I just absolutely love camping! I always have so much fun. Turn off the cell phone, forget social media, and just breathe in nature.
Before kids, camping was a favorite pastime. Now that I have a houseful of kids, the itinerary has changed a bit, but we still have so much fun.
If you are looking forward to taking the entire family on the next camping trip, or if you know someone with outdoorsy kids, who may be stumped on what would be a great gift idea, this is the perfect list to look at.
We have put together a list of 27 great camping gift ideas for kids. Some items are more practical and no-brainers, but some of these items are super awesome and guaranteed to make camping even more fun.
Fun Camping Gifts and Toys for Younger Children
A great idea for an outdoorsy child is to teach them how to use a magnifying glass. Not only can the little kids get up close and personal to the smaller bugs, like ants, but it’s also a good idea to show the little campers that in an emergency, you can make a fire using a magnifying glass. This is a fun way to incorporate an important life skill.
When little explorers can't go camping outdoors, this play set with fun camping toys is the next best thing! It comes with all the essential camping gear including a play pop-up tent, hat, pretend campfire with stand, binoculars, oil lamp, 2-in-1 pretend hatchet with knife, magnifier, water bottle, cooking pan with pretend foods, lunch box, 3-in-1 emergency whistle with functions of flashlights and compass, and pretend camping utensils.
Perfect for pretend play indoors at home, in the back yard, or even next to the grown-ups' tent on the next camping trip.
One of my fondest memories of my childhood is using my butterfly net to swoop up beautiful butterflies and moths, as well as hunting for lizards, frogs, and dragonflies. I loved catching (and releasing) all types of creatures.
Kids will enjoy hours of fun playing with this bug catcher kit that includes a bug house, insect net, binoculars, tweezers, magnifier, and 2 toy bugs.
This educational gift will quickly become their favorite way to connect with nature for some screen-free time in the fresh air! (And on a personal note - we love all of the kids' toys from B. toys. They are so well-made and perfect for little hands!)
This lantern/headlamp combo for kids is as adorable as it is useful! They can use it on their next family camping trip to play outdoor games after dark, or take it into their bedroom closet for some make believe adventures on a rainy day. Provides 360-degree light as well as directional light from the owl's eyes.
Not into owls? Other animals and fun options are available to choose from.
This explorer kit includes everything a kid needs for bird watching – a good pair of binoculars, a fan to keep cool, a magnifying glass, crank flashlight, and a 5-in-1 multi tool packaged in a carrying case.
The perfect outdoor gift for a trip to visit the national parks, for a simple camping trip with the family, or to see nature up close in their own backyard. Ideal for ages 4-8.
Cool Camping Gifts for Bigger Kids and Teens
Do you need a fun way to get the older kids to play with the younger kids? A scavenger hunt will provide so much fun to the entire family. Keep them from being bored with this activity set that includes a pair of walkie talkies and cards that help them learn how to become super spies as they hunt for items!
Walkie talkies have been a fun outdoor activity for kids of all ages for many years, and they are just as cool now as they have always been! My own children have this set and love to play with them indoors on rainy days.
This set has good quality transmission and includes a built-in flashlight for outdoor adventures in the dark. Definitely one of my top picks, and a great option if you're looking for fun camping gift ideas or screen-free ways to keep kids entertained.
A perfect gift for any occasion is an assortment of fun games. One that will add to the camping experience is a memory match game that even the younger children can play. Sometimes little hands can’t play all the fun games that the older children can, but having this game on the family camping trip is perfect for kids of all ages.
Is there anything more fun than sailing through the trees? Turn any slack line into a zipline with this kit from Trailblaze. Comes with a wooden monkey bar to hold onto, but can be switched out to use any other object. Set it up in your backyard, or take it camping for some super outdoor fun!
(Doesn't include the slackline.)
While we are generally very "leave no trace," these paint pens can be the perfect gift for any nature lover. This set includes 12 non-toxic pens that are water-based and work on a variety of surfaces including rocks, stone, metal, pottery, smooth wood, and more.
Kids of all ages can enjoy painting rocks for The Kindness Rocks Project, adding a piece of eco-friendly art to a nature trail, or decorating a souvenir from their latest camping experience or wilderness expedition.
The Polka Dot Camping set from Our Generation makes sure your little one’s dolls camp in style. It includes a tent, sleeping bag, coffee pot, mug, plate, marshmallow, hot dog, roasting stick, and a lantern that really lights up!
