Best Camping Chairs 2024 - Outdoors Magic

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Best Camping Chairs 2024

We've tested a variety of camping chairs, ranging from super light options small enough for a backpack, to super comfy options for sinking into outside of your camper

For campsite holidays, beach trips or even wild camping adventures alike, a camping chair is the item you always thank yourself for bringing. Easily forgotten, but rarely regretted; after a long day of outdoor activities such as hiking, kayaking or mountain biking, a seat to sink into and rest your weary limbs can feel like a luxury. This is certainly true when the only other option might be a soggy forest floor, or hardened ground that offers no respite for your worn-out hindquarters. 

One of our test campouts and a few camping chair options that passed our selection.

Just as with choosing a family camping tent, a sleeping bag or sleeping mat, there are many factors to consider when choosing a camping chair. With everyone’s varying needs, it can be a pretty subjective task. Luxury add-ons aside, specifications are ever-broadening and span from ergonomic supportto weight capacity, and terrain-type, amongst other things. Certainlythere are also factors to avoid; we’ve all experienced the hot mess of using a festival camp chair or a petrol station favourite. Images of sinking into mud, plastic bag DIY seats, and canvas-less frames come to mind. For these reasons, here’s a list of our campsite favourites, including how-to-guide to avoid dead weight, wasted money, and sore bottoms.

OM editor Will testing the Vango Laguna chair

Best Camping Chairs 2024 | Our 10 Favourites

We’ve tried to find an even-spread of camping chair options for 2023, encompassing a variety of styles, tailored for all terrains and personal needs. Here are our team’s favourites. 

  • Best Overall Camping Chair: Helinox Chair One
  • Best Value Camping Chair: Vango Dune Chair
  • Best Camping Chair for Caravan and Van Camping: Yeti Trailhead Folding Camp Chair
  • Best Ultralight Camping Chair: Nemo Moonlite
  • Best Reclining Camping Chair: Nemo Stargaze Recliner
  • Best Camping Chair for Heavy People: Coleman Maximus Sling
  • Best Two-Person Camping Chair: Kelty Loveseat



How We Tested Them

These products were all tested out by our crew here at Outdoors Magic and were used in actual camping scenarios. One option, for instance, was taken to a running festival in Gower, another was used for a luxury glamping trip, while others were used throughout summer holidays over the last couple of seasons. We’ve included a range of products here, all suited to different types of trips, but generally we assessed these products based on comfort, convenience, durability, stability, packability and weight. Value also played a big part in our decision making.


1. Helinox Chair One

Selected as the best camping chair overall following our tests. 

Price: £100
Material: Aluminium alloy frame, Fibre-reinforced nylon hubs, ripstop nylon fabric
Max. Load: 145kg

We’ve used this chair extensively for a number of years now and rate it very highly. The quality really is excellent.

It’s super light and very compact – small enough to fit into a standard sized hiking backpack – but it’s also remarkably comfortable too and that’s why this has become a classic chair for backpackers who like a little luxury.

Related: Best Two Person Sleeping Bags

At a standing height of 66 cm, and sitting 27cm off the ground, it’s a low profile chair but with a capacity of almost 23 stone, it can definitely hold its own. 

What we liked: comfortable, very light and packable
What we didn’t like: very low to the ground, can sink into soft ground and become unstable

Read our full Helinox Chair One review.




2. Yeti Trailhead Folding Camp Chair

This makes our selection as the best camping chair for car and van camping.

Price: £299.99
Material: Hardened aluminum alloy frame, Flexgrid fabric
Max. Load: 226.8kg

Let’s address the elephant in the room: this one’s pretty pricey. However, with durability and longevity being its primary focus, Yeti are hoping to offer the Trailhead as an investment; get it now and enjoy a quality, comfortable chair for ten– maybe twenty years without any serious damage. We take that claim very seriously, so before we even considered adding the Trailhead to this list, we put it through a lot of testing. The verdict: you couldn’t break this thing if you tried.

