Family camping trips are an ideal opportunity for teenagers to ditch their devices and connect with the great outdoors.
Whether your teen is an outdoor lover or a nature newbie, playing games at the campsite is the perfect way to keep them busy without Wi-Fi. To prevent them from getting bored an ideal teen-oriented camping game provides a good mix of physical activity and mental stimulation.
From Spikeball to Never Have I Ever, this list of the 15 best games for teenage campers explores the top ways to keep teens (and your whole family!) entertained on your next camping trip.
Table of Contents
- 1. Frisbee Golf
- 2. Spikeball
- 3. Ladder Toss
- 4. Cornhole
- 5. Capture the Flag
- 6. Tough Mudder-Style Obstacle Course
- 7. Speedminton
- 8. Scavenger Hunt (Teen Version)
- 9. Charades
- 10. Camping Olympics
- 11. Water Balloon Volleyball
- 12. Never Have I Ever
- 13. Throw Throw Burrito
- 14. Relative Insanity
- 15. Twister
- Camp Games for Teens: Happy Camping!
1. Frisbee Golf
Frisbee golf, commonly known as disc golf, is a fun game that’s similar to playing golf with a frisbee. Typical disc golf takes place on an official disc golf course. Each player has a set of flying discs which vary in size and are chosen depending on which one is needed for a specific throw.
The objective is to get your flying disc into the provided baskets in as few throws as possible.
While there probably won’t be a full disc golf course at the campground, you can play camping disc golf instead. For this simplified version, all you need is one flying disc for each person and an open playing area to design your course.
Although there are portable disc golf baskets for sale, you can always adjust the rules to create your targets to avoid packing up more gear for your trip. For example, you can assign tree stumps or boulders as the objects to hit instead of having to throw the discs into baskets.
Only got one kid? No problem. This game can also be played with only one person.
Featuring a circular trampoline net and a ball, Spikeball is one of our favorite camp games for teenagers. Also called roundnet, it’s an extremely popular group activity across the country at parks, beaches, backyards, and campgrounds.
This classic game is a mix of volleyball and foursquare played by two teams of two to four people. One of the most entertaining aspects of Spikeball is that the intensity of the rounds depends on the players involved. It can range from relaxing and easy to high energy and fierce.
To play, the teams position themselves around the net and serve the ball to the opposite team. The opposing team has to return the ball to the net within three hits. Once the ball is served, there are no boundaries for players and they can spike the ball from anywhere.
The round ends when one of the teams is unable to return the ball to the net in three hits or when the ball hits the ground or the edge of the net. The objective is to score as many points as possible.
3. Ladder Toss
Ladder toss, also known as ladder ball or ladder golf, is a great lawn game for teens. It’s best for older children and young adults because it calls for more skills and coordination than some others.
It’s played by two players, or two teams with two people each, who throw “bolas”, two golf balls tied together with a rope, onto a ladder-like vertical structure. The camping-friendly version comes with two ladders which can be easily disassembled and packed into a portable carry case.
Opponents get three bolas each and take turns trying to toss the bolas so they hang from the rungs. Players must toss their three bolas consecutively from 15 feet away from the ladder.
The two mini-ladders have three rungs each. The top rung is worth three points, the middle rung is worth two points, and the lower rung is worth one point. The first person or team to get to 21 points without going over wins.
An outdoor classic, cornhole is one of the most enjoyable camping activities there is. It’s easy to play and tons of fun for campers of any age, including kids, teens, and adults.
Although the original version of cornhole is played with heavy wooden boards which can be a pain to bring along on a camping trip, this camping cornhole set features lightweight portability and a carry bag.
Cornhole is played by two teams of two to four people. The cornhole boards should be spaced out about 27 feet apart and placed front to front.
To play, players stand at one board and take turns trying to throw the bean bags into the hole in the opposite board. A bag in the hole is worth three points and a bag that lands on the board is worth one point. The objective is to be the first team or player to reach 21 points wins.
