Camping with a big family tent has always been an inexpensive way to take the family on holiday, without the hassle of airport security and the other stresses that come with international travel. In these post-COVID times, it also eliminates any concerns over quarantine regulations and restricted destinations. As such, it looks like we might be in for a staycation.
And why not? Holidaying here at home is a great opportunity to discover some of the UK’s most incredible landscapes, from the wild Cornish coast to the rolling Scottish border country and beyond. With thousands of stunning campsites in the UK there is truly something for everyone – from small, back to basics sites that offer a ‘nearly wild’ camping experience to larger, modern campsites with a full range of amenities and state of the art facilities.
And we’re not just talking hot showers and flushing toilets – many sites are replete with everything from wood-fired hot tubs to Wi-Fi, giving even the most demanding first-time camper all the home comforts they could ask for, and more.
Having said all that, a decent family tent can make or break a camping holiday. Nobody wants to spend hours pitching their tent, trying to work out which poles fit through which sleeves. Nor do you want to feel cramped when you’re inside, jostling with other family members for elbow room. That kind of thing ramps up stress levels from the start, inevitably leading to arguments and unhappy campers.
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Fortunately, most modern family tents are designed to be the perfect home from home. Modern fabrics and improved ventilation systems ensure they feel bright and airy, with minimal condensation. Unlike the heavy, cumbersome tents of old, they’re also easy to set up, with intuitive designs and robust yet lightweight poles – or even, in some cases, no poles at all.
The last decade or so has seen the rise of the air tent, which use inflatable beams instead of traditional tent poles. And if you’re concerned about your tent getting punctured or taking off in windy weather, don’t be – most air tents are more rigid and robust than their poled counterparts.
To help you whittle down your tent selection, we’ve carefully picked out the top family tents from leading brands, ranging from four-person to giant eight-berth options. They’re designed to offer different camping experiences – so whether you want the communal space and timeless appeal of a deluxe tipi or bell tent or a roomy modular tent with separate bedroom areas for your teenagers, there’s an option for you.
Best Family Tents – Our Favourites
- Kelty Rumpus 6
- Robens Klondike
- Easy Camp Base Camp Air 500
- Outwell Airville 6SA
- Coleman Valdes Deluxe 6XL Air BlackOut
- Kampa/Dometic Studland 6 Air
- Wild Country Zonda 8
- Vaude Badawi 4
- Snow Peak Amenity Dome