Camping essentials

Get ready for your next camping trip with our camping checklist

Whether you’re visiting the beaches in Cornwall or the hills of the Peak District, camping is a fun and affordable way to enjoy the great outdoors. To make your camping trip more enjoyable and comfortable, you’ll need a few essentials. In this guide, we outline everything you need to start enjoying camping.

Camping EssentialsCamping EssentialsCamping EssentialsCamping Essentials


Your tent is probably the most important piece of equipment you’ll need for camping. This is the shelter that will keep you dry and protected from the elements, so it’s important to choose the right one for you.

Tents are available in several different sizes from small 1 and 2 person tents, to larger 4 person tents. If you plan on keeping your equipment inside your tent, it’s a good idea to choose a size 1 person larger than the number of people sleeping in it.

If you want to set up your camp quickly or don’t want to deal with the hassle of packing away a complicated tent when you’re finished, take a look at our range of pop up tents. These will simply ‘pop up’ when removed from the bag, giving you an instant shelter.

Sleeping bag

Sleeping bag

A sleeping bag will keep you warm and cosy as you sleep inside your tent. Although you may feel like you don’t need a sleeping bag on warm summer nights, it can still get cold so we always recommend taking one.

Sleeping bag shapes

Mummy sleeping bags

Mummy sleeping bags have a shape that tapers towards the feet to give you a cosier fit which helps with heat retention.

Rectangular sleeping bags

These sleeping bags have a more standard rectangular shape that will give you slightly more room to move around.

Sleeping bag season ratings

When choosing your sleeping bag, you’ll see ‘season’ ratings. These can give you an indication of how warm the sleeping bag will keep you.

  • Season 1 sleeping bags are designed for the warmest summer nights. These are particularly suited to camping at festivals.
  • Season 2 sleeping bags are designed for use in late UK spring or early autumn where the nights will still get cold, even if the days are warm.
  • Season 3 sleeping bags are ideal for cold winter nights where there’s no frost expected.
  • Season 4 sleeping bags are designed for the coldest nights where there’s a chance of frost or snow on the ground.

All these season ratings are a guide. You may see sleeping bags which are between two different ratings and you should also consider how warm or cold you sleep.

Camping mat inside tent

Camping mat

As we’ve already stated, the nights can get cold even when the days are warm. It’s therefore a good idea to take a camping mat for underneath your sleeping bag which will provide you with some insulation from the cold ground. Camping mats will also add some extra comfort.

Air bed

If you want to add a touch of luxury to your camping experience, or sleeping on the hard floor isn’t for you, take a look at our collection of air beds. These will provide a comfortable place for you to rest your head and can be easily inflated using a pump. If you’re lucky enough to have a camping pitch with an electrical outlet or you can use the power from your car, take a look at our electric pumps.

Camping chair

Once you’ve got your home from home set up, you’re going to want somewhere to sit, relax and enjoy the outdoors, so don’t forget your camping chair. These chairs are lightweight and foldable, making them easy to carry to and from your campsite. Look out for extra features such as bottle holders and fun designs for kids.

Camping Lights

Camping lights

Campsites and tents can get very dark at night, so camping lights are essential. Most of us are used to simply using our phones as torches. However, as power is often limited at campsites, you’ll want to reserve your phone use for emergencies.

Camping lights are designed to provide light to brighten your tent and campsite a night. A torch is ideal for navigating your way to the toilet block when all the lights have been switched off.

We stock camping lights with several different power sources, which all have different advantages and disadvantages. If you use battery operated lights, you know you’ll always be able to replenish the power with a new battery if it runs out. Rechargeable camping lights mean you don’t need to carry extra batteries around with you but can be less useful if you don’t have a pitch with a power source.


A windbreak is the one item that will help your camp feel like your home from home. Windbreaks will keep you protected from the wind, which can be particularly useful if you’re trying to cook on a barbecue. They will also provide you with some extra privacy and give your camp a physical edge, think of it as the garden fence to your tent home.

Pop up privacy tent

If you have a smaller tent, like a pop-up tent, it can be difficult to get changed. That’s where the added height of a pop-up privacy tent is ideal. These, like pop up tents, can be setup instantly from the bag, so you can relax knowing you’ve got a comfortable place to change.

Camping stove

Camping stove

If you want the true camping experience you’ll want to be able to cook you own food, which is where the camping stove comes in. Gas or wood powered, these stoves are designed to be compact enough for you to carry to the campsite without too much trouble, but powerful enough to cook a delicious meal. Don’t forget to purchase a set of camping cooking pans or mess tins.

Drinks cooler

Once you’ve set up your camp and cooked all your food, you’re probably going to be quite thirsty. At times like this a warm drink just won’t cut it, which is where the drinks cooler comes in. Whether it’s an electric mini fridge if you have a power source, or a cool bag, this is one camping purchase you won’t regret.

Folding table

A folding camping table will make preparing and eating meals much easier. These tables are lightweight and can fold down to a compact size, so you won’t have any issues carrying them to the campsite.

Camping toilet

Depending on where you’re staying, you might not always have easy access to a toilet. Even if you do, the conditions of camping toilet blocks aren’t always the best. Taking your own camping toilet will give you the peace of mind that you’ve always got somewhere clean  should you need it.

This list contains the items we feel are essential for your camping trip. However, no camping trip is the same, so take a look at our camping range and start planning your trip today.