Different types of camping – which one do you prefer?

For some, camping is just not a form of an outdoor expedition, it is a means to spend some quality time with your family away from the nitty-gritty of daily life. Camping can be pursued as a hobby or as a recreation.

For most of us, camping means packing your gear into a car, driving to a camp site, pitching a tent and lying on your back watching the stars. But did you know that this is just one of the many types of camping? Do you know what are the different types of camping?

In this article, we take a detailed look at some of the different types of camping that are enjoyed and how they are different from each other.

For some beginner camping tips for each of these types of camping, you can check out MyOpenCountry’s Excellent Guide to Camping for Beginners.

For some additional resources and books, check out our article on the best camping guides for beginners. You would find a great collection of beginner camping guides and some additional online resources to follow.

What are the different types of camping?

The idea of camping is different for each of us. Every one of us has our own comfort zone when it comes to camping. Some prefer camping with family in an official campsite. Others who are more athletic and adventurous prefer hiking or backpacking.

Let us take a look at what are the different types of camping that people go on. Broadly speaking, camping can fall into any one of these types,

  • Country camping
  • RV camping
  • Glamping
  • Backpacking

Different types of camping

Country camping

different types of camping - tent camping

This is the type of camping that most families will refer to when the word camping is mentioned. It is also sometimes known as tent camping or car camping. In this type of camping, you drive to a designated campsite, pitch your tent and get started. There is no restriction on the camping gear, it all depends on what you can bring along either packed in your car or on your person. These campsites act as a playground for all the different families who come here, set up their tents and enjoy the camping experience.

Most of the campsites provide some sort of basic amenities like running water and washrooms. These places are family friendly and are a good place to camp for days. These types of camping are favorite with families. Sitting around a campfire and telling stories is a favorite camping pastime. Most families collaborate with other families in these campsites and engage in group activities and games.

Some people prefer camping in sites which are established campsites within national and state parks. This type of camping is known as established site camping. Apart from the basic amenities, these kinds of established campsites also have tables for family meals, cottages and sleeping areas. They are not free but available for a nominal fee. People who do not want to bother setting up tents and do not prefer the regularly crowded sites can opt for these types of campsites.

A subcategory of established site camping is cottage camping. People normally pack the basic requirements like food, toiletries etc and can rent a cottage where they can stay for as long as they want. This kind of camping let people get away from their daily routine and enjoy the peace of the backcountry and at the same time have a comfortable experience.

It is different from renting a room at a hotel or an inn as you are responsible for making or bringing your own food. The only service you get is a place to live with the amenities. People from the city prefer this type of camping where they do not want to go through all the heavy lifting of a regular backcountry camping trip but at the same time feel the experience.

RV camping

RV camping

In RV camping, the people stay in a RV(Recreational vehicle). People can load all their essentials in their RV and can drive from one place to another. They can stop anywhere, partake in outdoor camping activities while at the same time be in close proximity to basic amenities of their RV. In this type of camping, the biggest investment that the campers have to make is in the RV. RV camping is not for everyone. If you are someone who loves traveling, visiting new places and at the same time enjoy the camping experience, then this type of camping is for you.

You can travel as per your convenience, park yourself in any of the camping sites you visit and get started. This kind of camping is a lot more comfortable than traditional camping as you always have the luxury of using the amenities in the RV. Most RVs have all the amenities within them – you can cook, sleep, shower. Some RV also let you watch TV and use a refrigerator. You do not need to buy an RV to enjoy this type of camping. RVs can be rented and RV rental is a thriving business. There are many sites that can help you locate an RV rental close to you.



A new trend that has emerged in the recent years is glamping. It is a word play and derived from glamor and camping. Glamping has become popular over the years and is often pursued by the rich and wealthy who want to have the adventure associated with camping but do not want to miss on the everyday luxury that they are used to. Glamping is a huge business and many sites exclusively cater to people looking for this type of camping.

Glamping can be termed as camping but in a controlled environment. The trend of glamping is said to have evolved from safari tours where people can go in the outdoors, enjoy the local wildlife and nature and still not be far from day to day luxuries.



Backpacking is a more extreme type of camping wherein you pack all your essential camping gears in a backpack and set out. It is also known as primitive camping where the focus is on hiking and enjoying nature. Backpacking is all about being adventurous and camping when required and wherever possible. In backpacking, you decide how much you want to hike, when to stop, where to stop and then pitch your tent or hammock. Backpacking requires you to be physically active to a certain level and brave nature in its raw elements, so it is not for everyone. And there are some excellent health benefits of hiking, as explained in the article by the Conservation Institute.

Since you will be hiking a lot on foot, backpackers go to extreme measures to ensure that they travel light. There are specialized gears targeted at backpackers which are lighter than the usual camping gear. Backpackers bring along only what is absolutely essential for survival. Families can opt for backpacking if they are physically capable of it and there and no small children who will find the entire experience quite taxing.

An extreme type of backpacking is survivalist camping. This type of camping involves carrying bare minimum essentials and using special bushcraft and survival skills to virtually live off the land. This type of camping is not for the light-hearted, and an individual should opt for survivalist camping only after thorough training and preparation.

Final thoughts on the different types of camping

A camping trip is a great way for families to get together and have some fun while at the same time get away from the regular life and enjoy nature. In this article, we looked at the different types of camping and how each is different from one another. So go ahead and pick a type that suits you but do not stop yourself from going out on a camping trip and enjoying some quality alone or family time together in the lap of the nature. Until next time, happy camping!

Related posts

Beginner Guide to Camping
Best Books for Camping
Best Tarp Tents
Best Camping Hammocks

Image credits: Amazon.com

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