Want to know my happy place?
Travelling in a campervan.
It’s accommodation on wheels! The simple living and ultimate freedom speak to my soul.
Alas, I don’t have a van in my life right now.
But when I did, I loved every single second (notwithstanding the breakdowns, broken A/C in an Australian summer, and myriad mechanical problems that occurred along the way!).
I also learned a thing or two about the key camper van supplies you need to make the most of the experience! No matter how long you’re spending on the road, having the right van accessories for camping makes all the difference.
Van life becomes easier, comfier, and safer.
Are you buying or renovating a campervan and want to find out which van camping accessories to get for it? Check out this list of campervan accessories!
From the downright essential to the pointless luxuries, you should come across everything you need to know.
Heads up, this post contains affiliate links.
Complete Camper Van Supplies List
I decided to divide this list up into sections, starting with the essential van accessories for camping, before moving onto items that are more optional in nature.
If you’re looking for the absolute bare bones for your camper van, then focus your attention on the first section. For anyone who wants a bit of extra comfort, convenience, and fun, check out the second as well!
100% Essential Camping Van Accessories
Whether they’re for cooking, sleeping, bathing or seeing, there are some campervan accessories that you really can’t go without! You’d lack some of the creature comforts, but (whether you’re living or travelling in your van) you’d be absolutely fine with nothing more than the camper van supplies in this section of the list.
Campervan Accessories For Cooking
Unless you plan on buying breakfast, lunch, and dinner every day, you’ll need something to cook your meals on! There are all sorts of options, but I had a simple two-burner camp cooker and it did the job just fine.
However, anyone with a bigger camper could install something more extravagant. You’ll even find mini ovens that could fit inside!
Always be careful if you’re cooking in your van though. Some gas cookers will release carbon monoxide that, in an enclosed space, can have fatal consequences. Make sure there’s enough ventilation and/or remove the risk altogether by cooking outside instead.
Here’s one made by Coleman that should do the trick:
2. Pots and Pans
You can’t cook without pots and pans! Grab some that are durable, stackable, and a size that’s both practical for cooking without taking up too much space.
The ones from Gutsdoor below seem ideal…
Top tip: you can also find these cool little spongey gizmos that fit between your pots/pans. They provide a buffer that both protects the non-stick surfaces and stops them from jingling around annoyingly as you drive!
For more ideas on your campervan kitchen, check out this list of RV kitchen accessories.
3. Crockery and Cutlery
You’ll need something to eat your meals both on and with as well.
Camper kitchens are tricky though. You need stuff that a) won’t break as you drive, b) won’t take up too much space, and c) won’t jingle and jangle around too much!
I had metal cutlery and porcelain crockery in my van. And, to be fair, they were fine.
…But they definitely made a racket over rough roads!
Camping-style equipment would be better. It might not look as pretty, but it’ll be far more functional. These ones from Coleman look great:
Having something to keep your fresh food fresh makes a massive difference when you’re living/travelling in a van. Trust me, these spaces can heat up like a greenhouse when the sun’s out and you’re driving long distances (especially in older vans)!
If you have anything like meat, milk, and veg inside, it can go bad in record time unless you have something cool to keep it in.
For best results, I recommend getting your hands on a portable fridge like the one from AstroAI below.
Good ones aren’t cheap (and they require a power source!), but they’d definitely be most effective. For a cheaper option, you could also buy one that plugs into your van’s cigarette lighter. I had one like that and it was better than nothing- I just had to be driving for it to work! Want something even cheaper?
Get a cooler/cool box. Just be prepared to stop every day or so to stock up on new ice!
5. Camping Table
I 100% recommend having some sort of table in the van as well. Whether you’re preparing meals, eating, playing card games, or want somewhere to put your beer in the evening, it’ll prove useful all the time.
Again, the exact type of table you should get depends on your set up…
Larger vans may have enough room for an interior table that either folds down or stays in situ. Anyone in a smaller van, though, should look for something more portable that you can fold out and take outside when you need it.
A folding camping table like this one from Redcamp would be ideal in the latter scenario:
6. Camping Chairs
Be sure to take some camping chairs along for the ride as well. I mean, you don’t want to stand up outside or sit on the cold hard earth all the time, right!?
These chairs are essential for anyone who’ll be cooking/eating their dinner outside. Yet anyone travelling in a camper van will benefit from having them. You can set them up around a campfire in the evenings, sit on them as you sink a beer/coffee, and gaze up at the stars as the night draws in.
Top pick: Kijaro Portable Camping Chair
7. Chopping Boards
You could probably go without chopping boards and simply cut up your food on something like a plate instead. However, there are such cheap, slim, and functional boards available (like those below) that it makes sense to bag yourself some for the van.
They won’t take up much space and will help prevent your knives from blunting as well.
Check out these stowaway ones from the Toadfish store:
8. Collapsible Containers
Stopping to cook all the time can be a nuisance (especially when you don’t have a kitchen inside your camper), so I always tried to make up enough food for leftovers.
This effectively halved the amount of cooking I had to do, saving time and providing quick and easy meals along the way.
