Are you on a camping trip and looking for some of the best camping games to play with your family and friends?
Never fear, because in this article we’ve got the premier list of the top 11 camping games for adults!
Stop doom-scrolling on social media while you’re in the great outdoors, and instead enjoy quality time with some old-time classics and new sensations that are sure to leave you in fits of laughter.
We’ll cover all of the basics when it comes to how to play these camping games, including:
- Rules and strategies
- Necessary equipment
- Who the games are best suited for
- Safety precautions to be mindful of.
Who says camping games are just for kids? Let the fun begin!
Table of Contents
- The Best Fun Camping Games for Adults of All Ages
- Adult Drinking Games To Play While Camping
- Active Camping Games to Play
- Safety Tips While Playing These Camping Games
The Best Fun Camping Games for Adults of All Ages
Camping often provides the best opportunity to disconnect from the outside world and enjoy entertainment the good, old-fashioned way.
From card games and drinking games to physical games and board games, there’s sure to be a camping game to play on every occasion no matter the group you’re with!
Below are 10 of my favorite games to play while camping. These games are well-suited for adults and are all fantastic crowd-pleasers. Be prepared to get competitive and let your hair down!
Charades is a classic camping game that can be played with little to no equipment!
Start by gathering your friends around the campfire and separate into teams. You can either choose to play individually, in pairs, or split into two groups.
The overall aim of the game is to act out something without speaking while the other team/players guess what you are portraying before the timer runs out.
This game is a great one to play while you’re away because you can choose to either play with a set of charade cards or just make it up as you go!
Physical charade cards
There’s no doubt that physical charade cards can help the game run more smoothly! The rules are already decided, and the instructions are right there to make sure everyone is on the same page.
Choose your teams and then designate a few actors. When the timer is ready, the actor needs to pick up a card.
The cards are all worth a different amount of points depending on the difficulty, so if you think your acting skills are top-notch then choosing a harder card will give you a bigger advantage!
When the timer starts, you have a certain amount of time to act out without speaking or mouthing.
If your team guesses correctly before the timer runs out, then you’ll be rewarded with those points.
The game alternates from group to group, and the winner is whichever team has collected the most points by the end of the game.
This competitive game will leave you in fits of laughter (or rage), but be sure not to cheat!
Playing without the physical cards
If you choose to play without the physical cards, the rules become a bit more versatile.
Make sure to agree in your group before splitting up into teams!
Often when you play without the physical form, the game becomes less competitive and the aim shifts to creating more laughter rather than winning.
All you need for this variation is a timer and pen and paper to keep score.
Each person will choose what they will act out before starting. Then, when the timer begins, try your hardest to have your team guess correctly!
If they manage to do so before the timer goes off then you get a point. The game ends when one team reaches a certain amount of points first.
2. Campfire Storytelling
If you feel like being creative and want to either challenge your imagination (or just want to get a story off your chest!), then this is the game for you.
Campfire storytelling is simple, and no equipment is needed. Just gather your friends around the fire and get the tales started!
How to tell a story around the campfire?
To tell a story, you need to have a hook. Make sure to let your friends know whether the story is true or made up before starting.
You need to be expressive to keep everyone interested and drawn into the story. Make sure the story moves quickly while painting it full of color. Then, when you come to the end, make sure to have that “mic drop” moment – leaving everyone stunned!
Types of Campfire Storytelling
Campfire storytelling is most well-known for its scary, supernatural tales, but that doesn’t always have to be the case. The only limit is your imagination, so feel free to go in any direction!
Below is a list to help you think:
- Crazy life moments
- Famous people/celebrity encounters
- Near-death experiences
- “Adult” stories
- Embarrassing moments.
3. Card Games
Card games are great to play around the campfire because you can be entertained for hours with just a single deck of cards!
There’s no need to get up and act or otherwise move around (if you’re feeling lazy) and can cater to many players.
A pack of cards also takes up no space at all in your backpack, so do yourself a favor and bring a set on your next trip! Here are two of my favorite card games (as well as how to play them):
Scum is a game where the aim is to get rid of your cards as quickly as possible. It is a very addictive and competitive game once the rules are understood! Again, all you need to play is a standard deck of cards.
