2021 is likely to be the year of the staycation for many. With hotels and self-catering accommodation at a premium, Brits looking to escape their own home are pitching tents and towing caravans around our beautiful Kingdom. This got me thinking, what would be the best games to take camping…
The prerequisites would be that the games would need to be quite small and transportable. They would need to be quite durable too. Also, the footprint on a table would need to be small enough for a folding table – I know those in a caravan might have a bit more luxury around this but I wanted to cater for the “worst case” scenario.
So after some careful consideration, I have formulated my top 5 best games to take camping!
Just for clarity the images in this feature and links in the orange boxes are affiliate links, also some of the games included have been gifted for review, these are included in the list because I want to include them and not due to any obligation, read our disclosure policy for more info.
As I said in my recent review, don’t let the smug little fish bag put you off Happy Salmon. This is a corker of a game for young and old. What’s more, everyone playing is competitive regardless of age. Happy Salmon comes in two colours and each plays up to six people, but if there are a few of you, they can combine for twelve player fun. It can play around an outdoor table but the cards are robust enough to be thrown on the floor instead. In fact a variant play can also see you spread players out more running to the centre to take your action. Because it is a quick game you will play more than once and still get back to your camping chair before you’ve realised it!
I reckon you will enjoy Happy Salmon so much it will get thrown in your bag when not camping too!
Splash Party is a brilliant game for kids to take camping. The tin it comes in is the playing board so it is nice and compact. It is also simple for kids to play without grown up intervention. Although, if they ask you to play too, you won’t mind! The game revolves around pushing other players into the pool and to be the last swimmer standing!
Compact and quick, this is the ideal game for camping with kids. Splash Party has been a resounding success with every child (and grown up) my family has introduced it too.
A little word of advice though… open the game and stick the stickers on before you show it to the kids and before you pack it for the trip!
Not quite making it into the top 5 Best Games to Take Camping but worthy of a mention is High Risk. Great if your children are a bit older and a favourite of ours to travel about with.
I haven’t got around to reviewing Metro X on my website yet. This is a fantastic flip and write game, whereby players plot train routes on sturdy player boards based on turned cards. There is plenty of strategy as Metro X is a very interesting puzzle to try and solve. A little bit of luck is involved with the flip of a card but that adds to the planning to try and mitigate such things. While it is a multiplayer solitaire experience, it will get the brain cells working on lazy afternoons and evenings. The game plays up to six but with additional copies of the game more can be accommodated. Once you’ve worked out the winner, wipe the boards clean and shuffle the cards and you are good to play again!
Let’s be honest, most people go camping for the tipple around the campfire once you have finally managed to get the kids to sleep. More perfect than a sing-song is the party game Scrawl. Chinese whispers with drawings and some saucy start cards will guarantee some laughter by torchlight. Now I confess the box is quite big for scrawl, but this could be condensed right down into a ziplock bag or similar for travel purposes. I will also say there is a more family friendly version available too – just don’t get the two versions mixed up!
If you are camping in Britain you have to expect a little bit of rain from time to time. Okay, most of the time. If you are going to be stuck in the tent or caravan for a period of time my final recommendation is The Crew: The Quest for Planet Nine. This trick-taking game comes with a booklet of scenarios to play through. This game will while away the hours as you and your teammates travel into deep space. As a co-operative game this will see you and your campmates getting in sync and working out each level of the book.
Of course, The Crew isn’t just for rainy days, as I said in my review, I can imagine playing this on the balcony of a hot country too. Imagine that as you are looking out of your tent, unwashed and staring out into a deluge!