How to Get Rid of Flies While Camping

How to Get Rid of Flies While Camping: 12 Eco-Friendly Methods

Are you tired of those pesky flies buzzing around your campsite while you’re trying to enjoy the great outdoors? Well, fear not! In this article, we will show you how to get rid of flies while camping using 12 eco-friendly methods. Whether you’re planning a weekend getaway or a long camping trip, these tips and tricks will help you keep those annoying flies at bay, so you can fully immerse yourself in the beauty of nature. So, let’s dive in and discover how to make your camping experience fly-free!

1. How To Get Rid Of Flies While Camping Using Fly-Repelling Herbs

One of the most effective and natural ways to keep flies away from your camping area is by using fly-repelling herbs. Certain plants have strong scents that flies find unpleasant, making them an excellent eco-friendly alternative to chemical-based repellents. Here are some popular fly-repelling herbs you can incorporate into your camping setup:

a. Lavender (Lavandula spp.)

Lavender is not only known for its delightful aroma but also for its ability to deter flies and other insects. Its strong scent is highly effective in keeping flies at bay. You can place fresh lavender bundles near your tent entrance, around your campfire, or even inside your tent to create a fly-free zone.

b. Lemon Balm (Melissa officinalis)

Lemon balm, with its citrusy fragrance, is another powerful fly repellent. Crush a few lemon balm leaves and rub them on your skin or around your camping area to keep flies away. Alternatively, you can hang small bundles of lemon balm in key spots to create a natural fly barrier.

c. Mint (Mentha spp.)

Mint is well-known for its ability to repel flies, mosquitoes, and other pests. It emits a refreshing scent that humans love, but insects find overpowering. Planting mint around your campsite or placing potted mint plants strategically can be effective in deterring flies.

d. Rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis)

Rosemary not only adds flavor to your camping meals but also acts as a fly repellent. Its strong aroma is disliked by flies, making it a great herb to have around your campsite. Use rosemary sprigs in your campfire to release its scent, or rub some fresh leaves on your skin for added protection.

e. Basil (Ocimum basilicum)

Basil is a versatile herb that not only enhances the taste of your camping dishes but also keeps flies away. Crushing basil leaves and rubbing them on your skin or placing potted basil plants around your camping area can be effective in repelling flies.

f. Lemongrass (Cymbopogon spp.)

Lemongrass contains citronella, a natural compound known for its insect-repelling properties. You can plant lemongrass around your camping site or create a spray by boiling lemongrass leaves in water and then using the infused water as a natural fly repellent.

Remember that herbs work best when their scents are released, so consider crushing or bruising the leaves slightly to enhance their effectiveness. Additionally, you can combine different fly-repelling herbs to create a more potent barrier against flies.

By incorporating these fly-repelling herbs into your camping setup, you can enjoy a more pleasant and fly-free outdoor experience without harming the environment or resorting to chemical-based repellents. Embrace the power of nature and let these herbs work their magic during your camping adventures.

2. Maintain a Clean Campsite

A clean campsite is not only crucial for hygiene and safety but also plays a significant role in keeping flies away. Flies are attracted to food scraps, garbage, and sweet-smelling substances, so it’s essential to adopt good camping practices to minimize their presence. Here are some quick tips to maintain a fly-free camping area:

  • Properly Seal Food: Keep all food items tightly sealed in containers or resealable bags. This prevents odors from attracting flies and other insects to your camping site.
  • Use Double-Bagged Trash: Dispose of food waste and trash in double-bagged containers. Knot the bags tightly and store them away from your campsite until you can properly dispose of them.
  • Clean Up Immediately: Clean up spills and food crumbs promptly. Flies are quick to detect even the tiniest food particles, so maintaining a tidy camping area is essential.
  • Wash Dishes Thoroughly: Wash dishes, utensils, and cooking equipment immediately after use. Leaving dirty dishes out can attract flies and other unwanted pests.
  • Designate a Cooking Area: Set up a designated cooking area away from your sleeping and dining spaces. Cooking odors can attract flies, so keeping the cooking zone separate helps contain their presence.
  • Cover Food When Not in Use: When not actively eating, cover your food with lids or mesh screens to prevent flies from landing on it.

