Backyard Camping Sleepover Ideas

Thinking of a backyard camping sleepover or backyard camping birthday party? Here are tips to on how to make camping more fun at your house right in your own yard, including backyard camping party ideas and which kids pop-up backyard camping and sleepover tent is good (and even what to do if you don’t have a backyard tent). Perfect party idea for backyard glamping, tween or teen slumber parties, or weekend family activities.

Backyard Camping Sleepover Ideas

Ultimate Backyard Camping Sleepover Tips

Whether you’re having a backyard camping birthday party or a romantic backyard camping pajama party or backyard camping date night, use these tips as your camping checklist.

Before we get to the backyard camping hacks, tips for camping in the backyard, and how to go camping in your backyard, let’s answer…

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What is backyard camping?

Backyard camping is camping in a tent or RV or outdoors right in your own backyard. You set up a camp in your yard and do all the normal camping things like making s’mores, campfire, and sleeping under the stars. Don’t forget to include camping in the backyard activities like games!

There are also many benefits of camping with family and friends in your own back yard.

Backyard Camping Benefits

The benefits of backyard camping include:

  • Less stress of setting up at a campground or park
  • Having an indoor bathroom nearby
  • Being able to retreat to the house for inclement weather
  • Ability to get more blankets if you get cold
  • Practicing camping with kids before going on a real camping trip
  • Being able to put kids back in their own beds if kids get scared
  • Don’t need as much kids camping gear

What do I need for backyard camping?

What do you need to go camping in your backyard? For camping in backyard you will need camping basics like a tent, sleeping bags, and flashlights. Then, add in the fun things like camp games and camping activities, and camping food and drinks.

Is backyard camping safe?

Backyard camping is as safe as any other camping. If you’re having a kids’ sleepover party and are worried about kids camping in the backyard alone, you can set up a tent near them and sleep outside, too. You can also let them have a camp under, where they play in the tent and then sleep inside.

You can also check out tent locks to make it harder for others to get inside a tent while you’re sleeping.

Best Backyard Camping Tent

Backyard camping tents are the first thing you should focus on for camping out in the backyard. The size of your tent for camping will depend on how many people will be camping.

What is the best tent for backyard camping?

Check out these kids pop-up backyard camping and sleepover tent for sale:

Want a fun tent for kids? Try a sleepover teepee tent!

How can I camp in my backyard without a tent?

You can camp in your backyard without a tent. You can build a blanket fort (DIY camping tent), use a tarp or backyard canopy / patio tent, or even sleep right out under the stars with blow up mattresses or sleeping bags and blankets. If you have a trampoline, you can have a fun backyard trampoline slumber party!

Learn more about trampoline sleepovers and a trampoline tent for backyard camping.

How To Have a Campfire When Camping in Your Own Backyard

  • Check on any local laws, regulations, or restrictions on having a campfire in your backyard.
  • Choose a place away from the house and tents you set up.
  • Review fire safety with the kids.
  • Remove any dry brush, sticks, or items that could easily catch fire.
  • Build a fire pit with bricks or stones, or buy a fire pit (we like the ones with mesh, especially if kids are going to be around).
  • Gather wood or use untreated lumber for your firewood.
  • Loosely stack your firewood with a few pieces and use kindling to light it.
  • Enjoy your fire!
Cooking Through Camping with KidsYou may also like COOKING THROUGH CAMPING WITH KIDS!
Fun kids activities while backyard camping!

Ok! Let’s get to how do you take a camping trip at home!

Backyard Camping Ideas

Backyard Camping Essentials and Backyard Camping Supplies

Essential things in backyard camping will vary based on who is camping. (Are you doing an adult romantic sleepover or a kids’ backyard slumber party?) However, there are general things you will need.

Backyard camping list:

How to camp with kids in your backyard is fun family activity!

Backyard Camping Games and Activities

Now that you have the basics, it’s time for camping activities for kids and camping games for kids!

There are many fun things to do outside in your backyard while camping!

How do you make camping in the backyard fun?

What do you do when you camp in your backyard with friends?

Things to do while camping and fun things to do in your backyard:

  • Build a bonfire
  • Make s’mores
  • Do a backyard camping scavenger hunt
  • Search for constellations
  • Watch movies outdoors / camping movies (make popcorn on the bonfire!)
  • Play flashlight tag
  • Read stories aloud
  • Tell ghost stories
  • Play capture the flag
  • Make shadow puppets
  • Play mega lawn games (this one is awesome for all ages!)
  • Do sparklers
  • Play truth or dare and other fun camping games
  • Use flying wish paper to send up your wishes
  • Release wishing lanterns

Almost any game can be transformed to backyard camping fun! Ask your kids for ideas on fun things to do while camping!

(These are also great camping bday party ideas for the backyard, too!)

How to make backyard camping smores

Backyard Camping Recipes

Camping cooking backyard sleepover food can be fun because you have the benefit of accessing everything right from your house. Don’t be afraid to have fun with cooking over a bonfire!

Backyard camping tips for food:

We looooove these telescoping roasting sticks for bonfires and camping!

Backyard Camping with Kids

What is the best age for backyard camping?

The best age for backyard camping will really depend on your child’s maturity and/or their experience with camping. If you want to host a backyard camping for kids (where they camp alone outside), probably tween camping or teen camping is best. However, you can camp as a family starting at any age. (Yes! Even camping with babies and toddlers!)


Backyard Camping with Toddlers

Camping out in the backyard is a great way to introduce toddlers to camping.

Benefits of camping in my backyard with toddlers:

  • Easy set up (don’t have to haul things long distances)
  • It’s familiar, so your child will be less likely to get scared
  • Easy access to bathrooms (especially if you’re potty training!)
  • You can go in the house if they get too scared to camp all night
  • Toddlers can bring as much as they want to feel comfortable (stuffed animals, blankies, etc.)
  • You don’t have to worry if you forget something (it’s right there at your house!)

Let us know if you have more backyard ideas for kids!



DISCLOSURE: Affiliate links are used on this site. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. Please refer to our DISCLOSURE.

About the author

Friends have called Jackie the "Midwestern Martha" [Stewart] because of her 20 years of over-the-top theme parties, super fun sleepover tips, fun theme recipes, DIY game ideas and awesome party tips! LEARN MORE

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