If you do something similar, make sure you have some decent containers to store your leftovers in! Having some collapsible/stackable ones will do double-duty, saving space whenever they’re not in use.
Here are some from Superdee Corp that’d be great:
9. Coffee Maker
I know, I know…a coffee maker? Is that really essential?
For me, anyway! I just love my morning cup of Joe- especially when I’m on the road and could be driving for hours to come. Catch me without it and it’s not a pretty sight.
If you’re the same, then find yourself a means of making one. Trust me, there’s nothing better than sitting outside your van on a beautiful morning, welcoming in the day with a steaming hot cup of coffee.
I like plunger/French press coffee best. This durable one from Coffee Gator Store would be epic:
Van Accessories for Cleaning
10. Portable Camping Shower
One of the best parts of travelling in a camper van is that you can park and sleep (almost) anywhere you want. However, sleeping in random spots comes with downsides too!
And finding ways to wash, bathe, and stay clean is one of them.
Basically, access to showers is limited whenever you’re not at an official campsite. There are rivers and lakes if you’re in nature, and leisure centre bathrooms come in handy along the way too. Nevertheless, it’s still easy to go for days without showering sometimes!
…Unless you have a portable camping shower with you. These things are lifesavers when it’s hot, humid, and you’re desperate for a way to freshen up.
Top pick: Ivation Store camping shower
Want to see some different ones? Read these reviews of the best portable camping showers on the market.
11. Collapsible Washing Bowl
Washing bowls are another useful piece of van camping equipment to have at your disposal.
Sure, you might not need one if/when you’re staying at campsites with proper kitchens. But they’re invaluable whenever you head off the beaten track and do some boondocking!
It’s not just for dishes either. You can use these bowls for hand washing your clothes too. They’re also a useful place to store loose items when you’re not using them to wash stuff up.
As always, the lack of space makes collapsible bowls, like this one from Prepworks, the better choice:
12. Laundry Bag
Nobody wants dirty clothes littering their van and causing nasty smells to occur! Grab yourself a laundry bag to store them in instead.
Want to take it a step further? You can buy special self-cleaning laundry bags that double as a portable washing machine! I’ve never used them, but they look great and would make you less reliant on laundrettes when hand washing wouldn’t cut it.
Top pick: Dalykate Backpack Laundry Bag
13. Washing Line
It’s always handy to have a washing line (or two) in the van. They take up no space whatsoever and make drying your clothes far more convenient when you set camp (the alternative’s drooping them over any edges you can find).
Oh, and you can use washing lines for decorating purposes too! Why not string them up inside, wrap some fairy lights around them, and peg on some travel snaps?
You don’t need anything fancy. This top-rated one from Hawatour would be fine:
14. Dustpan and Brush
Expect dirt, dust, and debris to accumulate in record time in your van- particularly when the weather’s bad and you’re spending more time inside.
There’s no escaping it in such a small space! You’ll drop crumbs and tread things like sand/grass into the camper on a daily basis.
Grab yourself a dustpan and brush (like this one from Casabella) to clear out the worst of it.
Best Camper Accessories for Sleeping
15. Bed and (Good) Mattress
As you’d expect, the quality of your bed and mattress setup makes a massive difference to your experience of living/travelling in a van.
Whether your bed’s fixed in position or folds away, make sure it’s big enough for the task. There’s nothing worse than feeling too cramped at night- especially when there’ll be more than one person using it.
As for the mattress, comfort’s key.
If you’re going to splash out on one item for your van, then I’d encourage you to make it the mattress! It’ll pay for itself in terms of the difference it makes to your sleep.
Top-Rated Cost-Effective Option: Best Price Mattress Store Tri-Fold Memory Foam
16. Bedding and Pillows
The size of your bed and quality of your mattress aren’t the only factors that determine how well you sleep in a camper. Your bedding, linen, and pillows all come into play too.
There are a few things to think about here:
Night-time temperatures, comfort, and ease of washing/drying.
Pick bedding that’s appropriate for the climate you’re in! Back in the Australian summer, for instance, it was so hot at night that a thin sheet was more than enough. If I was van packing in an English winter, though, I’d need a thick, heavy duvet.
Whatever you go for, the quicker it is to dry and easier it is to wash, the better (assuming this doesn’t sacrifice too much on comfort).
These LuxClub bamboo bedsheets would be a good starting point:
Van Camping Equipment for Seeing
17. Head Torch/Flashlight
It’s always worthwhile having a head torch! A standard flashlight’s fine too, but head torches free your hands up, making them much more convenient when you’re camping.
Whether you’re cooking after sundown or need the bathroom in the middle of the night, you’ll be thankful you brought one along!
Here’s a popular GearLight head torch online:
18. Fairy Lights
I very nearly put fairy lights in the non-essential category. But then I remembered how much difference they made to my time in the van!
The low lighting created a chilled-out vibe and enough light to read by in the evenings. Suspend some battery-operated ones (like the Twinkle Star lights below) in your camper and experience these sorts of benefits for yourself:
Head torches and fairy lights should provide enough light to see by in and/or outside the van. However (unless you’re already tight for space), I think don’t think there’d be any harm in getting something like a lantern as well.
