Camping comfort essentials

There's something magical about camping – the sense of adventure, the simplicity of life, and the beauty of nature. However, adding a few comfort essentials to your camping gear can make your trip even more special, explains Carolyn Tate.

Camping comfort essentials: the little ‘extras’ that make camping comfy and fun

Camping is a time-honoured tradition in Australia that allows you to connect with nature, unplug from your everyday life and the digital world, and really strip back to the simple joys of life. It's also a must-do if you like to go to music festivals.

That first morning cup of tea cooked on the campfire, just sitting and being at one with nature, and turning in soon after the sun goes down.

Sure, you could be a traditionalist and really rough it on your camping adventures, but we think there's no harm in adding a touch of comfort to your outdoor adventures.

So we've compiled a list of 8 camping comfort essentials that you can absolutely do without, but which can significantly enhance your camping experience, making it both easy and fun.

Camp chairs with back support

Sitting around the campfire or enjoying a meal becomes much more comfortable when you have proper camp chairs with back support – especially if you have a bad back to contend with. Look for foldable and lightweight options that are easy to transport and set up. These chairs provide a cosy place to relax and are perfect for stargazing or reading by the campfire.

Try: Kathmandu Roamer Chair, Dune 4WD Nomad II Deluxe XL Chair or Oztent King Kokoda Chair. Did you know that you can get 5% cashback when you purchase at The Iconic with your Citro card?

Supportive air mattress

While sleeping on the ground in a sleeping bag may be a traditional part of the camping experience, a good-quality air mattress can make a world of difference in terms of comfort. These inflatable options provide cushioning and insulation, ensuring a more restful night's sleep. If you want to save yourself a bit of extra work, go for the self-inflating variety.

Try: Kathmandu Zenter Insulated Airmat, Nemo Roamer XL Wide, ZOOOBELIVES Extra Thickness Inflatable Sleeping Pad with Built-In Pump, or for couples, Bestway Alwayzaire Dual Pump Queen Airbed

Portable camp shower

If you’re not at a fully equipped campground that offers showers, a portable camp shower allows you to enjoy a refreshing wash after a day of outdoor activities – and ensures your campmates can stand to spend time with you. Whether you prefer a quick rinse or a more thorough soaking, camp showers come in a broad range of luxury and price tags, so you can choose a budget shower that uses solar power or scale up to a more luxurious option that can provide hours of hot water.

Try: Nemo Helio Pressure Shower or Companion AquaHeat Lithium Gas Shower

Battery-powered camp fan

Camping during hot summer months can be sweltering in our wide brown land, especially if you’re inside a canvas tent. A battery-powered camp fan is a fantastic addition to your gear, providing a cooling breeze that can make a big difference to your comfort levels. Look for models with adjustable speeds and long battery life.

Try: Coleman Lithium-Ion Rechargable Fan or KITWLEMEN camping fan with LED lantern

Camp kitchen setup

If you love cooking and you don’t want to compromise on meals while you’re communing with nature, consider investing in a portable camp kitchen set-up. It doesn’t have to cost too much, and these compact systems will typically get you sorted with a foldable table, storage compartments, and space for a camp stove. They make meal preparation a lot easier and more convenient, and allow you to keep your food organised, so you can cook up delicious campsite feasts.

Read 9 amazing campfire recipes that are a cinch to get on the fire.

Try: Stowaway Camp Kitchen Table or OZtrail All In One Camp Kitchen

Coffee maker

For those coffee lovers among us, camping should not mean having to drink instant coffee. A decent cup of coffee is an essential part of the morning routine, and that’s what you can have. Choose a simple Aeropress or go for a machine that uses pods, just like you have at home. Either way, a good hot coffee while watching the sunrise is a delightful camping indulgence that you can enjoy.

Try: AeroPress Go or Wacaco NanoPresso and drink from the Camino Cup


A hammock is the perfect addition to your camping comfort arsenal. Whether you’ve had a day of hiking or exploring, or you simply want to relax outside your tent and read a book, you can unwind in your hammock, gently swaying beneath the trees. It's an excellent way to relax or take a peaceful nap while catching the breeze, surrounded by the soothing sounds of nature.

Try: Sky Bed Bug Free or Brazilian Style Hammock (double size)

Portable campfire ring

While campfires are a camping staple, a portable campfire ring can make building and maintaining your fire much easier and more convenient. These collapsible rings provide a contained and safe space for your campfire, reducing the risk of sparks or embers spreading. They also make your clean-up easier, leaving minimal impact on the environment.

Try: VEVOR Outdoor Fire Pit Ring or Aussie Campfire Kitchens Fire Ring

Read the caravan and camping etiquette guide.

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