There’s something magical about sleeping under canvas and, while I‘m more partial to glamping than camping these days, either way, nothing beats it if you want to reconnect with nature. I’ve camped in everything from the tiniest of tents that leaked so much I ended up sleeping in a puddle to a luxiry safari tent with air conditioning, a four-poster king-sized bed and ensuite bathroom on a wildlife reserve in Senegal. And I’ve tried a great range of outdoor gear and cool camping gadgets along the way.
Right now, the only option we may have is camping in our back garden, if we’re lucky enough to have one. But these restrictions won’t last forever, so now is the time to dream and plan your next adventure large or small. In the meantime, if you do have a garden and the weather is warm enough why not set up a tent and have a mini-adventure in your backyard. The kids will love it!
Cool Camping Gear & Gadgets
Here’s my guide to the best camping gadgets and outdoor gear available. I’ll be adding more to the list whenever I discover something I really love.
This spacious octagonal-shaped tent from Coleman sleeps up to 8 people and is perfect for friends or family who doesn’t mind sharing or a couple who want loads of room. It has a blackout feature so you won’t be woken up in the early hours in the summer and 360-degree windows you can open up for panoramic views. It’s sturdy enough to withstand most weather conditions you are likely to encounter. And this tent is ideal for anyone with back problems as you don’t need to crouch down to enter it
Camping Toilet & Shower Tent
Perfect for your own private loo or shower, this pop-up tent from WolfWise is easy to et up and lightweight.
Camping lamp, Bluetooth speaker and power bank
I reviewed this lamp a few years ago and still use it almost every day. From charging my phone in the garden to listening to music in my kitchen while washing up, or lighting up the attic, it’s one of the most useful products I’ve ever reviewed. As you can imagine, it’s a godsend when camping. You can read my full review here.
The Sistema Traverse Tritan Bottle is made of a durable Tritan plastic which is BPA and phthalate-free. It has a good 850 ml capacity and is dishwasher, and freezer safe and, at around £8, it’s great value too.
Portable Espresso Maker
If like me, you have to start your day with a good cup of coffee, you’ll absolutely love this portable espresso maker by Wacaco. Reputedly it’s the “smallest, lightest and most versatile handheld espresso machine” there is. The only down sound is that it only makes one shot so be sure to pick up the Minipresso Kit as well to make a longer cup of coffee.
Another item I was gifted for review purposes was this fabulous backpack from OUTXE with a built-in cooler. It’s perfect for picnics and camping weekends. I confess that I use it even more often for my weekly shop at the supermarket. It holds everything I buy for the fridge and freezer, keeping them cool and leaving my hands free to carry more bags. Read my full review here, backpack cooler.
Dexshell does a wonderful range of waterproof beanies that are perfect for camping in chillier conditions.
My US readers will find a great range of tactical pants (trousers as we call them here in the UK) for both men and women at LA Police Gear. They’re great value too and perfect for camping and hiking.
Ordnance Survey maps
I love walking in the countryside and, here in the UK, we’re lucky enough to have a fabulous network of public footpaths through both well-known beauty spots and out of the way places. The Explorer range are the perfect choice for hiking with all public footpaths, bridleways and more marked for you to follow. They now come with a digital download for your phone.
This is a fabulous range of books, each one covering a different region or topic. I have the Wild Guide London & South East. It’s a complete guide to all the best spots for everything from wild swimming to remote camping, lost ruins to off the beaten track micro-breweries. At the moment, these guides only cover the UK, parts of Europe and Australia. If you know of a similar collection covering the USA & Canada or indeed anywhere else in the world, do let me know.
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