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Your romance was written in the stars, so why not gear up to camp beneath them? While a traditional wedding registry affords you the necessities to create domestic bliss at home, a camping registry can help you cultivate your ideal home-away-from-home.
Because many couples are choosing to tie the knot later in life, they’ve often already accumulated everything they need to outfit their kitchen cabinets and linen-closets; instead of a traditional registry, these couples opt for alternative registries to equip themselves for shared experiences and adventures. Whether you're changing up your list completely or just supplementing a more traditional registry, you'll be ready to hit the trail (and lounge by the fire) with these registry picks.
Read on for the best camping gear.
Best Double Sleeping Bag: REI Co-op Siesta Hooded 25 Double Sleeping Bag
This product was made for spoons: for Big Spoons and Little Spoons, that is. For the couple that prefers to sleep together, a quality double sleeping bag is key to staying snug and toasty even when the temps drop. The REI Co-op Siesta Hooded 25 Double Sleeping Bag keeps warm down to 25 degrees Fahrenheit, and it includes a 2-sided muffler (with adjustable cinch) and an insulated hood around the top to keep the cold out.
If it’s warm out, the hood is totally negotiable; just fold it under and use the dual 2-way zippers for ventilation. What’s not negotiable is a good night’s sleep, especially if you’re going to hike until sunset or go fishing at dawn!
Best Cooler: Tundra 45 Hard Cooler from YETI
The only thing more durable than the bond with your beau? YETI coolers. Rotomolded construction ensures they’re basically indestructible. And with three inches of PermaFrost insulation, they keep your contents as cold as look from your mother-in-law (just kidding!).
The Tundra 45 boasts 32.9 liters of icy-cold storage: that’s about 28 cans of beer, with plenty of room for ice and all the fixings for a blueberry pancake breakfast. This heavy-duty cooler comes in turquoise, navy, white, and tan.
Best Tent: Eureka Copper Canyon LX 6
Theoretically, this tent is meant to shelter six people, but unless you’re planning on backpacking it, there’s no reason to relegate yourself to the claustrophobic tent-for-two. (And if you’ve got a couple of kids or pets in tow, all the more reason to round up!)
We like the Eureka Copper Canyon LX 6 for its roominess, its durability, and easy setup. With a 7ft ceiling, this tent allows for a celebratory dance inside once it’s pitched.
Best Camping Stove: Eureka Ignite Plus 2-Burner Stove
You might prefer your romance sizzling hot, but you’re going to want a camp stove with flame control. The heat regulation of the Eureka Ignite Plus 2-Burner Camp Stove and its 10,000 BTU burners ensures you can sauté apples and caramelize onions as easily as you can fry up an egg.
This propane stove also achieves sturdiness without unnecessary heft. Not to mention, this dude looks sharp. No seriously, it’ll compete with your significant other for “most handsome.”
Best Coffee Maker: AeroPress Coffee and Espresso Maker
The best part of camping is ditching the office routine, but there’s one element you’ll want to keep: the coffee. The AeroPress Coffee and Espresso Maker makes a mean brew with a compact, streamlined design perfect for portability.
While a large percolator or French press might be great for a crowd, this small immersion press is ideal for the couple. Makes 1-3 cups in a minute and cleans up in mere seconds, meaning the two of you can keep your eyes on the sunrise.
Best Solar Lanterns: LuminAID Solar Inflatable Lantern
These solar-powered lanterns work while you play. Left in 10 hours of direct sunlight for a full charge, LuminAID lanterns can offer up to 24 hours of light. Not to mention, they’re inflatable, collapsible, shatterproof, and waterproof; in other words, they’re the perfect portable alternative to a cluttered pack of flashlights and batteries. (However, if necessary, you can achieve a quicker charge through the USB port).
Best Portable Shower: Nemo Helio Pressure Shower
No shower? No sink? No problem. The portable shower from Nemo allows you to rinse off just about anywhere and the pressurized tank eliminates the need to locate high surfaces for hanging. The foot pump pressurization allows for 5-7 minutes of the continuous spray: enough time to give you, your bike, or your dishes a thorough rinse.
