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Bonfires & Campfires: Same Thing with a Different Name?

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Campfires and bonfires are frequently used interchangeably. Given that they are both types of outdoor fires, it is not unusual that this error was made. What then might be the difference? Despite their shared characteristics, their size and intended use are different.

Small and controlled campfires are typically built in a fire pit. On a camping trip, it is typically utilised to provide warmth, light, heat for cooking, and entertainment. A bonfire, on the other hand, is a big fire used for a variety of things. Additionally, campfires and bonfires are constructed differently.

Everything you need to know about bonfire vs. campfire will be covered in this post to assist you confidently choose your next flaming form of amusement.

What is a Bonfire?

The bonfire is a sizable, controlled outdoor fire. It is typically constructed in a clear space away from potentially flammable bushes, shrubs, and trees. The typical locations for bonfires are beaches, pastures, and meadows. They are kept away from flammable wood in order to prevent their spread and save the environment and surroundings.

During their celebrations, the Celts would burn animal bones to frighten away evil spirits. There are numerous mystical ceremonies associated with bonfires. The name comes from prehistoric societies that would build "bone fires" to worship their gods. Some prehistoric tribes built a bonfire for their religious purposes and worshipped fire. In some places, people honour their saints with bonfires.

Bonfires are useful for getting rid of rubbish because of their size, including old furniture, unneeded wood, and even your child's homework. That's one method to earn the title of cool parent! On exceptional events and during holidays, bonfires are still lit today.

How to make Bonfires

Beginning by delineating the area with rocks or other non-flammable items is a good idea. Create a pit to contain the flame after that. Additionally, a sizable burn area will be required, so make sure you have all the required permissions before beginning. You'll require kindling and tinder to create a blaze.

The fuel, such as sawdust, paper, or twigs, ignites the Firestarter's initial blaze. Large sticks or thin wood strips that transition from being sticks to fuelwood are considered kindling. As soon as the kindling begins to burn, you may start preparing for the full fire.

What Is a Campfire?

Small fires made during a camping trip are called campfires. The fire is typically enclosed in a pit or fire ring so that people can gather safely around it for warmth, cooking, and entertainment. A campfire offers light and pest protection.

When camping outside, campfires are useful for cooking and providing warmth. In order to make your campgrounds comfortable, they are also employed to frighten off wild animals, insects, and other pests. Many entertaining songs and games are related to them even if they do not have a joyful religious function like bonfires do.

How Campfires Are Made

Safety is still crucial despite the fact that a campfire is a small fire. Always create a campfire in a fire pit or ring far from any vegetation, trees, or tents. The campfire can be established after a secure fire ring or fire pit has been constructed. To aid in starting your fire, you should bring kindling, wood shavings, or cardboard strips. The three types of wood you need to create a campfire are kindling, tinder, and wood. Light your stick with a match, add kindling gradually, and let it catch fire. After that, surround the kindling and tinder with wood in a teepee-style arrangement.

Before going to bed or leaving the campground, be sure the fire is completely out. This is crucial because even a small, unattended fire can grow into a dangerous, out-of-control blaze.


Although both campfires and bonfires can provide heat and light, their purposes and sizes are very different. To avoid an unwanted fire hazard, be sure to take all necessary safety precautions when lighting a campfire or bonfire.

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