Camping is such an exciting way to spend time outdoors, but not every kid may be into the outdoors at first. The picks on this list of picture books about camping feature a variety of camping stories, with both human and animal protagonists. Whether your family is big on camping or looking to get into it, these picture books are sure to light a fire!
28 Adeventure-Packed Picture Books About Camping
Here are 28 fun-filled picture books about camping:
Fatima’s Great Outdoors
Published: March 30, 2021
Fatima Khazi is excited for the weekend. Her family is headed to a local state park for their first camping trip! The school week might not have gone as planned, but outdoors, Fatima can achieve anything. She sets up a tent with her father, builds a fire with her mother, and survives an eight-legged mutant spider (a daddy longlegs with an impressive shadow) with her sister. At the end of an adventurous day, the family snuggles inside one big tent, serenaded by the sounds of the forest. The thought of leaving the magic of the outdoors tugs at Fatima’s heart, but her sister reminds her that they can keep the memory alive through stories–and they can always daydream about what their next camping trip will look like.
Published: May 21, 2019
Every year, a boy and his family go camping at Mountain Pond.
Usually, they see things like an eagle fishing for his dinner, a salamander with red spots on its back, and chipmunks that come to steal food while the family sits by the campfire.
But this year is different. This year, the boy is going into first grade, and his mother is encouraging him to do things on his own, just like his older brother. And the most different thing of all . . . this year, a tiger comes to the woods.
The Camping Trip
Published: April 14, 2020
My aunt Jackie invited me to go camping with her and my cousin Samantha this weekend. I’ve never been camping before, but I know I will love it.
Ernestine is beyond excited to go camping. She follows the packing list carefully (new sleeping bag! new flashlight! special trail mix made with Dad!) so she knows she is ready when the weekend arrives. But she quickly realizes that nothing could have prepared her for how hard it is to set up a tent, never mind fall asleep in it, or that swimming in a lake means that there will be fish — eep! Will Ernestine be able to enjoy the wilderness, or will it prove to be a bit too far out of her comfort zone? In an energetic illustrated story about a first sleepover under the stars, acclaimed author-illustrator Jennifer K. Mann reminds us that opening your mind to new experiences, no matter how challenging, can lead to great memories (and a newfound taste for s’mores).
Published: August 12, 2014
Inside the tent it’s cozy, but what is going on outside? Is it dark? Is it scary? Not if you have your trusty flashlight!
In this charming story, told solely through images, artist Lizi Boyd offers an enchanting exploration of night, nature, and the nocturnal world. One boy’s camping adventure gets even better when he shines a light into the shadows and finds all sorts of nighttime creatures, fascinating insects, plants, trees, and streams—all brilliantly illuminated in the beam of his flashlight.
Both lyrical and humorous, this visual poem—like the flashlight beam itself—reveals there is magic in the darkness. We just have to look for it.
Published: October 5, 2021
Tamen longs to see the stars, but none are visible in the light-polluted sky above the fire escape of his urban apartment building. Even in the neighborhood park, the stars are hidden by city lights.
This is a story about love and sacrifice: Tamen’s mom, a nightshift nurse, finds a way to take him camping. For one magical night on the shore of a wilderness pond, the Milky Way in all its glory belongs to them. color throughout
Published: May 3, 2016
Meet Homer, a dog who heads to camp to live like a wolf! Here’s the perfect book for the legions of kids out there who love dogs and funny books.
Homer is a dog . . . but he also secretly fancies himself part wolf. So when an invitation to attend WOLF CAMP (“Where every dog can live as a wolf for a week”) falls out of his kibble bag one morning, he’s determined to go. After his people finally agree, Homer boards the bus bound for Wolf Camp, along with fellow campers Trixie and Rex. They’re greeted on the other end by wolf counselors Fang and Grrr (“they seem nice”), and what follows is an array of wolf activities, including learning to howl, mark, and hunt. Of course, Homer’s a little homesick at times, and the food isn’t very good, but that just makes heading home all the sweeter.
The Great Indoors
Published: April 9, 2019
When the humans head out to go camping, the animals settle in for a relaxing holiday of their own! Teen bear takes over the bathroom with her curling iron, the beavers prepare their fanciest recipes, and the deer kick up their feet for a dance party. What starts as a little unwinding soon escalates to a big mess, just in time for everyone to head home. . . .
Tiny T. Rex and the Very Dark Dark
Published: March 3, 2020
Tiny T. Rex and his friend Pointy are having a campout in the backyard! It is what best friends do. But without their nighty-lights, the dark outside suddenly seems VERY dark . . . and very full of spooky things. Good thing Tiny has a super-secret plan to keep the dark at bay! Full of warmth and plenty of laughs, this new adventure starring Tiny T. Rex shows that friends will always find a way to face their fears together—even when those fears are not what they seem!
