Thinking about pitching a tent and doing some backyard camping with your family this summer? Sometimes it’s fun to stay home and let the kids set up their own campsite in your backyard. Check out this guide for everything you need to know about backyard camping and fun ideas to include the whole family.
When I was young my family went on a lot of camping trips. Most of our summer vacations were spent camping. We used to take long car rides all over the Canada, camping out at different destinations.
I was also a member of Girl Scouts when I was young and we did a ton of camping with our Girl Scout troop. I think it’s safe to say that if I was ever lost in the wilderness for days at a time with nothing to survive with but a paperclip and a shoestring I would be just fine.
At this point in my life I think I am officially done with camping in the wilderness. If given the choice between a tent and a hotel, I will choose the hotel every time.
My daughter, Chloe will be turning 7 this summer and she is very excited about the idea of camping. She went on an overnight camping trip with her grandparents last fall in their trailer and I know she would love tent camping.
Since she is a little young to go on camping trips (and because I’m not super thrilled at the idea) we will be pitching a tent in the yard for some fun backyard camping this summer.
Backyard camping is a blast for kids. Simply pitch a tent the yard and let them go nuts. If they are too scared to sleep overnight in the tent you can still use it as a shady spot to relax during the day and hang out after dark until it’s time for bed.
Make things even more fun by building a small campfire to make S’mores and roast hot dogs on summer nights.
Is it legal to camp in your own backyard?
Well that depends on where you live. In most places, technically no, but if you are just pitching a tent in your yard for your kids for a couple nights or letting a visiting friends sleepover in their RV parked out front you will probably be okay.
You’ll have to check your local laws to find out if what you are allowed to do in your yard. In general, the laws are there to prevent someone from allowing people to start a tent city in their neighborhood or parking their RV and trying to live permanently in someone’s driveway.
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Essentials for Backyard Camping
- Sleeping bags
- Air mattress
- Books with scary stories
- Lots of blankets and pillows
- Hot dog roasting supplies
- Deck of cards
How can you camp in your yard without a tent?
If you want to camp outside s but don’t have a tent you can always do some old-fashioned cowboy camping and sleep under the stars. Try some of these alternatives if you don’t have a tent available:
- Sleep in a hammock
- Set up sleeping bags on the trampoline if you have one
- Set up your blankets and pillows under a tarp in case of overnight showers
Back Yard Camping Birthday Parties
Does your child have a birthday in the summer months? Why not throw a camping themed birthday party? Your kiddo and all their friends can have fun roasting hot dogs on the campfire, making camp-themed crafts and then they can have a sleep over in the tent.
This is a great way to host a sleep over but keep the noisy kids outside of the house.
Backyard Camping Activities
Besides the usual bonfires and telling stories around the fire here are some other activities you can try:
- Get out some glow sticks and sparklers for fun after dark
- Start a campfire and roast hot dogs and make S’mores
- Set up an obstacle course in the back yard
- Play corn hole or volleyball
- Set up games like bingo or hopscotch
- Supply your kids with sidewalk chalk to create art.
What fun activities do you have planned this summer? Are you going to do some backyard camping this summer?