Ok. So, finally, I decided to write an extensive guide to camping for beginners. Let’s start..
The camping is independent. Acampo since I have sense of freedom and keep a tent in my backpack on every trip. I love the lightness, autonomy, and flexibility that this item of my travelling team allows me. The reduction in the lodging budget is collateral: the carp becomes a wild card to have its own nest, even in the most isolated places without infrastructure, such as national parks or towns outside the tourist circuits. In addition to the resource it implies for the backpacking trip, there are new trends, such as luxury camping, or glamping, which combine glamor and nature, and are consolidated as a new trend. In this post, eight tips to go camping, for all tastes and cases.
If you are going to travel as a backpacker, I recommend you not to load tents that weigh more than 2 kg, at the most. The ideal tent, especially if you travel with a companion, is an igloo for two people. The igloo of crossed rods has the advantage of being self-supporting and arming on solid surfaces and not only on grass. Ideally aluminum rods (and not plastic): they will last longer and make the tent lighter.
If instead, you are traveling by a car, there are igloos of 4 to 6 people will add comfort and the weight gain will be irrelevant. Lovers of camping and trekking should look more at the tents with tunnel design, i.e., those of two parallel rods. These tents must arm themselves with stakes, since they do not generate their own tension, but they have the advantage of being lower and having an aerodynamic presentation that allows the lower part to be oriented towards the wind. (Do not go to take a normal square igloo to the high mountain because the wind will blow them).
#2. Investigate camping options in the destination
In Argentina, we are badly used to having an extensive network of campsites, both private and municipal, at affordable prices, and even free. Each locality, whether tourist or not, normally has one. Therefore, it is possible to travel throughout the country using the campsite as a means of economic accommodation. Those who travel through Patagonia know that there are campsites of two kinds organized (with bathrooms, stoves, electricity and other services paid) and free (areas enabled for beginners’ camping, free but without services). In the Argentine Northwest, too, there are ample options for camping in the most visited points, such as Purmamarca and Humahuaca.
It is good to know that going up to Bolivia and Peru, the campsites become scarce or nonexistent (although the cheap accommodation makes them unnecessary). If you are going to travel to Europe, keep in mind that the campsites are more directed to the motor homes and, although they have many more services, the prices are around 20 euros. There are trips where a carp seems to be over, as it happened to us in our crossing of Africa from Egypt to South Africa. And yet, the times we used it were key to enjoy special sites.
#3. Wild camping: spontaneous accommodation
Having said that, and always depending on your travel style, you have to know that carrying a tent does not mean that you have to depend strictly on a network of campsites. You can use the tent in a myriad of unregulated situations. All over the world, asking and asking the locals for permission, I have camped in soccer fields, church parks, fire stations, fields, in a barn in France, in a lighthouse in Scotland, inside an ice cream parlor or the gardens of Versailles.
It’s just a matter of being creative, of training the eye, of knowing how to talk to people so that they understand that you are on an adventure trip and show solidarity with your budget. In this way, I have travelled to countries such as Norway with a daily budget of $5 or less. In fact, my advice if you are going to make a long trip, of more than six months, is that you join with this art, sometimes called wild camping.
#4. The luxury camping: reconciliation between nature and comfort
A trend that takes hold around the world is luxury camping, also called glamping. Glamping has promulgated a mystical reconciliation between the comfort associated with conventional accommodations and the escapism and intimacy with nature that always motivated campers. Usually, it is three-walled structures where they retain the prominence of the environment from a core of comfort. From capsules hanging from a cliff overlooking the Peruvian Andes to a tree house in California, the range is endless.
Our first experience of this kind was in Kenya, and our room had an empty side, a balcony from which you could see herds of elephants.
In Europe, luxury camping is currently evolving from isolated establishments to real networks. Perhaps the most famous is Yelloh Village, a network that currently has 86 luxury campsites in Spain, France, and Portugal. These campsites have a swimming pool, restaurants and all the facilities of a European campsite with the added value of having fully equipped modern cabins with design details. In addition, many of these campsites are near cycleways that connect architectural heritage areas such as the Loire Valley in France and can be ideal for luxury restorative in the middle of a long pedal trip. A feature of the Yelloh Village campsites in France is that they all have an Aquatic Park. For those who have a limited vacation time, this can be a good option that combines high-end accommodation with the possibility of having breakfast listening to the birds singing.
Check out the top fish finders so that you don’t have to sit hours and hours for fishing…
#5. Choose the right place
What is the perfect place to camp? Here are some tips for finding best camping places for beginners:
The ideal beginners’ camping plot is level or, in the case that a small unevenness is inevitable, keep in mind that your head should always be higher than your feet.
It is important to remove all stones, branches, sharp objects and other debris that may damage or puncture the floor of the tent.
If the sky promises rain, it may be a good idea to make a channel or groove around the perimeter of the tent that drains the water out.
In case of a storm, never place the tent under the trees: although they give the feeling of protection, you can fall a branch on top.
If you are in a campsite, it is a sacred advice to choose a plot near the bathrooms.
If you are doing wild camping, always look for a place that someone can authorize you to use, instead of throwing the tent next to the route. For example, the serene of a school can allow you to use a patio, or a family can lend you your garden.
#6. Atá all the winds
The tents come with ropes called “winds”, which some think are ornaments. Well, no. The winds not only give stability to the carp but separate the roof of the tent itself, avoiding that if it rains, the water passes from the first to the second and ends up dripping inside.
#7. Take an insulator
For many years I was a fakir of the camping, using clothes or my jacket as a shock absorber, in the desire to travel as light as possible. In the end, the “Acrobat” version of gentrification meant that after 30 I started travelling with inflatable insulators, which are very compact and super comfortable.
#8. Think of food
If you plan to camp in isolated places such as national parks, I recommend you bring your high mountain kitchen of Primus or MSR type. They are used in trekking expeditions and high mountain and pulverize all types of fuel, from kerosene to naphtha.
And this is it for my beginners guide to camping. I am sure you would have learnt some new tips and now you can go out camping with no hesitation and full preparation.
Pro Tip: Get an inflatable kayak with you too so that you can inflate it anytime and enjoy the float through the sea. I personally recommend Intex Challenger K1 Kayak. Happy Camping 🙂