Luxury Camping Guide
This is the first in a series of 3 articles going†through camping necessities, starting with luxury camping, then leading on to how to make your kit a bit smaller and lighter and finally on to how to go ultra lightweight and get away with the bare minimum.
Always fancied getting out into the great outdoors for a weekend? Getting back to basics? Donít want to be cold and/or wet? Canít sleep on one of those uncomfortable air beds?
There are plenty of solutions to all of these problems, luxury camping is a great way to get into the outdoors without suffering the loss of those must have home comforts.
So whatís going to make your camping trip comfortable?
A comfy sleeping mat: One of our Thermarest Camp & Comfort mats or an Exped SIM Comfort are good starting points, but there are loads to choose from. Donít forget to buy a pump, particularly for large mats, as blowing them up can be quite an effort. Some of them come with a pump, for those that donít there are a few options at a good price. For more information on choosing your mat have a look at our guide on How to Choose a Sleeping Mat. †A Thermarest Fitted Sheet will also make your mattress just that bit more like your own bed at home and is great if you canít get used to the nylon finished on the top of many sleeping mats.
If youíre not a fan of sleeping on the floor then Thermarest Luxury Cots are an excellent option, theyíre sturdy and pack down pretty small for a bed. They come in a few different options and have various add-ons.
A good sleeping bag or blanket: We have a huge range of Sleeping Bags, for a luxury camping trip a synthetic bag will be fine. Down is great as it provides more warmth for the weight and it packs up smaller, but it is more expensive and unless you plan on camping year round itís not really necessary for this type of trip. Having a sleeping bag liner is also recommended as they make sleeping bags comfier, cleaner and add a little extra warmth. The Mountain Equipment Starlight or Rab Ignition ranges are ideal starting points. Have a look at our How to Choose a Sleeping Bag page for more information.
If you donít like sleeping bags then Thermarest have a blanket system which is compatible with most Thermarest mats. The Regulus blanket is the synthetic option and the Auriga blanket the down one. These are compatible with most Thermarest sleeping mats up to size large and offer a great alternative if you find sleeping bags restrictive, have a look here – Thermarest Blankets.
A Chair: This is quite an important one if youíre after a comfortable camping experience. Sitting on the ground gets uncomfortable very quickly, and when youíre away for the weekend itís nice to have something to sit it when chilling at the campsite. The Thermarest Treo Chair is the obvious one for those who want a bit of luxury, itís sturdy and packable. There are also a number of Chair Kits and Seats to make things more comfortable for your behind.
Lanterns: Lanterns are great, particularly if youíre going camping in spring and autumn and the nights draw in a little bit more quickly than around mid summer. They just extend those warm evenings when you can sit up and chat, read or play cards before going to bed. Battery life is always being improved and even powerful lanterns can now last a surprising length of time Ė just make sure you remember to turn it off when itís not being used and to bring some spare batteries with you. You can find our lanterns here – Lanterns.
Bits and pieces: We have loads of little bits and pieces designed to make all sorts of travel that bit easier and more comfortable – Travel Accessories. A few special mentions from this category. The Black Diamond Ember Power Light is a great little multi use torch. It is rechargeable and can be used as a torch or an additional power source and has a quality finish and feel to it. The Exped Mesh Organiser Set – for any trip where youíre away for longer than a couple of days this little set of bags is indispensable for keeping your stuff together. A Water carrier, not glamorous but entirely necessary, the Source Liquitainer Water Carrier is a good 4 litres Ė big enough so you donít have make constant trips but small enough so that it doesnít weigh a ton when full and the nearest tap is a bit of a walk.
Click here to read the next article, in which we go over which bits of kit you can make smaller and lighter without sacrificing too much comfort.
Video – Stu takes you through the luxury Thermarest Camp & Comfort range: