Boredom While Camping – 15 Ways To Stay Entertained

Man and child building campfire

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Camping is a great way to get away from all the noise of the world and enjoy nature with a bit of relaxation. However, some people may find camping boring and seek out ways to entertain themselves during their trip. If you are a full-timer, you might get tired of the same ole routine every day and need a way to spice it up a bit while out on the road.

While I normally don’t get bored while camping, not everyone is the same and some people need to be entertained regularly or they won’t enjoy themselves. Camping offers the perfect opportunity to take it easy and appreciate the simple moments in life. For me, it’s a time to get away from all of the entertainment bombardment that we are so accustomed to in our normal lives. I like to shed the consumption lifestyle and I find comfort in the simplicity that comes with the whole camping experience. These “boring” moments are what I look forward to the most.

If you are one of those who struggle to stay entertained or have children who find themselves bored, the following list is things that you might consider to help you find more enjoyment in your trips. It’s easy to tell you to just turn on the TV or set up your mobile device to play a movie. However, camping is something that is different than the normal world in which we live. While there is nothing wrong with watching a good movie or TV show, this list will seek to introduce other ways to help you entertain yourself.

1) Play Music or Sing

Playing guitar beside campfire

Playing music around the campfire can be a fun way to let go of the stresses of the day, have some laughter and entertainment at the same time. There are lots of small instruments that can travel well and take up minimal space. Some of my favorites include the following.

  • Acoustic guitar
  • Ukulele
  • Banjolele
  • Harmonica
  • Keyboard
  • Recorder

As a guitar player, I can stay entertained for hours playing my guitar so doing something like this on a camping trip would provide me with plenty of entertainment. If you are going to carry an instrument on a camping trip, make sure it is not a super expensive version. You don’t want an expensive solid wood guitar getting banged around along the way. It’s better to find a cheaper instrument that can take a beating and won’t really matter.

Just make sure you are in an area where you are not going to disturb other people. If you are in an area with other people, ask them to join along. The more the merrier and you’ll make new friends at the same time.

2) Play Games

There are tons of games you can play while camping and I’m not talking about video games. Instead, I’m referring to games where you have fun, laugh, and interact with others at the same time. These types of games can be a great way to break up the boredom and enjoy the company of others. Some of the games you might play include:

  • Cornhole
  • Jacks
  • Horseshoes
  • Ringtoss
  • Lawn bowling
  • Mumblety-peg
  • Cards
  • Boardgames

If you are traveling by yourself, it may not be as easy but there are still games that you can play such as puzzles, and word find games. Even video games on your phone or iPad can come in handy in helping to break the boredom.

3) Hiking

Hiking boots and backpack in the grass

My favorite way to add fun and interest to my camping trips is to go hiking. Nearly any place worth traveling to will have hiking trails nearby. Hiking can be a great way to get your mind off of things and explore nature and your surroundings in a way that broadens your senses and allows you to appreciate all that is around you. It’s something that can be done alone or with a family and it never gets old. When hiking, you are always seeing something new and if you are with others, it can be a great time to interact, talk, laugh, and just have a good ole time.

Casual hiking doesn’t require anything special other than a good pair of shoes, comfortable clothes, and enough water to stay hydrated. Learn more about some great reasons that you should be hiking.

4) Biking

Biking is another physical activity that can be done to break the boredom. Not only is it great for adding some fun, but it’s also a great exercise as well as a great way to get around to explore the area that you may be at. Bikes are easy to carry with you in an RV or in almost any other vehicle that you might be traveling in. Biking is fun by yourself or it can be an activity for the entire family. Children will especially love riding bikes. If you have children with you, make sure to include bikes in your packing list so that they will have a fun activity to look forward to.

5) Sightseeing

There is no need to just sit in your camper or tent the entire time you are camping. When you go sightseeing, it doesn’t require much. You can just walk around and appreciate the sights or sit where you are and take in all that is around you. You can seek out animals, rocks, seashells, landmarks, and other interesting things.

6) Reading

If you are looking for something less physical and a lot more relaxing then reading may be the activity for you. Reading while camping can be a relaxing way to enjoy your time and to either gain knowledge or get entrenched into an interesting novel or another type of book. If you are a reader, camping affords you the perfect opportunity to slow down, find peace and quiet so that you can focus on your book. For those who love to read, sitting down with a good book is definitely not boring and is a great way to pass the time if you find yourself with some downtime.

The great thing about the digital age in which we live is how books are delivered. Digital books take up no room and you can have hundreds or even thousands on your device in the palm of your hand. It’s the perfect way to pass the time no matter where you go.

7) Build and Watch the Campfire

Is there any better movie out there than watching a campfire? Most people will agree that a campfire is something to look forward to when camping. It can be a welcoming experience in cooler weather. Sitting by the campfire offers the perfect time to let your mind wander as you stare into the burning embers and converse with those around you while the crackling and popping of the fire can be heard around the campsite. I’d rather watch a campfire burn than a movie or TV show any day!

Stoking the fire and keeping it going is a chore that can be fun and allow you to break the boredom of just sitting around.

8) Cook

Now that you have the fire going, why not break out the roasting sticks and roast some marshmallows, make some S’mores, or whatever other food is your favorite to consume around the campfire? There are many amazing campfire recipes out there and you could get lost for days trying to cook the perfect campfire meal. There is just something extra special about food cooked over the campfire.

Of course, it doesn’t have to be cooked over a campfire. You can cook food utilizing whatever cooking method you wish. Cooking is a great way to add a little excitement and anticipation to your day. Looking forward to camp cooked dinners is one of my favorites parts of the camping experience.

9) Photography

Photographing sunrise in the mountains

As a photographer, this is one of my favorite activities and nearly all of my camping trips revolve around photography. I am always going to locations where I know I can explore and capture some awesome landscape photography. You’ll see all kinds of sights when you go camping. Some may be worth photographing and some may not but it’s fun to seek out the scenes that inspire you. If you have any interest in photography, it’s a great time to take part in the hobby and improve or just have fun doing it.

I enjoy getting up in the mornings before sunrise and getting myself into position for the perfect sunrise opportunity. It’s the anticipation of this that often keeps me up at night.

10) Paint, Draw, Sketch

If you aren’t into snapping pictures with a camera, perhaps you can paint, draw or do other artistic activities. Looking onto a beautiful vista and sketching it with a pencil can be fun for those who have the artistic ability to do so. I can barely draw a stickman but even I could have fun trying to draw an image before me and putting my spin on the scene.

Painting or drawing only requires a few tools and they are all easy to bring with you on your trip.

11) Talk & Tell Stories or Jokes

When all else fails, talking and just sitting around telling campfire stories, jokes, or just talking about the day is something that can be a great way to spend your evening. If you are by yourself, you may not want to be telling stories to yourself and laughing at your own jokes but hey, who’s gonna know? If you are with your family or other campers nearby have joined you, talking is all you need to be able to enjoy your time.

Camping in a campground is a great way to make new friends or just converse with others that may have things in common.

12) Whittle

Perhaps one of those things I do when I am at my highest state of boredom is pick up a stick and whittle it into something. I have done this most of my life as many people have and it can be a fun pastime to pick up a stick, whittle a point onto it, or try to carve something out of it. Oftentimes, I find that I don’t care to make anything, I just enjoy cutting the bark off of the stick. There is something satisfying about running a pocketknife across a stick and cutting chunks off of it. It’s reminiscent of my childhood when I would sit on the porch with my grandparents doing the same thing.

13) Birdwatching

Depending on where you are at, you may have the opportunity to see species of birds that are often elusive. Whether it’s a Bald Eagle, Woodpecker, Spotted Owl, or other bird that is hard to spot, finding different birds can be fun and challenging at the same time. Be sure and bring a book or download information on different species of birds for the area you are going to. It can be a fun game to play with others to see who can spot the most birds from the book. Not only will it keep you on your toes the entire time, but it will also be educational for you and any children that may be camping with you.

14) Astronomy

Milky way sky while camping in tent

As night falls, the stars come out bright and plentiful. If you happen to be boondocking out in the middle of nowhere, the sky may light up with more stars than what you are used to seeing. If you live in a light-polluted area near a town or city, camping in remote locations can be a sight to behold and allow you to see things in the sky that you might not normally see.

It’s the perfect opportunity to look for constellations, planets, and other oddities in the night sky. A good pair of high-powered binoculars are all that you need to be able to see a little closer to objects in the sky. However, if you really want to get closer, you can bring a small telescope on your trip. Better yet, a camera with a long telephoto lens on it can allow you to take your memories home with you. The Nikon Coolpix P1000 is a great option for zooming in close and capturing stunning pictures of the moon and planets. You’ll need a tripod to get the most from it but these items are well worth the cost for the memories you’ll gain.

15) Just Relax

Camping is one of those activities that doesn’t require you to do anything. Once you have arrived and set up camp, it’s time to relax. Anything you do after that is your choice and boredom is subjective. I could just chill and read a book the majority of the time and be fine with it. I do love physical activities such as hiking and photography but my ultimate goal on any trip is to just relax. I just love to sit and listen to nature around me as I enjoy the peacefulness that it brings. It’s a welcoming sound after you have had a particularly stressful week and need to escape from it all.


Camping can be as fun as you make it. If you are the type of person who needs a lot of entertainment, hopefully, the list above will help you find something to do rather than sitting around twiddling your thumbs. Perhaps you find yourself camping with your partner and you aren’t particularly fond of the lifestyle. Sooner or later, you’ll be seeking out ways to add a little fun to the experience.

Camping is something to be appreciated for what it is; a time to unwind and enjoy a more simplistic way of being. However, even the most hardened camper may find times when the boredom is just too much. The list above may help but finding intuitive ways to pass the time is all part of the experience. Each person has different interests so seek out whatever speaks to you and immerse yourself in it rather than thinking about the boredom.

Dan Collins

I consider myself an outdoor enthusiast. I love to travel and go to places that most people don't get a chance to go. I want to see it all and live life to the fullest while I'm alive. My camper van is helping me to do just that. I write about my experiences to help inspire others to do the same.

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