Nomadic Life has its comforts and recently I’ve had several members of my free & private Facebook Group dedicated to Nomads, Adventurers, Travelers, & Outdoorsy people request a full breakdown of what I use with links to everything so that they can make similar purchases to make their nomadic life or van life experience more comfortable.
So, that is what this post is all about!
What If I’m a Total Newbie at Nomadic Life?
If you are just getting started on your own nomadic life or van life journey or are curious about trying camping with a minimalist approach, then you may like my other blog articles Top 5 Essential Camping Gear, or my Top 10 Camping Gear Essentials.
Now, without further ado, here is my breakdown of my 42 Nomadic Life Comforts that I take with me (Click Here for the Index):
Nomadic Life Cooking
Since I am traveling in a Dodge Grand Caravan, I have some room to take some larger items.
1. Dual-Fuel Coleman Camping Stove – The interesting thing about this dual-burner camping stove is that it is dual-fuel!
You can use white fuel like Superfuel (next link down) or you can use unleaded gasoline (available at any petrol station and you will also need a gasoline container).
White fuel will burn cleaner with less black smoke although Unleaded gasoline will be more budget-friendly.
There is plenty of space to fit a 10-inch and 12-inch pot and pan.
The windshield helps keep the flame going.
I’m interested to see how efficient this Superfuel is.
Also, consider investing in a container with a locking lid like this 20 Ounce MSR Liquid Fuel Bottle.
3. Lodge Pre-seasoned Cast Iron Reversible Grill/Griddle 16.75 inch x 9.5 inches, Black – You just can’t go wrong with cast iron! And I love using a griddle to cook on. Lodge has been making heirloom-quality cookware and accessories since 1896. You can read more about Lodge using this link.
Other Nomadic Life Kitchen Accessories
5. Steel Turner/Spatula – You definitely want a metal turner as opposed to a cheap, plastic one. The plastic ones will melt if you’re not careful and especially if you bought a cheap version. They do make rubber or silicone versions that are highly heat resistant, but this basic metal turner is perfect for flipping pancakes on my griddle!
6. Tongs – Coming from the restaurant industry, I knew having a set of tongs was crucial to camp cooking success. I imagine them as an extension of my fingers. You can grab hot food items to turn and flip quickly.
7. Collapsible Dish Basin with Drain – This is a space-saving design that is perfect for #vanlife
8. Food Storage Containers Collapsible (4) – I generally try not to have leftovers, however when I do, I use these containers.
9. Outdoor Micro Fiber Travel Towel – Lightweight and small footprint for a towel.
10. Reflective Paracord 100′ – Paracord has multiple uses so it’s always a good idea to have with you. This type is reflective which helps at night. Paracord is great to use as a clothesline and also for after I wash my dishes and need to air dry my dish towel.
What About Water?
11. 5 Gallon Water Jug – I bought one of these years ago at a Wallie World. The linked version is a 7-gallon version. Same design. The faucet comes turned inside the lid. When you get this, remove the sticker on the lid, unscrew the lid, unscrew the faucet and reverse it, screw the faucet back in, fill the container with water, and screw the lid with the faucet back on.
Or if you are like me, the pump and faucet below the Aqua-tainer come with a tube that will fit inside the container. For this reason, I won’t use the faucet. Only the lid when the faucet is removed.
12. Electric Drinking Water Pump & Faucet – This device is rechargeable via USB and Android connection. The button lights up which is cool. I have yet to install mine. Still thinking about how I want to install it. Once I install it, I will be sure to include it in my YouTube video van tour and I will update this article with a link to the video.
Ice Packs (2) – I purchased 2 medium size ice packs at Academy Sports. I wasn’t able to find the ones I purchased. With ice packs, the larger, the better so it will last longer. Here are some ice packs I found on Amazon.
Nomadic Life Campground Gear
This section will include all general camp supplies that I carry with me in my 2013 Dodge Grand Caravan.
14. 10′ x 10′ Canopy – This is one of the items on my wishlist!
15. 5′ Folding Table – I actually found this table at Walmart in their Sporting Goods in the Camping section. I paid the same price, about $50.
16. 18″x18″ Custom Metal Pole Table (no photo) – This table was custom-made by my father and gifted to me. I will get a photo of it and update this post.
18. Folding Chair (no photo) – I inherited a folding, camouflage camping chair from a film I worked on so no cost to me on this item.
19. Tri-leg Collapsible Stool – These fold up to be easily stored and are lightweight.
21. Small Notebook of Waterproof Paper – Great for when it starts pouring on you before you get a chance to cover the paper.
Pencil or Pens – Not linking these because if you’re like me, you have tons of these laying around.
Nomadic Life Bedroom Gear
For my first attempt towards van life and a nomadic lifestyle, I went with a no-build type of approach with my Grand Caravan. This is largely due to the fact that sometimes I may need my van to haul my work tools, so having something not permanent was key for me.
