Camping Games and Activities for Fun with Your Tweens and Teens
“Mom, there’s nothing to do.”
You have heard that before. The idea of camping and the possibility of quiet family time brings back memories.
The wonderful fragrance of the spruce that adorns the roads as you arrive to the campsite. Car doors fling open as your children jump out to survey the best place for their tent. We have overcome “boredom” you think. The back hatch of your car swings open and out comes the camping games, fishing poles, tents, campfire wood, and the other supplies for your camping activities. Let the happy memories begin!
Before You Head Out
For my homeschool family, budget is always a priority but first we have to figure out what is it we are looking for in a campsite. To make sure I pack all the equipment we need for the camping activities the family enjoys, we have very brief conversations that go something like this:
- Me: Would it be fun to find a campground where you can swim?
- Boys: I don’t know.
- Me: Fish?
- Boys: Yeah
- Me: What about hiking trails?
- Boys: Sure
- Me: Maybe we can stop at some historic landmarks.
- Boys: Do we have too?
- Me: Let’s play it by ear.
I now have some family camping ideas to make it better for my teenagers to go on. We have hiking and fishing plus we have to please mom too and that means we hit up at least one historic landmark with the promise of a good meal later.
Location, Location, Location
The first website I went to was Go Camping America. Using the Campground search tool you can locate camping sites using the criteria that you gathered earlier by talking with your family and by entering the distance from your home.
I also looked at KOA but after searching a little bit I wasn’t finding the location that would make my husband happy. I finally ended up at my states Park and Recreation website which delivered the state parks different locations. You will also get some ideas for camping activities while browsing around.
NOW the FuN Begins!
Wait a second, I know your thinking that this is a no brainer, hiking that is but we are going to take it up a notch.
The Movie Hike
If the phone is attached their hand then let’s make a movie. Don’t you think this would be the perfect time for the family home movie? Some encouraging ideas, because kids usually don’t want to have themselves in the family home movie, suggest they film you.
The Photo Hike
Similar to the Movie Hike your tweens and teens can become the family’s photo journalist documenting the family hike. When you get back to your city dwelling together the family can create a photo book right from their cell phone. This is also an opportunity to share time with the kids.
We have always used Snapfish link for photo books because they have wonderful quality and great pricing.
Around the Bonfire
Camping Stories and Riddles
What’s camping without a spooky story? Here’s a story that’s whimsical, imaginative and fun to tell, The Hairy Toe!
You also need to have a creepy tale like The Missing Bride.
If you want to keep the family laughing share a few riddles. When I went to camp as young teen that was probably one of the activities that I shared for years and years, the riddles that were told. When we played we were only allowed to ask questions that can be answered with a “yes” or “no”. Here’s one for you to think about: What comes once in a minute, twice in a moment, but never in a thousand years? Did you figure it out? You can visit iMom dot com for the answer and more riddles.
Over the Flames
Everyone loves a good bonfire. The warmth of the tower of fire and crackling of the embers. a good game of charades is in order don’t you think.
If you are a musically inclined family, we’re not, a little guitar and singing sounds like a good time to me.
Now, we are a foodie family and what’s a fire without those amazing s’mores. The kids also like to watch the marshmallows burn to a crisp in the flames but I wouldn’t suggest that. You will have to try Campfire Cones! An amazing treat that will make everyone happy and who doesn’t love that.
- What you need:
- sugar ice cream cones
- Mini marshmallows
- Chocolate chips
- Optional goodies to add are pretzel sticks, fruit, nuts anything you can think of, yummy!
Wrap them in foil and toss them in. Okay, you will probably want a put them on a grill or at least have some tongs handy to pull them from the fire. It doesn’t take long for them to melt which means you will want to watch them.
We actually bring games. You probably aren’t surprised when I tell you that our homeschool family brings a game of Chess.
On a past camping trip with friends they brought a game called Mancala. The object o the game is to collect all the stones called mancala. This is a strategy game and becomes rather addictive once you start playing. The directions on how to play can be found at The Spruce Crafts.
Charades was mentioned earlier and is worth mentioning again. This game brings everyone together and doesn’t take up space in the backseat of your car. Here is a free printable from The Joys of Boys to help make this fun camping game easy to prepare for too.
Glow-in-the-Dark Ring Toss is a game that can you feel challenged. You can play the game in the day or the night and it is one of the least expensive games I have ever put together. All you need you can get at the Dollar Tree or other discount store.
- You need:
- Glow sticks
- Water bottles
Relax with a Good Read
Can you see it? Laying in a hammock under a giant evergreen. Enjoying the weather and reading a good book.
- The Wild Muir: Twenty-Two of John Muir’s Great Adventures by Lee Stetson
- The Call of the Wild by Jack London
- Gentle Ben by Walt Morey
You are here, on the internet, and now it’s time for you to pack up your car and head out with your family to have fun camping. With these camping games and ideas you will have a memorable time to look back on. Enjoy!
Hi, I’m Kristina. I’m a veteran homeschool mom of 3 amusing boys and proclaimed and proclaimed bibliophile. I have towed my sons to book stores where they wandered through the aisles collecting books to read with smiles on their faces. On my blog, Book Bound Boys, my hope is to help you create a love for literature in your home.
If you want the fun, activities and games to continue all year long, consider a True North Homsechool Academy Club! Check out 5 Super Smart Clubs for students ages 12-99 as well as Traveling with a Large Family part I and part II.