Do you want to experience the outdoors…but you’re not quite ready for the GREAT outdoors? Here’s a great idea: instead of jumping both feet into camping, why not try an adventure in your own backyard by creating a backyard camping experience? Grab a tent and a sleeping bag and spend the night under the stars without going too far from home (and indoor plumbing). It’s a great activity for the whole family, especially if you have little kids who aren’t up for nights truly in the wilderness. The best part is that you can bring all kinds of games to get the family moving: no screen time here. If you’re ready to set up your camping experience, just keep on scrolling: I’ve put together the comprehensive list of everything you’ll need to make it the perfect night. You can reuse them over and over because we promise you’ll have a great time.
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Get Cooking with These Grill Accessories
If you’re going to be spending the evening in the backyard, one of the best things to do is grill! Get yourself ready for a feast with this set of grilling accessories that includes tongs, a fork, spatula, meat thermometer, knives, meat claws, skewers, and more!
You Can’t Camp without the Perfect Chair
You’re not hanging out in the backyard to work hard, are you? Obviously, you want to relax, and the best way to do it is in this lounge chair.
The reviews say: “This is the best folding lounge I purchased. My wife was pleased with the product that I bought the second one. A must-have.”
Have a Fire in Your Own Backyard
What’s camping without a fire? Bring the fire pit to your backyard with this fire bowl that you’re sure to use any time you’re hanging out outside. Most importantly, you can use it for roasting marshmallows, which means you can get your s’mores on.
You Can’t Go Camping without a Sleeping Bag
No one is going camping if there isn’t a sleeping bag, right? So make sure you invest in one that’s going to be comfortable. This one is great for kids and is relatively lightweight, so you don’t get overheated in the middle of the summer.
This Tent Fits the Whole Family
Next to your sleeping bag, a tent is the next most important thing to include on your camping pack list! This one is perfect for a family as it fits four, and will feel super spacious when you pack it in for the night.
Rest Comfortably with This Camp Pillow
Want to add a bit more luxury to your camping experience? Try grabbing a camping pillow. This one is great whether you’re a serious hiker or just camping in the backyard.
The reviews say: “Really tiny in the package, and super lightweight. I love the texture of the pillow, it isn’t sticky and plasticky like most portable pillows. It also doesn’t deflate overnight at all. Really great support and nice colour options. The strap is also a genius feature that keeps your pillow from sliding around your sleeping pad.”
It’s Time to Get Grilling
Remember when we said grilling was one of the best parts about hanging out outside? Well if you don’t have a grill on hand, this little tabletop buddy is a super inexpensive way to add one to your inventory. At less than $50, you’re not going to get a better deal.
Chill Out in Your Hammock
One of my favorite parts of camping is spending time chilling in a hammock. And you won’t get a better one than this one.
The reviews say: “Used it in our backyard during pandemic times since we can not go anywhere we wanted to make our backyard somewhere we can relax.
All of our family goes out everyday and enjoys it on different times. It is a really good quality.”
Bring a Blanket to Stay Warm
If you live somewhere the temperature tends to drop in the evenings, it’s a great idea to include a blanket when you haul everything out for your backyard camping. Not only is this one super warm, but it’s also incredibly durable and will last for years, even if you’re working it hard outside.
Complete Your Camping Trip by Roasting Marshmallows
Nothing beats roasting some marshmallows over the fire, but I have to say that the old-school way of doing it with sticks you just find on the ground is…well a little unsanitary. Give the tradition an upgrade with these roasting sticks.
Bring the Fun Outside
If you’ve got kids (or even if you don’t), camping is more fun when you bring some games to keep everyone entertained: I personally love this bean bag toss.
The reviews say: “Fun for all ages! This would be fun for date night, for kids, for camping, the possibilities are endless!
I love how portable this set is. Everything fits nicely into this little storage bag. It is quick and easy to set up.”
Add a Game of Skill
If a beanbag toss isn’t quite your cup of tea, there are other lawn games to try too! This bottle bash is perfect for those who like to drink an adult beverage.