Note: Cards will differ depending on how many players there are. If there are less than four players, then only one Joker should be put in the pack. If there are more than four players then place all the Jokers in.
How to play?
The cards are dealt out between the players, with none remaining. Following that, each player will look at their cards before organizing them in a way that suits them best. The player with the 3 of Clubs starts.
If the person with 3 of Clubs has another 3 (of any suit), they can choose to start the round on doubles.
This means that in this round, only double cards can be played. The cards also need to be higher than what the previous player had put down. If you can no longer go then you have to skip the round by saying “skip!”.
The winner of the round is whoever puts the last cards down. The cards played can then be discarded to the side. The winner of the round can then choose what to put down next.
The winner of the game is whoever gets rid of all their cards first! Then, as the game goes on, the winner becomes ‘president’ and the loser becomes ‘scum’.
This means the loser needs to give the president their best card. The president can then choose to give scum one of their cards.
The order of the cards is different from other games. Below is a list from lowest to highest card and how they can help you in-game:
3: The lowest card. Usually the hardest to get rid of, but having doubles can help!
10: If you play this card, you can choose whether the next card dealt is higher or lower
Joker: Joker trumps all! You can play this card at any time to win that round.
Rules to remember:
- Doubles and triples can only be played if the person starting the round puts it down
- You cannot counter a Joker with another Joker!
This is a strategy game. You can be dealt a horrible hand but still beat someone with a better hand if you use your smarts!
Rummy is considered by many to be one of the best card games of all time. The aim is to collect sets consisting of groups of three or four of a kind, or sequences of three or more cards of the same suit.
This game can be played with as many players as you want! If your group is bigger than 6, you may need to add another deck into the mix. Remember to remove the Jokers!
How to deal the cards?
The dealer will give you cards face down. If 2-3 players are playing, each player gets 10 cards. When there are 4 or 5 players, then 7 cards each are given out. If 6-7 people play, then 6 cards are dealt to each.
All remaining cards are then placed face down on the table. The top card is shown and placed to the side to be used as the upcard.
How many sequences do I need to form?
This will depend on how many players there are:
- 2-3 players – you will need to form either two piles of 3 and one pile of 4, or two piles of 5.
- 4-5 players – you will need to form one group of 3, and one group of 4.
- 6-7 players – you will need to form two groups of 3 to win.
Sequences you can collect
You can choose to either collect runs of the same suit (for example, 4,5,6 of hearts) or to collect the same number.
The card order
The lowest card is an ace and the highest is a king. Remember that the number of cards is the number of points you could be stuck with at the end of the game.
Often, players who don’t have a set of high cards will want to get rid of these first to avoid being stuck with lots of points.
How to play?
The player to the left of the dealer starts. They can either take the upcard or draw another from the down pile. Then, they need to discard a card they no longer want.
Once it is your turn and you have formed a sequence, you can put these face down on the table.
The player who gets rid of their cards first wins the game! The remaining players will then show their hand to tally the remaining points.
The lower the score, the better. Tally the scores by writing them down somewhere, and start again!
This game is one of the best of all time! It comes in a box and is sure to entertain you for hours on end.
Articulate works best in teams of 2 or 3. The aim of the game is to get around the board as quickly as you can, and to do so you need to correctly guess what your partner is explaining.
Remember: for every correct guess, you make you can move one spot!
In your teams, take turns being the guesser or the describer. Your turn will start once the timer is upright.
How to play?
The describer will take a card from the front of the pack, where they will read and describe to their teammate the entry that corresponds to the segment that their playing piece sits on.
The segments include Object, Action, Nature, Person, Random, and World. The describer will describe and discard the cards as fast as the other player can guess them – remember to stick to the same category!
The turn is over when the timer runs out. If three points are earned, then the team can move their piece 3 steps forward.
If you don’t already have the game, here is my favorite Articulate game to buy on Amazon. Check price. It’s perfect to play with friends or family around the firepit on your next camping adventure.
