RV Camping with Kids
Camping is great no matter who you go with. That said, going out in the RV with kids is an especially awesome experience!
Whether you choose weekend adventures or RV living with kids, taking the little ones on your adventures gives you a chance to see the world through their eyes, providing an extra bit of magic along the way. Best of all, RVing can be an educational family vacation, meaning you can give your kids the gift of hands-on education while having an absolute blast.
Want to know more about how and where to RV with kids, and what to do to ensure an educational family vacation? In this article, we will discuss all of that and more.
Long-Term Camping and Living in an RV with Kids
First of all, let’s discuss the ins and outs of staying in an RV with kids. For the most part, those who plan to take shorter weekend trips shouldn’t have too much to worry about. Just pack accordingly, pick some kid-friendly destinations and activities, and you should be all set.
That said, those who are planning long-term educational family vacation adventures—as well as those who wish to live in their RV full-time with kids—may wish to consider a few things first:
- Budget — Kids are expensive, and so is travel. Put the two together, and you could be looking at some big expenses. For this reason, a solid budget that includes discount camping memberships, smart grocery shopping, and reciprocal attraction memberships is incredibly important.
- Schooling — If you’ll be living in your RV, you will need to consider schooling. Of course, visiting educational vacation spots takes care of some learning, but many families choose to supplement this learning in other ways. Be sure you research roadschooling before you get started.
- Socialization — Many people worry about how their kids will socialize while traveling. Fortunately, this tends to work itself out. However, if you are especially concerned about this, we highly recommend joining Fulltime Families in order to attend gatherings and events, all while getting to know other traveling families during your adventures.
- Privacy and Personal Space — There’s no denying the fact that RVs are small. If you have several kids, or if your kids are a bit older, they may crave some personal space. Try to be prepared for this by providing a tent, hammock, or some other special spot for each child to hang out and get away from the others.
These are some of the biggest challenges of RV living with kids. You will likely run into other hurdles along the way. That said, if you can overcome these difficulties, you will be in for one of the most fun and rewarding parenting experiences imaginable.
How to Pack on an RV Trip with Kids
Wondering how to pack for your RV getaway with kids? Well, for the most part, you’ll pack just as you do for any other RV vacation. Of course, you will also want to include clothing, toiletries, and some entertainment for the kids.
Other items you might consider include:
- A small inflatable pool to use for baths if your RV only has a shower.
- Extra clothes for playing in mud and dirt.
- Kid-friendly bug spray and sunscreen.
- Favorite snacks and drinks for picky eaters.
- Spill-proof cups and snack holders.
- Reading material to expand upon your educational adventures.
- Educational podcasts and audiobooks to listen to in the car.
- Other road trip entertainment such as window stickers, craft supplies, and tablets.
- Outdoor toys such as bikes, scooters, sports equipment, binoculars, magnifying glasses, etc.
The Best Educational RV Family Vacation Locations
Now that you’ve considered some potential challenges and packed your rig appropriately, it’s time to hit the road! But…where will you go and what will you do?
Well, any family-friendly destination or activity you choose is going to have at least some educational value. That said, there are definitely particular educational vacation tours and locations that give you more bang for your buck in terms of introducing new ideas and information to your kids.
We recommend the following educational vacation spots to anyone wondering where to RV with kids:
- Museums — Perhaps the most obvious educational option is a museum. There are hundreds of amazing museums all over the country, and many of them feature hands-on exhibits that encourage kids to jump into the action. Seek these out and use them!
- Zoos and Aquariums — Zoos and aquariums are also awesome options when it comes to educational vacation spots. They provide an opportunity to see animals up close and personal, and learn a little about how they live.
- National Parks — Offering some of the best learning adventures out there, our country’s national parks should absolutely be on your must-see list. Be sure to participate in the Junior Ranger program at each park in order to help engage the kids.
- State Parks — Many state parks are just as good as national parks, and some even offer Junior Ranger programs of their own. Make sure to check each state you visit for especially interesting parks to visit, and if you’ll be in one state for an extended period of time, consider getting an annual state park pass there.
- Farms — Agritourism (meaning, visiting farms and wineries as a tourist) is an interesting concept, and one that offers lots of educational opportunities. Most people can learn a lot by seeing where our food comes from, and there’s something magical about helping out on a farm for a few days. Harvest Hosts is a great membership program that offers some excellent agritourism opportunities for RVers.
Making RV Trips with Kids Educational
As mentioned before, anywhere you go can be educational. Likewise, anything you do is likely to have some educational value. However, if you’re making a point of taking an educational family vacation, it just makes sense to fill it with as much learning as possible while still keeping things exciting for the kids.
Here are our top tips for doing just that:
- Plan ahead — Know where you’re going ahead of time so you can do research together and learn about related topics in advance of your field trip.
- Read books and watch videos — Visiting a living history museum? Why not read a historical fiction novel set in that time period? Going to the Grand Canyon? YouTube has tons of videos about the formation of the canyon. What we’re getting at is, seek out books and videos to learn more about the places you’ll visit.
- Try hands-on activities — Some kids do well with hands-on activities. Cook up a recipe that Thomas Jefferson used after a visit to Monticello, or try your hand at echolocation after seeing bats at a national park. Both are examples of activities that will get kids excited about learning and help their educational experiences stay with them for years to come.
- Engage and discuss — During field trips, make a point of engaging your child in the experience. Offer them a camera to encourage close observation, discuss what you see with them, ask their opinion on things, and encourage them to ask questions of any park rangers or other staff members you meet. The more you can engage your child, the more they will get out of the experience.
Ready to get out there and start learning new things as a family? Rent an RV now so you can get started as soon as possible!