Each piece is perfectly sized for your child's Our Generation Dolls, American Girl Dolls (or other 18-inch dolls), bringing more personality and excitement to playtime.
This is a practical gift paired with cool technology that any music lover will enjoy receiving! Keep their head and ears warm while they listen to their favorite tunes - no headphones or earbuds needed. They just connect their device via Bluetooth for up to 20 hours of continuous play.
Makes a great gift for an older kid or young adult who enjoys lots of outdoor play time but doesn't want to be completely disconnected.
If they love adventure, get them a GoPro video camera. The GoPro HERO10 is waterproof with front LCD and touch rear screens, produces unbelievable image quality, and has 1080p live streaming capabilities.
Let them capture photos and videos of all their coolest adventures to easily upload to social media and YouTube. This high quality camera is on of the most amazing gifts and is sure to go everywhere with them so they never miss a moment.
This sensory swing is such a fun gift for kids! Made of durable canvas material, it is suited for hanging indoors or outdoors. Set it up in a corner of their bedroom, under a tree in the backyard, or take it on your next camping trip to give them a place to relax and read or rest.
Practical and Useful Kids’ Camping Gifts
Kids always want to have their own camping gear. Get them their own bag so they can stay warm and feel like a "real" outdoor camper. Bonus for you - they won't be kicking you all night!
This Coleman sleeping bag glows in the dark, comes in different colors that kids love, and is rated down to 50 degrees Fahrenheit to keep them snug as a bug.
Getting the kids their own personalized water bottle is a perfect camping gift. This 12 ounce reusable water bottle is perfect for young kids, with a cool dino design that glows in the dark and and easy to open and lock lid. The inside is stainless steel for easy cleaning and to keep drinks cold.
We have a different version of this water bottle, and it has been perfect for my little guy! Plus it reduces the number of plastic bottles that we have to use, which is super important to nature lovers like us.
This is a practical gift that comes in handy quite often, whether you're in your own backyard, at a ball game, or out in the woods and need a camping chair. This kid size camp chair is sturdy and secure so it won't easily tip over, and has a fun glow in the dark design that kids love. Plus it comes with a mesh holder so they can easily keep up with their water bottle (or the rocks they collect).
Carry bag included, of course.
When the adults and older children go fishing, the little kids just want to be included. One of the best ways for them to join the fun is with their own fishing pole and accessories! This rod and reel set includes a tackle box with hooks, lures, and all kinds of fishing things they will need.
This is a great choice for active kids who are just learning to fish but don't yet need pro fishing equipment. (We all know how it feels to watch that expensive rod and reel sink to the bottom of a lake, right?)
I almost included Hot Hands as one of the best gifts for this list, then I realized how much better rechargeable hand warmers are! This hand warmer also doubles as a backup battery and is easily charged via USB. It has 3 different temperature settings and is a great way to keep cold hands warm outdoors (or even indoors, if needed!).
Trust me when I say one of the best outdoor gift ideas is a simple hammock! We had one in our backyard when I was a kid, and we spent so much time relaxing on it. This one is lightweight, super affordable (no need to pay extra cost for anything fancy), and perfect for taking along when camping or hiking.
Nature and Camping Books for Kids
No camping trip is complete without having a fun book to read by flashlight in your tent or under the stars. These camping kids books are some of our favorite, and definitely must be included in our list of camping gifts!
From worms, birds, and spiders to trees, flowers, and clouds, young explorers learn what to look and listen for wherever they are — whether in a nature preserve, an urban park, or a suburban backyard. Seek-and-find lists, on-the-trail art projects, and discovery games get kids engaged in hands-on learning about nature, and a real pull-out magnifying glass helps them get a close-up glimpse of leaf veins, seed pods, and tiny insects. Filled with activities, checklists, and stickers, this interactive nature guide belongs in every kid’s backpack.
Perfect for kids ages 4-8.
One of our favorite characters, Llama Llama, is back again for a camping trip! Little ones will love reading this board book so they know what to expect on their first camping adventure, and to help them to not be scared to encounter new things.
Young explorers can use this journal to get started with bird watching. They can track the birds they see, record scientific details, and learn all about the world around them! Perfect for kids 8-12.
We hope this list of camping gift ideas has helped you to find the perfect kids’ camping gifts for your young adventurers! Whether you choose to give them an essential item that will grow their personal camping equipment or surprise them with fun gifts and games to make the outdoors more fun and exciting, we are sure they will love what they get!