You’re planning a Baja camping road trip…¡Ayyyy que bueno! Before you go, take a look at our must-have’s below which are sure to make your viaje smooth and unforgettable. (Please note: everything listed here is suggested for a 7-day road trip for 2 people. We are not sponsored by any of these brands although there are affiliate links contained in this post, they are our personal favorites that are proven & tested by us!)
And click here to watch our 4 video edits from our travels through Baja!
- Unless it’s brand new (and even still), it’s a good idea to take your vehicle to a mechanic at least a week before your departure to have it checked over for essentials like an oil change, fluids inspection, tires & pressure, etc.
- Recommended 4 wheel drive vehicle or track pads & tow rope
- An extra gas tank
- Windshield sun shade
- Mexican Car insurance (great option here)
- Tire pressure gauge
- Camp stove (we have this one from Coleman) & 2-3 small propane tanks
- 2 lighters (in case one breaks or runs out of fuel)
- 2 cooking pots (1 large, 1 small) & 1 cast iron skillet
- Cooking utensils, eating utensils, camping plates/ bowls /cups
- French Press coffee maker – we find this method the easiest for making coffee on the go. No filters, so wondering if the percolator is finished, and the grinds can be added to the natural landscape for some natural fertilizer.
- Insulated coffee mugs (1 per person)
- Sharp knife
- Large plastic container with locking lid for dry goods (like this one)
- Wet wipes & paper towels
- 2-3 reusable dish towels
- Small bottle of dish soap, sponge, possibly a drying rack for dishes
- 2 x 5 gallon water jugs
- Multiple shade coverings like an easy-up, retractable car awning, or this SJK car tarp
- 2 decent coolers (one for ice & beer, one for food)
- 2 folding chairs
- 1 folding table
- 2 headlamps (& extra batteries)
- Gas or battery powered lantern
- A good broom (Might sound funny, but your car and camp area WILL get dusty, and it’s nice to be able to brush the dust off every now and again)
- Ground covering like an old rug, tarp, or roll-up blanket
- Extra bungees, rope, and guy lines
- Clothes pins **We can’t express enough how much these will come in handy!
- Small hatchet for chopping wood
- Gorilla tape, 1 hammer, 1 screw driver (for emergency needs)
- Portable waterproof
- Portable waterproof bluetooth speaker (we have a Nixon brand but sadly they don’t make them anymore!)
- Mexican blanket (buy this in Baja, of course)
- Hat with brim for the sun, or Katie’s personal favorite: a visor
- A beanie for cool nights, 1 per person
- LOTS of sunscreen
- A lightweight jacket per person, we love the nano puffs from Patagonia
- 2 insulated water bottles (love our Hydroflasks)
- 2 travel beach towels
- 2 travel microfiber bath towels
- Surfboards & wax (of course you won’t forget these) & soft racks if you need them
- A fishing rod & lures
Bonus items that can seriously improve your trip:
- *Instead of making a fire every night from scratch, consider investing in a portable gas fire pit- this might sound ridiculous, but considering the amount of firewood you would need to bring for a 7 day trip, a gas fire pit is an awesome, smokeless alternative. We brought THIS ONE from Lowe’s and it puts out so much heat and also conserves propane pretty well!
- Rechargeable water dispenser -life changing and inexpensive
- Solar charger for phones, cameras, etc. – important to note that this is NOT a charging bank, it only charges the items while it’s in direct sunlight. You can charge a spare batter with this solar panel though
- 12V car charging port – Super clutch if you’ve got cameras, drones, etc. that use a standard 110V wall plug to charge!
- Camping hammock – we love this one from Bare Butt
- Goal Zero battery/charging station
- Car air compressor for re-inflating tires – If you’ll be driving on dirt/sand this is insanely useful to air back up before driving on pavement again
- Sony alpha 6400 & extra batteries and DJI Mavic Air 2 drone – We have the original Mavic Air and love it but reviews on the newer Mavic Air 2 are awesome.
- Waterproof camera/GoPro & extra batteries – We have the GoPro Hero7 Black and it’s been a great little versatile camera, perfect for snorkeling or surf footage
- Mask & Snorkel – There are so many beautiful bays with stunning marine life in Baja. If you bring along your own snorkel gear you’ll be able to jump in to see everything that lies below the surface without having to rent the stuff or worse, be caught without it when you want to use it!
Of course, everyone is different in what they consider ‘essentials’ and we’re sure you will build your own personal packing list after a few trips south-of-the-border. We hope this post is helpful to anyone stressing on what they might need before heading into the great unknown of Baja!