If you’re planning a caravan holiday with young children then you’re probably wondering what you need to know before setting off on you adventures. In this post I’m sharing our top tips and recommendations on what to pack when caravanning with toddlers.
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Caravanning with toddlers: our experience
I started caravanning when I was a child and took my own children away for their first trips in a touring van when they were babies.
We found caravanning with a baby really easy. Everything we needed – muslins, bottles and spare baby grows – were all close to hand. And they didn’t go anywhere under their own steam.
However, we soo found thing changed where they are about toddle about.
Our first year caravanning with a toddler was a journey of discovery. For Tin Box Tot, it was all about getting to know the world around her. And for Mr Tin Box and I it was about aquatinting ourselves (quickly) with potential hazards and opportunities for little hands to create mess.
We couldn’t have done it without a few handy pieces of kiddy equipment that have fitted into our Tin Box lifestyle seamlessly.
Caravanning with a toddler: essential packing list
Here’s our top five essential items for caravan trips with a toddler:
IKEA high chair
Most importantly it has removable legs so it’s easy to dismantle and transport.
It’s also really easy to clean – there are hardly any joins in the seat and table, so a quick going over with an anti-bac wipe removes the stickiest of leftovers.
Toddler cutlery and plates
Bag of small toys and books
This was a life saver because it kept our daughters entertained in their caravan beds while mummy and daddy had a short lay in!
We regularly rotated the toys with bits and bobs at home to keep it interesting.
Here’s some more camping games and toys you might like.
Potty training – those were the days! But if you’re going to do it anywhere, a caravan is probably not the worst place.
We put our travel potty in our caravan awning during the summer which made it a bit easier to manage accidents when the girls didn’t quite make it in time.
The Potette Plus 2-in-1 travel potty* folds down and can be taken with you on days out as well as being used when you are hanging out at your caravan.
A robust stroller
We had a Quinny three-wheeled travel system, which was great for navigating uneven terrains.
It accompanied us on many walks off the beaten track while we’ve been enjoying our travels.
I don’t think this system wis still available but there are plenty of other great options*.
Of course there are some places that not even a robust pushchair will go. This is when a child carrier is a handy addition to you toddler caravan packing list.
We had a Freeloader child carrier, which is still available to buy.
Waterproof and wellies
There’s not much room to play in a caravan, so be prepared for outdoor fun in all weathers.
This was one of our five essential items for caravanning a with a baby and was still a firm favourite item to pack when caravanning with toddlers.
Tot and Baby continued to use a flexi bucket* as their travel bath tub for as long as we could fit them in. Neither were fans of showers as young children.
It also doubled up as a handy overflow washing basket for when we’d been away for more than a weekend.
Packing lots of snacks is one of my top tips for any kind of holiday with kids. They always seem to munch through more when we are on the move.
Here’s some handy snacks for caravan trips with toddlers:
- chopped fruit and vegetables
- hummus for dipping
- bread sticks
- rice cakes
- plain biscuits
Caravan beds for toddlers
We went through various arrangements to create comfortable beds for our girls. This involved fashioning bed guards out of cushions and finding bedding that kept them cosy.
We went for DIY options because we found that a lot of the travel cots on the market at the time wouldn’t fit in our touring caravan like they might a static or mobile home.
Take a look at my full post about our solutions to caravan beds for toddlers and babies.
What else to pack when caravanning with toddlers
Here’s a few more things that will probably already be on your caravan packing list but it’s worth mentioning them anyway:
- Anti-bacterial wipes
- Nappy bags
- Sun cream
- Sun hat
- Lots of layered clothing
- Hats and gloves
Read more tips for caravanning with kids.
What items have to come with you when you are on holiday with your family?
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