When describing, you are not allowed to:
- Say what letter the word starts with, or how many letters it has
- Say the word or any derivative, e.g., If the word is “post” you may not say “postage” or “postman”; for “swim”, you may not say “swimmer” etc.
- Use “rhymes with” or “sounds like” type clues.
When describing, you may;
- Choose to PASS and not play a card – but only once each turn
- Gesticulate, act, mime (however, you cannot mouth the word)
Adult Drinking Games To Play While Camping
5. Truth or Dare, Campfire Edition
Truth or dare is the ultimate game to bring your group’s guards down and learn how they truly feel.
Sometimes, some liquid confidence can help this game come alive! Grab your buddies, sit around the campfire, and then either play the game with physical cards or make it up as you go.
Aim of the game
This game can become competitive or non-competitive by simply taking turns asking one person a specific truth or dare.
The player you ask can choose to either tell a truth or accept a dare. If they choose a dare, then you can make up something they have to do. If they decide not to go ahead with it, a punishment is given out!
If the player chooses truth, then they must answer the question you give them truthfully. Again, if they decide not to, a punishment can be given out.
Get creative with your truth and dares, and make sure to ask questions that the person is most likely to do! Below is a list of some of the best truths and dares to try:
- What is your biggest regret?
- Have you ever cheated on a partner?
- Name someone you have pretended to like but actually cannot stand
- What is the most unethical thing you have ever done?
- If you had to get back with one ex who would you choose?
- Who in the room would be the worst person to date and why?
- Let someone shave a part of your body
- Eat something of the group choice blindfolded, then guess what it is
- Show your phone’s search history
- Perform a seductive dance in front of the group
- Ask a stranger for their number
- Change clothing with the person to your left.
Physical card form of truth and dare
If you want an easier game, then purchasing a truth or dare card game could be a great option for you!
That way, you can simply draw a card that will already have the truths and dares written out.
Then, you can choose a person to ask, and whatever card they choose is read aloud. This makes the game less personalized and not as calculated. My favorite truth or dare game can be found on Amazon. Check price.
Collectively come up with your punishments! Usually, if people are drinking, then the punishment would be something along the same lines. Other punishments can include:
- Having to complete an undie run
- The player is eliminated from the game until they complete the truth-or-dare
- Eating something gross
- Has to do another embarrassing dare.
6. Beer Pong
Beer pong is a classic competitive drinking game where consuming alcohol or other drinks is essential!
It’s the game you see in mainstream college movies and will take you back to your university days. All you need is red cups, ping pong balls, a table, and of course alcohol/ other drinks.
How does the game work?
The game is usually played in pairs, and only two teams can play at a time. One team is situated at one end of the table and the second team is down the other.
Then, 12 cups are set into a pyramid, from a row of 4 down to the last cup.
The cups are all filled with your liquid of choice! Just how full these cups will be is decided by the teams competing against each other.
Following that, it’s time to take turns throwing the two ping-pong balls into the cups. If you get the ball into any cups, the opposing team then has to drink the contents of the cup!
The winner of the game is whoever sinks all the cups first.
Rules will depend on who you are playing with, but there are a few essentials that everyone must follow.
First of all, the game starts with each team having one ping pong ball. They then perform what is called “Snake eyes”.
This is when two players on opposite teams look into each other’s eyes when they make the first throw. You are not allowed to look where you are throwing!
Then, if they miss, the other two players have a turn. In the end, the team that sinks the ball in Snake’s eyes first starts the game.
Another rule is that your elbow must not go over the edge of the table when throwing the ping pong ball. This prevents cheating or certain teams from having a disadvantage.
Another rule is if both players in a team get a ball in a cup, they get the balls returned for another go.
Finally, everyone gets one re-shuffle that they can use during the game. This means the team can bring the cups closer together to make it easier to get them in.
Usually, you will say something like “diamond”, which means you want the last four of your cups in the shape of a diamond.
Getting everyone involved
Because this game is usually played with two teams of two players, you might think that it can potentially become an antisocial game.
