Choosing the right tent isn’t an easy process. It’s hard to imagine all the features that will be valuable when you’re actually in the great outdoors trying to get some sleep or refuge from the elements. For example: do you want a vestibule? If you care about your sleeping area not being filled with dirt, then you should probably opt in. Do you want to be able to sit upright in your sleeping area? Do you want to make sure you can spend time in your tent during daylight hours without feeling like you’re in a nylon oven? Do you need more than one door? The perfect tent is highly personal, but find below are amazing tents to kick off your search. Most of these are ideal for car camping (that is, they’re not ultralight like those preferred by backpackers), though there are a few hybrid options that would work for hiking.
You can turn it into a sunshade during the day. Amazon
The Big Agnes Titan mtnGlo camping tent is incredibly sturdy and offers tons of space. The most unique is its ability to easily turn into a sunshade. This is perfect during the day if you’re outside of the shelter of trees. It comes as a four-person or six-person tent, but could fit more if you don’t need a lot of square footage for belongings. There are plenty of pockets along the walls to store your stuff and there’s also an option to add a vestibule (not included) to store everyone’s bags.
Designed for maximum airflow to keep you cool. Amazon
The Marmot tent’s 60 square feet is spacious enough to comfortably fit a family or group of friends. The tent stands 63 inches tall and comes with a weather-resistant vestibule to make storing your stuff and keeping your shoes outside easier. The color-coded poles make it less confusing to set up, too.
Glow-in-the-dark zippers makes it easy to get in and out when it’s dark. Amazon
If you’re thinking you may want to hike with your tent on your back, the MSR Elixit 3-person tent is a solid choice. It’s very easy to set up and only weighs 7 pounds. This tent also has two doors, so you won’t have to wake up your tent mate if you have different sleeping schedules.
It’s only 5 pounds when packed up. Amazon
The 90 x 54-inch, two-person Kelty Night Owl tent has a quick set-up process as it only uses two main poles and one ridge pole to give your tent more height. It’s also pretty light, which makes it a good choice if you’re thinking about eventually using your tent for a short backpacking trip and want something that will work for that too. The tent also has taped seamed to keep water from leaking in. It comes with a stuff sack for easy storage.