When we find a new piece of camping or outdoor equipment that we love and that really works, it’s here.
Everything you see – from barbecues to mosquito repellent – has been tried and tested by a member of the Campfire team and is now one of their actual camping essentials. If something let us down after long-term use, it’s gone!
Click on any picture or link for details and prices. And if you’re looking for something in particular – from the best campervan to the best loo – just use the search box!
A brilliant series of guides that help you discover lovely landscapes, places to swim and camp, unusual and special places to eat and more.
What’s this doing here?
Not totally camping, but…we love Dr Bronner’s 18-in-1 soap liquid. And actually, you can use it for washing up, washing clothes, washing yourself, your kit and your pets, keeping ants at bay, so…totally sensible for camping?
It’d be hard to find a more ethical, people- and environment-minded company and the bottles are made from recycled plastic.
Fairtrade, organic, no detergents, foaming agents or synthetic preservatives. Lots of lovely scents too.
It was our friend Kathy who introduced us to the wonders of these lightweight binoculars. Fr birdwatching, a pair of carryable binoculars is a really good idea. These £80 Nikon binoculars are the best we’ve tried for portability and clarity. We’ve spotted a golden eagle, seals, yellowhammers and a naked man having a shower next to a green bucket on the beach! Who could that be?
They fold down small, seal well and have a fit that works for women as well as men. Oh, and they cost about £5.
Boy, these are brilliant. We've been using bulb timers for when we're away, but they were unreliable. The TP-Link Smart Bulbs and Smart Plug let you control your lights and a radio, say, from anywhere you've got signal or wifi. Dimmable, tuneable lights with screw and bayonet fitting and the easiest, most feature-rich app to control them. VERY impressed. From around £20.
You'll find a couple of great bivvy options on this page, but the Lawson Blue Ridge combines ground-based bivvy with almost flat-bed sleeping-in-the-trees hammock. Around £175. We love the airy feel with a mosquito net to protect you, but a rainfly if the weather turns wet. See more hammocks and bivvies too.
One of our favourite (non-down) sleeping bags – it doubles as a blanket/quilt and is made of eco-friendly materials. The Vaude Navajo is soft, warm, versatile and really well-designed. We use the 900 option for spring, summer and a warm autumn .
Try a Snugpak Jungle Blanket for a cheaper option too. Lots of readers say they love them. Warm and light.
Either the fabulous self-inflating Sea to Summit Comfort Deluxe or the Exped 10LW. Not cheap camping mats, but well-insulated, good at inflating (especially the S-to-S) and lovely to lie on. More options in our special feature on mats. Get even more comfortable with the best pillow we've found – a mini memory-foam, bamboo travel pillow of loveliness.
Cadac Safari Chef camp stove. Our favourite gas cooker. Very efficient, packs away nicely and has lots of options for cooking styles – from pizza stone to seared steak griddle plate. New models have added piezo ignition. All fits into a roomy, easy-to-carry bag and set sup in no time. High and low pressure options (ie. big gas bottle with hose or screw-in canister)
A tarp. Nothing fancy, just a very versatile piece of kit. String it up from a tree, attach it to your tent, use it as a shade, an extra dining area, a rain shelter. We've got a feature on tarps here too. Remember to get bungee or elasticated cord for fastening your tarp (details at the end)!
These bits and pieces will cost you under a tenner and will change your (camping) life! Use the bungee cords to secure tarps, awnings, bits of flapping tent or for 101 other uses. The green clips fasten on to canvas taps, tents and so on without damaging the fabric and give you more options for securing.
Avoid plastic when you can! It's easy when bamboo crockery is as lovely as these bowls, plates and more. Lightweight, very stylish. Plus lots more earth-friendly tableware in our article on alternatives to plastic. Also have a look at other green camping ideas – for more environmentally friendly shopping, cooking. washing and more.
We love our stainless steel bowls for all our home baking and mixing. They’re even more useful when camping. These Von Shef bowls (five of them) are great because they have lids, plus interchangeable centre bits for grating, slicing etc. Mix in them, measure in them, serve in them. Perfect and indestructible.