7 Ways to Make Your Camping Trip More Romantic

Looking to impress your crush on your next camping trip? Look no further! Camping and Hiking Expert Jessica LaPolla gives 7 ideas to add some romance to your trip!

Two people standing together near a tent. There is a lit up heart around them. There is a desert landscape barely visible in the background.

Photo by Pete Johnson

For many of us hikers, campers, and outdoorsy folks, spending a weekend in the wilderness sounds like paradise. It is easy to idealize the perfect weekend in nature with a partner. Cozy tent snuggles, fireside drinks, and sunset hikes; what could be better? If you want to have a romantic camping trip with your partner, however, there are a few logistical details to figure out to ensure you have the experience you’ve been daydreaming about.

1. Select the Perfect Weekend

Two women set up their camping gear. The photo is taken through a tent door.

Photo by Andrea Piacquadio

We all know that Mother Nature can be a buzzkill sometimes, and nothing is a bigger turnoff than the floor of your tent getting soaked with rain or having to endure scorching heat and ending the day with a nice sunburn.

Depending on your location, different times of year will be better suited for camping. Do your research and select a couple of weekends or dates that work with both of your schedules. Make sure to select more than one in case bad weather makes a last-minute appearance. Check the forecast in the week leading up to your trip so that you can make arrangements or change plans if necessary.

2. Select the Right Location

The bottom of pants and socks of two people who are laying in a tent. The edges of the tent are visible and there is some water in the background.

Photo by Ali Díaz

Depending on a variety of factors, like where you live and how far you are willing to travel, your options may be limited, especially if you are just looking for a quick weekend getaway. That being said, there are still plenty of ways to make sure you pick the best location possible.

First, decide on the general location you want to go to based on the activities you want to engage in or sights you would like to see. It also may be worth considering a location that neither you nor your partner have been to before. Though there is something to be said for being able to show someone around a place that you love and are familiar with, there is a certain kind of magic about experiencing a new place together for the first time.

After selecting a general area, get to work on researching campgrounds, and don’t settle for the first one that pops up. Not all campgrounds are created equally. Some are loaded with amenities, such as showers, bathrooms, and a camp store. Others are more bare-bones and might have a pit toilet if you are lucky. If you and your partner are looking for a more primitive camping experience, try selecting a more remote site. This will offer fewer amenities but will probably offer greater views and fewer people.

If you want to enjoy modern plumbing for the weekend, there are plenty of campgrounds that will cater to your needs that exist in beautiful settings. Take a look at the campground map before you book. Try and bag a site overlooking a lake or river, or simply one that is tucked back into the forest.

Book your campsite as early as possible – many campgrounds book up months or even a year in advance, especially during peak season. If everything is booked up, try a backyard romantic camping date. It may not be the most exciting, but it will be a fun little adventure.

3. Spring for Comfort

Two people in a hammock. One is reading a book and one is laughing.

Photo by Cottonbro

Traditionally, camping is about making do with what you’ve got and enjoying the simple experience of being in nature and sleeping under the stars. If you’re looking to add some romance and relaxation to your next camping trip, it may be time to reconsider this viewpoint.

Embrace the luxuries in life and go all out to make your next weekend in the woods a memorable one. Bring the biggest tent you have; nothing says luxury like being able to stand up inside a tent while getting up to pee in the middle of the night.

Ditch the foam sleeping pads and bring an air mattress or something comparable. Bring your sleeping bags to maintain authenticity, but bring a couple of nice blankets, throws, and pillows to make the tent feel cozy and warm. You could also invest in a double sleeping bag to get even closer to your sweetheart.

Add ambiance to the space by bringing a variety of lighting: lanterns, tealights (plastic ones), or string lights. Stay away from candles in most instances, however, because starting a forest fire would not be lit! Create a killer playlist and bring along a small portable speaker. Be mindful of other campers close by, but set the mood with your favorite tunes.

4. Cook a Luxurious Meal

A charcuterie board sits near a fire pit. There are a few glasses of wine on the side and bread, olives, cheese, and hummus on the board.

Photo by Rachel Claire

I don’t know about you, but dehydrated meals don’t really scream “romance” to me. Except for ramen! I'm a huge lover of ramen while camping and backpacking, BUT when trying to impress your partner or set the mood, it might be worth it to put in a little extra effort in the camp kitchen.

The beautiful thing about car camping is that you get to drive right up to the campsite, so you can afford to bring extra gear and goodies. Pack your cooler full of ice and special treats to enjoy on your romantic outdoorsy getaway.

The sky is your limit here. Put together an artfully rustic charcuterie board, bring some Prosecco, cook steaks and veggies for a romantic dinner over a campfire. Customize a menu that will satisfy both of your taste buds. Oh, and don’t forget dessert. This doesn't have to be toasted marshmallows, though they are delicious. Try chocolate-covered strawberries or even a cup of hot chocolate.

5. Curate an Itinerary with Activities You Both Enjoy

A man and a woman sitting at the top of a hike. The man has his arm around the woman and is kissing her on the cheek.

Photo by Clarisse Meyer

Hiking, kayaking, fishing, canoeing, stargazing, or checking out a cool brewery are all activities you could partake in on your romantic camping adventure, depending on the location and what you and your partner like to do. Be sure to have a couple of fun activities and date nights planned out ahead of time.

This will not only take the stress out of making last-minute plans and decision making, but it will also give you and your partner the opportunity to connect and bond over something that you both enjoy. This doesn’t mean you need to have every second of every day planned; leave some room for spontaneity and be open to changes.

6. Have a Phone-Free Day or Weekend

Two people sitting by a campfire at night. There is a body of water in the background.

Photo by Manuel Meurisse

I know I might lose some of you on this one, but hear me out. Most of us spend the majority of our days behind a screen, whether it be a computer for work or a phone for scrolling through social media. Technology is a huge and important part of our lives. That being said, sometimes technology can get in the way of personal connections. How many times have you been sitting next to someone, mindlessly scrolling, when you realize a whole hour has gone by?

When you and your love venture into the wilderness, consider going a short period of time—or perhaps your whole trip—without cell phones and laptops or at least without social media. Doing this may seem daunting, but it will force you to be more present with each other and may lead to some great conversations.

7. Make a Camping Checklist

A checklist with a hand holding a pen.

Photo by Glenn Carstens

Before embarking on your romantic getaway, make sure you have all the right gear packed. There's nothing like driving for two hours and realizing you forgot something important. Make sure you have all of the essentials, plus plenty of snacks for the drive. Go over your checklist with your partner in case you missed something.

So what are you waiting for? Grab your gear and someone you like and get outside! If you are not in a relationship, try spoiling yourself with some of the tips listed above, or get together a group of friends for the ultimate glamping vacation.

Whoever you decide to take with you on your next camping adventure, be sure to enjoy nature and have a great time. If you need to elevate your camping game with some new gear, reach out to a Camping and Hiking Expert on Curated and we would be stoked to help you. Happy camping!

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Written By
Jessica LaPolla
Jessica LaPolla
Camping & Hiking Expert
Hi there! I have always had a deep love for the outdoors, having grown up on my family's horse farm in New Jersey. I began hiking and camping at a young age and started backpacking as a young adult. I now enjoy taking weekend backpacking trips with my dogs and rock climbing with my partner. This yea...
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