Whether your son or daughter will be away at an overnight summer camp for a week or an entire month, packing the essentials for everything they do could ultimately be the difference between a great overnight summer camp experience and a phone call asking to come home.
To make your child’s camp experience one they’ll never forget, be sure to pack these overnight summer camp must-haves.
When it comes to packing the right overnight summer camp clothing, we like to live by the old saying, “prepare for the worst and hope for the best.” While there may not be any rain on the radar a few days before sending them off to camp, it doesn’t mean a few showers (or torrential downpours) won’t pop up. Here’s a list of overnight summer camp must-have clothing:
- Plenty of face masks, reusable and disposable
- A good rain jacket and rain pants
- 2-3 bathing suits
- 5-6 pairs of shorts
- 2-3 pairs of long pants or jeans
- 5-10 shirts (short and long sleeve)
- 2-3 sweatshirts or hoodies
- 10+ pairs of socks and underwear
- 2-3 pairs of pajamas (at least one for hot weather and one for cooler weather)
- 2 pairs of sneakers
- 1 pair of rain boots
- 1 pair of comfortable sandals or pool slides
- 1 pair of water shoes (these can double as shoes if sneakers go missing or get wet)
General Overnight Summer Camp Necessities
Sun, Bug & Germ Protection
Nothing ruins a good time faster than sunburns, bug bites, and sickness. That’s why some of our other favorite overnight summer camp essentials are sunscreen, bug spray, hand sanitizer, and sanitizing wipes.
You’ll also want to pack a reusable water bottle, 2 large beach towels, a small first aid kit, a camera, and a day pack for daily hikes or adventures.
Cleanliness is key while your son or daughter is creating a home away from home this summer. Be sure to pack the bathroom essentials needed for proper hygiene, including:
- Shower caddy & toiletry tote bag
- Shampoo & conditioner
- Soap (bottled soap would be best)
- Detangler (if necessary)
- 2 bath and face towels
- 2 washcloths
- 1 new toothbrush, toothpaste, floss, mouthwash
- Feminine hygiene products (if necessary)
- Razor and shaving cream (if necessary)
- 1-2 sticks of deodorant ( just in case!)
What you pack for them to sleep in is just as important as the rest of their overnight summer camp essentials. You’ll want to make sure they’ve got warm layers to bundle up in case the temperature drops at night, but also that they’ve got breathable blankets and layers for warmer nights, including:
- 1-2 pillows with extra pillowcases
- Sleeping bag and 1 blanket
- 2 sets of twin sheets
- Mattress cover (if you feel it is necessary or required by the camp)
- Extra fleece blanket for added warmth
- Stuffed animals (if they would feel more comfortable having them)
Bunk Floor Mat
If you’d like to help your child make their bunk space feel a little more like home, a bunk floor mat can help. Interlocking foam floor tiles offer a clean, comfortable surface to wake up and get ready on and can help personalize your child’s space. Plus, they assemble and disassemble fast and are extremely easy to wipe clean!
Leisure Time Activities
During the day or week, your child will have downtime where they can write home, play games, or relax the way they want to. Here are some great leisure time tools they can pack to keep them occupied during their downtime:
- Playing cards
- Writing materials
- Board games
- Personal play or yoga mats (more on this below)
Personal Play Mat
If your child has some downtime during the day or evening at summer camp, pack them a personal exercise mat they can use to play games with friends rather than sit on their bed or the hard ground. These mats are convenient and easily portable, equipped with carrying handles, and protected in an 18 oz vinyl for easy clean up of dirt, spills, sap, and whatever else camp life can throw its way.
Whether your son or daughter’s overnight summer camp scheduled yoga as one of the activities or you prefer they have their own mat to relax on during leisure-time activities, a yoga mat is a lightweight, portable solution to help keep them from sitting or lying directly on the ground.
This can be a lifesaver if the grass is wet from the morning dew or if the pavement they’re playing on is a bit too warm from the summer sun. A yoga mat can also double as a surface to sit on at the lake or beach, and they’ll love how easily sand shakes right off.
Give your child an overnight summer camp experience they’ll remember with the must-have camping essentials designed to keep them safe and comfortable day in and day out!