Reconsider before you instantly say no to a camping trip with a toddler. It doesn’t have to be an ordeal. With a little planning and organization you can have a wonderful experience. While you may not be able to relax as much as if the toddler wasn’t present, your trip can still be fun and enjoyable for the entire family.
When you arrive at your campsite it is ideal if your toddler is napping in her car, since this makes setting up a campsite quick and easy. If your toddler isn’t sleeping put them in a stroller or a playpen. This ensures they don’t wander off while you are busy pitching your tent. Assign an older sibling the responsibility of watching the toddler while your back is turned. You can also let the older siblings set up the campsite while you watch and supervise with the toddler.
No one should be expected to hold the toddler during the entire camping trip. Give your toddler ample time to wander and explore their environment. Just make sure someone is with them at all times. When you are cooking or busy, put your toddler in a playpen or a small play tent. The tent can hold toys and be a safe place for them to play.
You need to consider how you will dispose of dirty diapers while you are camping. No one wants to smell them throughout the trip, and they can attract flies. It’s best to camp in an area where you have easy access to a dump station. If you don’t, bring a large plastic bag and smaller grocery store bags with you. Place the dirty diaper into the small grocery bag and tie it off. Then place it into the large plastic bag. Take a trip to the nearest dump station to dispose of the large plastic bag every day or two.
Toddlers get dirty very fast. Make sure you’ve brought enough clothes to get them through the trip. You should also bring a plastic tub of some sort to use for bathing. All you need to do is heat a bit of water on the stove, and then give a quick scrubbing while they sit in the tub. You can use baby wipes between bath times to clean dirty feet, hands and face.
You can invest in a carrier that allows you to strap the toddler to you. This will keep the toddler safe and close while you are hiking and exploring, and it will keep your hands free. Adults can take turns toting the toddler around.