Fishing is an activity that requires patience and often is done in solitude or small groups. This slow pace allowing you plenty of time to think and relax is why anglers swear by their hobby as an essential way to reduce stress and maintain your mental health.
Camping is another hobby or holiday style that offers a lot of the same qualities. Once you have the equipment, it is relatively cost-effective, and it allows you to get back to nature and appreciate the world around you as you live in the moment. Camping can reduce your stress levels and give you plenty of opportunities to relax and live in the moment. This is why camping and fishing go so well together.
Fishing is a popular activity in the United Kingdom and across the world, so wherever you go, you can fit in a little of your favourite hobby.
Choosing your location is almost too easy; many campsites and caravan parks have dedicated fishing lakes on-site, so you don't even need to go anywhere.
A lot of the camping equipment required is similar, if not the same, to some of the fishing equipment you need. So, although you plan to do both on your holiday, you will need to pack extra gear, you might be surprised at what can be used for both.
Essential camping equipment
When you go fishing, you need to consider all your fishing gear, but you shouldn't neglect the equipment you need back at camp. This is where you will go after a long day, and it's where you will cook any fish you have bought back to camp. This is why when you go camping or caravanning, your equipment is one of the most important things to consider. The right equipment to keep you comfortable and keep you entertained can make or break the whole holiday. Here are a few of the basics you need to take.
Your tent or caravan and all the equipment that goes with it
The first thing to decide is where and how you are going to stay. Are you going to take a tent for a full back to nature experience? Or do you prefer taking or hiring a caravan and having a comfy bed and a solid roof over your head to come back to after a day spent by the lake or river?
Which you choose will affect the type of equipment you take. If you plan to stay in a tent, you need to ensure it is fully working and has everything you need before you head out. Check to see if you need to re-waterproof it and mend any tears or damaged areas and make sure no tent poles, pegs or guy ropes have been mislaid. The same applies to your caravan; make sure it has everything you need before you head out on holiday. Even if you are hiring a static caravan or a lodge, it is worth checking with the holiday park what is included and what you need to take.
Make sure you have all your bedding, towels and any beds you need to take. These can make a big difference to your nighttime comfort. If you expect it to get a little cool at night, pack extra blankets and throws to use while relaxing in the evening before bed.
Cooking and cleaning equipment
Camping and caravanning holidays tend to be primarily self-catering. You might have the odd meal out here and there but cooking your meals is one of the pleasures of a camping holiday. Pack your bbq equipment, your camp stoves and all your camping pots and pans so you can cook your meals easily.
You might also be lucky enough to bring back the odd fresh fish or two to cook and eat. So, make sure you pack a good filleting knife and a pan in which to fry the fresh fish - delicious!
Being able to clean up after cooking and, in general, keeping your camp clean is important. Take your washing up bowls, detergents and any wipes you need. For quick and easy cleaning, it is worth having some anti-bacterial wipes and wet wipes handy. These can help you clean up when you are in a hurry.
Lighting and entertainment
Camping is the perfect opportunity for early nights and early mornings. This is when you can make the most of the day. However, you don't always want to have to head to bed early, so make sure you take plenty of lighting options to light up your tent and caravan in the evening. You will also need to have torches and plenty of spare batteries so you can light your way to the toilet block or anywhere else you may need to go in the evening. Make sure you always have a torch handy with you in your bag too. If you end up in the local pub in the evening, then walking back to your camp in the dark is made much easier with a torch.
In addition to this, don't forget to take books, any puzzles and games you want to play in the evenings or on rainy days when you and your family are stuck back at camp.
Any camping or caravanning trip requires a lot of equipment, although you can strip it back to basics if you need it. One thing you should not skimp on is your phone charging options. Either take plenty of spare batteries or invest in a good solar panel phone and device charger.
Make sure you also take a base first aid kit with all the basic items you may need. Make sure you stock up on plasters, antiseptic wipes and bandages for a fishing trip.
You also need to pack a good day bag that is easy to carry on your back and is waterproof. This will be what you take out and should have some basic first aid items, snacks, a torch and spare phone batteries. This will also help you carry your fishing equipment to your spot by the river or lake.
Essential fishing equipment
If you are a keen angler, then the chances are you already have most of your equipment and are ready to go, but in all the packing and organising, it can be easy to forget something essential. Avoid this by planning ahead and checking everything is in good working order before leaving for your holiday.
