Best Things To Try At Night When Camping – Don’t Just Sleep!

The night sky and the natural world become alive and beautiful. That means there are plenty of enjoyable things to do during camping in the evening to keep everyone entertained and create lasting memories.

However, you don’t need to gather around a campfire, share terrifying stories/recite skits and go to bed. Change things up a bit.

I’ve decided to create this list of ideas you can do during your camping trip at night that I have tried many times with my family and friends.

Evening Walk

A nighttime nature walk is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to view species that only appear at night, including bats, moths, and hedgehogs. The exact timing is contingent on your location and the season.

Be careful if you are in bear territory as they are more proactive at nighttime; read my guide on what to do if you see a bear.

Hedgehogs, for example, can be easily observed during summer nights, whereas Owls are easier to hear and see during winter.

While you’re at it, you can create a fun experience for your children. You can play the listening game or the scavenger hunt. The game of listening is easy. Without speaking, the kids are asked to shut their eyes and focus for around 20 seconds.

After the time has passed, Ask the participants what they thought they heard. After that, you swap locations and discuss the results with each other.

A scavenger hunt involves making a list of what you observe or hear. Children love exploring, and playing this game will get them excited.

Nature walks in the evening are thrilling, but remember that security is the priority. Always walk-in groups, dress appropriately for the weather and ensure you have plenty of lights and spare batteries.

Explore The Campsite

If encountering the creatures of darkness isn’t your thing, then stroll around and explore the campsite. Explore the natural beauty and beauty in the night.

On a clear, bright night, there’s plenty to be seen from the skies of the night, and that’s not just the stars.

The majority of state and national parks provide stunning night-sky views. Please make the most of it and experience the wonder of the night sky with an unforgettable night-sky viewing experience.

It is also possible to go for a brisk moonlit stroll along the shoreline or beach. It’s not just an excellent opportunity for couples to connect and a chance to think about those you love and lost while admiring the breathtaking views.

Evening Swim

Want to step your swimming experience to the next level? What about a nighttime swim in the open ocean? A nighttime swim is likely to be one of the most thrilling outdoor activities you’ll experience.

The fact that it is exciting and mysterious makes it more enjoyable. What’s the best part? Explore it with your loved ones and family.

Be aware, and don’t get too caught up in the moment. To ensure your safety, please consider the following:

Be aware of the water. Look up the forecast for local weather. Be attentive to tide charts. Also, check whether there are warning signs displayed at the beach, campground, or park regarding the dangers of swimming or jellyfish.

Do not go out on your own. Whatever your ability to do, swimming by yourself in body water that is open at night could be risky. The worst-case scenario is to get cramps or get caught in the grass.

Be secure. Always take a swim with an encircling group that is two people or more. Keep your eyes on one another, especially if there are children in the water.

Know your limits. The water in the ocean or a lake is not as easy as swimming in the pool. The rough water to weather conditions is constantly changing. So don’t go too far. Make sure you are in the vicinity of the beach.

If you’re not an experienced swimmer, do not go into the water where you won’t be able to reach the bottom. If you’re not sure about the basics of swimming, don’t go into the water. Instead, keep an eye on your friends and notify anyone drifting too far away from the shoreline.

If the water is powerful, swim along the shore until you’re free. After that, slowly swim back to the beach.

If you come across a huge wave, make sure you dive the same way surfers do.

Wear reflective tape or wear something that reflects light onto your arm, allowing others to see you.

Use a flashlight or a smaller lantern to indicate the entry point to navigate your way out of the water.

Do not dive into the ocean or swim when you’re under the effects of alcohol or drugs.

If you’re searching for fun, unique summer camp nighttime activities, you’ve found one!

Play Camping Games

What about some enjoyable evening-time games that anyone will appreciate? If you’re bored with playing the same old games at night and want to add some varied games to your collection by using these choices:

Flashlight Freeze

Have a good time and dance to the beat (it’s pure joy to watch children dance) But, if the beam of light hits either you or the other group members, you’ll be frozen instantly.

If you shift, you’re not in the game. All other players must remain in their place until the music starts again.

I Spy

Another excellent game to play at the campfire for kids. The “spy” picks an object they can spot in the area while others attempt to figure it out. The word ‘ “spy” goes as follows: “I spy with my little eye something beginning with (insert letter).”

The person who can guess correctly takes over the role of the “spy”.

Wink Murder

The game is known by various names and comes in multiple versions. It is also known as The Killer Wink, Murder in the Dark, Murder Killer, or Killer Killer. Each version is pretty basic and can vary a little.

It’s great entertainment for both youth groups and adults.

While everyone’s eyes are closed, the moderator (who isn’t playing the game) selects the person to kill by tapping their shoulders or head. Then, everyone can open their eyes. The killer kills the other players by glaring at them.

If the killer smiles at you and you cannot ignore it, count to five and then lie down or walk out of the circle. The remaining players must determine who the murderer is. If a participant believes they have the perpetrator’s name, they can claim, “I accuse” without divulging the suspect’s identity.

The game is stopped when there is an additional accuser, they both say the same thing, and both accusers point at the suspect simultaneously. If they’re both right, the game will end.

If they point to different players or at the wrong person, they die. Be aware that you cannot communicate with one another.