Best Hammock For Two: Eagles Nest Outfitters DoubleNest Hammock
Once you’ve tackled the summit and gathered the firewood, you’re gonna need somewhere to collapse (and canoodle). ENO hammocks are small enough to toss in your pack but sturdy enough to hold you and your S.O. The durable, woven nylon and tough carabiner attachments support up to 400 pounds. Book and beer not included but definitely encouraged.
Best Kitchen Set: GSI Destination 24-Piece Kitchen Set
Outdoor cooking is an adventure in its own right, but it’s easy to forget all of the necessary gear! You can knock out all the kitchen essentials with this one convenient kit from GSI Outdoors. The set includes all the cutlery you’ll need, plus a pivot spoon and spatula, collapsible whisk, cheese grater, utility knife, and cutting board.
Not to mention, the set also features two spice shakers and two condiment containers (to mitigate the risk of an unnecessary mess), and a camp towel and scrubber (for those unavoidable messes!). Elastic bands keep everything so organized that even chef Monica Geller would approve.
Best Insulated Glass: Poketo Stemless Wine Glass from Corkcicle
The practical has never been so pretty! Triple insulated, the Poketo stemless wine glass from Corkcicle keeps your cold drinks cold and your hot drinks hot. The shatterproof design and non-slip silicone bottom make this the optimal vessel for outdoor festivities.
Best Grilling Set: Cuisinart 13-Piece Wooden Handle Grilling Set
If your other half looks smokin’ in an apron, consider outfitting them for the grill. The 13-Piece Wooden Handle Grilling Set from Cuisinart tucks essential individual grilling tools into a slender, portable storage case. Cut from durable stainless steel, these pieces are meant to last. You’ll be searing steaks and spearing shish kebabs in no time.
Best Sleeping Pads: Camper Duo Sleeping Pad from Therm-a-Rest
Some say sleeping on the ground is the only true way to rough it in the wilderness, but we say comfort is king. An investment in a quality sleeping pad is an investment in a good night’s sleep.
Not only does it protect you from achy joints and a sore neck, but it also provides an added layer of warmth between you and the cold ground. That’s another reason to love the double sleeping pad: if you try to combine your old single pads, someone’s inevitably falling through the middle.
Get set up for a good night's sleep with the spacious Eureka Copper Canyon LX 6, along with the REI Co-op Siesta Hooded 25 Double Sleeping Bag and the Camper Duo Sleeping Pad from Therm-a-Rest. A delicious cup of coffee in the AeroPress Coffee and Espresso Maker will get you set up for the day ahead. And the Eagles Nest Outfitters DoubleNest Hammock may not seem like a camping essential, but we guarantee you won't regret adding it to your registry.
What is the must-have camping gear we need if we're just getting started?
If you're brand new to camping, there are just a few things that are absolute necessities: a good tent, a comfortable sleeping set up (a pad, sleeping bag, and pillows), and some cooking tools if you're planning to make food at the campsite. (We won't judge if you just want to visit the diner in the nearest town for brunch). It's also a good idea to bring an emergency first aid kit, a flashlight or lantern, matches, and firewood.
Where to go camping
There are so many options around the country for camping—from vast National Parks to small-scale, privately-owned campgrounds. Check out useful camping resources like Reserve America, Recreation.gov, and The Dyrt to access databases of campgrounds near you. If you're planning to go to a popular area or a beachfront site, make sure you make your reservation several months ahead of time early because those spots book quickly!
Why trust Brides?
Jessica Joblin writes about décor and lifestyle for Brides. She’s pitched tents across the United States, from muggy Mississippi to rocky Maine, loving best the sandy shores of Assateague in between. She has never attempted a backpacking expedition and having known the convenience of a pressurized shower and oversized tent, she is not likely to start now.