The reviews say: “We purchased this game set with the anticipation that we would be spending a lot of time at home during the pandemic and we were wanting to play something new. This game is a fun family game and would be very entertaining for a party or family get-together. It can be challenging in that the players need good aim, and you really have to have quick reflexes to catch the bottle or frisbee. Doing this all with one hand adds even more complexity. We recommend having a drink in hand to encourage one-handed play. Overall, we would recommend this game as it is a lot of fun and it has been one of our favourites to play over the summer.”
This Inflatable Lounger Is Super Cozy
Invest in this lounger for backyard camping, then appreciate it any time you hit the beach or spend time outdoors. It’s super comfortable, incredibly portable, and easy to inflate, so no matter where you go you have the perfect seat.
This Baby Tent Lets Little Ones Play Outside
If you’ve got a little one who tends to make escape attempts, this baby tent is the perfect way to include them in your backyard camping. Set it up and let them loose to play with toys while feeling included in the fun!
Your Kids Will Love This Hammock Swing
My kids cannot get over how much fun this hammock swing is. It’s big enough for two or three, which means they’ll have tons of fun pushing each other and jumping in for the ride. During quieter times it’s great as a reading nook.
Keep Bugs Away
One of my least favourite parts about spending time outdoors is the bugs. Luckily we have the technology to fix that, with this bug zapper.
The reviews say” “The mosquitos where I live can be pretty bad so having this allows me to enjoy my balcony with no uninvited guests lol. It works really well, looks nice and wasn’t too expensive.”
Eat in Style
Chances are you don’t have a picnic table conveniently hanging out in your backyard, so you’ll want somewhere to put your drinks and food while you’re camping. This folding camp table works great, and stores easily when you’re done with it.
This Headlamp Is a Camping Must
As the sun starts to go down, you’ll want to have a few different light options on hand. The first one is a headlamp: these are great for using if you want to keep your hands free.
Don’t Forget a Few Handheld Flashlights
You’ll also probably want a couple of standard flashlights on hand. This set of two will make sure everyone in your family has light when they need it.
The reviews say: “These flashlights are great. The set is around $16.00, so each one is about $8.00. They are very well built and the metal is very strong. They are the same quality of other flash lights I’ve bought for 6 times the price. They zoom in/out and are a cool white. They are very bright but they are not the brightest ones out there.”
You’ll Need a Lighter to Start Your Fire
Don’t head outside without a way to light your campfire! My favourite lighter is this rechargeable USB lighter that even has a flexible neck so you can reach anything. When you’re not using it to light campfires, it works great for candles.
This Cooking Set Is Made for Camping (Quite Literally)
Don’t ruin your pots and pans by bringing them outside! Instead, try this camping cook wear set.
The reviews say: “The pot is actually a bit bigger than I thought it would be pan is perfect size for cooking two eggs. The fork & ladle are excellent and the two bowls are perfect for condiments or children.”
This Dinnerware Set Gives Everyone Plates, Cups, and Cutlery
You’ll also want to invest in some camping dishes to make sure your good dishes stay happily in the kitchen where they belong. This set comes with plates, bowls, mugs, and utensils, so you’re set for any meal.
Add a Sleeping Pad for More Comfort
It’s true that the ground is not always the comfiest place to sleep, even with a sleeping bag. Add a sleeping pad to make it a little nicer.
The reviews say: “I was overly impressed with the size, thickness, easy to blow up/deflate and small size to fit on a bike, backpack or motorcycle. I blew it up in Colorado, slept on it for 3 nights with no loss of air at any time. I will be looking at buying another couple of them just to have!!! Job well done to this company & a big thank you!”
Don’t Forget to Protect Your Skin
If you’re headed outdoors before the sun goes down, you don’t want to go without your sunscreen. You’ll love how easily this 50 SPF goes on, and it keeps your skin safe for hours.
Bubbles Are a Great Outdoor Amusement
If your kids are starting to get antsy outside, just hand them some bubbles and watch them entertain themselves. This 12-pack means everyone gets their own bottle, and you’ll have plenty to get you through the summer.
Set Up This Lantern So Everyone Can See
You’ll want to invest in a lantern that will help you light up your whole tent while you’re getting ready for bed, and this one is great!
