Car camping is a great way to travel domestically and explore the countryside when overseas travel is not an option. Many friends and families took car camping trips after plans for foreign trips were halted due to the outbreak of the coronavirus.
Car camping in the United Kingdom is something you must experience at least once in your lifetime. The glorious English countryside is full of rolling hills, quaint old cottages, charming pubs, pretty villages, and idyllic scenery that are waiting to be explored. A car camping adventure can also give you some much-needed respite from city life. On your next break from work, consider embarking on a car camping trip with your closest friends so you can make memories that you will cherish for a lifetime.
If you’re planning a car camping adventure, here’s a complete car camping checklist that will make sure you have the best time on the road.
1. Pack a map
While almost everyone these days relies on Google Maps to travel through new and unfamiliar places, having an old-fashioned map at hand can also be useful.
If you want to explore the English countryside on your car camping trip, know that there are many places in rural England that may not be visible on Google Maps. Since most tech-savvy people usually work and live in urban centres, there are many roads and villages in the country which have not yet been mapped online.
You might also find that your mobile signal goes out in certain places when you’re on the road. To be prepared for occasions like these, it’s best to keep a map handy, so you can find your destination even when you’re not getting cellular reception. If you still have trouble finding your destination, you can always go knock on a church or pub door and ask some friendly locals for directions.
2. Pack reusable bamboo cutlery sets
Why contribute to plastic waste when you can just take reusable bamboo cutlery sets along with you on your trip? The United Kingdom is a beautiful country, and as a responsible citizen, you should play your part in ensuring that the pristine countryside and the scenic beauty of the locations you visit remain untarnished by plastic waste.
It is estimated that people in the UK use 4.25 billion items of single-use plastic cutlery and 1.1 billion single-use plates a year. Currently, the United Kingdom is a major contributor to the global problem of plastic pollution. You can do your part to cut down on the menace of plastic pollution by being a responsible citizen and saying no to single-use plastic items, such as plastic water bottles, plastic straws, and plastic cutlery.
3. Pack enough food
Nothing could possibly be worse than being in uncharted territory without a supermarket in sight and having run out of food.
Make sure you plan ahead and pack enough food and drink to last you through your car camping trip. Pack items that won’t go bad within a few days, like crackers, chocolate, canned meat, baked beans, apples, bread, and milk cartons.
You can also avoid plastic waste by packing your own home-cooked meals instead of buying crisps and other snacks wrapped in plastic packaging. To store water and other drinks like lemonade, you can use reusable thermos.
Don’t pack plastic straws that will contribute to plastic waste; instead, pack reusable bamboo straws that can easily be cleaned and will last you for the entire length of your trip.
4. Fill up your vehicle’s fuel tank
This is one of the most important items on this checklist: make sure your vehicle has a full fuel tank before you hit the road. While there are fuel stations located all across the UK, you wouldn’t want to be stranded on the road with an empty fuel tank.
You should also pack money for fuel in case your fuel tank needs to be filled up at any point during your trip.
5. Pack a survival kit
Even though you’re not going on a trip into the wild, being prepared for unforeseen circumstances always pays off in the end.
Pack a survival kit that has a flashlight with a fully charged battery, a box of matches, and a GPS. Also, pack a first aid kit that you can use in case anyone suffers from a cut or burn.
Make sure you have enough food and water to last you for the entire duration of your car camping trip. Also, pack reusable cutlery, such as bamboo cutlery sets, for everyone on the trip so that you can always eat your meals on the go without needing to use disposable plastic cutlery.
Don’t forget your phone charger and other important items like your driver’s license, your wallet, your credit card, cash, and your house keys. You should also pack sleeping bags, sunscreen, insect repellent, and important medication if you have been prescribed any.
6. Keep a change of clothes
Keep one or two extra sets of clothes for your car camping trip. These will come in handy if the clothes you’re wearing become soiled, wet, torn, or otherwise dirty and need to be removed.
It would be wise to pack a spare set of clothes, even if the trip you’re taking is just for a day or two. You never know when you’ll need to change into clean new clothes. Maybe you’ll spot a charming old church off the beaten track and want to go and explore it from the inside. In that case, you’ll want to go in looking presentable in clean clothes that don’t smell like you’ve been wearing them for a week.
7. Pack a yoga mat
A car camping trip should be all about connecting with nature. If you meditate or practice yoga, make sure you pack a yoga mat that you can use to do meditative exercises and yoga poses outdoors. Doing yoga outdoors in the woods or under a night sky full of stars is a magical experience that you should have on your camping trip.
8. Miscellaneous items
Other items that you may want to pack for your car camping trip can include:
- A fishing rod and a fishing kit
- A hygiene kit (with items such as shampoo, talc, deodorant, and a comb)
- A tent and/or a hammock
- Paper towels
- Extra cash
- A regular pillow or a camping pillow
- Extra blankets
- Foldable camp chairs
- A compass
- Clothing repair kit
- Duct tape and nylon rope
- A Swiss Army Knife or a pocket knife
Make sure that all the aforementioned supplies are packed in a quantity that will be enough to provide for each person who’s coming on the trip.
9. Decide on the route you want to take
While the idea of journeying off into unknown territory can sound romantic, it’s not so fun when you find that you’re lost and have no idea how to find your way back to civilization.
Always decide on the route you want to take on your car camping trip. It’s also a good idea to take a friend along with you who’s good with directions, can read a map, and use a compass.
You should scout possible routes that you would like to take well before embarking on your car camping adventure. Ask a friend or a travel guide for the best spots (such as pubs, villages, churches, forests, parks, and memorials) to visit on your car camping journey.
10. Bring kitchen items
Last but not the least, bring important kitchen items that will help you survive on your camping trip. This includes a kettle, a saucepan, a small frying pan, and a spatula. With these, you’ll be able to cook simple meals by yourself in the woods.
Buy bamboo cooking utensils in the UK
Bamboo cooking utensils are biodegradable and can last for years. You can get customisable bamboo cutlery sets and bamboo cooking utensils at My Little Panda, a company offering UK customers eco-friendly alternatives to disposable plastic products.
Their range of eco-friendly products made from organic bamboo straw currently includes reusable bamboo cutlery sets, bamboo straws, bamboo cooking utensils, reusable makeup remover pads, reusable bamboo chopsticks, bamboo toothbrush holders, and more. You can also check out their rainbow-coloured Panda bamboo socks, which would be a perfect gift to give to a friend during Pride Month or to wear to the upcoming London Pride Parade in July.