In addition to extremely solid construction, the Flexgrid fabric makes for one comfortable seat, conforming nicely to your shape and being wide and deep enough to feel like you’re sitting in a hammock with back support. It also holds up to 500lbs (or thirty-five stone), so have no fear about squeezing two of you on there, the extra wide feet do a great job of keeping the chair stable on any terrain. We also appreciate the detachable cup holder which docks underneath the arm rest instead of being built-in and taking up valuable real estate.

Finally, the carry bag is a super convenient accessory for campers on the move. The Trailhead packs away quickly, and the padded shoulder straps make this huge chair pretty easy to carry a long way. Overall, the Trailhead is super sturdy, well-engineered, excessive in its size, strength, and comfort, and it’s made by Americans. It’s basically the muscle car of camp chairs.

What we liked: comfortable, very sturdy and durable
What we didn’t like: expensive, not very compact



3. Nemo Stargaze Recliner Luxury Chair

This is our choice as the best camping chair out there for those who are looking for a chair they can recline on. 

Price: From £215
3.23 kg
Material: Aircraft grade aluminium suspension frame, Non-absorbent monofilament mesh
Max. Load: 136 kg

Though the priciest on our list, its concept is probably the coolest. As the name suggests, it’s made with stargazing in mind, so has built-in rocking and reclining abilities. It’s kind of a hammock, rocking chair, and camping chair, all in one. With a supportive headrest, and a breezy non-absorbent monofilament mesh, the seat itself resists bacteria by not retaining moisture, whilst also withstanding sun exposure. This additionally makes for a breathable and comfy fabric.  

Its design accommodates every type of surface, even when you are swinging. This is due to its aircraft grade aluminium frame, and unique pole set-up (anodized pole exterior and red ferrule interior), making for precise pole connections and greater stability on precarious terrain.  

Though its set-up is supposed to be done in 3 easy steps, it’s a bit fiddlier and more time-consuming than most camping chair set-ups. This, coupled with its weight, means it’s not a backpacking chair, though can be stashed away easily in a car or in your campsite. Coined a ‘fireside favourite’, it’s quite the luxury item.

What we liked: comfortable, fun, unique
What we didn’t like: heavy, needs to be assembled



4. Kelty Loveseat

Our pick for the best two-person camping chair/sofa. 

Price: From £89
Material: Steel frame, 600-denier polyester fabric
Max. Load: 181.4 kg

As a two-seater camping chair, the Kelty Low Loveseat is perfect for a two-person holiday, or as an extra seat for a canine companion. It’s fitted with two insulated adjustable cup holders, with mesh bottoms for easy cleaning, so is built with relaxing at your campsite in mind. That being said, there’s a bar in between the two seats, so it’s not ideal for lying across.  

With a slight recline, extra padding, and adjustable arm rests for different heights, it nevertheless retains big comfort points. It’s also very wide and roomy for optimal lounging and sinking capabilities 

At 6.8kg, it’s pretty heavy so is better left at your campsite, though it folds up accordion-style like a traditional camping chair so can be packed away discreetly. Check out their website for some excellent pics of dogs in their camping elements. 

What we liked: comfortable, fun, good value
What we didn’t like: material quality isn’t great


5. Coleman Sling Chair Maximus Steel

The best camping chair for heavy people.

Price: £50
Material: polyester, steel
Max. Load: 135kg

The first time we folded this out we were blown away by the size of it. It’s a real whopper. This, we found, made it great to sink into, particularly with a big cosy blanket. 

Out of all the chairs we tested, we found this one to be the best for larger people. As we’ve already pointed out, it’s very big, but it’s also very strong and sturdy too. It’s not a chair that wobbles or rattles around but instead stays firmly planted on the ground. It certainly has a durability to it that gives us the impression it will last a long time. 

We liked the large cup holder and the little side pocket which we found to be ideal for stashing a phone. There’s also a large zipped pocket that we found served very handily as a place to stash campfire snacks. 

As you might expect, this has quite a large packed size. We found it was still OK to carry short distances though, and it will fit into the boot of a hatchback – though it doesn’t give you much space leftover.

What we liked: sturdy and tough, very comfortable
What we didn’t like: heavy and bulky.


