Camping is always a great time full of bonding, having fun, and creating memories to last a lifetime. When it comes to camping games, prying everyone away from their devices can seem to be a difficult task. Sure, the younger children are excited and ready to explore, but keeping teenagers entertained is a completely different story. Combining the perfect amount of fun, physical activity, and strategic thinking for each age group is key for ensuring a great time for everyone involved. We’ve put together a creative and hilarious list of games for the eager young child, the uninterested teen, and even a some “adult” games for the grown ups to enjoy.
Kids Camping Games
Campsite Scavenger Hunt
While fun for all ages, this game can really appeal to younger children by teaching them a lot about nature and camping in a fun and competitive way! This game will most likely take some secret planning, so we suggest going for a hike with the family around the campsite to gather ideas and scope the area.
- Pair the younger kids with an adult or older child to help them along the way.
- Set boundaries to prevent children from wandering too far.
- Draw pictures of each item for the younger children who might not be able to read yet.
- Create an incentive. (treat or special privilege)
- GET CREATIVE! Remember, the longer the hunt the more relaxation time for the adults kid-free!
- Not feeling creative? Download and print off this nature scavenger hunt here.
Glow In The Dark Bowling
Glow sticks are an underrated camping gem. They have the potential to for many helpful things. Glow in the dark bowling just so happens to be one of them. It is a really fun game to play at night in the campsite. You’ll need 10 water bottles, glow sticks, and a ball. Just put the glow sticks in the water bottles, fill or let out water in the bottles as needed (as much as you need to stand up, but will still get knocked over easily), and play! Take turns seeing who can knock down the most pins.
- To keep the game fair, especially if you have a range of ages playing, set a distance for each age group. Smaller children are allowed to stand closer to the pins while older kids that need more of a challenge should stand farther back.
Mosquito Bites is another game to be enjoy by all ages, but children especially love this one! Fortunately, no real mosquitos are used in the playing of this game. Instead, each player is given a sticker sheet of red dots (mosquito bites). The goal is to secretly “bite” the other campers by placing a sticker on them without them noticing. Whoever gets rid of all of their stickers first wins. And if you get caught you have to take your sticker back.
Camping Games For Teens
Down, Down, Down
This is an Australian game similar in many ways to Twister! All you need is two people, a tennis ball, and a competitive spirit! Be prepared to get down and dirty!
- Two people stand a distance apart and throw the ball back and forth to each other.
- The first time one of them misses, they have to get down on one knee.
- The second miss requires getting down on two knees.
- Next come the elbows, continuing until at least one of the players is throwing the ball while on their knees and elbows.
- The first person to miss the ball while down on all four body parts is the loser and another player faces off with the champ.
Ninja Time: For Hemlock
This game is a thrilling combo of Capture the Flag and Red Light, Green Light! You’ll need at least 7 players (3 players per team and one “Alarm Caller”). Buying flags aren’t necessary because any random item can be considered a “flag”. You will also need to clearly outline boundaries and bases with random items or landmarks. This game requires tactical thinking, teamwork, and ninja-like moves!
- Divide into 2 groups. One team is the ninjas, the other team is the guards.
- Declare 3+ items as “flags” and 1 item as ninja base (rock, bench, tree, etc.)
- Each guard places an item on the ground within the boundary created. They can hide it minimally, but like in capture the flag, it must be able to be seen from at least three directions. They can stand no closer than ten feet from the object they are guarding.
- The object for the Ninjas is to get all items back to base without getting caught. The object for the Guards is to capture the Ninjas that are taking their flag or Ninjas trying to get back to base.
- All the kids stand still then the Alarm Caller says “go”. The Guards close their eyes and the Ninjas try to pick up as much stuff as possible by stalking and creeping into the guarded territory.
- Periodically (every 10 to 45 seconds) the Alarm Caller yells “Alarm!” and the guards open their eyes and try to tag the Ninjas as they flee to the base. If the Ninjas get tagged they go to the Guard jail where they wait to be rescued.
- A Ninja needs to get to the jail before the counselor says, “Alarm!” in order to free the captured Ninjas. If the Ninja gets back to base before they are tagged they are safe.
Catch the Killer
This is a game that’s perfect for sitting around the campfire! Your only supplies are a pen or pencil, a container of some sort (hat, bowl, etc), and a piece of paper. Catch the Killer is designed to heighten awareness and investigative thinking while allowing for some hilarious theatrics!
- Slips of paper for the number of players are put into the container. One has a black dot, one has a star and the rest are blank.
- All of the players draw a piece of paper and look at it privately. The person with the black dot is the murderer and the person with the star is the detective.
- The killer eliminates the victims by winking at them while trying to keep the detective from noticing. This is a challenge since the murderer doesn’t know who the detective is.
- The theatrics kick in when each victim dies, as they are encouraged to act out their death as hilarious or dramatic as they wish.
- The detective’s job is to figure out who the murderer is before all of the victims die.
Camping Games For Adults
Stand Up And Shout
Stand up and shout is a game of numbers. Count up and remember how many people are in your circle. The more the merrier! Then, each person has to yell out a number, in numerical order, until everyone has shouted. However, there are some rules that make it a bit sticky. Anyone can start, but if two people try to yell the same number at the same time they are both out of the game. To make stand up and shout more frantic, the last person to call out a number also loses. This camping activity for adults can be played almost anywhere. In daylight, exploring the campsite, and hiking are all perfect times to play this active game. However, it can be much more challenging at night around a campfire!
Drunken Relay Course
This is exactly what it sounds like. Everyone will help put together an obstacle course and include stations where drinking is required. Split into teams of 2 or more. Each person will complete the obstacle course and drinks at each station, then race back to tag in their next teammate. We suggest using things that are readily available at your campsite (benches, trash cans, trees, sleeping bags, etc), but feel free to bring along other items like hoola hoops, water rafts, and of course your drink of choice!
Slip It In
One person brainstorms a “slip it in” phrase for each camper. This is a phrase that they’ll endeavor to “slip in” to casual conversation over the course of the night. Hopefully, without anyone realizing it. If you use your phrase and five minutes go by without anyone noticing, you get to make everyone else drink. If someone calls you out on using your phrase, you have to drink.