Camping can be a blast, but it’s best when you plan ahead. Make sure your agenda includes plenty of activities, be sure to bring the right gear, and don’t forget to take along some tasty recipes to enjoy at your campsite!

Need some inspiration before you venture into the great outdoors? No problem. We’ve put together a list of 14 summer camping ideas that are guaranteed to help you have an absolutely wild time. And don’t forget to book your campsite online with CampReservations.ca!

Our Top 14 Summer Camping Ideas

#1: Try Letterboxing

This quirky hobby can turn your camping trip into an exciting scavenger hunt. Letterboxes are containers with logbooks inside that people hide in public places (like campgrounds) with clues to their whereabouts. Once you discover a letterbox, you can mark it with a stamp to prove you’ve been there. For a list of known letterboxes in Canada, click here.

#2: Make Omelettes in a Bag

One of our favourite breakfast recipes, the omelette in a bag is both easy and delicious—plus, it requires next to no cleanup! If you prep the ingredients before your trip, all you’ll need to do on the day is boil water. Here’s the recipe, and check out these other easy camping meals.

#3: Make S’mores!

If you’re camping with your children, s’mores make a tasty campfire treat guaranteed to help them enjoy their time away from civilization. Of course, you don’t have to be a kid to enjoy these classic campfire snacks! Learn how to make ‘em here.

#4: Bring Dryer Sheets

You won’t be doing laundry out in the woods, but dryer sheets have other uses. Use them to freshen up musty spaces (like the inside of an old tent or backpack) and place them under your tablecloth to keep bees away from your food! Just remember to dispose of them properly—nature is no place for littering.

#5: Use Your Belt to Hang Cookware

That’s right—you can save valuable table space by mounting s-hooks on your belt and wrapping it around a tree to create a makeshift set of kitchen hooks! Don’t believe us? See for yourself.

#6: Start Campfires Easily with Trick Candles

You know those candles you can buy at joke shops that relight themselves when someone blows them out? Bring a pack of those on your next camping trip, and you’ll find it a whole lot easier to start a campfire in windy weather.

#7: Save Money On a Sleeping Pad

You might not have a high-quality sleeping pad kicking around the house, but there’s a good chance you have a yoga mat—and that can work almost as well when you put it under your sleeping bag. Yoga mats also tend to be cheaper than good sleeping pads if you need to buy a new one.

#8: Make Coffee Sachets

You probably aren’t taking your coffee maker camping, but you don’t need to. Instead, just add a few spoonfuls of your favourite ground coffee to a filter and seal it with a string to create coffee bags you can steep in hot water, just like tea!

#9: Have Your Water Pull Double Duty

Clean out some empty plastic jugs and use them to freeze your drinking water before your trip. Then, keep them in your cooler to preserve perishable foods and thaw them out as needed when you need a nice cold drink.

#10: Make Campfire Hash

This versatile recipe makes a great addition to dinner, but can also be jazzed up to make a standalone breakfast or lunch! The whole thing can be prepped and cooked in under an hour, making it as convenient as it is delicious.

#11: Create Instant Lanterns For Your Campsite

Having a flashlight is great, but sometimes you want to see where you’re going in the dark while keeping your hands free. Just wrap a headlamp around one of your empty plastic jugs and tie it to a tree. Let there be light.

#12: Make Onion Bombs

We had to include at least one eccentric camping recipe on this list, and here it is! Onion bombs are just as odd and exciting as their name implies. They’re basically meat packed inside an onion, then foil-wrapped and baked over a campfire. Truly an explosion of flavour.

#13: Build a Handwashing Station

Roughing it doesn’t mean you have to forego basic hygiene. Stay healthy and keep your hands clean by using an empty laundry detergent container as a handwashing station. You can even add a roll of paper towels on top, like this person did.

#14: Use Corn Chips as Easy Kindling

Not sure you’ll be able to scrounge up enough sticks to start your campfire? In a pinch, you can actually burn corn chips like Doritos or Fritos. The grease in these products will burn easily, and can help you get a fire started when all else fails. Just don’t use them for the whole fire, since grease fires create a lot of smoke.

Put A New Spin On Summer Camping

With these new activities, campsite tips, and recipes to try, you’re about ready for your next adventure! Use what you’ve learned to get creative this summer and make this upcoming trip a truly memorable experience.