However, there are ways to make it more exciting! For example, you can hold a beer pong tournament where players are partnered up and play to see who the true champion of beer pong is.
Please note: You do not just need to play with beer. Any drink is acceptable for this game!
7. Two truths and a lie
Two truths and a lie is a classic game that not only works as an icebreaker but may also make you question just how well you know your friends!
While a little bit of liquid confidence can help this game flow more smoothly, all you really need to do is gather your friends around the campfire and get started.
Everyone will need to think of two truths and a lie in your life. The idea is to come up with statements that all sound believable (or unbelievable) to make it harder to guess.
After stating your three facts, your friends will then guess which one is the lie. Whoever gets it wrong can either do a punishment of your choice or have a drink!
You will then take it in turns to go around your group. Be prepared to find out which friend is the best at fibbing and who has the wildest stories.
Best lies to use in two truths and a lie
Below is a list of quirky lies to help you out:
- I have never had surgery
- I know how to fishtail braid
- I have a selfie with Taylor Swift on my phone
- I have been trapped in an elevator before
- I’ve been stung by a jellyfish
- I am scared of spiders
8. Never have I ever
Another great game to play that’s easy and doesn’t need any equipment!
Decide in your group how many fingers you will put up. Usually, 10 fingers are a good way to start.
Then take turns to ask a “never have I ever” question that you haven’t done. Then wait for your friends to either put their finger down if they have done it or leave it up if they haven’t.
The game goes in a circle and the loser of the game is the person who has all their fingers down first.
The loser will get a punishment that is determined by the other players. Usually, punishments involve being embarrassed or drinking more alcohol.
Playing the game with cards
This game doesn’t need to be played with cards; however, there is a “Never Have I Ever” card game you can purchase if you don’t want to spend any time thinking. My personal favorite can be found on Amazon – click here to check the price!
Using cards can have its benefits. The questions will more likely catch you off guard, and they can be very creative. They don’t call it the “ Game of poor life decisions” for nothing!
Active Camping Games to Play
Kubb is an all-time favorite game of mine that can be played on any occasion!
The game’s objective is for one team to knock over the king after knocking over all the kubbs on the opposing side of the pitch.
If you knock over the king before knocking over the other kubbs – you lose.
This game can get very physical! You will be using the strength of your arms and be making use of all your hand-eye coordination. Remember to play this game on grass, as playing on concrete can ruin the equipment.
How to play?
Firstly, split into two teams; you can have as many as 6 players per team.
You then will need to set up the field to play. Each team needs to set up 5 kubbs at the edge of their side of the field. The king sits in the middle of the field.
To start the game, one player from each team tosses a baton toward the king. The closest baton to the king starts the game.
Then, players take turns tossing the batons toward the other team’s kubbs in an attempt to knock them over. You get as many turns as there are batons before the other team gets a chance to do the same!
Once your team has successfully hit all 5 kubbs, you will then work to knock the king down. The winner is whoever completes this first!
Below are a few important rules to remember when playing:
- When throwing your baton, make sure to stay behind the line
- All throws must be underhand
- Throwing sticks sideways is not allowed
- A baton can knock over more than one kubb.
The game can only be played with the proper Kubb kit. It’s a great investment to make and is a game you can play in many different situations! Amazon has some great deals, so click here to check it out.
10. Scavenger Hunt
Scavenger Hunt is a game that even adults love to play!
This can be a very customizable game, and you can change or make up the rules as you please.
However, be aware that it will involve a bit of setup time! One or two people will set the game up, creating hints and clues for the rest of the players. Hunts are best done in groups of twos or threes.
How to set up your scavenger hunt?
If you’ve been left in charge of setting up the scavenger hunt, then the most important thing to make sure of is that each clue leads to something else!
Plan out a trail, then list all the things that the teams need to collect or do on a piece of paper.
Make sure everyone’s hunt is the same so it’s fair! Then, give all teams a time limit to complete these tasks. The first team back with all tasks completed wins the hunt.
How to make your scavenger hunt unique?
