When you set up a new caravan, or establish a caravan setup for the first time, you quickly realise you need many things.
Are there any hard and fast rules? The best thing you can say is that there are some guidelines. What you need in your caravan is very much individual.
However, if you like to make your caravan your home away from home, there are some things you may need more than others.
1. Mattress Topper
In our first caravan, we didn’t add a mattress topper. Since then, I have put a mattress topper on my essentials list.
Having a mattress topper has many benefits. Firstly, when you get back home, you can remove it and wash it. A recently washed mattress topper immediately freshens up your sleeping area.
Mattress toppers are great for regulating body temperature. Pick the right one, and you be cool in the summer and warm in winter.
2. A Pan Set
Eating out all of the time is expensive.
Also, part of the convenience of having a caravan is that you can cook and eat when you want to.
Therefore, investing in a quality pan set is a great idea. Remember that you are probably going to be limited when it comes to space. Turning your caravan into a home away from home means bringing with you as many of your creature comforts as possible.
I suggest you go for a non-stick pan set which is also stackable. That way, you can maximise space in your caravan.
3. Stovetop Oven
Not all caravans have built-in ovens. If yours doesn’t come with an inbuilt oven, and you still want to cook, investing in a stovetop oven is a good idea.
Stovetop ovens come in different shapes and sizes. Shop around for the best stovetop ovens. We have also created a guide to stovetop ovens and other food-cooking options. For instance, steamers and Shabuki pots are two alternatives to consider.
4. 12 Volt Fans
Never hit the road without some way of staying fresh and cool in hot weather.
Depending on the size of your caravan, you need at least one 12-volt fan. If you have a larger caravan setup, adding a couple of fans in locations such as the sleeping and family areas is the right thing to do.
5. Washing Machine
Do you need a washing machine? The jury is out on this issue.
Whether you need a washing machine or not is up to you. If you are a keen hiker and go through a lot of socks, having a washing machine may be essential. There is nothing worse for foot health than dirty or damp socks.
That does not mean you need to have a full-size washing machine. Technology has moved on. You can now buy small portable washing machines. They make life much easier when you are on the road.
6. Privacy Screens
Privacy screens don’t only offer you privacy. They also help to protect you from the elements including wind, rain and sun.
When you shop around for privacy screens, make sure you buy the right size and fittings for your caravan.
Many privacy screens have also been treated with UV protection. With the sun’s rays getting more intense, it is best to buy a privacy screen with high UV protection.
7. Sand Pegs
Camping on softer ground is more challenging than camping on the Arctic tundra.
During my time camping, I have learned that it is best to be prepared for anything. When we bought our first caravan, I realised my husband would set up camp almost anywhere. This is fine as long you are prepared.
Sand pegs are a must when you camp on soft ground. You can use them to secure screens and awnings. If you are planning on going camping in the desert, sand pegs are a must.
8. Break Resist Crockery Set
Not all road surfaces are smooth. This is especially true when you go wild camping.
Unless you want to end up with broken china or porcelain everywhere, it is best to invest in a break-resistant crockery set right from the start.
I have seen many campers go through plates like there is no tomorrow. Not only does it work out expensive. Broken glass and china easily cut your feet or even pet paws if you are travelling with furry family friends.
9. Cleaning Materials
Many first-time campers and caravaners forget they need to keep their space clean.
Build-ups of dust and mold are bad for your health. A Swiffer mop is a great way of cleaning your space quickly without having to resort to a mop and bucket.
A small portable vacuum cleaner can also help. Dyson has an excellent selection but is expensive. The brand Cecotoc also offers a vacuum cleaner that works inside as well as outside. The Cecotec range is much more cost-effective.
10. Portable Solar Panel
There is no do doubt about it – portable solar panels are a must-have when you are off-grid.
You can use them to charge batteries and all of those essential mobile devices you need to manage modern daily life. Never leave home without your solar panels.
The choice of solar panels is excellent. You are bound to find the right panels for your needs.
These are some of the most useful caravan accessories to bring with you when you tour.
The way we camp varies from one person to the next. Bring with you what you need to make sure you don’t drag any excessive baggage around with you.
Excessive gear means extra fuel cost and more time spent loading and unloading.