Difference Between Camping and Backpacking (With Table)

Who doesn’t like traveling? Almost 99% of the population likes to travel. Travel is a blessing for some and self-love for some. Without travel, no one can imagine their rest of the life to be. And when we talk about travel there are two famous terms attached with it i.e Camping and Backpacking.

Now many people get confused between both terms, according to half of the population both terms reflect a single meaning, but it is not in reality. They may appear to be similar but they are not the same words to be compared. Camping and Backpacking both can be used for a term related to travel + stay in raw places with fewer facilities like proper rooms and dining facilities of motels and hotels.

Camping vs Backpacking

The difference between camping and backpacking is that the term camping is used for camping done with comforts and driving to a location with a car whereas the term backpacking is used for camping done through hiking with fewer necessities confined within one backpack with no travel comfort like a car.

Camping in one sentence can be defined as a comfortable option to choose with family to build the camp and live in nature and night full of stars while traveling by car and with more comforts like a bonfire, boating, fishing, barbeque, etc which not confined to one backpack.

Backpacking in one sentence can be defined as a self-reliant trip to a camp location via hiking through mountains and plains where comfort is confined within one backpack which only has necessities and not luxury gears compare to camping like traveling through the car, entertainment sources like telescope night, boating, fishing, etc.

Comparison Table Between Camping and Backpacking

Parameters of ComparisonCampingBackpacking
DefinitionCamping is driving in the car to different locations with all gears.Backpacking is hiking to different locations with one backpack.
Level of ComfortCamping is more comfortable with more gears.Backpacking is a little less comfortable with only necessities.
Mode of TransportCamping is usually done with the car to travel.Backpacking is usually done with hiking and only one backpack with all gears packed.
Self-IndependencyCamping is more sort of comfortable and less self-independent.Backpacking is more of self-independence.
Group of PeopleCamping is usually done by the whole family.Backpacking is usually done by individuals. 

What is Camping?

Camping is usually known as car-camping. Camping is the best option to go away from daily responsibilities and enjoying outings in nature and an open environment with many more facilities like born-fire, family barbeque under starry night, telescope night, etc.

Camping is more comfortable compare to backpacking. Camping is done usually by driving in the car to different-different locations and building a camp to stay in nature. Camping is preferred mostly by more than one number of people to enjoy tripping with. Camping comes with a great level of comfort so elderly people can also enjoy their me-time in the environment.

Camping is also known to be a great stress buster, camping gives you relaxation, peace, and most importantly space to breathe and thoughts to declutter. Camping is also a great refreshment from your day-to-day life full of rush and chaos. Camping gives you more comfort so you can collect your gears like boating, fishing rods, bicycles, bonfire table and other different-different kinds of your comfort you prefer to utilize while camping.

What is Backpacking?

Backpacking is the activity that is carried out by hikers to hike to different-different camp locations while carrying everything they need or basic utilities in one backpack. Backpacking is less more comfortable than camping in general. Backpacking is more about individual trips rather than family camping.

Backpacking is usually carried out by individuals who are very likely to be dependent only on backpacks and hike through their camping locations without any comfort like a car etc. Backpacking is more of a solo trip compare to family reunions and get-together.  Backpacking is also quite famous compare to camping or car camping.

Backpacking is preferred more when someone wants to travel over mountains or hike different -different mountain ranges where car-camping is not possible. Backpacking also seems very easy to handle for beginners who don’t know much about camping and the gears required to be successful to do so.

Main Differences Between Camping and Backpacking

  1. Camping is more comfortable than Backpacking.
  2. Camping is more of group tripping and Backpacking is more of individual trips.
  3. Camping is an easier option for oldies and young children than Backpacking.
  4. Packing for Camping is tougher than Backpacking.
  5. Camping gives you all comforts like bonfire, car, etc whereas Backpacking gives you only the basic facilities confined within the supplies of the backpack.
  6. Camping can be more time-consuming than Backpacking.
  7. Camping is preferred for locations like lakes, places where the car can drop you, and Backpacking is preferred for locations like mountains where cars can’t reach easily.


Camping and Backpacking both have different thrills and fun to enjoy. Choice of selection depends on how you want to travel, with whom, and what comforts you need with camping and traveling. 

In conclusion, we can say that Camping should be preferred when you are planning to camp out with family or a group of friends when you need more sort of gears and sources for entertainment. And, Backpacking should be preferred when you want to travel on solo or duo trips with less comfort and more thrill and you love hiking and mountain climbing.

Both of the options are best to take a break which everyone needs in this life full of chaos where you can’t even breathe freely for a second and are pulled back by heavy deadlines to follow. Both of them provide, open environment, the beauty of nature, a night full of stars, soothing voices of the river, waterfall, etc, and space to breathe freely and enjoy your me-time or family get-togethers away from city lights and city stress. You must take a break, it is necessary and soul-searching.


  1. https://books.google.com/books?hl=en&lr=&id=t1mPn3apl6AC&oi=fnd&pg=PP7&dq=camping+and+backpacking&ots=7zBOZ4mTt0&sig=MPEm0-_nYnbwSO2MY3_IQoIACkw
  2. https://www.pnas.org/content/105/7/2295.short

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