Camping Checklist

This article is part of our series: Intro to Camping.

 Illustration of items in camping checklist

Camping is a great way to get outside with family and friends or even by yourself. You can go camping in many state and national parks, at private campgrounds, in the backcountry or even in your own backyard.

Most campsites include a picnic table, a place to park your car and a spot to pitch your tent. Many also have shared bathrooms and running water.

What to Bring Camping

If it’s your first time camping, it might be best to borrow or rent some of these things. 

  1. Tent
  2. Sleeping Bags
  3. Sleeping Pads
  4. Plenty of Food
  5. Weather-appropriate Clothing
  6. Hygiene & Medical Essentials

Part of the joy of camping is needing very little gear to exist outdoors. But, it’s also nice to have a comfortable, convenient and homey campsite. As you become a more experienced camper, you may find that part of the fun is figuring out what to bring along to meet your needs.

How to Use This Camping Checklist

While you’re packing, use this handy camping checklist to make sure you don’t forget anything important. This is a comprehensive list, and we don't expect you to bring along every item — though we won't judge you if you do!


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Camping Checklist

In and Around Camp


Clothing & Footwear Packing List

If chilly nights are possible, come prepared.


Kitchen Supplies

Select according to personal tastes and needs:



For more options, see our Camp Kitchen Checklist.

  • Coffee
  • Cereal/granola/oatmeal
  • Eggs (freeze-dried or fresh)
  • Breakfast bars
  • Batter mix
  • Syrup
  • Butter/margarine
  • Jelly/jam
  • Bread/bagels
  • Meat (fresh and jerky)
  • Soup mixes/bouillon cubes
  • Prepared or freeze-dried meals
  • Cooking oil/spray
  • Salt/pepper
  • Tea
  • Milk (powdered or fresh)
  • Cocoa
  • Drink mixes
  • Bottled/canned beverages
  • Energy food (bars, gels, trail mix)
  • Fruit (dried and fresh)
  • Vegetables
  • Cheese
  • Crackers/chips
  • Chocolate/sweets
  • Marshmallows
  • Spice kit
  • Herbs

Personal Items

Tip: To more easily locate gear, keep similar items in a single duffel.

Other Items to Bring


Fun Stuff

Browse Games and Toys for more ideas.

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