A Camping Spree with Mr. Magee
Published: May 1, 2003
In their new adventure, Mr. Magee and his dog, Dee, are enjoying a peaceful camping trip when along comes a lumbering, marshmallow-loving bear and the excitement begins. The next thing the two campers know, they are plunging down a mountain, racing down a river, and teetering on the edge of a waterfall! How will Mr. Magee and Dee find their way out of this slippery situation?
First Star: A Bear and Mole Story
Published: May 1, 2018
Rolling up sleeping bags, picking fresh berries, and climb-climb-climbing, the two buddies are having a great time hiking to Camp Tiptop. They especially can’t wait to watch the sunset. But Mole soon realizes that when the sun goes down. . .it will be dark. What if they get lost?
Seeing Mole nervous, Bear decides to tell his friend the legend of a special star–the First Star–that will always help them find their way. Featuring the popular characters and cozy illustrations of Will Hillenbrand’s earlier Bear and Mole books, First Star is a perfect bedtime book, an ode to friendship, and a gentle reminder that no matter how dark it gets, your loved ones will always help you find your way.
The Not-So Great Outdoors
Published: May 14, 2019
What’s so great about the “great outdoors”? A grumpy urban kid begrudgingly accompanies her family on a summer camping trip, missing all the sublime sights right under her nose as she longs for the lights and stimulation of the city. But as she explores forests, lakes and mountains, and encounters bears, beavers and caribou, she slowly comes to realize that the simpler things are just as sparkly, that the sky is its own majestic light show, and the symphony is all around. The Not-So Great Outdoors is a humorous and richly imagined reminder of the beauty and magic that can be found away from the city and our screens.
Published: April 1, 2017
Between work and school, homework and housework, a mother and daughter don’t always get to spend as much time together as they’d like. Add to that a little girl’s fears about leaving home for the first time, and the need to stay close through handwritten notes becomes even more important. As the camp departure date gets closer, Mom does her best to soothe her daughter’s nerves. A visit from her grandmother helps to calm her fears and convince her that she’ll have a good time, even away from her mother and beloved cat. Camp ends up being a wonderful adventure – but nothing is sweeter than a back-at-home reunion.
C is for Camping
Published: March 24, 2020
An engaging collection of 26 illustrations featuring campground favorites from Campfires and Hammocks to S’mores and Wildlife. Illustrator Greg Paprocki’s popular BabyLit alphabet board books feature his classically retro midcentury art style that’s proven to be a hit with both toddlers and adults. Discover new details in each illustration with every successive reading.
Published: April 22, 2014
What could be more fun than a camping trip with a good friend?
When that friend is T. Rex!
It’s important to set a few wilderness safety guidelines first. . . like making sure he stays on the trail. And does not disturb the local wildlife. And knows how to build a safe campfire. But sometimes dinosaurs have a different way of doing things, and that’s why it’s best to be prepared . . . for anything!
Monster and Mouse Go Camping
Published: May 29, 2018
It takes a little convincing, but with the promise of food, Monster decides to join Mouse on a camping trip. Things quickly go awry when Mouse takes off to explore, because, well, Monster gets hungry. He starts with just a little snack—the lantern. And the sleeping bags are hard to resist. Then the tent . . .
Stranded in the wild with no supplies, what are a monster and a mouse to do?
Come Home Already!
Published: December 5, 2017
An excited Duck wants to hang out with Bear. But Bear’s gone fishing for a whole week and is happy to finally get a second alone.
What will Duck do while Bear is gone? How will he survive without his best pal?!
Published: November 20, 2015
“Goodnight, Campsite” is an award-winning children’s book on camping, featuring more than tents. Our book highlights RVs – Travel Trailers, Fifth-Wheels, Pop-Ups, Class A, Class C, and other camper options. The perfect gift for RVers, especially those looking for kids camping books or camping books for toddlers. “Goodnight, Campsite” is set in a beautiful nature park, and the story follows visitors as they explore the park during the day (hiking, biking, fishing, etc.), and then returns with them to their campsite at night. There is an emphasis on RVs, which sets this title apart from other camping books on the market, which only feature tents. Preschool-aged children will love the beautiful and colorful pictures – and searching for the squirrel hiding in the pictures. Rhyming text will keep children engaged, as they build sound associations and phonemic skills. Also included in the book is a Campsite Bingo game! We know there are lots of children’s books about camping out there, and we are honored that you are considering “Goodnight, Campsite.” Children love books, almost as much as they love camping! Let’s get outside and make some memories. See you on the trails! Loretta Sponsler
Published: September 15, 2020
It’s a place of wordless wonder: the wilderness of the Boundary Waters on the Minnesota–Canada border. Travel its vast distances, canoe its streams and glacial lakes, take shelter from rain under a rocky outcropping (or in your tent), camp in its vaulting forests as stars embroider the darkening sky. Is this your first visit? Or is it already your favorite destination?