The reviews say: “It’s surprisingly small, but the light super bright. Battery life — well, it’s going to be as good as the freshness of your batteries. It uses replaceable “D”s, so in theory, it should power the light for a long while, specially on the lower settings. The dim-ability is nice.”
This Camp Chair Has Built-in Cup Holders!
You’d be shocked at how often it’s useful to have a good, solid camp chair and I cannot recommend this one highly enough. It has built-in padding on the seat and back, a cooler pouch on the armrest, a storage pocket for your reading, and a cup holder. What else could you want?
Carry Your Coffee in Style
When I go camping, I like to wake up with a cup of coffee, and the best brand of tumbler to keep your coffee warm outside is Yeti.
The reviews say: “These things blow my mind. Amazing quality. True story I made my tea at 6am go to work forgot it in the car @ -24 ran outside right at noon for lunch and thought for sure it would be frozen. Nope the outside felt cold but I popped the top and it was steamy. I live in Northern Ontario, the Snow capital of Ontario. Outstanding.”
This Clothesline Is Multipurpose
Even if you’re not straying far from home, you’ll probably appreciate having this clothesline for your gear: you can use it to keep snacks out of reach of ants or critters, to hang up wet bathing suits, and store your camping essentials.
Stay Cool with a Chargeable Fan
When it gets super warm outside, you want to make sure you have a fan to stay cool. This one works without being plugged in.
Reviews say “Everything; lightweight, soundless, RECHARGEABLE BATTERY VIA USB, 3 cycles of strong air & brightness, hanging or place on tabletop. LOVE ❤️ LOVE ❤️ LOVE❤️ IT. I AM BUYING 3 MORE.”
This Mystical Fire Turns Flames Beautiful Colours
Want to add a bit more fun to your fire? Try out these coloured flames.
The reviews say: “Finding the pack of coloured flames on Amazon makes life so much easier, and they were one day shipping! Sweet!!! They’re exactly what you’d expect. They make every colour they usually do, and one package lasts for well over an hour.”
You Never Know When You’ll Need a Swiss Army Knife
It’s just a good idea to have a Swiss army knife on hand when you’re going to be spending time outside. This one has a knife blade, scissors, nail file with screwdriver tip, toothpick, and tweezers, and it’s incredibly sturdy. Plus it comes with a key ring so you can pop it on your keys.
Bring a Ukulele for a Sing-Along
One great addition to your camping time is a ukulele: bring it outside for some sing along time.
The reviews say: “It has a beautiful finish. After tuning it, it sounded very good. For the price, this is a quality item. The built in tuner ( acoustic/electric model) is spot on for tuning. It comes with a nice cleaning/polishing cloth, one plastic pick and one felt pick.”
These Lights Are Perfect for Your Backyard
If you’re using your backyard camping trip as an excuse to add some updates to the backyard, these deck lights are for you. They’re totally weatherproof and add great ambience to your outdoor space.
Bring All Your Food and Bevvies
Don’t keep running into the house every 10 minutes: pack up your cooler and keep everything you need right at hand.
The reviews say: “This cooler is actually much bigger than I need, but the price on sale ($28) was excellent. I tested it with ice packs. After five days of opening it once a day, the packs still contained ice, so I believe it lives up to its claim of keeping ice for three days. It’s too big for my needs, but I just pack the unneeded space with dry foods in a plastic bag, plates, and utensils. I also added a silver blanket for extra insulation.”
These Scary Stories Will Keep Everyone Entertained
I remember telling these same stories with my friends around the campfire when I was a kid, so I cannot recommend highly enough that you order a copy of this book and read some of the spooky tales when it starts to get dark.
Use This Projector to Make It a Movie Night
If you’re not book people, another option is to set up this projector in the backyard and kick off your camping with a movie!
The reviews say: “I love the built-in DVD player and internal speaker system. The compactness will allow us to setup movie nights with ease and less stress since we won’t be hauling so much excess equipment outside. The picture is perfect for our home, outdoor movies on our deck. Great purchase and investment for family fun with lots of memories to be made.”