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Camping with a 3month old - are we mad?!

(22 Posts)
campergirl30 Mon 16-Feb-09 14:05:14

I would really appreciate some opinions on this one as I'm expecting our first baby (due date 3rd June). We have a campervan and would love to go to france for a couple of weeks in early september. Im getting a lot of raised eyebrows whenever I mention this to people! Are we completely naive and mad? Or could it be the nice holiday I've been daydreaming about all winter?! Any advice would be gratefully received

MrsBadger Mon 16-Feb-09 14:16:26

you are not mad to want to go on holiday - do it quick before they are crawling

but IME the best kind of holiday with tiny babies is one that is like being at home only better

ie we took 7wkold dd on an (otherwise very out of character for us) five star last-minute all-inclusive beach holiday to Morocco. She slept just as erratically and fed just as constantly as she did at home, but the weather was better, DH didn't have to go to work, someone else was doing the housework, people brought us drinks and (best of all) the dinner buffet meant each of us got to eat a hot meal while the other paced up and down with the baby.

However, a camping holiday, which IMO is like being at home only worse more challenging (no sky+, chemical loos, self-catering in tiny kitchen, less comfy sofas) may not be exactly what you need.

Gateau Mon 16-Feb-09 14:54:38

Of course you're not daft. You're just bloody right. Have baby, will travel..
Must say, a camper van would be luxury to us. We took our Ds when he was 15 motnhs camping in a tent in the Lake District. It's a big tenty, but we wrapped him up in a child's sleeping bag (tied at the bottom) and put him inhis travel cot. And he slept through the night.
Wonderful.
Give me camping any day over an expensive all inclusive holiday.

Gateau Mon 16-Feb-09 14:56:09

By the way, that wasn't an attack on your choice of holiday, Mrs Badger. I've just read your post!

Gateau Mon 16-Feb-09 14:56:53

Also, much easier to do it while baby is relatively immobile!

Fennel Mon 16-Feb-09 15:06:05

We did loads of camping, mainly in a campervan, with our babies, they all went at a month old. It's really quite easy, especially in a van with an immobile baby who will only need milk and to be kept warm.

tattycoram Mon 16-Feb-09 15:09:24

Easy with a young baby. We had a lovely camping holiday with DS when he was six months old, but it was a nightmare the next year when he was 18 months and on the go from 530am.

sdr Mon 16-Feb-09 15:09:58

Great age to go. Samsonite do a great little pop up cot which you can use till they're about 15 months.

bluebread Mon 16-Feb-09 18:10:28

I've been watching this with interest as we are camping this year with dd3 aged 14 months. We chickened out last year when she was 2 months and stayed in a cottage, but really missed camping! But tattycoram has got me worried...

Sorry to slightly crash your thread campergirl, but can I ask what other people think about camping with an older baby/toddler?

Kathyis6incheshigh Mon 16-Feb-09 18:13:15

We camped when dd (born in June) was 6 weeks.
Not mad at all, do it when they're small.

Toddlers - the game is a bit different. We had one awful trip when the weather was terrible and dd kept trying to crawl out under the sides of the tent to splash in puddles. You also have to bear in mind they may not go to bed at their normal time the first night or so. Otherwise it's been great.

Katiestar Mon 16-Feb-09 20:28:13

We took DD2 camping at 4m.Unfortunately the first night we had a ground frost ! I was very worried but she had a nice warm sleeping bag and slept like ..well like a baby.Worst thing was getting my boobs out to b/f

Fennel Mon 16-Feb-09 20:43:53

We camped a lot with babies and toddlers. I'd say it was fun (at best) rather than restful. And sometimes grim, depending on how everyone slept. By the time we had 3 children under 5 in a small VW camper van it got a bit much and we had to sell the van expand to a family sized tent. But we had some very good times camping with babies and toddlers, you can let toddlers run about on campsites in a way it's hard to do in many places.
It's still one of the things we do which we all enjoy most.

We cancel or come home if it's raining though. And avoid campsites with running water or similar features or you won't be able to relax at all.

piscesmoon Mon 16-Feb-09 20:48:35

It is much easier before they are mobile. I went camping with 4 month old.

tigermeow Mon 16-Feb-09 22:34:17

No, you are not mad at all. Go for it! The smaller they are, the easier it is. You wont have to be carting round millions of toys and books, food etc. If you are BF then you wont need bottles, steriliser etc. DD took her first flight at 5wks old and since then has notched up more flights/countries than most adults (she has her own BA card now)!
We had a Samsonite pop up cot which was just brilliant.
Have fun!

campergirl30 Tue 17-Feb-09 10:18:19

Thankyou so much for the reassurance and advice everyone - booking our ferry crossing now and already looking forward to it!

piscesmoon Tue 17-Feb-09 10:25:33

I hope you have a great time. I found it one of the great advantages of breast feeding-at that age I didn't need food, bottles etc.

Ernestina Tue 17-Feb-09 20:53:52

Honestly, you're probably mad wink. We did camping with ds when he was 6months old and you couldn't call it a holiday - more a change of scenery with more work than usual. He still needed three naps a day, so much of the time was spent frantically wheeling him up and down in the buggy while he screamed from overtiredness. He didn't like the heat (English south coast) and whenever we had something planned, like a walk with him in the backpack, you could guarantee he wouldn't be in the mood.

But I guess if you get a baby who naps well it could be fine hmm

Ernestina Tue 17-Feb-09 20:56:27

Ahh, have just read that you're booking your ferry crossing now - oops. Ignore me, it sounds like loads of other people have a great time camping with their babies smile

Fennel Tue 17-Feb-09 21:04:59

grin at Ernestina. We've had holidays like that with small children too. But, assuming you aren't ready to admit that going on holiday with small children is a big waste of money and effort (which I do often feel) then camping is as good as anything, and campervan + one little baby did work well for us.

Sazlocks Tue 17-Feb-09 21:14:52

We first took our DS when he was 4 months old in our camper van. I was a bit panicked beforehand about a variety of things but it was great. I was BF so he didn't need anything food wise apart from me. We had a great time and it was just what we needed as a couple as well.
Have a great time.

ThingOne Tue 17-Feb-09 21:15:41

We took DS2 camping at 10 weeks old. It was great fun apart from being too hot - 28 degrees plus in North Devon - I wanted my money back wink. It's much easier before they start moving.

We all just got togged up and slept together on inflatable mattresses, under the duvet, with DS2 in his sleeping bad right next to me.

FrannyandZooey Tue 17-Feb-09 21:18:30

we had a lovely time when we took new ds2 camping this year, and he was fine except for not liking the car

however
I found i was really uncomfortable and found myself physically not ready to rough it
we had quite decent beds as well, but i felt like princess and pea
i wouldn't do it again for that reason alone - i would wait longer to physically recover from birth

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