Published: December 5, 2019
Bear, Squirrel, and Raccoon have been friends a long time. A loooooooong time. So when a family of city folks comes to the neighborhood, the friends think that a surprise welcome party is just the kind of fun they’ve been looking for. Well, the party turns out to be quite the surprise indeed, but maybe not exactly what Bear, Squirrel, and Raccoon were imagining?
Wordy Birdy Meets Mr. Cougarpants
Published: February 5, 2019
Wordy Birdy and her pals are heading on a camping trip, and our favorite chatty bird is all ready for a big night under the stars. (“I brought pickles and bean burritos and more pickles and mashed potatoes and some pickles and . . .”) But the friends soon find themselves in hot water when the dastardly Mr. Cougarpants stalks their campsite. Can Wordy Birdy talk them all out of this pickle? Grab your pack, grill up a s’more, and find out!
Scaredy Squirrel Goes Camping
Published: April 1, 201
Scaredy Squirrel is not too comfortable with the idea of camping ? unless it’s on his couch! There will be no mosquitoes, skunks or zippers to worry about when he watches a show about the joys of camping on his brand-new TV. But first Scaredy must find an electrical outlet, and that means going into the woods! Will the nutty worrywart’s plans prepare him for the great outdoors, or will his adventure end up as a scary story told around the campfire?
Into the Outdoors
Published: October 11, 2011
In Susan Gal’s delightful young-concept book, a family travels up a mountain, over a bridge, and under a canopy of trees to reach their campsite in the great outdoors. A forest hike offers more opportunities to showcase words that describe spacial relationships and show young readers where they are in the world. Beside a lake! Next to a waterfall! On top of a mountain! Then after the sun slips behind the hills, they’ll snuggle alongside each other and dream sweet dreams inside their tent among the trees.
Brave Little Camper
Published: January 15, 2016
Explore nighttime in the forest with Little Camper and adorable woodland friends! It’s a beautiful night filled with new sights, animals, and sounds. Gather around the campfire and join the crew on another brave adventure as Little Camper spends the night in the forest for the very first time. Follow along the interactive story by pushing the corresponding audio button to play friendly forest sounds as you peruse the campsite and meet new fuzzy friends! Pushing the button will help strengthen fine motor skills and allows for an enhanced sensory experience your little one will enjoy. A must for your next family camping adventure!
Don’t Feed Bear
Published: April 10, 2018
Mac and cheese, Carrot cake, Meatball stew: Bear loves when campers leave him grub. The park ranger does not. Smackity smack, Ranger pounds a sign into the ground: DON’T FEED THE BEAR! Upset—no more chewy cookies? No more juicy burgers?—Bear quickly crosses out the “don’t.” Now, it’s war in the park! But when both Bear and Ranger end up losing out, will the two antagonists finally call a truce? With its delightfully cartoon-like pictures and clever wordplay, this picture book will keep kids laughing for hours.
Published: March 1, 2005
When Maisy sets off to go camping in the country, it’s only natural that all her friends come along, too. But they soon find that pitching a tent is not an easy thing to do. Even if they do manage to keep the tent up, there’s the matter of fitting them all in — Maisy, Charley, Cyril, Tallulah, and finally, the huge elephant, Eddie. What a squeezy squish-squash! Good night, campers! Uh-oh-what’s that popping sound?
Published: April 9, 2013
Let’s get into the station wagon, roll those windows down,
Let’s sing out loud and wave to cows as we drive out of town.
Let’s park the car beneath the trees and trade our shoes for boots,
Let’s set the timer, all say “Cheese!” then head into the woods.
Ladybug Girl and Bingo
Published: May 1, 2012
Lulu and her dog Bingo the basset hound are best friends. Whenever they play outside, Bingo always stays close by Lulu’s side. When they go camping for the first time, Lulu does her best to be responsible and hold tight to Bingo’s leash. But what happens when Bingo wants to explore the forest on his own and runs off? This is a job for Ladybug Girl! She will find Bingo in time for toasting marshmallows at the campfire.
Froggy Goes to Camp
Published: May 15, 2008
Look out, Camp Run-A-Muck! Here comes Froggy. . . . Froggy?s off to camp?and Camp Run-A-Muck will never be the same! Froggy packs a lot into one week: hikes and archery lessons, K.P. and food fights, scary stories and funny songs around the campfire. But only Froggy could also manage to lose his trunks during swim class and overturn his kayak with the camp director in it. Lovable, bumbling Froggy will keep his many fans laughing with his latest antics.
There they are: 28 of the best picture books about camping! Which of these have you read and loved? What did I miss?