The ultimate UK camping checklist: camping essentials

If you’re planning your next outdoor excursion and aren’t sure what to take camping, you’re not alone! Packing for any trip can sometimes
feel a little overwhelming, but when you’re heading into the Great British outdoors and unplugging from everyday life, it’s even more important to have all the home comforts you’ll need to hand.

So, to help you get started, we’ve created the ultimate camping checklist for a stress-free and seamlessly organised outdoor adventure!

Below you’ll find a thorough camping packing list for five different glamping holidays, so whether you're gearing up for an exhilarating hiking trip, an enchanting festival experience, a delightful family staycation, a picturesque outdoor wedding, or a serene well-being weekend, we've got you covered. Our free printable checklists will ensure that you don’t forget a thing!

Here, we’ll cover:

Camping essentials list

Firstly, no matter where you’ve set your sights on travelling, you’ll need a core list of non-negotiable camping equipment to make sure you’re well-prepared for a safe and comfortable outdoor excursion. These camping essentials are a must and form the basis of each of our printable checklists, so here’s where to start when you’re unsure of what to take camping:


A good night’s sleep is the key to a great day, so comfortable bedding is one of the most important things to bring camping. No one wants to sleep on the hard ground, so always be sure that a reliable, good-quality sleeping pad or air bed is at the top of your packing list. These will not only provide you with much more support and luxurious comfort while you sleep, but with handy equipment like a manual or electric air bed pump, you can create the campsite bedroom of your dreams within minutes. As well as a comfortable camping mattress or air bed, you’ll also want to pack a well-insulated sleeping bag to keep you warm and toasty during cold nights. Blankets or duvets might be great for decorating your bell tent or spending cosy evenings toasting marshmallows by the fire, but proper sleeping bags are always best for the night as they are specially designed to keep you safe and insulated — whatever the weather.


Sharing a delicious meal under the stars or enjoying your morning cuppa with the sunrise is one of the greatest joys of camping. So, to make sure you’re prepared for all eventualities and are ready to cook up a storm, here’s what cooking equipment you should be packing next time you plan to hit the open road:


Alongside a selection of camping essentials and cooking equipment, if you’re taking your little ones along for your next unforgettable adventure in the great outdoors, you will of course need a spacious family tent to stay in. Our family-sized tents can be tailored to the size of your family, as we stock everything from four to 14-person designs — so, you’ll have plenty of choice when it comes to picking out your all-important campsite accommodation. A pole-free design with ample living space is great for families with mini campers, making the Nova Air Dome an excellent choice. Not only this, but opting for one of our dark inner tents can also be a great tip for parents hoping for slightly longer lie-ins during their countryside staycation! Once you’ve got the perfect tent and all the essentials you need to stay warm, dry, and secure overnight, here are just some of the things your kids will benefit from when you take a camping trip to sleep under the stars.

  • Mini luggage cases
  • Books and their favourite toys
  • Travel-size board games and a pack of cards
  • Bikes or scooters, plus helmets and other safety gear
  • Sports equiment (balls, tennis rackets, swimming costumes etc.)
  • Arts and crafts like crayons, pens, and notepads
  • Lots of snacks!
  • Kid-friendly plastic plates, cups and cutlery
  • Home comforts (teddies and blankets)
  • Sunscreen and toiletries
  • Child-sized picnic table and chairs
  • Kids' first aid kit
  • Any medicines e.g., inhalers

For even more child-friendly essentials, check out our full checklist for camping with kids, which you can download as a PDF and print off when it’s time to get packing.


Our premium bell tents are perfect for elevating any camping trip and adding a touch of luxury to your time spent off-grid. Ample internal space and extended external shelter are just two elements that will make your tent worthy of effortlessly lavish living, so make sure you opt for one of our spacious designs such as the Tucana, Luna, or Star Bell in the correct size for your party (or slightly above, to allow extra room for luggage or lounging). As well as your core camping essentials, here are just some of the things you’ll want to pack to transform your camping trip from good to glamorous.

  • Luxury canvas tent
  • Glamping furniture - chairs, stools and tables
  • Attachable external canopy
  • Lanterns & fairy lights
  • Plump feather pillows
  • Outdoors furniture e.g., picnic table, butterfly camping chairs
  • Jute or coir floor matting
  • Centre pole chandelier for electric tea lights
  • Speaker and charger
  • Books and magazines
  • Fun board/card games
  • Drinks cooler
  • Portable projector and white sheet for movie nights!
  • Pampering materials: robes, face masks, nail polish etc.

Download the glamping getaway checklist below for even more top tips and inspiration on what to take camping.

garden glamping checklist

For those with their own outdoor space, opting to pitch in the back garden can be a stress-free alternative solution when craving a spontaneous night under the stars. And with your home just next door, your packing list can be far shorter! Beside the camping essentials needed to set up the tent and your bed for the night, we’ve put together a few items to make your garden glamping experience really pop.