By adhering to these simple guidelines, you can significantly reduce the likelihood of attracting flies to your camping site. A clean campsite not only enhances your camping experience but also contributes to a more eco-friendly and enjoyable outdoor adventure

3. Use Natural Fly Traps

Another eco-friendly approach to combat flies while camping is to set up natural fly traps. These traps are simple to make, effective, and environmentally friendly. By using natural bait and materials, you can attract flies and prevent them from bothering you during your outdoor adventure.

a. Sugar Water Trap

Create a fly trap using a plastic bottle or jar. Mix equal parts of water and sugar to create a sweet solution and add few tissues to that so that it absorbs excess water for flies to land on. Cut off the top third of the bottle, invert it, and place it inside the bottom part, forming a funnel. Pour the sugar water into the bottom part of the bottle. Flies will be attracted to the sweet scent, enter the trap through the funnel, and won’t be able to find their way out. 

b. Vinegar Trap

Similar to the sugar water trap, you can use vinegar instead of sugar water as bait. Flies are drawn to the pungent smell of vinegar and will be lured into the trap but unable to escape. You can use apple cider vinegar or white vinegar for this purpose.

c. Fruit Peel Trap

Flies are naturally attracted to the scent of fruits. Utilize this to your advantage by placing overripe or rotting fruit peels inside a container with a lid. Cut small holes in the lid to allow flies to enter, but ensure the holes are small enough to prevent them from escaping.

d. Natural Sticky Trap

Create a natural sticky trap using a mix of honey and water. Smear the sticky solution onto a piece of cardboard or a small plate. Flies will be attracted to the sweetness, land on the sticky surface, and become trapped.

4. Employ Citrus Peels

Citrus peels offer a natural and eco-friendly way to keep flies at bay during your camping trip. Flies are known to dislike the strong scent of citrus fruits like oranges, lemons, and grapefruits, making them effective fly repellents.

To use citrus peels, simply place them strategically around your camping area. You can scatter them near your tent entrance, around the campfire, or near food preparation areas. The scent released from the peels will act as a natural deterrent, keeping flies from bothering you and your fellow campers.

An additional benefit of using citrus peels is that they add a pleasant aroma to the air, enhancing the overall camping experience. As a bonus, these peels can also be composted after use, making them environmentally friendly.

5. Invest in Fly Screens

When it comes to keeping flies out of your car camping experience, investing in fly screens for your vehicle’s windows and doors is a game-changer. Fly screens act as a protective barrier, allowing fresh air to circulate inside your car while keeping pesky flies and other insects outside where they belong.

By installing high-quality fly screens, you can enjoy a bug-free camping adventure without compromising on ventilation or resorting to harmful chemicals. These screens are easy to use and can be quickly attached to your car windows and doors, making them a convenient addition to your camping gear.

For the best car camping window covers and fly screens, check out our article on the best window covers for campers. We offer a curated selection of top-rated window covers and fly screens to enhance your camping comfort and keep those bothersome flies at bay.

6. Create a Fly-Free Cooking Zone

Keep flies away from your delicious camping meals by setting up a dedicated fly-free cooking zone. Flies are attracted to the aroma of food, so a well-planned cooking area away from your sleeping and dining space is essential.

Here’s how to do it:

  1. Choose the Right Location: Select an area away from your campsite where you’ll do all your cooking. Ideally, this spot should be upwind from your camping area to carry cooking smells away from your living space.
  2. Use Windbreaks: Erect natural windbreaks or portable screens around the cooking zone. This will not only shield your flames from the wind but also help prevent flies from getting too close to your cooking area.
  3. Cover Food Containers: When not actively cooking, keep your food covered with mesh or food tents. This protective layer will prevent flies from landing on your food and contaminating it.
  4. Clean As You Cook: Be diligent about cleaning up spills and food scraps immediately. Dispose of food waste in sealed containers to avoid attracting flies.
  5. Burn Sage or Rosemary: Consider burning sage or rosemary in your cooking area. These herbs release fragrances that flies dislike, acting as natural fly repellents.
  6. Dispose of Food Waste Properly: Once you’re done cooking, dispose of food waste away from your campsite. Bury it or store it securely in a double-bagged trash bag to minimize fly attraction.

