Wild camping is becoming more and more popular among families. With the right planning, wild camping is a great experience, and can be the basis of a fantastic family adventure. That’s why it sits at No. 17 in our Camp Xplode Adventurers Handbook list of #52Things to do before you’re 16′.

But what is WILD CAMPING?

Wild camping means not camping on an official campsite or right next to the car – you just literally head into the countryside and pitch your tent wherever you fancy – assuming it’s legal to do so, and not on someone’s land! In other words, it’s camping but without the ‘luxury’ of facilities usually provided by an official campsite.


  • No distractions – It’s just you and your favourite people, with a tent, sleeping bags and a few little luxuries. Getting away from phones, tablets and other technology is much easier to do when wild camping.
  • Adventure – Camping out with your family brings all sorts of new experiences, and learning opportunities, from spotting wildlife, to foraging for food, and learning to survive The Tribal Way style! Our Camp Xplode Wolves will be able to lead the way with this one!
  • Family Time – Imagine sharing a night sky with only your family for company, far away from city lights, and you’ve got just one of the thrills of wild camping.
girl with cup in summer mountains

Can it be done safely with kids in tow?

Yes! Wild camping is not for the sophisticated camper. There will be no water and electricity hook-ups, so your kitchenette tent area, complete with pantry is probably going to be overkill here. Think tent, torch, sleeping rolls, and rucksack, and you’re on the right track.

If you fancy giving this back-to-basics form of camping a go this summer, follow our TOP 5 wild camping tips before you head off into the wilderness…


A camping stove, and hot water bottles are going to be essential here, as are fleeces, thermals, and proper sleeping bags. There will be no bolting for the shower block to warm up, so it pays to make sure you have plenty of layers and a good sleeping setup.


Camp high up well away from water or marshy areas, which tend to attract mosquitoes. Likewise, make sure before you pitch your tent, that there are no ants nests in the ground underneath. Take all the medical supplies you might need, including creams for bites and stings, and an antihistamine, just in case.


Go with what you know works. Boil up some pasta or tinned soup, and take plenty of snacks you know the kids will eat. A hot chocolate always goes down well first thing in the morning, so some sachets of instant chocolate.


Real wild camping involves making your own toilet arrangements. You’ll have to dig holes, well away from your tent, other property, and water. Make sure you take a torch for nocturnal toilet trips! And don’t forget to take your toilet paper away with you in your rubbish. Wet wipes are a good idea too, and will serve as a basic wash should anyone need one.


Wild camping comes with more thrills, but also possibly more risk than a standard camping trip, so make sure your travel insurance is up to date before you go. The Camping and Caravanning Club covers you for specific camping-related items and scenarios.

Why don’t you give wild camping a go with your family this Summer? It really is a great family adventure!

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We’d love to know about your adventures. What were your best bits? Have you learnt some new skills you can’t wait to tell us about?

Keep checking back on this blog for even more essential things every adventurer should experience before their 16th Birthday!