Camping in a Camper – Is It Really Camping?

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For many people, real camping means sleeping outdoors, under the stars, in a tent. As such, if you are sleeping indoors in a camper, surrounded by the usual comforts you have at home, well, then you can’t call it camping. Right?

Camping in a camper is still camping, despite providing some comforts. It still requires preparation and packing. It extends camping to those with physical limitations. It allows us to enjoy remote locations, campfire dinners, and outdoor activities. And it provides memorable escapes to nature.

What Is Considered Camping?

This outdoor activity may include hiking or fishing, campfire dinners, and overnight stays in a shelter away from your usual home. Such a shelter could be a tent, a yurt, a camper, or a recreational vehicle (RV). You can set up your tent in the woods, on a campsite, or even next to the beach.  

Camping may also involve roughing it out in the great outdoors with the barest supplies – or not. For many campers, sleeping in a tent enhances their camping experience, making it undeniably rustic. Nights spent sleeping on the bare ground underneath lofty trees can make you feel more one with nature than if you are sleeping in a warm, cozy bed.

However, while you might want to spend your time outdoors camping in a tent, your health or physical limitations might at times make this next to impossible. But there’s no reason why you should not experience the outdoors the best way you can. 

Besides, it doesn’t matter where you choose to spend your nights so long as it offers you the chance to enjoy the outdoors. 

Why You Might Prefer Camping in a Camper

A camper is “a large motor vehicle with living accommodation” such as a pop-up camper or an RV. Such a motor vehicle or trailer comes equipped with several home amenities. This type of camping is popular with many people, especially families, as evidenced by the vast numbers that troop to national parks and campgrounds.

In most cases, camper and RV camping is an opportunity to improve on tent camping by having a home on wheels along with the accompanying luxuries. Add this to the unique thrill of camping in the great outdoors, and you have the setting for an unmatched experience. 

Campers that prefer going the camper route do so due to its many advantages. Some of these include:

A Camper Offers Convenience

While some people enjoy fixing their meals over campfires, others would rather use standard cooking equipment to do the same. Most people will also want to have air conditioning to keep heat stroke or sunburn at bay and use a real toilet. 

Campers can get you closer to the variety of extremely comfortable camping called glamping.

Other amenities you can get in a camper include:

  • Electricity – from a generator
  • Refrigerator
  • Hot showers
  • Indoor kitchen
  • Entertainment
  • Heating and cooling systems

You Have Ample Storage Space

When camping in a tent, you go through the inconvenience of packing and unpacking throughout your trip. But in a camper, you can pack everything in its place without needing to rummage through all your possessions to get what you need. You also have more space to pack all you need. 

You Sleep in Comfort 

Spending nights in a sleeping bag might be an excellent experience for some, but you might prefer sleeping on an air mattress. This is more so if you tend to wake up with an aching back. Besides, you may be so uncomfortable that you fail to sleep at all the entire night. As such, camping would be a miserable experience for you since you’d be sore and tired the next day. 

You Can Carry Along With the Entire Family

If you have a family, it’s easier – not to mention convenient – to camp in a camper. This includes bringing along family members who don’t care that much about camping because of bugs and the use of makeshift toilets. Teens, toddlers, and the elderly can all enjoy comfortably when you use a camper or RV. 

You Can Move Around With Ease

Camper and RV camping allows you to drive to anywhere you’d like to camp – including remote areas. In any case, you have everything you need to set camp wherever you’d like. You can thus choose a spot near the lake, in the woods, or an RV Park.

In a nutshell, comfort is what defines camping in a camper. And the best part? If the weather goes south, you can stay indoors and keep warm and dry – and watch TV too!

Nonetheless, if you wish to make your camping trip more “authentic” while using a camper, there are several ways to go about it.

How to Enhance Your Camping Experience

As mentioned earlier, as much as you may want to camp in a tent, you might be unable to do so due to ill health, a bad back, disability, or age. Yet, this shouldn’t mean you are packing away your camping dreams. You can make your camping trip less sophisticated and more fulfilling by: 

  • Ditching all electronic gadgets
  • Opting to camp in a remote location with limited distractions
  • Choosing dry camping – no hookups available
  • Bringing along friends or family to create unforgettable moments

Disadvantages of Camping in a Camper

While using a camper might be cozier than camping in a tent, it has its disadvantages. One major downside is that you might end up cooped up in your house on wheels instead of going out to explore the wild. The other disadvantages are:

  • It’s more expensive. For starters, buying a camper or RV is a huge investment. This type of camping is also more pricey than tent camping. You need to factor in campground fees as well as parking fees. The costs go even higher if you include extras like electric and water hookups. Other additional costs include gas, insurance, and vehicle maintenance. So, if on a budget, tent camping is the obvious option to pick.
  • Parking can be a challenge. Campers and RVs are massive vehicles, and there are places where parking them is restricted. Hence, you can’t go camping in such areas unless you are using a tent. You also need to figure out where to park your vehicle once your trip is over, since it’s too large to park in a standard garage or driveway.
  • You might miss out on interacting with nature. The main goal of camping is to interact with the outdoors. But while a camper makes you feel comfortable, it tends to limit this natural engagement with nature since you cook, eat, and sleep indoors. If your primary goal is to connect with nature, and not for fun and comfort on the road, you might be better suited to tent camping.
  • Lack of flexibility. Unlike tent camping, camper and RV camping is not limits the places you can access or camp. For example, If you own a long trailer, you may find it cumbersome to drive and reverse. On the other hand, a tent camper only needs to fit their essentials plus the tent in a backpack and hike to wherever they want to camp.
  • Setting up takes time. With tent camping, experienced campers can pitch up a tent and take it down in little time. But not so with an RV trailer. You would need to unhitch and level the trailer, and this technical process takes time.


Ardent campers prefer camping in tents while others would rather sleep in a camper or RV. Both are legitimate camping options. The thing is, people enjoy different experiences and camping should be no different.

If you enjoy camping, then go ahead and make it the most memorable experience you can – whether in a tent or a camper.

Better yet, mix it all up! Try both options and see what you like most. Who knows, it might also be a great way to get out of a camping rut.  


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