5. Capture the Flag
Ideal for high-energy teenagers, capture the flag is a great outdoor game to play with a large number of people of any age group. It requires a good amount of physical exercise and will keep groups of teens entertained for hours on end. It’s the perfect camping trip activity because there’s very little equipment to bring along.
Capture the flag requires two flags, two spacious outdoor areas or “territories,” and two teams. Each team places its flag somewhere within its side of the playing field. If you don’t have official flags, you can use two different colored bandanas, small towels, or any piece of brightly colored cloth instead.
The objective is to be the first to capture the other team’s flag and take it back to your team’s home base. Players must work together to avoid getting tagged on foreign territory and defend their flag from the invading team.
6. Tough Mudder-Style Obstacle Course
Building a Tough Mudder-style obstacle course at the campsite is an awesome way to keep high-energy and thrill-seeking teens busy.
There’s little to no extra equipment to bring along because you can use a combination of campsite gear and natural materials to create a challenging obstacle course.
Teen campers can get creative by designing their obstacles and fun activities. They can set out logs to hop over, tie a swing rope to a branch, crawl under a picnic table, swim across a stream, weave in and out of trees, and carry their teammate on their backs to the finish line.
A packable obstacle course can make the setup faster and add to the challenge.
Speedminton, also called crossminton, is like a high-speed version of badminton combined with volleyball and squash. It’s ideal for campsites near large open meadows or spaces.
The playing equipment is minimal and there’s no net required. All you need are two Speedminton rackets, a few birdies, and a playing area.
Players hit the birdies back and forth to defend their square and to have it touch the ground in the opposing player’s square. The game is over when one of the players reaches 16 points.
8. Scavenger Hunt (Teen Version)
Classic scavenger hunts are a great game for camp fun with groups of all ages. The goal of scavenger hunts, also called treasure hunts, is to search for and find as many items on their list as possible.
You can purchase an outdoor scavenger hunt card deck or create your list of items to seek. With a group of teenagers, make the items a bit more difficult to find by being very specific or have them search in more challenging areas. For example, have them find a river rock from the creek. Or instead of having them search for any fallen leaf, have it be a leaf from a specific tree.
This fun activity is very flexible and you can switch up the rules and play length to suit your needs. For example, you can split up a large group into several smaller teams or your whole campsite can work together as one. You can also set a timer and see who finds the most items in the allotted time or make it so the first team to check off all of their list wins.
This classic pastime requires players to act out a phrase or name of something while their team members try to guess what it is. The catch is that facial gestures and body movements are allowed while talking is strictly prohibited. A timer is usually set to limit each team’s play to a few minutes.
To play, teens can write phrases or names on pieces of paper, fold them up, and put them in a bag. Players take turns reaching in and picking a phrase to pantomime for the group. Common things to act out include names of popular movies, celebrities, and books. The team that guesses the most phrases quickly wins!
10. Camping Olympics
Camping Olympics is a creative and fun way for teens to stay active at the campground. They can work together to design a series of sports for their camp olympics. A few ideas for camp olympics include water balloon relay races, kayaking to the center of the lake, swimming across the stream, balance beam on a log, flying disc throw, javelin with a tree branch, and egg races.
Make it extra competitive by rewarding the top three finalists with olympic medals.
11. Water Balloon Volleyball
Most teens will have battled it out with water balloons at some point in their childhood, but has your teenager ever played water balloon volleyball?
Water balloon volleyball transforms a simple water balloon fight into a challenging (and wet!) game of volleyball. It’s one of the top summer camp games and ideal for teen campers wanting to cool off on a hot day.
You’ll need at least four people to play. Players need to divide into teams of two and need to have one beach towel per team. Setting up requires filling up plenty of water balloons and setting up a volleyball net between the teams. If you don’t have a net, you can use a rope on the ground or draw a dividing line in the dirt.
