Take a twist on the traditional way to outdoor camp by taking your adventure to the sand and surf. These Beach Camping Basics and Tips will have you ready to embrace the sand and sun at your favorite local beach campsite.
Beach Camping Basics & Tips
Nothing feels more relaxing and fun to me than kicking back on a sun-drenched beach while my kids giggle and splash in the water. This could just be the Florida girl in me, but very few things beat beach camping in the summertime. Whether you’re embarking on this adventure for the first time on your own or with your family, preparation is key to making this a worthwhile endeavor for everyone, especially you. Focus on these and before you know it, you’ll be on your way, floppy sun hat in hand, to make some unforgettable summer memories.
Know Your Destination Area
Whether you’re camping directly on a beach or at a nearby campsite, it’s important to know the area you’re going to. Will there be a source of water available? What about electricity and showers/bathrooms? If it’s a bare campsite, that means you’ll need to bring in everything you need and be prepared to haul it back out again.
Regardless of the facilities and amenities provided, you’ll need to plan accordingly for how long you’re going to stay. There are plenty of camping hacks out there to help you improvise for what you need as well. Grab a map of your campground and see if you can get there by car or you’ll need to walk a ways. That will affect what you decide to bring with you!
Make a List
There’s no worse feeling than arriving at your camping spot, boogie board in hand and poised to dive in, and realizing that you forgot diapers or deodorant. While that might be a strong tactic for claiming more sleeping space, forgetting necessary items can most assuredly add unwanted stress to your life.
It might be the natural organizer in me, but I feel more confident that I have all the essentials when I have a checklist in front of me. Try this free beach packing list to make sure you remember everything for your beach camping trip.
Plan Your Meals Ahead
While carving a fishing spear out of a tree branch in order to “live off the land” may seem quite rugged and exciting, that excitement will quickly wane after your three-year-old’s first piercing screams for animal crackers. Unfortunately, you can’t hunt and gather those in the wild.
It’s important to have meals planned BEFORE you arrive at your campsite. Make sure the meals are low-prep and can easily be prepared over a campfire. There are some delicious foil packet meals out there that my family has tried and loved. Also, speaking from experience, aluminum foil is the quintessential camping meal prep item that every beach camper should have in their arsenal.
Snacks are a must. After all, the sun can quickly take you from full to famished. One recipe we always make for the beach is our beach snack mix! Double or even triple your recipe for hungry bellies.
Have the Right Equipment
Having the right camping equipment can make or break your beach camping experience. You’ll want to invest in gear that’s appropriate for the place and time of year you’re making your trip. This doesn’t mean that you’ll have to take out a second mortgage on your home, though. Ask your friends if you can borrow their tents/gear first, and there is nothing wrong with gently used camping tents and equipment either.
Regardless of how you get your hands on a tent, you’ll want to ensure it has the following qualities:
- Easy set-up and breakdown
- UPF 50+ Protection (Recommended)
You’ll also want to make sure that you have good ground cover to prepare for any type of weather. If it’s hot, there’s a virtual certainty of sand fleas and ticks. No one wants to worry about sharing their sleeping quarters with sand fleas. No one.
Wear Appropriate Clothing
The type of beach you’re camping at (sandy or rocky) will determine what clothing you’ll want to throw in your suitcase, but for the most part, you’ll want items that are:
- Lightweight and moisture-wicking
- A nice hat that shades you from the sun
- Mosquito netting
- Water shoes (if beach is sandy)
- Water-resistant sneakers (if beach is rocky)
All in all, the key to a fun, memorable beach camping experience is preparation, organization, and a healthy thirst for adventure. Follow these Beach Camping Basics and you’ll be a pro in no time. So, what are you waiting for? Let’s go to the beach!
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