› Baby camping gear

Baby camping gear: What extras do you need?

You might be surprised at how little baby camping gear you need when you go around Australia. Your baby will need some specific items, but there are lots they can happily do without. Here’s what I’ve learnt from trial and error over the years…

A travel high-chair - an essential piece of baby camping gear!

#1 - Never leave home without stacks of nappies and wipes!

Clothing and bedding

It’s easy to pack too much baby camping gear, because babies’ things are little. But it still adds up, and you’ll probably find you don’t use half of it… or you’ll wash more often than you need to.

This guide worked well for me:

  • 1 x play outfit per day away, plus a spare (or max. 10 outfits),
  • Fresh sleepwear every 2nd night (or max. 5 sets),
  • 1 x winter outfit including warm socks,
  • 2 x hats, preferably quick drying,
  • Swimwear and swim nappy (even if you don’t plan to swim),
  • 2 x baby wraps (so versatile!)
  • 2 sets of sheets, and
  • 2 x warm blankets / baby sleeping bags.

I often got two days or more out of play outfits, after all it’s just camping. But by packing one a day it meant I had back-up on messy days! Also, once my babies were in their pyjamas, they were in bed. This kept their nightwear cleaner for longer.

Feeding and food

Breastfeeding does make camping easier. If you bottle-feed, make sure you take a big saucepan to sterilise bottles. Don’t rely on electric or microwave sterilisers unless you always plan to have power.

If your baby is on to solids, take a few portions of commercial baby food and snacks, even if you prefer not to use them. They are handy back-ups, and will give you piece of mind when you are camping remotely.

Extra baby camping gear we couldn’t live without:

  • An ergo baby carrier (or some other baby carrier) – With one of these, you can carry your baby/toddler up to 25kg on your back, front, or side.
  • A compact travel high-chair.
  • A portable cot (or alternative safe sleeping area)
  • Baby medicines and first aid kit.
  • A washable, padded change mat.
  • Nappy disposal bags (these are great even for in-car rubbish bins!).
  • Plastic-back picnic rug – You can throw it down anywhere to make a comfy play area.
  • A couple of durable plastic play toys, no more.
  • An infant swim ring.

What about your stroller or pram?

A stroller can often be impractical on a trip around Australia, but there are times it could give you much-needed relief. On the other hand...when you’re camping, there are lots of rough surfaces and other obstacles that may prevent you being able to use a stroller. 

One thing is certain – they take up a fair bit of valuable space.

So like anything you pack, think about how often you’ll really use it. Your baby’s age and preferences will also play a part. Before you leave on your trip around Oz, try this idea out:

Go on a short camping trip without your stroller, and see how much you miss it.

If you really can't live without it, take it.

If you decide to take a stroller, go lightweight and not too expensive. Then you don’t need to worry about damage on the road, and you can jam it in anywhere it fits.

Our babies had some fabulous times camping with us.

They got incredibly dirty at times, but I am certain our babies' early camping trips have shaped the children they’ve become. Play around with the baby camping gear you take, until you get it right. It only gets easier from here, so please persevere!

And once you've got it sorted, check out my suggestions for what else I think is essential family camping gear.

› Baby camping gear