6. Vango Dune Chair

This wins our award for best value camping chair. 

Price: £29
Material: steel, polyester, foam
Max. Load: 120kg

This is a neat little chair that we found to be very comfortable and sturdy. The main thing to know about this is that it’s very low to the ground and it does take a bit more effort to get into and out of compared to some of the other chairs in this round up, though the hard arm rests do help there as they serve as useful supports. 

In our tests, we really appreciated the small packed size and reasonably light weight. It’s the kind of chair that takes up very little space in your car boot or tent porch and it’s not a burden when you need to carry it. 

It’s no way near as small or light as the Helinox Chair One but it’s comfier and more stable, particularly when you’re getting in and out of it. It’s also a lot cheaper. 

Overall, we really liked this chair and found it had a good quality feel to it.

What we liked: comfortable, sturdy, compact
What we didn’t like: very low to the ground



7. Nemo Moonlite Reclining Chair

Our pick for best ultralight camping chair


Price: From £150
Weight: 850g
Material: Forged aluminium hubs and tubes, 100% recycled mesh fabric
Max. Load: 136 kg

Another eco-friendly favourite, the Nemo Moonlite reclining chair is much lighter option than the Vango if a lightweight kit is your priority. 100% post-consumer recycled materials are used here for the webbing and there’s a bluesign approved mesh seat.  

It also has an adjustable seating position for optimal leaning, made possible by oversized tubing and forged aluminium hubs for strength and stability. The recycled mesh is also engineered to stretch and accommodate this reclining, whilst supporting a variety of body types. The seat attaches to y-moulded, ball and socket connectors that rotate and align with your body, so comfort is not sacrificed by weightlessness, though it is on the pricier side.

What we liked: super light and packable, comfortable
What we didn’t like:
can sink into soft ground and become unstable very low to ground.



Best of the Rest



8. Quechua Extremely Comfortable Reclining Chair

Price: £49.99
Material: Polyester fabric, 40% aluminium 40% steel 20% polypropylene frame
Max. Load: 110kg

This is a bit more of a traditional camping chair compared to some of the other options on this page but that doesn’t mean it’s a bad chair. In fact, at £50 it’s great value for what you’re getting here.

It’s a heavy-duty option, coming in at a fairly heft 4.85kg, but it’s got some real load bearing potential and all of the materials are nice and hardy. Best of all, there’s optimum comfort and back support here. As you’ve probably already guessed, it’s designed with campsite comforts in mind rather than portability, so you get the luxury of a cushioned headrest, two armrests, an adjustable recliner, and a ventilated back for supreme breathability. 

Handily, this comes with a two-year warranty. Even more handily, if any of the parts happen to break somehow, you can find replacements on the Decathlon website.

What we liked: good value, high, comfortable arm rests
What we didn’t like:
heavy and not very packable


9. Sea To Summit Air Chair

Price: £45
230 g

Material: Fibreglass poles, Nylon fabric
Max. Load: N/A as on ground

As the lightest option (without legs), the Sea to Summit Air Chair is a hybrid sleeping mat and chair that keeps minimalism and multi-functionality at the fore.  It has a 70-denier base with 2000mm hydrostatic head protection, as well as nylon panels covering the base, to protect your mat from rough or wet ground. The elasticated gussets sewn into the sides, and abrasion resistant Ultra-Sil fabric, also act as a further protection against the risks of being seated directly on the ground. This fabric is used on the back panel and strap anchors, allowing you to lean back into a reclining position without fear of breakage. 

This is a great option for multi-day adventuring or wild camping, if really getting stuck in (or on) nature is your thing. Perhaps not if you’re planning on spending most of your time at your campsite though.  

Though it’s made to fit all Sea to Summit air mats, famed for their cosiness, the air chair set-up can also fit other brands of air mats, though make sure to check measurements and try it out beforehand. For more info on sleeping mats, check out our best sleeping mats including the Sea to Summit Comfort Light.

What we liked: very light and simple, great for backpackers
What we didn’t like: not the most comfortable, can expose your sleeping mat to punctures.


