Take camping to glamping this summer with fun gear you never knew you’ve always needed!
By Amy Whitley
Picture this camping scene: you wake up from a night sleeping peacefully under the stars and reach for a cup of joe, but instead of cowboy coffee, you’re greeted by the aroma of freshly brewed espresso. Settling down with your perfect expresso, you lounge in your lightweight hammock or in your portable chair—no hard boulder or dirt for you, thank you. In the evening, more luxury camping items abound: you sip a craft cocktail in a temperature-controlled lowball glass from the comfort of your screened-in porch.
Doesn’t sound like camping as you know it? It will! Just add a few of these top-shelf items to your camping gear. Buyer beware, however: once you indulge in some of these luxury camping items, you won’t be able to leave home without them. Here are some of our favorites to try this summer.
Wacaco Minipresso Maker
This cylindrical portable espresso maker may look like a little toy submarine, but it produces an incredible cup of espresso. It’s fairly heavy (you won’t want to pack it into the backcountry) but perfect for car camping enthusiasts. MSRP: $49
Snow Peak Cast Iron Oven
When the old becomes new again, it seems to get more…expensive? Snow Peak’s cast iron oven delivers with ultra-thin casting technology (the rounded bottom makes for a more successful cooking experience), but it comes with a high price tag. MSRP: $269.95
Platypus Platypreserve Wine Pouch and GSI Outdoors Wine Glass
We’re not animals…our camp wine should stay fresh and be served in style. Store your vino in a Platypus wine pouch and sip it from GSI’s stainless-steel wine glass built with camping in mind. Wine pouch MSRP: $9.95; Wine glass MSRP: $14.95
Yeti Rambler Lowball Glasses and Minute Mixology Cocktail Set
Okay, fine, booze is an important aspect of my camping experience. But in my defense, you can put any beverage in Yeti’s lowball glass and keep it cold or hot for hours and hours. If you do want to make a cocktail, Minute Mixology makes it easy and portable with single-serve cocktail mixers already packaged for you. Lowball MSRP: $19.99; Mixology MSRP: $5.99 (single box).
Quick tip: In many regions of the U.S., local companies will rent you the basics and set up your campsite for you. Many state park systems also have services in place to help first-time campers learn the basics, from setting up the tent to starting that first campfire. Sit back and relax and let them do the work!
Eureka Northern Breeze Screen House
It’s not good enough just to have a tent. Enjoy your meals bug-free with a screen shelter. They come in multiple sizes, but we say go big or go home with Eureka’s largest model with built-in front porch. MSRP: $449.95
Goalzero Nomad Solar Power
I’ll take my power to go, thank you! GoalZero’s portable four-panel solar charger is lightweight and powerful enough to charge all your devices in the outdoors. MSRP: $249.95
Snow Peak Hozuki Lantern
Now that you have power, use this LED ‘candle-mode’ lantern to create ambiance or to read by in your tent. It will intuitively turn off when your space becomes silent, conserving power. MSRP: $99.95
Sea To Summit Silk Sleeping Bag Liner
Slip between silk sheets at bedtime instead of scratchy polyester or chilly down. Sea to Summit’s silk liner is lightweight and packs down small, so you won’t even notice it in your camping gear pile until it’s bedtime. MSRP: $69.95
Sierra Designs Frontcountry Bed
This zipper-less sleeping bag will ruin you for all others. It feels more like a bed than a bag, and it comes in double or single styles for the backcountry or the front country. MSRP: $129.95 for the front-country single.
Grand Trunk Skeeter Beeter Hammock and Klymit Hammock V Pad
Want to sleep sans tent? Keep the mosquitos at bay while resting in your hammock with Grand Trunk’s fully enclosed model. Now, for the finishing touch, line your hammock with Klymit’s Hammock V pad, which makes sleeping in a hammock much more comfortable. The pad features no-slip zones that will help to keep you from sliding around. Hammock MSRP: $89.95; Pad MSRP: $139.95
Tentsile Tree Tent
Want to be the talk of the campground? Elevate your camping experience with a tree tent. Yes, it’s exactly what it sounds like: a tent tree fort, complete with bouncy ‘trampoline-style’ flooring and optional rope ladder. Now, I won’t lie. These tents are a beast to set up, and you won’t want to carry them far (they’re heavy). But once perched in the treetops, you’ll be smitten. MSRP: $550 for the Vista model.
About the Author: Amy Whitley specializes in outdoor travel writing for families with children. She is the founding editor of Pit Stops for Kids, a family travel site dedicated to resort, attraction, and outdoor activity reviews for kids. Amy writes regularly for U.S. News Travel and Southern Oregon Magazine as is an editor for OutdoorsNW Magazine and Twist Travel Magazine.