comfortably camping in a tent

9 Ways How to Make Tent Camping More Comfortable

In Beginners Guide by J. PenneyLeave a Comment

Camping in a tent isn’t always the most comfortable way to spend your time outdoors. For some getting into a tent can be dreadful for others’ experience with nature. Camping in a tent can be fun as long as you find ways to make your tent fit your comfort level.

How do we make camping more enjoyable and significantly more comfortable?

To create comfort and coziness, we first have to think about all the parts of camping that are uncomfortable. What about camping is your biggest struggle?

My most significant discrepancy with camping is being on the hard ground. I have a difficult time sleeping without my specific pillow, so I purchased pillows identical to mine for camping. For my partner, it’s the feeling of being frigid. For others, it can be the bugs. Knowing what it is, that makes you uncomfortable will help you identify ways to make your camping experience more enjoyable.

I put together a list of nine ways how to make tent camping comfortable so you can enjoy every minute of it!

9 Ways How To Make Tent Camping Comfortable

  1. Lay Out Tent Floor Padding
  2. Choose a Comfortable Camping Bed and Sleeping Bag
  3. Take Warm and Cozy Outdoor Clothing
  4. Pitch Tent in The Right Place
  5. Use Bathroom Before Bed
  6. Don’t forget your Toothbrush!
  7. Always Close the Tent!
  8. Keep Your Belongings in The Car
  9. Embrace The Experience

1. Lay Out Tent Floor Padding

dog laying on tent floor

When you’re camping, the thing you may miss most is the comfort of your pillowtop queen mattress. The thought of sleeping on the hard grown can be repulsive. There has to be a better way to create a serene sleeping environment.

When I go camping, I always bring a self-inflating blow-up mattress. If you don’t have a blow-up bed or know you won’t have any power to blow up your mattress, many opt-in for a sleeping pad.

A great option to place underneath your bed and for overall tent comfort is by laying out a tent floor. I actually go into full details about the tent floor padding ideas in our article “Best Tent Floor Padding Ideas”, check it out to see my favorite options!

Anyways, tent floor padding is perfect to layout as a base, my favorite option is using interlocking foam tiles and place/cut them into the correct size of your tent floor. This minimizes the chances of stepping on rocks and twigs under your tent.

I hated waking up and walking around the tent to only stub my toe on a rock sticking up, or to step on a stick that nearly drives up my foot, either is not enjoyable…

Furthermore, it creates a base for your camping bed. Sometimes sleeping pads and mattresses are not comfortable when sitting on the ground. To start, sleeping pads are thin and in my opinion, they are made for certain people. Yes, if on a long hike and need a lightweight bed these will do justice, but camping in the campground I would stay away.

The foam flooring underneath a sleeping pad will create a better sleeping surface, it provides a stable and flat surface so your body will get a comfier sleep.

As per the sleeping mattress, it lowers the chance of small holes that leak air throughout the night. I know that many camping trips after sleeping in a blow-up mattress my body is nearly touching the ground. Prevent this issue with some tent floor padding!

Also, using a ground cover creates another layer of padding and prevents moisture from entering into your tent. This will help keep you dry and comfortable, I think this camping tip is usually forgotten and it really does help!

2. Choose a Comfortable Camping Bed and Sleeping Bag

sleeping in a tent with sleeping bags comfortably

Finding little ways to make your tent more comfortable can be as simple as finding the perfect sleeping bag and camping bed. This can be a cot or the ideal blow-up mattress that doesn’t deflate overnight.

If you are willing to invest in a comfortable camping bed, you can find cots that are lightweight and easy to transport with your tent. Having a cot raises you off the ground from the tent floor. This also will increase space as you can store items under your bed.

I have an article about the best camping beds, read it by clicking here “Best Camping Beds for Bad Backs”. These beds are designed to provide the most comfort while sleeping when camping.

