First Time Camping List – Beginners Guide with Experts Advice

Last Updated:

For a first-time camper camping can almost seem overwhelming at first. Though let me assure you that making a simple list is the easy solution to solve this problem.

Knowing what kind of camping trip before you leave can also be a good thing to consider before starting on your adventure. Whether that be certain weather conditions or keeping the number of things you bring to a minimum there are some things to keep in mind depending what you want.

For example, if you are a hiker and are carrying your gear with you it would be definitely worth considering keeping your load as light as possible. Anyway, below I have listed all the most important things you should consider bringing on your upcoming camping adventure!


Tent, Poles, Stakes

Recommended ChoicesTents, Stakes

Probably the most important thing for basically any camping trip is a tent. Choosing your tent should be a thing where you take your time choosing as it is arguably the most important piece for any camping trip. Of course, assuming that you are not using an alternative such as a hammock for example. Once piece of advice that I feel is important to tell you is to not skimp on a tent. If you end up going for a lower quality option, it could in fact end up costing you more in the long-term due to problems or replacements you may have to make.

Tent Footprint

When I say tent footprint, I basically mean the manual or guidelines that came with the tent. This most commonly will show you how to get the tent set up. For a beginner who isn’t sure you should definitely bring this with you until you are confident about setting up your tent without it.


Bringing an extra tarp can be very useful on certain occasions. This could be used as a backup or even used as an additional layer between the tent and the ground which is sure to increase the length of your tents lifespan because it will be better protected.

Sleeping Bag

Recommended ChoicesCold Weather Sleeping Bags

Of course, a sleeping bag is important for most campers and I would recommend you don’t skimp on this.

Sleeping Pad

The sleeping pad adds an additional layer of comfort to camping and once you get used to it you won’t want to go back to not having one.

Repair Kit

Having a basic repair kit is something that is often overlooked when it comes to camping and you will be regretting it if you don’t have one sometime on an upcoming trip.


Recommended Choices –  Pillows

Pretty self-explanatory but I recommend getting pillows that are made for camping and not just a pillow from home. Check out my choices for some pillows I have used myself.


Recommended ChoicesBlankets

Often a sleeping bag will be enough when camping but if perhaps you are camping somewhere, and you need extra heat then bringing an additional blanket would be a fantastic idea. Again, blankets designed for camping would be preferable.


Sometimes overlooked but if you are staying in and around your tent a lot having some good camping chairs is a must.

Flashlights/ Lanterns

Recommended ChoicesFlashlights

Having something for light at nighttime is important. I would recommend having both a lantern and a flashlight ideally.



If you are wanting to do your own cooking, you will need a stove or something to cook your food.


If you are using a stove or something similar, then you will need fuel with that.


Matches or a lighter are needed for starting some cooking devices. They can also be useful for starting a campfire as well if needed.


If you are wanting a more natural camping experience you will need firewood for your fire. Depending on where you are camping you may be able to access some firewood onsite. Though if you know that not to be the case you will need to bring some with you beforehand.


Again, if you are cooking you should bring along a pot/pan. Try and search for a pot that has been designed for camping and not just one from your home kitchen.

Corkscrew/ Bottle Opener

Things like a corkscrew or a bottle opener can be useful and handy to have with you.


Recommended ChoicesBest Cooler for the Money

Depending on the style of your camping trip some people would almost consider a cooler a necessity and I can see why they would say that. I myself usually bring a cooler along with me to keep my food and drinks cold. Sometimes people think you need a big cooler filled with ice for it to properly work and while a big cooler filled with ice is probably the best option for keeping ice longer there are still plenty of coolers out there that are portable and hold ice a long time. Check out my recommendations for ideas.


Of course, at some camp sites water can be easily accessed whereas with others it difficult to come by. If you aren’t sure I would recommend bringing water for at least 2 days until you know where to access it near your campsite.

Cooking Utensils

If you are cooking don’t forget your utensils and your cutlery.


Daytime Clothes

Knowing the weather where you are camping and the weather forecast before you leave is my best advice. Bring clothes to suit the weather conditions though I recommend bringing at least one back up for wet weather even if it’s forcast to be dry.


Again, with sleepwear just remember to consider the nighttime weather and how much clothes you will need before leaving.

Rain-wear/Swimsuit etc

Just like the others you will likely know what you need to bring with you depending on conditions. Although I would always recommend rainwear regardless.

Hats/Gloves etc

Whether that be for warm or cold or wet or dry just try to bring clothing choices that keep you dry or protect your skin from the sun or anything else that may be needed for your camping trip.



I always recommend sunscreen to protect your skin even in the winter because your skin may not be used to being exposed to the sun as much as it would be during normal week.

Insect Repellent

Insect repellent is often overlooked, and I would definitely recommend you get some before leaving.

First Aid

It’s important you bring a first aid kit with you on your camping trip. Even a basic kit should be enough for most people.


Don’t forget your regular medications if you have any and some extras which you may need on the camping trip. Things like pain killers and allergy tablets are always useful to bring with you.


Depending on how much you want to bring will depend on how many things you want to be included here. Though things like toothbrush will be basically compulsory.

First Time Camping List


There is no doubt for camping that you can bring a host of different things with you. It just important to consider everything and then decide what you want to bring along. Most people won’t bring everything I listed but a selection of the things they feel they need to bring. This list is meant to make you be aware of things that maybe you didn’t think prior and offer you some suggestions through our recommended choices.

Happy camping!

Please Share :

Leave a Comment