It’d make the experience of cooking/hanging out outside after sundown that bit easier and more enjoyable.
This one from Vont looks great:
Camper Van Supplies for Charging
20. Solar Panel(s)
Another essential van camping accessory, solar panels allow you to charge your electronic gear on the go and use any appliances without draining your battery.
The best solar panel setup for you will depend on things like your budget and the number (and type) of electronics you have/use.
If you’ve got lots of electrics, then larger, more powerful panels will be better for the job (but they’ll cost more too). You can attach these to the roof, or buy models that can be moved around and placed in the run (like the one from Renogy below).
For more flexibility, you can find compact, portable ones that are only designed for charging smaller items, like smartphones.
Inverters take your 12V vehicle supply and, through some magic I don’t understand, convert it into the correct voltage (110/240V) for charging things like your laptop.
Once again, your specific electronic requirements will determine the exact inverter you should buy! As a rule of thumb, though, more expensive models will always deliver better results.
Here’s one from Bestek that should do the job:
Optional Van Accessories for Camping
When you’ve covered the basics, it’s time to think about the campervan accessories that’ll add some extra joy and convenience to the experience. These items might not be essential, per se, but they’d definitely come in handy on the road! For added versatility, ease, and entertainment, check out these optional camping van accessories:
Best Camper Accessories for Fun
Take something fun to do in the evenings or on bad weather days! Anything from a deck of cards to a classic board game will help you pass the time and stay entertained.
Top pick: Winning Moves Tile Lock Scrabble Set
23. Sports Stuff
Travelling with your friends or partner?
Having something like a football, soccer ball, or Frisbee to call upon will be ideal for chill days at the beach, park, or campsite.
To take it a step further, why not sling some surfboards on top of the camper? Or fit some inflatable kayaks inside? Or get a bike rack and take your bicycles along?
24. Wireless Speakers
No road trip’s complete without some music on in the background! The van’s stereo will be fine when you’re driving. But having some wireless speakers is always good when you’re parked up, preparing dinner, or relaxing outside and don’t want to drain the battery.
Here are some durable, weatherproof JBL speakers that’d be awesome:
I loved the awning on my van so much that I almost included it in the ‘essentials’ category!
You don’t really need an awning, but they’re a worthwhile addition to any campervan. They provide shelter from the sun and rain and extend your living space in the process.
Whether you fit it yourself or pay someone to do it, there’s nothing better than sitting out under the awning at night with music playing, fairy lights dangling from the outside, and a cold beer/glass of red in hand!
Top pick: Yes Com Side Awning
26. Portable Grill/BBQ
A portable grill would be a definite luxury in my book, but I can’t deny how nice it’d be to have a BBQ every once in a while on the road!
I’d be tempted to save some space in the van and just buy the disposable ones as you go. If you want something reusable, though, grab something like this from UCO:
Cool Camper Stuff for Comfort
27. Black Out Curtains
Like your beauty sleep? Want some extra privacy? Don’t have tinted windows?
Get some black-out curtains. They’ll stop the sun from coming into the van as it rises, keep you cooler as a result, and prevent passers-by from seeing inside!
28. Bug Nets/Window Mesh
There’s nothing fun about being awoken by creepy crawlies scuttling across your legs in the middle of the night, or mosquitos buzzing in your ears. Both things happened countless times when I was in Australia and it never got any more enjoyable!
That’s why I recommend buying a bug net/window mesh to fit over any windows/doors you want to keep open. They’ll be a lifesaver on hot nights when you want to let some fresh air inside but keep the insects out!
Top pick: Roadie Overnight Window Tent
With camping chairs and a bed in the back already, you might wonder why you’d need a hammock as well. And, to be fair, you don’t. You’d be fine without one.
But that doesn’t mean you wouldn’t love it! Imagine finding somewhere to park up for the night. If you’re in a beautiful spot with trees around, you could set up the hammock and swing happily in the breeze for a few hours.
There’s no better way to kick back and relax!
And, if you go on a multiday hike in warm weather, you could even use it as a lightweight substitute for a tent.
Top pick: Wise Owl Hammock
Click here to learn more about the best hammocks on the market.
Must-Have Camper Accessories for Safety
Your campervan’s going to contain all of your valuables! Things like your smartphone, laptop, tablet, keys, wallet, and so on will be lying around inside.
Imagine if someone broke in while you left it unattended…
Investing in a good-quality safe stowed/secured somewhere inside should help protect your possessions in these scenarios. With your valuables out of sight and locked away, you’ll have one less thing to worry about.
Here’s one that’s highly rated online:
Don’t Forget These Van Camping Accessories
Living and travelling in a van is an unforgettable experience that’s defined by simplicity, independence, and freedom. If you’re going to make the most of it, though, there are certain van camping accessories that are crucial to success!
Have you been wondering which camper van supplies to take on your trip? Well, I hope this list of essential van accessories for camping has helped! Whether you take all or some of them along for the ride, your life on the road should be safer, simpler, comfier, and more practical to boot.
Got any questions about living in a van? Leave a comment below and I’ll do my best to answer it!