9 Cool Camping Activities

One of the great things about camping is being able to get away from the daily routine at home. Get away from the phone calls, internet, cars, noise, and start thinking about camping activities instead.

I am going to list 9 camping activities that you can do while camping and some tips to prepare for these before you leave home.  This inititial preparation should keep you from getting bored during you next camping trip.

9 Camping Activities


River Camping

1) Fishing

Let me first start by saying that fishing does not have to be super difficult.  I have taught many beginner’s how to fly fish over the years and have learned that almost anyone can do it.  Start easy to begin with by finding a fishery that is easy.  It’s typically easier to catch warm water fish than cold water fish so Bass or other panfish might be a place to start.

There are lot’s of fishing bonuses including eating fish, learning about patience, and teaching kids a valuable tool and skill. Take a look at this link if you are having trouble deciding where to go camping.

Action item prior to leaving:
If there is a local fishing shop around, stop by and pick their brain for where to go fishing.  If not, contact the nearest fishing shop by phone or online and find out where to go.  You can also contact your local state fish and wildlife office for information.

2) Hiking

I just got back from a hike yesterday in the Columbia Gorge with my family. I hiked a pretty steep trail carrying my toddler much of the way and Megan carried our 2 month old. It was great exercise and was really fun for the whole family. There are many different levels of hiking so it is important to find the trail and hiking length that suits your needs.

Hiking books can usually be found for most areas and if not available, there is usually someone local you can check in with. Find your local outdoor store or search online for information.

Action item prior to leaving:
Find a hiking book that is specific to your area and find a few trails that will meet your needs. Make sure you have a comfortable pair of boots or shoes for the hike.

3) Card Games

I have found card games to be a great way to pass the time and connect with friends and family. There are lots of good games but I have enjoyed cribbage as my main camping game over the years. Find a nice shady spot on a hot day in the middle of the afternoon and see if you can take down your best buddy.

Action item prior to leaving:
Do some research to find out what games might be most enjoyable for you.

camping activities

4) Geocaching

If you are looking for a way to test your GPS skills and feel like you are looking for a treasure, then Geocaching might be a good camping activity for you. There are Geocache locations all over the world that you can explore and find. The basic Idea here is that people place little treasures in different locations around the world and you use your GPS unit to find them.

The easiest way to get started is to log onto this site, and type in the location that you will be camping. Geocaching.com will get you involved in a community that will explain a lot of the details invovled with the proces.

Action item prior to leaving:
Log onto the Geocaching.com web site here and find where the nearest sites are located. Read through the introductory material to find out what it’s all about. Do some research on GPS units if you don’t already have one.  If you are interested in a checklist for other camping items, this camping gear checklist will get you started.

5) Reading

This one is pretty self explanatory. Find a good book that allows you to disconnect from everything. If you are not a reader, you might try downloading an audio book. This is a great way to listen while on the go as well.

Action item prior to leaving:
Find a good book, ebook or audibook. Make sure to find something that is relaxing and allows you to disconnect.

6) Star Gazing

This is something I have been doing almost every night with my Toddler. We have this star “Vega” that is usually the first one she sees in the city. One of the great things about getting out camping is that you are typically away from the city and all of the bright lights that makes seeing stars so difficult.

There is a lot of information online about constellations but one of the best resources I have found is an iphone app called Star Walk. This app uses the phones GPS receiver to show you what stars and constellations are out there. You can plug in a star or planet and it will direct you to it. I have probably used this app more often camping than any other.

star gazing

Action item prior to leaving:
Download Star Walk if interested in bringing a techy devise. If not, you can research online to make sure you are aware of what’s going on during the year. This site is a good example of the resources out there. You can plan your trip around peak meteor showers for a chance to see a lot of action.

7) Music

I am not a professional musician but have played a few tunes during some of your camping trips. I usually end up strumming the guitar to some old classic country song. You don’t have to be a pro to create music outdoors. In fact, just singing campfire songs can be as enjoyable as anything. Music has a way of relaxing us and bringing us together so give it a go.

Action item prior to leaving:
Think of one instrument or type of music you could play while out camping. Do a little research to find out a few good songs that you could play. Practice before you head out camping so you can be ready to bring the group together when there.

8) Wildlife Viewing

The birds, deer, coyotes, snakes, bugs and anything else you can think of counts as wildlife viewing. You can take some of this to the next level my getting a simple field book that describes the species descriptions and their life histories (how they live their life). Learning just a little bit about the animals in nature can provided so much value.

Bird songs are a great example. Instead of just hearing a noise in the woods, you can actually know what species it is, what the song means, and why it’s here now. Animal tracking is a cool way to learn about animals in the area, even when they are not in front of you.

Action item prior to leaving:
Go to a book store or go onto Amazon and find a good field book to get you started.

desert hiking

9) Napping

Ok, maybe napping isn’t the main activity, but it is one of the most relaxing things you can do while out camping. A shady area and a 20 minute session can make you feel amazing.

Action item prior to leaving:
Find a nice hammock or other bedding of choice so you are ready fro your trip.


The main idea in this chapter is to help you find additional ways to relax and wind down out there. Go with your own feeling on these things and set up your own plan if none of these seem interesting.  You can find these activities and other resources in my new ebook that is available.  Find out more here.

Let me know if you have a camping activity that I didn’t listed here that you really enjoy.  You can leave a comment below or send me an email at dave@campingstovecookout.com.  I read all of these emails so I would love to hear your feedback!


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    • Dave

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