Usually, scavenger hunts are very generic and involve ‘collecting something from nature’ or finding an odd item.
However, if you’re the one creating the scavenger hunt, then I recommend you make the hints a little more personal for your team! For example, it might involve collecting another player’s shoe from their tent.
Another great way to turn the game up a notch is by having a scavenger photo hunt.
Instruct teams to complete challenges and dares while having them video it for proof. Examples of this can include ‘taking a selfie with a stranger’ or tricking another team.
Basic scavenger hunt clues
If you want to stick to the old classic scavenger hunts, here are some great clues to get you started:
- One of me keeps the doctor away. (apple)
- I can smash scissors and paper will cover me. (a rock)
- I am as light as a …. (feather)
- One sheet, two sheets, three sheets, four, some people use less and some people use more. (toilet paper)
Pre-made scavenger hunts
To save time, you can always use the trusty internet to find a scavenger hunt that best suits your friend group!
Then, all you need to do is print lots of copies out and bring pens with you. This way, you can join in the fun as well!
If you feel like being active and are with a bigger group of people, then a good old volleyball tournament might be absolutely perfect – especially if the place you are camping already has a volleyball net set up!
If you are a keen volleyball player, then purchasing a portable set can work wonders. The sets typically include a net and ball; click here to see what options Amazon has.
Simply divide your team into twos and get started! The aim of volleyball is to hit the ball back and forth over the net without dropping it.
This game can quickly become very competitive, so watch those legs if you attempt to make a dive to stop the ball from touching the ground!
Safety Tips While Playing These Camping Games
Some of the games listed above can become pretty competitive, which may result in you accidentally hurting yourself or others.
It’s important to be aware of the risks of the game you’re playing, and if you choose to play something involving alcohol then please stay hydrated and eat plenty of food!
Here are a few tips to keep you safe:
- Stay hydrated: Make sure to keep sipping on water between games, especially if it involves physical activity or alcohol! The last thing you want is to end up with heat stroke or a bad headache while you’re on a camping trip.
- Wear appropriate clothing and footwear: This is especially important when you are playing physical games that involve running or moving around! You never know what might be lurking on the ground. To avoid standing on something sharp or being stung, wear those shoes!
- Apply sunscreen and insect repellent: Say “no thanks” to horrible burns and bites! Make sure to always apply sunscreen and insect repellent before getting carried away in the games.
- Set clear boundaries and rules: It is easy to get carried away in the competitive nature of the games, so to avoid any misunderstandings, make sure to set clear rules and boundaries before you start! That way, everyone will understand how to play properly and fairly.
- Be mindful of wildlife: If you are playing camping games that involve moving around, make sure you look out for any precious wildlife you may be disturbing. Pick up your rubbish and try to not set up any equipment that could damage the environment you’re in.
- Keep a first-aid kit handy: Accidents can happen, especially during the height of competition! If you have a first aid kit on hand, then any minor injuries can be cleaned up quickly. Game on!
- Avoid playing near open flames: This is especially important for those who plan to have a few drinks while playing the games in this article. Remember: you are not invincible! Protect yourself and others by keeping a safe distance from any open flames.
- Play in well-lit areas at night: Only play games in well-lit areas so that you can avoid running into any dangerous hazards! For example, if you can’t see the ground properly, it becomes much easier to accidentally trip and hurt yourself. In certain camping locations, wildlife can be more active at night. If you can’t see them, you might be putting yourself or the animal at risk!
Hopefully, you’ve now come to realize that camping games are not just for children!
There are plenty of games out there that are designed just for adults to be able to let their hair down and enjoy some “mature” fun.
In this article, we’ve touched on 10 of my favorite games to play while camping.
These games all offer a blend of nostalgia, relaxation, social bonding, and outdoor adventure.
Whether it’s being left in fits of laughter from charades, being shocked at a friend’s wild ‘never have I ever’ admissions, or letting your competitive side show in a game of volleyball, these games are all great for providing a break from our busy lives and bringing together friends old and new.
Next time you head out on a camping trip, don’t forget to bring a few of these games along for the ride!