When you plan to camp in the spring, summer, winter, or fall, choosing the right sleeping bag for the season will help keep you warm or cold. Finding the perfect sleeping bag for your liking is the best way for you to get a full night of sleep.

I don’t always use a sleeping bag because I find I get too warm. I end up always bringing camping blankets and a sheet for the air mattress. My partner likes to use all of the above, and if he could, he would bring the campfire into the tent with us.

See the best sleeping bags in our article called “Top 10 Best Sleeping Bags Under $200?”.

The best way to know if you’re going to be comfortable is to test out camping in the backyard to see what works best for you. Maybe you’ll need earplugs to keep out the sound of other campers or the music of the outdoors. Eye masks can help if you can’t sleep with any light. I have a hard time with mornings, so I always bring an eye mask that keeps me comfortable in the morning.

Finding small things that will make sleeping more comfortable while in the tent will overall make your time in a tent more enjoyable.

3. Take Warm and Cozy Outdoor Clothing

warm clothing for camping

When you’re on a camping trip, you can never be sure of the weather. Things change very quickly, and nights can be freezing. I sleep warm, but my partner is similar to an iceberg at night.

If you’re a cold sleeper, think about packing long johns. Something breathable that won’t lock in the sweat. You need materials like wool or spandex to wick away the moisture. When you have Gore-Tex material, this will aid in keeping you warm and dry; this will keep you at a comfortable temperature.

Make sure to pack hiking boots and lots of bug spray. If you plan on going into the woods on an adventure, you will want comfortable walking pants and a long sleeve shirt to protect you from any mosquitos that may follow you.

Packing comfortable clothing that you don’t mind getting dirty are the best for camping. I always pack warm hoodies and jogging pants for sitting by the fire or cooking an early morning breakfast.

Watching weather forecasts before you leave and planning your activities will help you pack the perfect wardrobe for camping. I always say prepare for the worst and hope for the best!

 4. Pitch Tent in The Right Place

place your tent in the best location

Finding the perfect location for your tent can depend on the time of day you arrive. What may be the right spot at noon may not be a good spot by midnight. Luckily a tent can be easily relocated, but its best to avoid this, of course.

Finding a place on your campsite that is flat without rocks or a minor incline will help keep your sleep comfortable.

It’s crucial not to pitch your tent where it may be damp or in an area where it catches a lot of wind during the day. Try and find shade within your camping lot. Before choosing your lot, see if the campground offers photos of the area. This will give you a better understanding of your layout before the booking.

When I am booking my camping lot, I try to find something secluded with trees nearby and a bit of shade. This keeps my mornings fresh and my tenting area private.

If you decide that you don’t like the location of your tent, you can always change the area within your lot and relocate somewhat quickly.

5. Use Bathroom Before Bed

putting shoes on while leaving camping tent

Or this will be you at 5 am!

Tenting is different than any other ordinary camping. In a trailer, you often have a bathroom you can use in the middle of the night. If you’re anything like me, tenting makes me frequent the ladies’ room, and in many cases, the bush.

If I was at home, I could make it through a 12-hour night’s rest without a need for the restroom, but if you put me in a tent, I will use the bathroom at least five times in a night, which can be annoying and complicated.

If you wake up and need to use the bathroom, it will require a bit more work than usual. If you’re backpacking or portaging, you will need to head out into the trees. It will probably be cold and even rainy. If you’re at a campground, you may have to walk some distance to find a bathroom.

It’s essential to use the restroom, or the bush before you doze off to dreamland. This can save you a lot of heartache at 3 in the morning when you wake up with the urge to use the restroom.

If you forget to use the washroom before bed, be prepared for doing acrobatics to get out of your tent without waking up your partner.

Here are some important words to remember: Just go before bed!

6. Don’t Forget Your Toothbrush!

taking a toothbrush for camping

When I first started spending my summers and some of my winters camping, I began making lists of all the things I would need so that I would never forget anything. Having the list as a reference point will ensure you pack your essentials.

