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Camping with a toddler

(13 Posts)
Allyoucaneat Sun 20-Mar-16 14:35:44

We bought a tent last year and did a few single nights, we loved it mostly, ds2 was around 9months though and easily contained. This year he's an active toddler and exploring everything. What are your tips and packing essentials?

What should he sleep in/on? Although last year he didn't really sleep at all and climbed on me all night.

We also have ds1 who's 5. Thanks!

MrsNeil Sun 20-Mar-16 19:08:02

We have DD who is 18 months, last year she slept in a travel cot. It will depend on the weather but next weekend she will sleep in layers eg. long sleeved vest, pjs, fleecy onsie and a sleeping bag, the same type we use at home. When it's warmer, onsie and a toddler sleeping bag. A puddle suit is an essential, we just put over her pyjamas and/or clothes so she doesn't get wet when she plays outside with DS9 & DS7. inflatable beach balls are great for keeping them amused. Hope that helps!

LaceyLee Sun 20-Mar-16 19:25:26

I'm in the same boat as you op, so no advice but hoping to get some ideas. Thinking we will be potty training around the time we are planning to go (summer) how about you? So that might be interesting. I'm hoping that overall camping will be great for toddlers as they can wander about and there'll be plenty to explore but maybe I'm naive!

ICJump Mon 21-Mar-16 08:28:21

I pack calm toys but not lots of them.
A camping high chair has been fantastic. It's made out of camping chair material and folds up. Make meal time so much easier.
We all sleep on sims. Ours are all chucked inside a doona cover to make one huge mat. The toddler is in a grobag type thing.

usual Mon 21-Mar-16 08:32:24

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

fiorentina Mon 21-Mar-16 19:36:00

Last year my 18 month old slept on a SIM and in a child's sleeping bag. Lots of extra blankets. Made sure we had a low camping table and chairs for meal times. Lots of extra lighting and torches as she didn't love going to sleep in the total darkness. We still took scooters etc and balls and they had a great time. Crocs and wellies v useful!

Allyoucaneat Tue 22-Mar-16 13:25:43

Thank you! I don't think just a grow bag will be warm enough, we're in Scotland! But we do have spare child's sleeping bag, I'm just worried he could slip down inside it. We'll need to get him a sim too, as we only have three between four of us.

Travel high chair is a good idea, if we have space in the car.

What do you do with the toddler while you're setting up? our tent takes 20-30mins to pitch and dh can do it mostly on his own but I have to help at some points to hold poles in place, ds2 is so active and so fast I'm worried he'd just run off into the woods or under a car-. Dh doesn't even want to take him, but I'd be so sad to leave him behind with grandparents, as I think he'll love it.

kiwiscantfly Tue 22-Mar-16 13:42:15

I've taken both our girls camping as toddlers and if he's as active as you say I'd suggest reins or in the car seat while you do the crucial parts. We camped at 19mo and again at 21 mo this summer (in NZ) and having someone to watch her while we set up was the optimal solution, but not always possible. Mine is still in a portable cot so if she was a real runner I would have stuck her in that. She did like to help though so was pretty good at handing out pegs.

Sleeping wise I have no advice because it's hotter here than in Scotland, we just always made sure we had plenty of spare blankets because having a small child between you while on an air bed is no fun!

My biggest worry about the whole thing is cars and keeping and eye on the kids,ne specially because at home we have a fenced backyard and I can just let them play on their own. If you can find campsites that keep cars in a separate area that would be better I think.

Hope this helps, in Dec this year we'll have a 6 yo 2.5 yo and a 5 mo to take camping, I think we're going to have to get a bigger tent shock

fiorentina Tue 22-Mar-16 22:03:37

I left her in the car for a while whilst I put the tent up and then she 'helped' whilst I finished doing the pegs etc.

It was really fun, she loved it. Bedtime was a bit later than usual but she slept v well!

BikeRunSki Tue 22-Mar-16 22:13:43

My DC slept in a ReadyBed for camping when they were toddlers.

Fleece onesies over pjs are a brilliant extra layer, particularly For pottering around in the early morning.

MagentaSpunkTrumpet Mon 28-Mar-16 10:00:04

I once saw a family pull up, screw one of those dog tethering cork screws into the ground and then attach a short lunge line to their toddlers reins harness.

Toddler was then dispatched with a pile of toy cars etc while the adults unpacked and set up.

TBH I couldn't work out whether I was in awe at their ingenuity or should be hoiking up my judgy pants. I settled on awestruck as they actually engaged with him all the time they were working, released him as soon as they were done and I never saw him tied up again grin

Allyoucaneat Mon 28-Mar-16 14:24:40

That's fab. We'll tie up the toddler then grin!

Fourormore Wed 30-Mar-16 19:35:18

We have a fold up play pen - Like this

It folds up really small and we use it as a playpen and as a travel cot. Toddler goes in there with toys while we pitch.

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