How to pick the right camping destination

Answer these six questions to help determine the best outdoor adventure options for you and your fellow campers.
Family camping with two tents and kids running
February 21, 2018 06:43 AM
  1. How much experience do you have?

    If you’re not ready to scale mountains and cook your catch, you’re not alone. Many campers started in their backyard. Having familiar options nearby can be useful if you’re new to camping. Figure out your comfort level and let that dictate where you make camp.

  2. Who is going?

    Both the number of people and who you bring can affect plans. In addition to sleeping bags and tents, you’ll need to plan for meals and activities. If you’re camping with kids or elderly campers, or if a camper has special needs, ask if your destination can accommodate you.

  3. When are you going?

    Summertime is the most popular time to camp––though reservations go a lot faster, too. If you’re hoping for smaller crowds, you may want to travel in the off-season. Many activities are also seasonally-based, so call ahead.

  4. How much gear are you bringing?

    Two people on a weekend jaunt require a lot less than a family of five going hiking for a week. Figure out how much space you’ll have for guests and gear. Your campsite might not be near your car, so find out how far you need to carry your gear. Determine what amenities are available at (or near) your destination. Renting equipment or buying items on-site can save space.

  5. What do you want to do?

    Some campers are content with a day of fishing, but you might have different ideas. Look for sites that most closely match your group’s wishlist. Find out if any of your activities have fees or restrictions or if they require licenses or permits.

  6. Do you have everything you need?

    Before you leave to go anywhere, think through your gear and campsite preparations. Does your tent have enough space? How many coolers do you need to bring? Do you know how to cook over a campfire? The Get Outdoors app has answers to all of those questions and more. You can also search for camping destinations near you.


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