I always make a list of food, clothing, camping gear, cooking gear, and sleeping gear. I try to envision myself at the campsite and think of all the things that we will need for comfort.

It is essential to start a camping box. This is where you can keep all the items you will only use when camping. Keeping them prepacked will eliminate part of the stress of ensuring you haven’t forgotten any items.

Before you leave for your trip, always go through your checklist once more. One thing I have learned from my many years of tent camping is: Once you’re out there, it’s hard to find something you may have forgotten.

7. Always Close The Tent!

zippers closing

Once, when I was planning my morning hike, I left my campsite to have a beautiful day in nature. When I returned in the evening, I had started to prepare dinner and a fire. After a long day, I was looking forward to getting into my tent and falling asleep. When I looked, my tent door flap was wide open, and my tent was now infested with unusual bugs looking for a new residence. My jaw dropped, and my palm hit my forehead. “Rookie Mistake,” I thought to myself.

This could be vital to your coziness in your tent. If your lodging is now home to hundreds of mosquitos and unwanted bugs, you may not be able to have a restful night of sleep. Ensuring that every time you enter your tent, you have closed the flap door will keep the unwanted guests out of your tent.

Although this may sound like a simple task, you’d be surprised by the kind of bugs that can come into even the smallest crack opening in your tent.

This brings me to another important topic in your tent. If you find an opening on your tent, be sure to patch it. I have repaired my tent many times with duct tape until I could sow it properly. There are two reasons why this is important.

  1. Bugs – they are my worst enemies at night.
  2. Rain – It may be calling for clear skies, but you never know when it might start to drizzle.

I have some more tips about proper tent care and cleaning, read our “How to Care for Your Tent” article to keep your camping tent in the best condition!

 8. Keep Your Belongings in The Car

car camping sunset

When managing your storage while camping can be a difficult feat, maybe you have a small tent, or you want to make sure you have a large sleeping area. Taking your belongings like clothes and toiletries can be a massive waste of space. Use your extra space for things like your cell phone and flashlight, so they are easy to access during the night.

Tents that say they are designed for six men are often actually built for two comfortably when car camping. In my six-person tent, I can fit myself and my partner with our air mattress. I never try to put more than the bed and us into the tent. It’s vital to your comfort level that you don’t clutter your surroundings. Everything in your tent should have a place.

Keeping belongings in the car also keeps them safe if you plan to leave your campsite. If you want to explore the outdoors, moving your items in your vehicle will be easy to lock and go. Otherwise, you will have to put a lock on your tent or remove all of your essential belongings and put them in your car.

I talk about tent camping security in our “Increase Your Camping Security | 12 Critical Tips” article. These 12 tips can help increase your camping security while increasing your overall comfort level when camping too.

9. Embrace The Experience

sipping coffee by camp fire while camping

When camping, you have to always keep in mind that you’re not in a five-star hotel. You may smell strange smells or have bugs in your tent. Things might be uncomfortable, but if you embrace camping for precisely what it is, you will sleep comfortably.

I always lower my expectations for comfort, assuming I will probably wake up with a kink in my neck. I allow my expectations to be below normal so that when I get to sleep in my tent, I don’t feel disappointed.

Tent camping is like nothing else. You can enjoy the sounds of the birds and feel the fresh morning air when you open all of the windows of your tent.

Just remember the nature is worth every minute, trust me!

Final thoughts

It is so important to know how to make tent camping comfortable, without comfort any activity becomes more stressful than anything. Camping can quickly become a passion, especially tent-camping. Once you have found your comfort zone and tested different ways to make it a more enjoyable experience, always bring the perfect mattress or sleeping gear to keep you off of the ground with warm blankets.

One of the most effective ways to have a restful night of sleep is to use the bathroom before you go to bed. And when you come back, don’t forget to close your tent!

Find ways to make your tent more spacious by leaving things in your car or under your cot. Remember, camping is an experience like none other; you need to enjoy it for what it is! Keep these nine tips in mind, and you are sure to have a relaxing time.

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