Camping in Hawaii Pt. 1 – WHAT TO PACK

It is now two days until our Hawaii trip and of course we’ve already started packing cause we are just ready to go!! This isn’t a regular Hawaii trip though, this ain’t no all inclusive! We’re doing the rustic side of Hawaii and we’re going camping around the Big Island. This takes a little bit of out of the box thinking for what to pack to make sure you’re completely prepared. There’s no makeup, there’s no fancy dresses, there’s only the minimum, because when you’re camping you don’t want to be lugging around useless items. Clothes, toiletries and camping equipment is all we will need for a successful Hawaiian camping trip. So let’s break down these lists a little more.




  1. Therm-a-Rest Prolite Plus Sleeping Pad
  2. Therm-a-Rest Compressible Pillow
  3. MSR Hubba Hubba NX 2 Person Tent
  4. Teton Sport Ultralight Sleeping Bag

Most of our camping supplies are from MEC, it’s a little on the pricey side but it’s all good quality so you know it’s going to last. Everything is lightweight so it’s perfect for camping and backpacking.



You don’t want to overpack clothing, especially in this case because lets be real, you’re just going to be wearing your bathing suit most of the time anyway. For our trip specifically we have two nights booked in a hotel so we’ll be able to do laundry if needed. My best lightweight packing includes:

  1. Three TShirts
  2. One Tank Top
  3. Two Sports Bras
  4. Four Shorts

These pieces give enough variety throughout the week without being overkill (I’m definitely guilty of overpacking at times…). Also what’s super important to me is that all of these pieces are comfortable with whatever activity we’re going to be doing. Speaking to that, you want to make sure you have some warm clothing as well.


  1. Beanie
  2. North Face Rain Jacket
  3. Long Sleeved Flannel
  4. Vans Hoodie
  5. Lululemon Leggings

We’ll be summiting the active volcano Mauna Kea which is 13,802 ft high. We’re also hoping to be staying the night in Volcano National Park. These points of interest definitely have a colder temp than the rest of Hawaii, so you have to be prepared with warmer clothes for these types of activities. Even if you’re not planning to see some volcanos, it’s just best to be prepared with warmer clothes regardless just in case. I made that mistake before when visiting San Francisco without bringing any bottoms besides shorts…I regretted that as the nights were chillier than I anticipated.



I don’t have my entire toiletries list pictured here, because I think bringing a toothbrush, toothpaste and deodorant is pretty self explanatory. What I have here is:

  1. Wet Brush
  2. Bug Spray
  3. Band- Aids
  4. Banana Boat SPF 60 Sunscreen
  5. Tarte Tarteguard SPF 30 Sunscreen
  6. First Aid Beauty Facial Cleanser
  7. Face Cleansing Wipes
  8. Sunday Riley CEO Moisturizer

Some of these items are a must and some of these items are a just in case. Will we need bug spray and band-aids? Who knows, but it’s always better to be safe than sorry. Sunscreen is the most important thing on the list for sure! That’s why I’m bringing two; one for body and one more specific for face and neck. I’m bringing three skincare items which may seem like more than enough for some, but I’m leaving 7 other skincare steps at home so this is the bare minimum for my routine.



  1. Keen Hiking Boots
  2. Vans Backpack
  3. LED Headlamp
  4. MEC 1 litre Water Bottle
  5. Two Zaful Swimsuits
  6. Tentree Towel
  7. Mask and Snorkel

Our main activities on this trip will for sure be hiking and swimming and/ or snorkelling, so these were important aspects to pack for. Again, you want to be comfortable on this trip, so make sure whatever hiking boots and bag you bring are broken in and work for you. The headlamp is a good source of light that’s hands free to make it easier if you’re hiking or setting up camp at night, which I definitely foresee us doing at least once on this trip. WATER IS VERY IMPORTANT WHEN CAMPING IN A HOT CLIMATE. You must make sure you bring a large enough water bottle to keep you hydrated.


This trip is all about packing light and packing smart to make sure you’re prepared for whatever might come your way. This is going to be a new experience for us so I’m sure it’s going to be a learning experience! Keep an eye out for the next part of our Camping in Hawaii Series!


What is one of YOUR camping essentials??

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