There’s something special about sitting around a camp fire. If you let your imagination run wild, you can see all manner of objects in the fire and the burning coals.

Camping gives us the opportunity to get away from our normal surroundings and experience life at a different location and at a different pace.

There are various levels of “roughing it” and it isn’t necessary to become primitive to enjoy the experience. However, some folk literally bring everything, including the proverbial kitchen sink.

Recently, we came across a group who had all their vans hooked up to a generator. From this they drove all their electrical appliances, including the portable satellite dish so they wouldn’t miss the weekend football.

While this is the extreme, other families are content to just getaway together, be it in a tent, a caravan or something in between. Bring the kids bikes (and your own too if you still have them) but leave behind the lap tops, the iPods and the DVD’s.

At national parks and camping grounds there are no flash take-away joints and cooking should be as easy as you can make it. Spuds in their jackets, wrapped in foil, cook great in the embers of your camp fire. Billy tea has its own distinctive flavour and the kids can help out cooking toast and marshmallows on a long toasting fork.

These are the times the kids will never forget, so why not plan to get away from the noise and pollution and go camping. It might not be 5 star accommodation, but the air is fresh and it’s a fun way to be family together.

Peter Mack

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