22. Hammock – Wise Owl – This is the hammock I am using and it’s comfortable. However, now that it’s getting colder I’ve noticed it’s difficult to fit so many blankets into the hammock. I am now considering a conversion build for my caravan so I can start taking trips as soon as possible.
23. Climbing Rope similar to this type – I used rope to create the loops that the hammock’s carabiners attach to.
24. 5000mah Rechargeable Fan/LED Light – This fan may be small, however, it puts out some good airflow to cool you down. And it has an LED light!
25. Bug Zapper Light Rechargeable – Still testing this little thing out.
26. Reflectix 48″ x 10′ Roll – Reflectix makes up two of the five layers of my window coverings for my rear windows. I also used a product called chloroplast which is a sort of plastic cardboard. It’s very rigid and because I upgraded my window coverings to have 5 layers now, I no longer needed the velcro.
27. Heavy Duty Velcro Tape Indoor/Outdoor – I bought this to help with the window coverings. After I added the chloroplast to the coverings, I didn’t need the velcro for that. Velcro comes in handy though. My next plan is to use it to attach the small, digital weather station I bought.
Other Nomadic Life Accessories
28. Ampeak 100W Power Inverter DC 12V to 110V AC – I bought this thinking I could use it to charge stuff with my van. Haven’t used it much yet.
29. Solar charger 20000mah – This is for emergency situations.
30. Bluetooth Speaker – Altech Lansing – Great little speaker puts out a decent amount of sound. Perfect for my Grand Caravan.
Having the proper gear to help with your fires will make your trip a better experience overall. Check out these 4 pieces of fire gear.
31. Folding Saw – Cut your longer pieces into shorter ones to make your wood last longer. And this saw has a space-saving design by folding up into the handle.
32. Hatchet – Basic hatchet to clean up branches and split small logs.
33. Folding Camp Shovel – Multiple uses! If you need to dig a hole to use the restroom or to prepare a fire, this is the tool you need. It can also be used to move your coals around in the fire for cooking purposes.
34. Bic Lighter – Instant fire in your pocket.
35. Custom Fire Poker (no photo) – This item is also custom-made by my father and gifted to me.
Nomadic Life Hobbies
One of my hobbies is playing acoustic guitar. I like the acoustic because you can play it anywhere without an amplifier. This makes it an ideal instrument for camping. It’s also an excellent way to be creative and soothe your soul with music.
Fender Acoustic Guitar (no photo) – I purchased this guitar in 1998. It is one of their 50th Anniversary Editions and has its fair share of nicks, cigarette burns, and scratches. It’s played countless shows and parties and was the first guitar I ever bought. I bought this guitar on a rent-to-own plan at Uncle Sam’s Jams over on Durrett Lane. It’s not there anymore. But they allowed you to put 1/3 of the cost down and then you could take the instrument home that day! And my monthly payments were about $30. Willie Nelson even autographed it for me.
36. Acoustic Guitar Travel Case (no photo) – I received this item as a birthday gift.
38. Capo – I was given the capo that I use now. If you are a guitar player then you likely already have a capo. If not, check out this capo that has a nut remover and pick holder!
39. Assortment of Guitar Picks – I received a variety pack of 100 picks as a Christmas gift a couple of years ago and I am still using them.
40. Leather Guitar Strap – Another Uncle Sam’s Jams purchase that I actually found the same one on Amazon and I’ve linked it for you.
41. Back-up Pack of Strings – I’ve always loved Martin strings and the sound they produce. If you are a guitarist, then you know the importance of having backup strings and picks.
While this isn’t everything I have access to in my arsenal of photography and filmmaking gear, these are the essential pieces of gear that I use the most to create content.
42. iPhone – I quit smoking on January 10, 2019, and saved the money I would have spent on buying cigarettes for a year. Then I bought this phone as a reward once I hit my one-year anniversary.
43. iPhone 18W USB-C Power Adapter – This is a fast charger and was worth the investment. I can fully charge my phone in less than 30 minutes usually.
44. Apple USB-C Charge Cable 2m – This equates to 6′ (six feet).
45. iPhone Mount – This is one of my earliest purchases from Amazon 4-5 years ago and it’s still in great shape.
46. Manfrotto Mini Tripod – Great for low-angle shots or bookshelves.
47. Regular Size Tripod – I actually have the same tripod my parents got me for Christmas when I was in high school taking photography my junior year. So that would have been 1993-94. It’s a Velbon tripod similar to the one I linked.
48. Lavalier Microphone – I am currently using this wired version to get crisp audio for my videos. Although a wireless version would be great, sometimes you have to work within your budget.
I hope you have enjoyed this list of all my camping gear! If you found value in this list, please consider sharing this article on your favorite social media platform to help spread the word. It’s free to do and is the easiest way to support this site.