Creative Camping Games and Activities for Teens

Josh Goldbach16 May, 2023

community service hiking in mountains trails

Camping trips are a once-in-a-lifetime experience teens will never forget. These excursions replace the noise and confusion of the city with the quiet peace of a natural environment with clean air and an abundance of sights to enjoy.

But what do you do on a trip? It’s easy to say just go set up a tent and explore. But a camping trip is a chance for teens to have meaningful moments that will enrich their lives. One of the best ways to maximize this opportunity is through teen camping activities and games to entertain and create unforgettable memories. Here are some of the best.


The obvious thing to do on a teen camping trip is to get out and explore the woods. After all, the point of a teen camping trip is to go out and immerse in nature’s beauty. Here are a few ideas to keep teens engaged and enjoying themselves while on the trail.

To make a hike the best it can be, plan the journey to a specific destination. The location can be a scenic overlook or a feature like a waterfall. Choose a spot that will keep the hikers active and drawn to searching for something important. A destination turns a simple stroll in the woods into an adventure they’ll get excited about.

Learning about the plants in the area while on your hike is one of our favorite teen camping activities. Most sites have guides to the trees and flowers in the area. Try to identify them on the walk and discover what sets them apart. With an understanding of nature, a trip into the forest suddenly becomes a bold journey into a vibrant, thriving world.

Acts of Service

Two boys hold black trash bags up while smiling proudlyAs you’re going into an environment that’s not your own on a teen camping trip, it’s essential to give back to the site. There are several ways to do that. One of the simplest ways is by cleaning up trash on the grounds. It’s an excellent way to show appreciation for the location and leave it in better condition than when you arrived.

When visiting public cabins, you can leave chopped firewood for the next visitors and write about your experience in the log book. The log book is a great place to record recommendations for others or gratitude for the land you’re enjoying.

These acts of kindness serve the location well and have the bonus of team building and bonding for the teens on the trip. Maybe they knew each other well from a previously existing group or were strangers. In either case, working together to make something better than you found it is a great way to help everyone get to know each other.

Scavenger Hunts

A classic camping activity, scavenger hunts are a blast for several reasons. First, a good list of items with creative clues forces teens to think outside the box. It also leads them to explore the grounds closely, immersing them in and familiarizing them with their new environment. It also gives teens a chance to get active, which is one of the best reasons to take a camping trip. Scavenger hunts are a great way to exercise the mind and the body.

A related hunt using modern technology is geocaching. In this activity, someone hides a small item, like a toy or log book, in an obscure location. The coordinates are posted on a website and quickly loaded into a GPS. Someone finds the item this way and leaves something in its place, keeping the game alive. Exploring pre-existing geocaches or creating your own is a great way to add value to a campsite.

Telling Stories

One of the great campfire activities is sharing a story with others. This grand tradition goes back to the dawn of humanity and remains an excellent thrill for people of all ages. One way to make the experience interactive is to play the game Exquisite Corpse. In this game, each person tells a section of a story. The following person has to add a section of their own. On and on, the tellers add their portion until the tale is complete.

You can also share personal stories. Creating a space to share experiences is a way camping brings people together. It lets people open up and learn about each other in a form the city sometimes cannot.

JournalingFour teens look out over a mirrored pond as sun rises

While bonding and working together should be one of the primary goals of a teen camping trip, there’s also a chance for reflection. Going into nature allows for deep introspection, so teens should take the opportunity to journal. Encourage them to describe everything they see and feel in these moments and explain the activities around them. They’ll leave with a clearer sense of themselves and an account sharper than if they’d only taken videos.

Camping is a rare experience, and for those with limited chances for outdoor opportunities, often a simple night or two under the stars becomes a full-fledged teen adventure program. With proper planning of activities, a teen camping trip will last in their memories for the rest of their lives.

Plan Your Summer Adventure

Bold Earth Adventures takes that mission seriously. We offer camping trips for teens 13-18 at a wide range of exotic locations around the country, including Hawaii and the Grand Canyon. We also have international trips to places such as Mount Kilimanjaro and the Galapagos Islands. These trips will give teenagers a unique chance to explore some of the most incredible sites in small groups of up to 13. On these 12-21 day trips, they’ll experience everything from climbing to rafting to even surfing.

Since 1976, Bold Earth Adventures has been a leader in the most unforgettable outdoor journeys a teenager will ever experience. We guarantee a safe, rewarding adventure to last in their memories forever. Visit our website and see what we have to offer today!


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