What are the essentials for a van trip?

What are the essentials for a van trip?

Warmer days are coming and you’ve decided to go on a van trip?
Don’t know what you should take?
Don't panic, this article is here to help!
We will explain everything you need to know for a successful “Into the wild” van adventure!

What are the essentials for a van trip?

Some of this equipment can be used during your van road trip, tent camping nights, as well as on your hikes.
Therefore it’s an investment that pays for itself if you love the outdoors and open spaces.

Firstly, let’s talk about kitchen equipment needed for a van trip. Then we’ll look at the sleeping area and finally the bathroom and accessories that you must not forget!

Without further ado, here is the list of what you need for a successful van trip!

Kitchen equipment for a van road trip: kitchen

Whether you have a kitchen inside the van or not, you should think about taking certain equipment for you van trip.
You can also make the most of the joys of cooking in the wide open spaces.

The water bottle is an essential for every adventurer who cares about environmental impact.
You can use it as much in the van as during your hikes.
If you're travelling in summer and plan on long hikes, take at least two one-litre water bottles per person at a minimum.
To reduce waste, fill your bottles with drinking water found in villages and towns.

For hot drinks, don't forget to take an isothermal flask as well as mugs, they are always useful!
They are available in several capacities, you’ll find the right one depending on your drinking habits!

A stove!
and why not a campfire

If your van doesn't have a kitchen, or you don't want to cook inside, then the stove is an essential tool for your van trip!
And if you want to cook with a “campfire” atmosphere then go for a wood stove, perfect for evenings around the fire!

Cooking utensils

Above all, don't forget a pot and everything you need to cook.
We recommend you take a cookset with you so you can do nearly everything.
Very practical, it can also slide into your bag during your hikes or treks.

Whether for one-day adventures, a van trip or a 5-day mountain trek, a multifunctional knife is the ultimate utensil of any good adventurer!

In addition, if your van doesn’t have a fridge and you want to eat fresh produce from time to time, go for a small cooler or an isothermal bag such as the Ice compact bag.
Available in 10 L, 20 L or even 30 L, it will also be useful for your hikes to keep your picnic fresh.

A table and chairs for al-fresco dining

It's always pleasant to be able to prepare and dine outdoors.
Even if your van has a kitchen, admit that it's nicer to eat in the sun!
To this end, folding chairs as well as a table will be good to have.
Are you looking to optimise the storage space inside your van?
Go for small folding stools.
There are also for 4 people, practical as well as affordable

Don't forget:

Bin bags, these can be tote bags made for this purpose.
The golden rule in the great outdoors: don’t leave any waste behind.

Top tip:
Shop regularly to avoid having too much food with you in the van.
Store food in airtight boxes.
This will avoid having any surprise guests that could be tempted to eat your cakes or other goodies!

Equipment for a van road trip: sleeping area

  • What are the essentials for a van trip?

    A pillow for comfort

    If your storage space is limited in the van, choose a compact pillow if
    you can't go without.
    You will gain precious
    storage centimetres!
    An accessory that will be useful
    when trekking or camping.

  • What are the essentials for a van trip?

    Be close to nature with a hammock

    Whether it's to hang between two trees next to your van or to take a
    lakeside siesta, the hammock is an original alternative to the classic bed.
    Compact and lightweight, it’s a good solution to make the most of the night freshness during summer.
    You’ll be right there to hear the countryside noises.
    The real “Into the Wild” adventure we're telling you!

  • SLEEPING material for a van ROAD TRIP<br>

    Sleeping bag

    To have a good night’s sleep in the van without having to carry all your bedding (which you must admit would take up a lot of space), the solution is to take a sleeping bag with you.
    If you’re leaving on your van trip
    with your other half, 2-person sleeping bags are available.

Rooftop tent

If your van has little indoor space for a bed, the rooftop
tent is the solution.
It can also help you out if you want to travel in a group.
With the rooftop tent you gain living space in
the van and/or you can take your friends on the road trip

"With the rooftop tent you gain living space in
the van and/or you can take your friends on the road trip"

What are the essentials for a van trip?
What are the essentials for a van trip?