10. Vango Laguna Chair

Price: £35
Materials: steel and polyester
Max. Load: 120kg

This chair takes the standard folding chair design and just adds a nice bit of extra comfort overall with the addition of a mesh fabric that keeps your back and backside nicely ventilated. In hot weather, we found this had genuine benefits – mainly saving us from an ugly sweaty back at the campsite – however, on colder nippier evenings that ventilation has obvious drawbacks.

The overall build feels strong, quite durable and sturdy. The bag it comes with is pretty basic but it does the job. There are lighter and more portable chairs out there, but if you only need something to carry short distances from the car to the tent then it should be fine for most people.

What we liked: comfortable, sturdy, good value
What we didn’t like: quite big and heavy, can be cold to sit in




How To Choose A Camping Chair

Choosing a camping chair generally requires three main considerations: your primary use for the chair, your size and height preference, and your design preferenceThese preliminary considerations will help narrow down your search, avoiding endless internet sprawling, and leaving you more time to get excited about your trip. 

The Coleman Maximus Sling during our tests. It’s an example of a folding chair that isn’t ideal for sitting in to eat at a table.

In terms of your primary use, thinking about the type of camping trip is key. If youre going on a backpacking or bikepacking trip, a lightweight and unassuming design will be handiest. You’ll want something that can easily attach or fit inside your hiking backpack, without weighing you down on your travels. Or perhaps youll have a basecamp to come back to, or youre going road tripping, in which case, maybe comfort is key, and weight less of an issue. As long as it can pack away neatly and easily in your car boot or in a storage area in a van, these car-based trips can generally afford more luxuries in terms of camping chair comforts.  

Thinking about your primary use in terms of location and weather is also beneficial. Am I camping in a muddy forest or a sandy beach? Which chair is less likely to sink into the sand? Which will be the easiest to clean mud off? Is it going to rain? Which chair will dry the fastest? 

Vango’s Dune chair during our tests. It’s a folding chair that, as you can see, is low to the ground.

Finally, there are more individualised design preferences. These can range from specialised lumbar support for those with back needs, to fitted coolers for those with beer needs. Some more luxurious than others, these are very much trip and budget dependent, and down to each person. Materials used in the design of the chair might also be worth considering, some prioritising warmth and comfort, whilst others might focus on sustainability and durability. 

The Best Materials for Camping Chairs

Most camping chairs for basecamp use or for van touring or car camping tend to use steel for the legs. This is durable but also quite heavy. It’s also relatively cheap. More expensive designs will use aluminium, a material that’s strong but also lightweight.

Camping chairs that are suitable for backpacking – chairs like the Nemo Moonlite and the Helinox Chair One – tend to use a frame and legs that are made from aluminium.

Jon Doran out testing the Helinox Chair One

Polyester tends to be the main fabric used for camping chairs. This is light and tough and it’s often quite quick to dry. It also has some mildew resistance. Nylon, which tends to be slightly more expensive, has all of the same traits as polyester but it usually tends to be a bit tougher.

The Different Types of Camping Chairs

Folding chairs are the most common design of camping chair. These either fold flat in a rectangular shape, like the Quechua or Yeti examples in this round up, or they consist of crossing poles that fold inwards into a long cuboid shape, like the Vango Laguna and the Coleman Maximus. The latter type of chair design is often more packable and portable, though it often results in a fairly deep sit that can make sitting and eating at a table tricky. They can also be harder to get into and out of.

Ultralight chairs, the types that are usually designed for backpacking, are often made from a piece of fabric and an aluminium frame, both of which need to be assembled together. There are also designs, like the one from Sea to Summit, that use a sleeve that can shape a sleeping mat into a chair.

Utralight designs are very portable but they’re not ideal if you want to eat at a table, usually because they’re low to the ground, deep set or slightly reclined.

As you can see, there’s a lot to weight up when choosing the design for you, but as it’s simplest just think about the types of trip you need the chair for and what you’ll be using the chair for (aside from sitting!) and then you should be able to work out your preferences from there.


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