Virgin Family Campers

Submitted: Saturday, Mar 12, 2005 at 01:34
ThreadID: 21159 Views:2992 Replies:7 FollowUps:0
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Hi all,
Hubby and I love the outdoors and camping however we are totally new at camping with our two children who are 2 and 3. We are planning a family camping holiday in Sharks Bay and need to purchase a tent. We have been looking on the net to see whats available and what everyone thinks is the best tent. I have a keen interest in the Sportiva Odyssey but Hubby thinks maybe a dome tent is not the way to go.
Can anyone offer some suggestions and reccommendations?
Thanks Julz
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Reply By: Troopy Travellers (NSW) - Saturday, Mar 12, 2005 at 07:16

Saturday, Mar 12, 2005 at 07:16
Julz there is heaps on tents in here just do a search for "tents" and you will be kept busy reading all day.

We have an Oztent which is fine for us (a couple only) and when we take the grand kids with us we use a small dome tent for them.

These would not suit a young family camped for a long period and bad weather.

We got our tent "used once" from the local paper at the right price, lots go camping and find their tent does not suit their needs so you are wise to research it before purchasing.


AnswerID: 102132

Reply By: Bonz (Vic) - Saturday, Mar 12, 2005 at 07:40

Saturday, Mar 12, 2005 at 07:40
When wew first struck out camping with kids (4) aged 10 thru 0.5, we bought a reasonably good quality, "normal" two room tent from K-Mart after borroign one from friends. The importnat thing is is had a verandah area out the front, to sit out of the sun (as if) or rain (if), it therefore had a little Mum and Dad space at the back and we also got camping bunks that could sleep 2 and not take up much room, worked for us.
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AnswerID: 102137

Reply By: Lone Wolf - Saturday, Mar 12, 2005 at 08:58

Saturday, Mar 12, 2005 at 08:58
Do what most of us have all done.....

Buy a cheap dome tent, and just enjoy yourselves. If you really like the camping scene, buy a better tent, with a keen eye for what YOU want.

If you don't like camping, well, you've only done a couple of hundred dollars.

Whatever you get, I am sure you will enjoy.

AnswerID: 102142

Reply By: Keith_A (Qld) - Saturday, Mar 12, 2005 at 10:43

Saturday, Mar 12, 2005 at 10:43
Hi Julz - We also raised 2 children with regular camping trips...good move.
Our current tent has the awning at the front, then 2 'rooms'.
Without an awning, the table, food, kitchen, esky etc all sit out
in the weather. You are in the full sun/rain preparing meals,
as is the family to eat etc. An awning/kitchen area can make a hugh difference.
On a recent trip, friends used a dome plus a 3m stand-alone 'Gazebo' (about $40).
Bunnings sell them, as do other outlets. For a picture of them try :-
Dome tents are great for sleeping, however that is less than 30% of the time.
For a family, you also need a living/kitchen area.

A 12V flouro light that plugs into the car battery solves lighting. 20c worth....have fun.
AnswerID: 102155

Reply By: Gajm (VIC) - Saturday, Mar 12, 2005 at 11:31

Saturday, Mar 12, 2005 at 11:31
If you do a search you will also find some great tips for camping with the kids. Taking loads of clothes is handy..when we first took out daughter it was wet and miserable and she went thru 6 sets of clothes in hours. Getting a cheap set of waterproof pants can be handy.
As for tents we went thru heaps over the years,(all still in the garage), from huge 2 room tents to small and large dome tents. The dome tents were the best for us, but by then the kids had their own.
Any tent with an awning over the front room where you can leave all the gear and shoes and have it protected from the rain is definitely the way to go. Otherwise a second cheap dome tent is handy for gear.
We now have a camper trailer, but If I had my choice again i'd probably go for 2 of those quick style Oztents, but space was always a problem for us when we took the kids away.
Don't forget If you have an open fire make sure you never take your eyes off the kids, and it pays to have a large bowl of water handy close by incase there are any burns. It's all fairly obvious, but it still happens.
AnswerID: 102157

Reply By: Footloose - Saturday, Mar 12, 2005 at 21:33

Saturday, Mar 12, 2005 at 21:33
Kids will be kidz. Regardless of which tent you buy, just have a great time with them. (which can be hard when they're bored or tired and confined..if the weather closes in you'll wish you'd bought a bigger tent) As previously mentioned, cuts, burns and stings are going to happen sooner or later. Keep the appropriate handy. Lots of fluids if its hot, they dehydrate a lot faster than adults. As they get older they will look back at the happy times they had camping and will probably do it themselves.
When ours got to about 10 we bought them their own tent and they loved it. gave us a break also :)
AnswerID: 102197

Reply By: Charlie & Rosemary - Sunday, Mar 13, 2005 at 17:36

Sunday, Mar 13, 2005 at 17:36
Hi Julz,
We are now grandparents but started camping when our two boys were little. We reckon our best 'camp setup' is a dome tent - but we never leave life to chance and always put up a tarp as a camp roof and have the tent and kitchen and sitting area. Kids can play games at the kitchen table and we can read books in the fold up chairs. Dome tents are so easy to erect - you can buy magnificent ones that section off. They are cooler in summer, dry quicker if they do get wet - the conventional canvas tents are a real bugger when they get wet! A good tarp and poles was our best investment - next to the dome tent! Have fun!
AnswerID: 102239

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