When going camping with the family, it’s important to get a tent that will keep everyone comfortable. Family camping is often the first introduction that many youngsters get to the outdoor experience, and you want it to be a good one. At the same time, you don’t want to be carrying a big, heavy family camping tents if you’re doing anything more than car camping. So you need to balance these two things, comfort and weight, while sorting through the many different options available to you when buying a tent.
Family Camping TentsWhat to look for when buying family camping tents.
- Capacity – How big the family is will determine how big of a tent you buy. Be aware that larger tents are disproportionately heavy, so two three man tents, for example, will be much lighter than one six man tent. If you’re going to be backpacking, it will pay to keep this in mind.
- Season Appropriate – Most people stick to camping in the spring, summer or fall, for which a three season tent will most likely be appropriate. But if you plan to go camping in winter, you should seriously consider a four season tent. Consider getting one three season tent and one four season tent, actually, since the four season tent will be quite a bit heavier.
Best Family Camping TentsSome of the very best family camping tents to choose from, in a variety of shapes and sizes.
- Big Agnes Fly Creek U.L. 3 - For smaller families, or for those that are looking to save on weight as much as possible, there is the three season Fly Creek line from Big Agnes. The two man version won the 2011 Backpacker magazine Editor's Choice award, in large part because at 3 pounds 3 ounces, or 1.44 kilograms it's one of the lightest dome tents on the market. It has room for three inside, though there is also a 4 man version. It's not the cheapest tent in the world, but if you're going to be carrying your family camping tent, it pays to make it as lightweight as possible.
- REI Half Dome Tent - If you just want something cheap that will put a roof over your head, the Half Dome is a good choice. At 7 pounds 1 ounce, or 3.2 kilograms no one is ever going to call it lightweight, but it's a solid 3 season tent that has room inside for four. It also comes with two doors and two vestibules, making it easy for everyone to enter and exit the tent without crawling all over each other. So a good family camping tent if you're not looking for anything too serious.
- Big Agnes Flying Diamond - If you want a 4 season tent, then you are going to need something a little more robust. The Flying Diamond from Big Agnes has enough room inside for 6 to sleep comfortably, though at 18 pounds 2 ounces, or 8.22 kilograms you better hope that you're not the person that gets stuck carrying it. It comes with 2 doors, and a zipper partition that you can use to separate the interior space in to two different rooms, to make sleeping at night a little less crowded. Definitely not lightweight, but then a large four season tent is never going to be lightweight.