Camping with toddlers is a wonderful way to show them all kinds of new and exciting things. It’s a way for the family to bond over every leaf and bug and critter you come across. It’s also a great way to lose your mind if you don’t come prepared.
Camping with Toddlers 101
When camping with toddlers, you have two main concerns: keeping them safe, and keeping your sanity intact. Toddlers can be tons of fun, but they can also be little devils if they aren’t properly occupied and stimulated. Tiny, screaming, red-eyed devils. You know it’s true. So what are we to do? I’m so glad you asked!
Keep Them Safe
First and foremost is ensuring that your little ones survive the trip. Never ever let your toddlers out of your sight. We all know how much trouble an unattended toddler can get into when we aren’t looking, and that’s just in the house. Now imagine taking your eyes off of your toddler for a minute out in the wilderness. Yikes.
Holding hands is a big one as well when camping with toddlers. Toddlers are impulsive and not very coordinated, generally speaking. Holding hands ensures that they don’t dash off to pet the cute creature they see in the distance, and it also ensures that they won’t take a tumble.
Teach Them Safety
When camping with toddlers, teaching them about safety is another great way to keep them safe. Use every opportunity to teach them the dos and do nots of camping. When little Susie wants to pet the deer, explain to her that it’s wild, and it doesn’t want to be touched. Simple things like that can help keep the tots from getting into dangerous situations. We used a lot of phrases like look don’t touch when our kids were little. Sometimes they even listened. LOL.
Keep Your Sanity
Keeping the kids safe is almost a no-brainer when camping with toddlers. It’s basically practicing all of the same safeguards we do while we’re in the house. Keeping our sanity is a different matter, though. All it takes is one ultra-bored moment, and tykes are in full-on meltdown.
Feed Their Curiosity
One of the best ways to occupy the kiddos is by going on a camping treasure hunt. When you’re on your walks with the little ones, keep them engaged by cataloging everything. Ask them to study everything from the bugs on the ground to the rocks to the leaves. Children are naturally curious, so engaging them in a game like this is a great way to keep them interested in the world around them.
Fishing is also a great activity to do when camping with toddlers. Think about it. You’ve got everything from “EWW! Worms!” to “You got a fish!” to “I got one, too!”. It’s exciting and engaging, and it’s so much fun to watch the kids’ faces when they catch their very own fish.
Here’s my biggest tip of all when you’re camping with toddlers. If all else fails, bring out the coloring books. Of course, we want our camping adventure to be all about getting the kids in touch with the world around them, but their attention spans are only so long. Colouring books are the ultimate toddler soother.
Camping with Toddlers is Great Fun
You just need to be prepared. It’s not as daunting as it sounds either. Just remember these few things: Practice common sense safety. Keep the kiddos engaged. Last but not least, never leave home without the colouring books. If you do that, your camping trip is sure to be a success.
Have you ever camped with toddlers. or children younger than 6? How did you manage?