  • Bedroom mattresses
  • Bedding and pillows
  • Lanterns and fairy lights
  • Books and magazines
  • Board games
  • Garden games e.g., football, tennis rackets, rounders equipment
  • Woodburning stove or Pizza Oven
  • Speaker and charger
  • Portable projector and white sheet for movie
  • Pampering products for a garden spa night
  • Extension cord from the house for unlimited electricity (in a weatherproof box)

Our Star Bell Tent is an excellent choice for an evening under the night sky, as it features 360° mesh walls for a breezy, bug-free interior and extended one metre-deep canopy which frames and shades the entrance. Remember, if you’re getting the glamping experience from home, size really does, to ensure there is enough room for your tents' guy ropes, make sure your pitching space is at least 2m (or 6.5ft) larger than your chosen tent size!


Festivals are one of the best things about summer, and there’s nothing quite like spending the weekend at a festival here in the UK. At Boutique Camping HQ, we're not shy of outdoing our festival neighbours when pitching our party tent. So, no matter the size of your camping crew, we have the perfect options to create a stylish yet cosy place to rest your head when that final gig comes to an end. We have luxury bell tents that sleep up to 14 people, as well as designs made with lightweight polycotton and ultra-light polyester to make your car-to-plot trips more camp-friendly. Below are a handful of essentials you should always have on your festival packing list to make sure your weekend goes without a hitch.

  • Festival tickets
  • Personal ID
  • Stage/act itinerary
  • Ear plugs and eye mask
  • Portable mirror
  • Tent spares kit
  • Tent lock
  • Torch
  • Camping wagon/trolley
  • Body paint/glitter
  • Thick jumpers and socks
  • Flip flops or sliders
  • Festival outfits!
  • Wellies or boots

Top tip: When it comes to organising your festival accommodation, an inner tent is invaluable — not only will this create a private sleeping pod separate from your lounge area or luggage, but our dark inner tents also help to reduce the glare from the early morning sun. Longer lie-ins all round!

For even more festival packing essentials, download the printable PDF checklist below.


When on the move, we know that practicality, weight, and quick set up time are just a few factors that will ensure the most enjoyable and efficient adventure possible. For featherweight freedom, our Oxford waterproof and ultralight tents will help to lighten the load well as being quick-drying, but if breathability is your main concern, you might also opt for our wide selection of lightweight canvas tents. As well as the core camping essentials and any campsite cooking equipment, make sure you don’t leave without the following kit next time you get off-grid or plan an ambitious hiking trip.

  • Roll-up mattress & sleeping bag
  • Hiking boots
  • Collapsible walking poles
  • Map and compass
  • Backpack
  • Torch and whistle
  • Tent repair kit
  • Portable chargers
  • Fleece jacket
  • Thermal underwear
  • Waterproof jackets and trousers
  • Lightweight, breathable sleepwear
  • Spare socks (you can never have enough!)
  • Gloves
  • Toiletries e.g., sunscreen, lip balm, insect repellent, toilet roll
  • Basic first aid kit
  • Water bottle

Print out the adventure camping checklist below for even more outdoor essentials.


Planning a Boutique birthday, wild wedding, or simply an outdoor shindig with some extraordinary sass? Our larger-than-life tent designs will provide you and your guests with an event to remember and turn magical moments into forever memories. We recommend one of our multi-door bell tents, as not only do they offer increased headspace, but the additional doors will free up the entrance and exit points for guests to come and go as they please. When throwing your next event in the great outdoors, don’t forget these special occasion essentials:

  • Bottle opener
  • Shot glasses
  • Corkscrew
  • Cups and glasses
  • Cocktail shaker
  • Coffee press
  • Ice, straws, and fruit/garnish
  • Kettle or stove water heater
  • Napkins
  • Balloons
  • Confetti
  • Banners
  • Blankets, throws and cushions
  • Tent chandelier and fairy lights
  • Speaker and charger
  • Extension cord for electricity supply

If you plan to serve up any meals to your guests, be sure to pack all the camping kitchen essentials you’ll need to cook up a storm, too. For more useful items and top tips, download our printable special occasion checklist below:


With our globally renowned range of breathable fabric tents, we are seeing more and more holistic and well-being businesses using our tents to host unique classes. Our exclusive, innovative designs with high walls boast maximum floor-to-head space, meaning that movement — ranging from yoga to pole dancing — can now be performed from the comfort of canvas (or cotton)! In particular, our Nova Air Dome and multi-door designs are a great fit for active groups. If you’re planning to host a class or retreat in one of our luxury bell tents, make sure you have a few wellness essentials on your packing list, including:

  • Coir matting for a slip-free surface
  • Portable exercise equipment e.g. Yoga mats, blocks, straps, weights
  • Towels
  • Safe self-standing candles
  • Incense and sage
  • Essential oils
  • Diffusers
  • Plants and flowers
  • Crystals
  • Portable fan
  • Hammock
  • Bean bags

Of course, if your wellness retreat involves overnight stays, be sure to include camping essentials like bedding as well as cooking equipment to keep your clients fed and well-rested! For more yoga and well-being must-haves, check out the free printable checklist below.

We hope our free printable camping checklists have helped you plan a safe, comfortable, and luxurious outdoor expedition, whether you’re taking it back to basics and getting off-grid or stepping up your glamping game for a special occasion.

Be sure to check out our full range of luxury
bell tents here at Boutique Camping, along with a selection of classic bell tents and yurts.

We’re also proud to stock an array of exclusive designs including our
Star, Tucana, Nova, Air Dome, and Emperor bell tents. Unsure of where to start? Our handy guides and manuals will help you find the perfect tent, fabric, and size for your next adventure in the great outdoors.