By creating a designated fly-free cooking zone and following these simple steps, you’ll be able to enjoy your camping meals without pesky flies buzzing around. Keep your campsite clean, organized, and fly-free, and savor the true essence of nature during your camping adventure.

7. Utilize Natural Essential Oils

Certain essential oils are known to repel flies effectively. Essential oils like eucalyptus, peppermint, and lemongrass can be diluted with water and sprayed around your campsite to keep flies away. Plus, they add a refreshing fragrance to the air.

Furthermore, there are natural bug repellents on the market that you can spray on your body. Here is a such product that is even safer for kids.


8. Use Fans to Disrupt Fly Flight Paths

Flies are not great fliers, and using a portable fan can be an ingenious way to create airflow that disturbs their flight paths. Position the fan strategically to create a barrier that discourages flies from entering your camping area.

9. Employ Fly-Repelling Clothing

When camping in fly-prone areas, your choice of clothing can make a significant difference in keeping flies away. Opt for light-colored and loose-fitting garments that cover your skin, as flies are less attracted to these colors and have a harder time landing on loose fabrics. Additionally, consider treating your clothing with natural fly repellents like citronella oil to provide an extra layer of protection against pesky insects. By wearing fly-repelling clothing, you can enjoy a comfortable and fly-free camping experience without the need for harmful chemicals or swatting.

11. Get Rid Of Flies While Camping By Hanging Reflective Objects

Hanging reflective objects strategically around your camping area can be an ingenious and eco-friendly way to deter flies. Flies are sensitive to light, and when they encounter reflective surfaces, they become disoriented and tend to avoid the area.

How it works: Flies perceive reflections as threats or obstacles, causing them to change their flight path and steer clear of your camping zone.

What to hang: You can use everyday items like aluminum foil, shiny CDs, or even mirrors to create reflective surfaces. Hang these objects near your tent entrance, around your picnic area, or by the campfire to create a natural fly barrier.

Why it’s eco-friendly: Unlike chemical-based repellents, this method doesn’t harm flies or the environment. It simply uses light manipulation to deter them from bothering you during your camping trip.

By employing this reflective approach, you can enjoy a fly-free camping experience without harming the ecosystem, making your outdoor adventure more enjoyable and environmentally responsible.

12. Encourage Natural Predators

Embracing nature’s balance can be an effective eco-friendly method to control flies while camping. By encouraging natural predators, such as dragonflies and birds, you can create a harmonious environment that keeps flies in check without resorting to harmful chemicals.

Dragonflies are voracious insect predators and have a particular affinity for flying insects, including flies. Setting up your campsite near a water source, like a pond or stream, can attract dragonflies to the area. These magnificent creatures will help reduce the fly population, leaving you with a more enjoyable camping experience.

Birds also play a significant role in controlling fly numbers. Birds like swallows, swifts, and flycatchers feed on flies and other flying insects. Hanging bird feeders around your campsite can attract these fly-eating birds, turning them into natural allies in the fight against pesky flies.

Remember to avoid leaving out food scraps or garbage that might attract flies, as this can disrupt the natural balance you’re trying to achieve. Encouraging natural predators not only helps control the fly population but also contributes to the overall health of the ecosystem around your campsite.

By promoting a natural predator-friendly environment, you can coexist with nature while keeping flies at bay during your camping adventures. Enjoy the benefits of this eco-friendly approach, and let nature’s helpers do their job in maintaining a fly-free camping zone.

ConclusionHow to Get Rid of Flies While Camping

Enjoying a fly-free camping experience without causing harm to these insects is possible with these eco-friendly methods. By using fly-repelling herbs, maintaining cleanliness, employing natural deterrents, and embracing the harmony of nature, you can fully immerse yourself in the beauty of the outdoors while keeping pesky flies at bay. Embrace these environmentally friendly techniques on your next camping trip and make the most of your outdoor adventure. Happy camping!

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