If you are wavering about whether or not you want to go camping with the family, we have put together a list to help you make that decision a little easier (and the most obvious reason not listed below is that its fun!!!)
Here are 5 reasons why you should take your children camping.
1. Family bonding time
Sleeping in a tent, campervan or caravan is one way to get everyone together in close proximity. But more than that, it allows you as a family to do so many activities that possibly you don’t (or won’t) do at home because of the busy lives we lead.
Camping will allow you to cook together, prepare meals, work to set up your temporary “abode” for the night and do activities like hiking, fishing, roasting marshmallows, exploring, to name but a few. Telling tales around the campfire, and seeing children mesmerised by the story (and not their Nintendo DS) is priceless!
Without the interruptions of home, it may also be a chance to tell and hear more from each other.
2. Experience nature
Did you know that its estimated only 19% of children climb trees now?
Research has shown the benefits of outdoor experiences for children. The research shows that children who experience nature are happier, healthier and also helps with cognitive development. Impressive right?
A study in the UK showed that a sample of school-age children knew more about Pokemon than they did about wildlife. That is pretty scary to think that children were more up to date on pretend Japanese anime than real life creatures!
So, camping is going to get your children out of their backyards, and into an environment that is going to allow them to see and experience nature, unlike their home.
And whilst for some, it may prove a little scary or daunting, do persevere.
The bug that scared them on the first trip camping, may not be as frightening if they see it the next time. And the emus that wandered through our campsite that first time freaked my children out. They had never seen such a big bird! Now, it’s like “oh, here comes an emu”….they watch but don’t go all crazy on us anymore!!
The benefits far outweigh the negatives.
© Yufendy | Stock Free Images & Dreamstime Stock Photos
3. Learning experience
It’s not just going to be learning about nature (see point 2). There is more to learn than that! In fact, as adults, we learn something every camp trip!
Children get to learn about their surrounds, but they can learn about meal preparation, building fires, cooking, how to set up for a camp, learn more about activities (eg. fishing, hiking), and learn how to get by without computer and TV screens.
Being together in a less busy environ might also make some children learn to get along with each other!!
4. Fresh air and open skies
Not many of us probably sit it our backyards at night and look up at the sky with our children
There is always something to do around the house, or something to see on TV or on our PC, or the kids have to be in bed by 7 pm.
When you are camping, sitting around looking up at the stars is what you can do. Sit with your children, and be amazed at the stars above you, the tranquillity and the clean air.
No interruptions. No pressing deadlines. Appreciate the stillness. Your children will too.
5. Exercise that everyone wants to do
For a lot of campers, its not all about just sitting on our camp chairs all day. Definitely, some days, but not all the time! With children, they tend to need a bit more entertainment, so exercise when camping is a lot more fun and easier than say, at home.
When you get up in the morning and depending on your campsite, there is a world of possibilities. Hiking, canoeing, playing in a creek, collecting firewood, climbing trees, clambering over rocks and playing hide and seek.
If you have brought your bikes, riding on dirt and over bumps is so much more fun – all that new territory to explore!
The sort of exercise your child does will depend on age and environment, but the main thing is they are moving and outside and hopefully having fun!
Just remember to have some snacks ready; exercise and fresh air makes kids hungry!
So, if you are only just "thinking" about camping as a family, hopefully, we have given you 5 reasons why you should do it.
Or do you think you need some more advice on this? If so, you might want to check out
10 tips to camping with children
or if you are new to camping, then read
10 beginner camping mistakes
If you camp with your children, then let us know what you like about camping, in the comments section below.
(this post is also reproduced on our main website www.gocampingaustralia.com)