To start, teams take turns holding out the beach towel between them and using it to cradle a water balloon.
The players on one team must work together to throw the water balloon over the net by popping up the towel and launching the balloon. The opposing team must then run together to catch the water balloon with their towel and return it over the net. Those who miss will get splashed by water and the other team will gain a point.
12. Never Have I Ever
A popular party pastime, Never Have I Ever is an amusing way for a group of teenagers to bond over the embarrassing and surprising experiences revealed while playing.
The Never Have I Ever Family Edition Card Set makes it easy to play with 224 question cards, a spinner, and Never Have I Ever paddles. This family-friendly version can be played by kids at least eight years old and up, teens, and adults.
Players take turns spinning and pulling a card from the deck for the selected players to answer. The cards include statements beginning with “Never have I ever…”
Some examples of real-life situations mentioned in the cards are “Never have I ever licked the brownie bowl” and “Never have I ever swallowed a bug unintentionally.” Players must hold up the corresponding side of their paddles to say if they have or haven’t done what the card says.
Good times and plenty of laughs are a guarantee while teens share these awkward memories with the group.
13. Throw Throw Burrito
Designed by the creators of Exploding Kittens, Throw Throw Burrito calls itself the world’s first dodgeball card game. This fun camping activity packs down small but brings tons of laughs for players of any age. Teenagers are bound to enjoy the action-packed play, including being required to throw things at their friends and family.
Throw Throw Burrito fuses together dodgeball and card matching, along with a very unique aspect: squishy burritos! The set includes a deck of cards and two foam burritos.
Play begins with two to six players and lasts up to 30 minutes. Players draw cards from a central deck to collect three-of-a-kind and earn points.
It seems easy enough, but there’s a crazy twist. When a player gets a burrito card, they must try to hit another player with a foam burrito. Players have to stay alert to duck and dodge the airborne burritos. Anyone hit with a burrito loses points and is punished with penalty cards. Points are collected when players match cards or successfully hit another player with a burrito.
14. Relative Insanity
Relative Insanity is a hilarious card game created by comedian Jeff Foxworthy. It’s a great party activity and perfect for camping because all you need to bring along are the Relative Insanity card set and four to 12 players.
The concept is somewhat similar to Cards Against Humanity but in a PG-13-rated version suitable for teenagers. There are 500 cards provided, some describe setups for different comedic situations and some are punchline cards.
Once the punchline cards are distributed and a setup card is chosen by the judge, the remaining players select the best punchline in their hand to finish the comedic scenario.
Setup cards include situations like, “When my cousin walked in with a mullet, I knew this family reunion was going to be…” While punchline cards feature endings like, “…a Jerry Springer episode.”
The judge is played by a different player each round and selects the funniest punchline for each scenario. The game ends when a player gets five winning punchlines.
As one of the most classic family games, teens are sure to enjoy a thrilling Twister tournament at the campground.
All you need to play is the Twister mat (which is made out of vinyl and outdoor-proof), a spinner board, and two to four players.
The vinyl mat has green, yellow, blue, and red circles on it. The players take turns spinning the board and placing their hands or feet on the color spot the spinner lands on. The spinner board may assign your left foot to red or your left hand to yellow. Players must attempt to follow the rules set by the spinner.
As the game continues, players will eventually find themselves on all fours while twisting into almost impossible positions. Those who are unable to follow the rules assigned by the spinner or fall to the ground are knocked out of the round. Knees and elbows are prohibited from touching the ground.
The objective is to outmaneuver your competition and be the last person playing.
Camp Games for Teens: Happy Camping!
Whether it’s getting all tangled up in a twister tournament or battling it out over water balloon volleyball, these camping games are sure to provide great fun and keep teens entertained for hours outdoors.
What are your favorite camp activities or camp games for teens? Let us know in the comments below. And if you’d like to share this post with your camping buddies, please do!