Car Camping Basics

What is car camping?

– It is going camping by car.

Pretty straight forward…

So why this is a separate topic, let’s say, from backpacking camping? Well, first of all, if you go car camping, you can take as much stuff as you want (almost) not bothering about the weight of the stuff.

I must admit that I am not a big lover of car camping. I consider it a way of camping for lazy people. However, I have a bit of experience with it. So, today I will share some great tips about car camping.

The Shelter

When going car camping, options for shelter are vast. You gan get a huge 6-person tent, you can sleep in your car (if it is big enough), you can pitch a tent on the top of your car… Before you head out, decide where you are going to sleep. If you take your whole family and your dog, the best idea is to get a 6-person tent (as large as possible). In such tent you will fit all your family and dogs and you will still have enough space.

If there are only two of you going camping, you can even skip a tent if you have a van or a car large enough to accommodate an air bed inside. Sleeping in car is great because you can control the temperature of your environment. If it is too cold, you can turn the heater on. And if it too hot, you can open windows and turn on the AC.

Get the Right Sleeping Bag

If you are going backpacking, every ounce in your backpack counts. That doesn’t apply, however, to car camping. Take the most comfortable sleeping bag there is. Avoid mummy bags. They are not too comfortable. Instead, go for a rectangular one. Even better, get a double bag. You will thank yourself when you go to sleep.

The Food

Yeah, this is the best part. You don’t have to compromise on that. Take the fresh food with you. No freeze-dried foods or noodles in a pack. You have the comfort of healthy eating when you go car camping. Actually, it can even be better than at home because when you go camping, you have enough time to prepare the dinner for you and your family. Be sure, though, to prepare well beforehand because you will probably not have a chance to go to the grocery store while camping…

Speaking about the food, you have to have the adequate cookware. Be sure to plan it well. Also, you have a comfort go take a stove with you so that you don’t have to bother making your lunch on a campfire.

The Cooler

It can be called an essential. If you want your drinks to be nice and cold, the cooler is a must. Get the one which is powered by electricity. It gives you all the comfort you need. You will be sure that the stuff inside it is always cold and ready for consumption. Be aware, thought, about the possibility to deplete your car battery. Make sure your car battery is charged before you go camping. Also, you can use a cooling gel inside your cooler.

Other Stuff for Your Comfort

Car camping is a luxurious way to be outside away from home. These items will make you enjoy your time to the fullest:

  • Camping chairs
  • Camping shower
  • Camping toilet
  • Tent fly
  • Foldable camping table
  • Hammock
  • Camping cots


I wish you a great time whether you go car camping for a weekend or you take a cross-country trip.


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