If you're missing extra sleeping spaces in your van and you
don't, or can't, get a rooftop tent, then take a
classic tent with you.
The 2 seconds Easy tent unfolds and folds away in no time, perfect for speed when travelling!

Don't forget: a blanket for cool summer evenings to make the most of the starry sky.

Equipment for a van road trip: bathroom

During a van trip the question of the shower comes up regularly.
If you want a real "into the wild" adventure and to avoid campsites as much as possible then the solar shower is made for you.
Just leave it to heat up during the day on the van roof, for example, and it's ready.

However, don’t forget to take a small ground mat, a bowl to put your feet in or to wear flip-flops during your shower.
This avoids you having your feet in the mud if you are in the great outdoors.
And then for those who are worried about someone seeing them in the shower in the middle of the countryside, portable shower cabins are available.

(bio) Soap and carry case

Out of respect for the environment and the countryside, choose biological soap and leave it to dry outdoors before putting it back in its small carry case.
Affordable, practical and eco-friendly, soap is essential during a van trip.
By choosing a big block of Marseilles soap, you can break it in two and use a piece to wash your dishes (yes, yes, it washes very well
and gets rid of plastic washing-up liquid bottles!).

Microfibre towels

Just as practical as bath towels as outdoor towels.
Their advantage is they dry very quickly
which means you avoid leaving your towel outside for too long.
Moreover, the smaller models can be used as kitchen cloths.


The bowl in a van is the item that does everything.
It can be used when you take a shower (put your feet in it to avoid wading in the mud), but especially to wash clothes or dishes and therefore save water.
Again, no need to take extra detergent.
Marseilles soap will do the job very well.
However this is for those who really want to avoid civilisation as much as possible.
Alternatively, you have the option of launderettes to wash your clothes.

What are the essentials for a van trip?

Essential accessories
for a van road trip

Out of all the items for a van trip, it's often the small accessories that make the difference.
Things you don't necessarily think of at first however they will be of great use to you!

Here’s a short non-exhaustive list:

Chargers, the basis for all van trip items:

Don't forget your chargers!
For small items such as your telephone, we recommend a solar charger or a standard cigarette lighter charger.
For items that need a more powerful charge, such as a laptop or drone batteries, nothing beats a transformer.
It is powered by the cigarette lighter socket and has a standard socket where you can connect.
It's a must-have for any self-respecting road trip!

Head torch or back-up torch

For a successful van trip, a head torch must be on the list!
Don't forget it in your back.
It will be really useful to you in the evenings or at night.
What's more, you can also use it for effects on your night photos!
For evening meals, choose a back-up torch for light.

What are the essentials for a van trip?

Maps, compass and gps to locate yourself easily on a van trip

If you're a fan of good old-fashioned road trips like in your parents’ day, set off
with a road map!
An IGN map will be perfect to find your location when hiking.
Don't forget to take a compass with you and to learn how to use it before setting off on the hiking trails.
Finally, remember that when hiking it's better to stay on the trails all the same.
To avoid getting lost, reduce the risk of accidents and above all to protect the fauna and flora.
Many GPS applications let you download hiking routes, our favourite: OsmAnd and Decathlon Outdoor!

An e-reader, a book, card games

Whether you are going on a van trip alone, in a couple or with the family, don’t forget to take with you something to pass the time.
It’s always nice to read a good book or to play board games after a day of exploring.

Dustpan and brush

We don't always think about taking off our shoes before going in the van so it can get dirty inside quickly.
Remember to take a few cleaning items such as a dustpan and brush, mop, washing up sponge or brush, etc.
A small iron shovel will be useful for outdoor ecological toilets.
If you use paper, put it in the hole and burn it before burying everything.
You can also get rid of it in a bag and throw it away in the first bin you come across.
Above all, don’t leave your papers outdoors.

What are the essentials for a van trip?

L'oeil d'eos

Who are the pair behind L'oeil d'Eos: Eloïse & Luc
Wilderness environments and mysterious atmospheres are the leitmotiv of this pair.
Through these tips and this list of items, you will be spurred on to travel, explore, discover and experience the natural subtlety of the world.