Your fishing equipment and tackle box
The most obvious equipment you need is your fishing rods, reels and your tackle box. This should include plenty of spare lines, hooks, weights and the correct type of bait for the kind of fishing you want to do. You may also want to check out where the nearest fishing shop to your campsite is in case you need to buy spares or extras of anything while on holiday. Don't forget a coolbox to store any fish you are going to be taking back to camp too.
Equipment to stay warm and dry
Fishing is a pastime which means you are sitting still for long periods in all kinds of weather. It's essential to make sure you have plenty of warm and waterproof clothing. You might even need a change of clothes in your day bag so you can change into something dry before heading back to your tent or caravan.
A small pop up tent shelter will help keep you dry and sheltered throughout the day and keep you away from the worst of the weather. Groundsheets and picnic blankets can make a big difference to your comfort during the day and a folding chair to sit in is a must! This ensures you are comfortable enough to keep fishing and your muscles are less likely to seize up. Make sure you have warm and waterproof outer clothing, and you can even pop a blanket into your day bag to use as a throw. A flask of hot tea or coffee will also help keep you warm throughout the day.
These are a few extra things you need to pop into your fishing bag, most of them are not fishing related, but they are essential to anyone who is spending time outdoors for long periods.
A first aid kit is the first thing you need. With fishing, you might need to make sure you have a few extra plasters and bandages along with some antiseptic wipes in case you cut yourself at any point. Other than this, your usual first aid kit should be enough for most everyday accidents.
Pop some sunscreen into your bag too. You can protect your skin and stop yourself from ending up with uncomfortable sunburn while out all day. You may also want to consider some moisturiser, aftersun cream and lip balm too. Spending a lot of time outdoors can cause dry and sore skin, and all of these will help combat this.
A multitool and fishing pocket knife is also essential, but if you travel abroad, make sure you do so appropriately and check what you can take into other countries before starting your journey.
Planning your fishing camping trip
Once you have finished packing, it's time to think about where you are going and what the rules are there. Many fishing sites require permits, and each will have its own set of rules and regulations. Different countries even have their own rules regarding how many fish you can catch in a day and how many need to be thrown back. So, before you go fishing, make sure you have all your fishing permits in order, have the permission of the landowner to fish, and know the rules thoroughly before you start.
One other thing to consider is the type of fishing you want to do and whether this is available where you are going camping and whether you have the right equipment for the type of fish and fishing you can do when you are on holiday.
Finding your perfect location
You can camp and fish all over Europe and the world. So, whether you want to stay in the UK or travel further afield, there are plenty of options for a camping trip that ensures you can indulge in your favourite angling hobby.
Camping and fishing in the UK
Waterrow Touring Park is the perfect place for fishing enthusiasts. This touring caravan park in Somerset is peaceful and perfect for a relaxing adults-only holiday, and it is ideal for fishing too. The park has its own nature reserve, including the facility to fly fish for brown trout.
If you head to St Ives in Cornwall, you can stay at Polmanter Touring Park, an attractive caravan park with modern facilities and right on the doorstep of an incredibly beautiful part of the country. In addition to this, you can take advantage of local fishing, boats, beaches and on-site facilities that will help you relax and enjoy your holiday fully.
Camping and fishing in Europe
For a fishing holiday in France, Camping la Chapouliere is perfect. This touring and static caravan park is situated on the Ardeche river. The park has a natural feel, yet has all the facilities you could want, including a spa and wellness centre. You can also fish on-site, so there is no need to go anywhere for a fishing trip while on holiday.
History and nature go hand in hand at the Chateau de l’Eperviere, a caravan park situated in the grounds of a chateau in Burgundy. There are 160 touring and static pitches located around a fishing lake. While you are fishing, there are plenty of activities for the rest of the family too. Activities for the children and even the occasional wine tasting offering for the adults!
Head to Valencia in Spain for a holiday you won’t forget. Sun, sea, sand and beautiful scenery are just the start! Euro camping Oliva Beach is a touring caravan park located by the beach and set amongst trees to provide a natural and relaxing atmosphere. On-site fishing is available, and after a day's relaxing, you can head to the bar for food, a drink and enjoy some entertainment in the evenings.
For a holiday in Germany, take a trip to Vier Jahreszeiten - Camping Biggesee, located in North Rhine-Westphalia. This is primarily a touring caravan park, and it has so many facilities and outdoor activities to take advantage of, you may never want to leave! The touring park has a lake on-site, and you can partake in diving, sailing, windsurfing and, of course, fishing.