My Worst Camping Experience Ever

I enjoy camping. It brings me back to the basics, connects me to nature, and makes me appreciate life in its rawest state. I’ve camped a number of times along the white beaches of Batangas, the placid lake of Caliraya in Laguna, under the refreshing pines in San Narciso, Zambales, at a remote surfing cove in Dalugan, Aurora, and so on…so I am very much familiar with the challenges and must-do’s in camping.

I was expecting a smooth-flowing, easier-than-usual camping trip at Nagsasa Beach in Zambales, an outing I had with my girlfriends a couple of weeks ago.

But it turned out to be my worst camping experience ever.

We were an all-girl group, with a male driver, and I initially blamed the lack of boys for our very tiring trip. But upon further thought, it’s not their physical strength that we missed. It’s more of equipping ourselves with simple, strategic acts that could have made our camping lives easier.

Here are some tips, or lessons, that I'd like to share with you for that camping experience you'll never want to forget. These may seem very basic, but I swear, ignoring these will hit you pretty hard.

Take Note of Menstrual Cycles

This is a major consideration, ladies. Don’t just schedule when your weekends are free. Take note of your menstrual calendar, and schedule your camping trip before or after your menstrual cycle. There are lavatories in Nagsasa Beach (and most camping sites), but don’t expect them to be clean and sanitary. Some camping sites do not even have lavatories at all.

Ladies, take note of your menstrual cycle when planning your trip!

Don’t Forget Your Portable Burner (with Butane Gas)

We must admit that the experience of camping won’t be complete without that charcoal-grilled meat, sausages, and skewered tomatoes and onions. Charcoal grilling still, I believe, makes the camping experience more authentic.

But how about those random moments when all you want is a warm cup of coffee? Or a hot chocolate drink? Will you still bother with the mess and effort in lighting up coal for that?

I won’t. And I bet most of you ladies won’t too. Hence, bring a burner (with butane gas) for your spur-of-the-moment cravings. It’ll really make your camping life more convenient. There are a lot of compact and lightweight portable burners in the market nowadays, so this won’t be a hassle to bring.

Pick A Serene Camping Spot

Nagsasa Beach has a long shoreline and there are a lot of camping sites you can choose from. Don’t settle on the first site you see; instead, take some time to explore other areas where you can pitch that tent!

The less people, the better! It'll make you appreciate nature more.

Just a warning though – the sand in Nagsasa Beach can get (extremely) hotter than usual, which makes walking on it really challenging. But don’t let this discourage you in finding that serene, quiet camping spot.

Aside from your peaceful location, consider a camping spot with water supply, lavatories, and good shaded areas (the more trees, the better).

Bring Packed Lunch and A Tumbler of Ice Cold Drinks

Bring packed lunch for your first day in camp. You will most likely be arriving at your camping site by 10:30 or 11:30 in the morning. The sun, the air, and everything else will extremely be unforgivingly hot time at this time of the day. You will be carrying your tent, coolers, and bags to your camping spot, then you will be setting up your site.

By this time, you will be very thirsty and hungry. You’ll want to down a cold bottle of water, or beer, but you’ll get disappointed as your drinks are not cold yet.

So I suggest for you to bring packed lunch and a tumbler of ice cold water (or beer). It’s instant comfort and satisfaction, at this time of the day when you and your girlfriends need it most. Bother with DIY charcoal grilling later in the afternoon, when everything – the weather and your temper – has cooled down.

Get to drink that ice-cold Hoegaarden ASAP by preparing your iced coolers beforehand!

Another suggestion is to fill your trusted cooler with ice early on. Place your bottle of beers or fruit juices inside, so it's cold when you arrive on-site.

Camping is fun when you know its in’s and out’s, so I hope you keep these recommendations in mind. It’s extremely doable, even for an all-girls camping trip, as long as everyone in the group is prepared.
Have fun!


PS: I’m looking forward to your best all-girl camp experience (seriously, who needs boys?). Share them with me by commenting below or by emailing Most striking stories will get featured for free in The Travel Archives’ Facebook and Instagram pages!

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