Difference between campfire and bonfire

Difference between campfire and bonfire

In today’s fast-paced lifestyle it's necessary to find some time for rest and the ideal opportunity for that is going to nature with your family and friends. If you are an adventurer this includes camping that cannot pass without fire. People today often confuse bonfire and campfire, although these are two similar terms, there are also some differences. In this article, we will talk about the differences between bonfire and campfire, so if you ever thought about that, keep reading!


What is a campfire?


A campfire is a smaller fire we use during camping. It's located in a fireplace or fire ring and people gather around it to warm up and cook and eat. In addition to providing warmth and light, the campfire drives the bugs away from you. They're always built in an open space that needs to be cleaned earlier if necessary.

A campfire is considered a relatively practical fire tank, while a bonfire has greater symbolism and tradition. Fire is generally associated with a number of human traditions and beliefs.


How to build a campfire?

There are several methods for starting a campfire. The three most common methods are to use a teepee, log cabin, or leaning structure. All of the above methods also require basic materials such as matches, tinder, kindling, and firewood.

Tinder is a material that helps you capture the initial flame from your match or lighter. You can use paper, sawdust, or a small twig for this.

Kindling are slightly larger sticks that have the role of transferring fire from the tinder to the firewood. Try to light the kindling very well.

Finally, we have firewood that will keep the fire going after the initial heating phase is over.

Let’s say something about security too. Although the campfire is a smaller fire, safety is very important here as well. We always build campfires in a fire ring or fireplace. Most campsites already have fire rings made, but if they aren’t at your place, here are a few brief guidelines on how you can do it by yourself. 

Choose a space that is relatively clean and away from tents and trees. Gather large rocks and make a ring of fire. It is necessary to dig a hole inside the ring that is at least 6 inches deep and about 2 meters in diameter. Finally, clean the area of debris and other flammable objects.


What is a bonfire?


A bonfire is a much larger fire that is lit outdoors but in controlled conditions. Bonfires can be built to dispose of waste material or as part of various rituals. They are built in an open space like meadows, away from trees and bushes. This is important because the fire is very large and can easily engulf nearby objects. That is why it must always be under control.

The word bonfire comes from the words "bone" and "fire" and is believed to have been first used by the ancient Celts to burn the bones of the dead to ward off evil spirits. Depending on the culture, bonfires are used today for various purposes and celebrations. (something like fireworks for U.S. Independence Day).


How to build a bonfire?

You need the same materials for lighting as for a campfire. The procedure is also the same, but there are additional things you need to pay attention to here. When building a foundation you need to find a larger combustion area. You must choose your location carefully to avoid fire and damage to the surrounding property. You will also need firewood, in fact much more than you use with a campfire. You can also use logs or other firewood for this.

You may also need to seek permission from the local authorities to light a bonfire. If you burn garbage, there may be some restrictions, and in some cases, you may need to have a fire extinguisher on hand. Unlike a campfire, bonfires cannot be used for cooking, they are simply too big and dangerous. They also provide a lot more heat than a campfire so it's not advisable to sit near them.


Final thoughts

Although both bonfires and campfires are fire and a source of heat, there is a big difference between them. First of all the difference is in size, the bonfire is a much larger fire used in various ceremonies and rituals while the campfire is a smaller fire intended for rest, cooking, and heating. Locations are also different, a bonfire requires a lot of space where there are no trees or shrubs nearby while a campfire is being built in the fire ring. It is important to emphasize that in both cases the fire should be kept under constant control, and after leaving the place, everything must be extinguished in order to avoid a fire.