Here at Cambee we have a whole heap of vans and a bunch of kids between us so over the years we’ve become really good at bringing the two together to enjoy some epic adventures with our families. A camping holiday with your children is ideal for so many families – it’s fun, flexible, gets everyone enjoying the great outdoors and can prove cost effective in the long run.
We’ve pulled together top tips from the team and our awesome Cambee community on getting the most out of your next van adventure with the kids in tow.
The biggest thing we’ve learnt over the years is that kids can smell chaos a mile off so planning ahead, at least a little way, is top of the list. Even if a more nomadic adventure is your style, we’d recommend getting the first night or two booked ahead. It’s painful for everyone if you arrive at your campsite to find they’re fully booked. Instead, get that first night nailed down and let the adventure free flow from there!
The Fun Starts on the Journey
The dreaded long drive to get there is probably the most hated feature of the camping holiday but it really needn’t be! Start your holiday the second you get into the van with fun games, sing songs and good snacks to keep them entertained. We’d recommend getting some audio books to listen to so you can all get lost in a pre-adventure adventure!
Don’t forget to plan regular breaks for the loo and to let them burn off some energy too before you get to your first destination.
Make Your Van a Home from Home
The biggest perk of travelling in your tiny house on wheels? You can fill it with all of the comforts of home without worrying about your baggage allowance here in the UK. Make sure you pack favourite blankets, bedding, toys and treats so that your kids feel as relaxed as you do when setting off. If space allows you can take your favourite sports kit along too: bikes or scooters to mix up the exploration, paddleboards or body boards if you’re heading to the coast, there are so many possibilities.
Whilst we’re on it, if you’re taking your van on a UK adventure, plan for the rain!! Pack some playing cards, board games or arts and crafts supplies so that you can create fun inside if the weather hits. Or pack your wellies and waterproofs and embrace that drizzle!
Have Some Fun Activities Up Your Sleeve
We’re big fans of no frills camping and really getting stuck into nature. The great thing about this is that the possibilities for entertaining the kids (the whole family in fact) are endless. For the daytime, try scavenger hunts, den building, searching for firewood, hide and seek, finding fairies, raft building, exploring the banks of streams and rivers, sketching what you see…anything can be turned into a game when you’re in the wild.
In the evening you can slow things down, enjoy toasting some marshmallows and dunking them in your hot chocolate, fireside story time, star gazing, even get them involved in the cooking.
Make Time for Free Time
As tempting as it can be to cram every day with activity after activity or sightseeing, we’ve learnt that being intentional about slowing down, immersing yourself in nature and letting the environment lead the way can be incredibly rewarding. Allowing your kids to be kids and letting their imaginations run wild is one of the most enjoyable things about holidaying in a van, who knows where it might take you!
Keep on Learning
We know, we know, you’re on holiday – no more school (home or otherwise). BUT taking a campervan holiday with your kids gives you a unique opportunity to start to teach them how to behave in nature. Anything from being responsible about fire setting, basic fishing, being mindful of litter and the environment, starting to identify the flora and fauna around you…the sheer novelty of being outside will make the learning seem fun and set them up for a lifetime of road trip adventures.
Most important of all? Relax, go with the flow and enjoy every second exploring together.
If you need a little advice on your conversion project (or have some awesome tips on family van adventures we’ve missed) please do get in touch with the team.