A great outdoor game that you can play with your kids. It’s a variation of hide-and-seek, where one player hides while the others search for the person. The player hides wherever within the designated area.

The participant has a couple of minutes to cover themselves, and when the entire group gathers to search for the person. If you spot the hiding person, you remain with them.

The first person to locate the hidden group wins, while the first player will be able to hide during the following rounds.


It is recommended to play by at least four people. The bigger number of players, the more enjoyable it is. Two people take on the roles of “tourist” and the “tour guide,” and the remainder is “statues”.

The “tourist” and the tour guide quit the area and switched off the lights. The statues move into positions while the “tour guide” counts to thirty.

When the time is up, the two come back with flashlights to make them laugh, dance, or make noise. They are permitted to speak anything that makes the statues move. However, touching isn’t allowed.

The final “statue” to remain unmoved is the winner.

I am a massive fan of this game. It can be both hilarious and sneaky while at the same time. Additionally, the dark provides the perfect opportunity to shift your position without one being aware.

Thief In The Dark

A simple and fun game suitable for all ages. Find twenty or more objects and put the items on the picnic table or the folding table for camp. Let the campers have time to examine the objects.

Don’t allow them to take too long.

When the lights are shut off (players can stand back or leave the space), the “thief” takes one of the items. Players try to determine which item was taken. The player who can identify the most stolen item is the winner.

Flashlight Tag

A classic that never gets boring! It’s a game of hide-and-seek in the evening. One person is chosen to be “it” and then heads out into the darkness using a flashlight to search for their companions.

If you’re “tagged” by that light, you’ll become “it” and start to look for others.

If you’re not playing, your game’s ended, and you have to wait until all players are located.

Other fun and classic camp games that are fun to play include mafia two truths and lie, shadow and puppets phone and capture the flag, truth or dare, twenty questions, and charades. Never have ever played board or cards.

Chill In A Hammock

Have you ever considered sleeping or sitting in a hammock beneath the star-lit night sky? It’s among the most beautiful moments one could ever have.

In addition, hammocks can take relaxation to a new level. There’s nothing better than swaying softly in a hammock after an extended hike.

It’s also a great spot to cuddle in with your kids and read them scary stories while taking in beautiful views and fresh air.

In addition, hammocks are an ideal place to sit and read a book, listen to music, and benefit from “me” time.

Capture The Moments

There is no need to put your camera and smartphone away after dark. There are beautiful moments and breathtaking images that need to be recorded.

From capturing your kids asleep to campfire activities to the stunning night sky, you name it.

It’s not easy to capture fantastic photos in dim and low-light places, but it’s not impossible. Change your camera settings to the highest ISO broad aperture and high shutter speed, and then use lighting sources like lanterns and flashlights to light up the scene.

Don’t be afraid to utilize the flash-it can be helpful in these circumstances.

Although it’s lovely to capture unforgettable moments, try not to be too caught up in your photography, and don’t do not forget to have fun!

Socialise With Other Campers

The evening is also a great chance to chat and interact with fellow campers. Engage in conversation with everyone you meet, particularly when you’re camping on your own. At least you’ll know that you have an interest at the end of the day.

You will meet like-minded and interesting people, which is always an excellent foundation for friendships. Do not be afraid to meet strangers.

Drink a glass of water and go to a different camp smiling. Everything else will become easier.

Create A LED Light Area

Your campsite will feel like home with vibrant decor and lights. This enjoyable nighttime camping activity can make your camping enjoyable, especially for children.

You can pick the string lights route or with the LED rope lights method and the non-flame LED candle method—the chic highlight solar-powered lanterns. The lighting you select will create a cozy atmosphere for your campsite and make it more comfortable.

Glow sticks don’t only work for games; you can also use them to make excellent decorations and craft projects. Pennant banners are pretty fun and bright and will bring an element of amusement to your camping.

Try New Food

Everyone loves hotdogs and burgers. What’s not to like about? It’s sometimes fun to experiment and cook something unorthodox.

Try the following: chicken, pasta, beef, or vegetarian dishes accompanied by garlic bread, potatoes mashed or roasted soup, or a green dish.

S’mores are a fantastic classic treat for campfires, and we’re all aware of that. However, there are many other great desserts for camping too. Be a bit creative and make grilled shortcake skewers using Oreo skillet cookies and peanut butter truffles.

To make it more enjoyable, cook as a family. Create new memories and create customs. To make this happen, be prepared in advance.

Read A Book

If you’re looking to unwind and relax, take an e-book. Nothing beats snuggling in your comfortable sleeping bag and reading a great reading in the night sky. A look at the light of the campfire is also fascinating.

The act of reading books with your children by the campfire or inside the tent can be entertaining and will make children more engaged.

There are plenty of great camping activities you can enjoy during the night. All you have to do is be imaginative and think outside the box. Why not start with these ideas and look at how the night unfolds?

Written by Norah Clark, verified, and edited by David Myer.

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Norah Clark

Norah Clark

Hi, I'm Norah! I have been an author at Dens Camp Guide since 2017 and a full-time nomad since 2012. I love outdoor walking trails, finding new places to adventure, and cooking on camp trips with my boyfriend.