As our children get older, we all know that the day will arrive where they feel they are too old (and cool!) to go camping with their family. However, we have written a guide to help encourage your tweens and teens to continue to come along and have some fun with the family for a little bit longer…
Camping with a teenager can be a fun and rewarding experience. Here are some tips to make the trip enjoyable for everyone and keep them entertained:
Involve them in the planning: Include your teenager in the planning process, such as choosing the place to stay, activities and meals. Giving them a sense of ownership will make them more excited and engaged.
Choose a place with amenities: Look for a place to stay that offers activities suitable for teenagers, such as hiking trails, swimming pools, or nearby attractions. Having options for exploration and adventure will keep them entertained.
Bring camping-friendly entertainment: While camping is all about enjoying the outdoors, it’s also good to have some entertainment options for downtime. Consider taking board games, cards, a Frisbee, or a portable speaker for music. Encourage them to take books, sketch-pads, or any hobbies they enjoy. And if all else fails, let them have some time on their phone/iPad to chill out.
Plan outdoor activities: Engage in outdoor activities that appeal to teenagers, such as hiking, fishing, kayaking, zip lining or biking. These activities provide opportunities for adventure and exploration, making the camping experience more exciting but also bringing all the family together for plenty of fun.
Allow independence: Give your teenager some freedom to explore the campsite/holiday park and nearby areas within reason. Depending on their age and maturity, you can establish boundaries and rules while still allowing them some independence. This will make them feel trusted & responsible and enable them to even make some new friends.
Build a campfire: Campfires are not only for cooking but also great for bonding and storytelling. Encourage your teenager to share stories, play games, or even learn how to cook simple meals over the fire. Roasting marshmallows for s’mores is always a hit!
Capture memories: In a world of technology, encourage your teenager to use their phone to take photos or videos of your holiday experience. They can create a digital journal or even start a vlog, documenting their adventures. This activity can be engaging & creative and you can spend time taking a look at their creation on your return home.
Stargazing: Camping offers a great opportunity for stargazing in some areas, due to the lack of city lights. Teach your teenager about constellations, bring a star map or use a stargazing app to identify different celestial objects. It can be a fascinating and educational experience.
Respect their need for downtime: Remember that teenagers also need some downtime to relax and unwind. Allow them to have chill out time or to read a book if they prefer. Respect their need for personal space while still being available for conversations and bonding.
By incorporating these tips, you can create a memorable (and hopefully harmonious) camping experience for both you and your teenager for a few more years to come!
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