Small Tents for Camping takes a close look at a number of good lightweight compact tents that are suitable for all types of outdoor adventures. Endless delightful features abound in some of these excellent tents.
This Article Was Last Updated On June 26, 2021
There are some very good tents on this list that would tick all the boxes for you. Finding the one that is a suitable tent for you is just a matter of putting together a list of what you want so you can then decide what is the right shelter for you and your family.
Buyers Guide To Choosing The Best Small Camping Tent
This article delves into the features, benefits, usefulness, and many other differences in a number of tents that are suitable for use by between one and four people.
I will share my thoughts with you on mostly good to very good levels in quality design and manufacture of shelters that we can use when outdoors whether by the sea of in one of the amazing national parks we need a shelter for camping hiking or other outdoor trips without it failing us.
One thing I know from experience for sure is that there are many different levels of quality and buying the cheapest tent available rarely brings long-lasting happiness. I will tell you what we found in our research, the build quality, the materials used, the thoughts of other people who have purchased these items, and the problems we found.
So that by the end of this article you will find a tent that will work perfectly for you, and give you what you need in order to make an informed purchase.
This is an important aspect to get right, manufacturers claim their tents can fit a certain number of people into a given area.
While this is quite true the fact is, if you purchase a standard 4 person tent, 4 adult men would be very uncomfortable sleeping together in such a limited space, with absolutely zero space for personal items and other necessary gear.
I think a standard 4person tent would be ideal for a small family of two adults and two children plus your bags bedding and other stuff that needs to be inside. if you have teenage children you may consider a tent with separate rooms for privacy and so they can feel in their own space.
A good rule of thumb is to always get the next size larger than the one you first think will suit, there is nothing worse than being packed in like sardines.
Weight is an area in which your mode of transport will largely govern, how heavy an item should be will matter more if it’s on your shoulders, if you have a pickup or other vehicle then it won’t be such an issue.
However, this will change dramatically if you are backpacking, some serious thought needs to go into the weight and dimensions of the tent if it’s tied onto your backpack.
Obviously, when backpacking you will either carry a tent for a maximum of two people and some of the designs in two-person tents are super lightweight, being just a couple of pounds.
But it’s super important to figure out how you’re going to transport the tent to its final destination as carrying too much weight in your pack is not much fun.
But you don’t want to spend hours setting up your tent when arriving the shelter is a priority and should be simple and straightforward to erect some have poles are pre-attached to the tent itself.
Some are color-coded for ease of putting the frame together and today there are a multitude of instant or very fast pitch systems in place to ensure everything goes smoothly in the setup of your tent.
It can sometimes take less than a minute to erect some smaller instant tents however the size will determine to a large extent how much time is required and the number of people onsite helping will also make a big difference.
Most small family tents will be easily set up in just a few minutes will minimal hassle and frustration giving you a pleasant shelter in which to enjoy your campsite.
This is extremely important and determining the camping destination is crucial in picking the correct tent for your excursion, if you are camping near the beach or in a hot climate free-flowing and good ventilation is going to be a huge factor.
This will give you either a comfortable and pleasant experience or a terrible time that you will never want to repeat, as stuck in a tomb-like tent will little ventilation will ruin any chance of a happy and enjoyable holiday experience.
Let’s Check Out Our Top 15 Small Tents For Camping
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1. Kelty Salida Camping and Backpacking Tent
- Good 3 – season tent built well
- Rainfly does a good job of covering the whole tent
- Super lightweight around 3.75 pounds
- The rainfly does a good job of keeping the rain out, but it also stops a lot of breeze from entering the tent when you have it covered.
Looking for a 2 good quality tent that you can take with you virtually anywhere without ever having to worry about the weight? this tent comes in at around 3.75 pounds so this one is a perfect fit.
For unbeatable protection and durability, this tent features a 68D polyester wall material and a 40D mesh. The floor is made of waterproof 68D nylon material.
Space is the last thing you need to worry about with this tent. One of the most exciting aspects of it as far space goes is the roomy interior. With a floor area of around 20 feet, it is more than enough if you are camping solo.
- In addition, it comes with several storage pockets and gear loft space for keeping several items. As a three-season tent, you can be sure to make the most of your purchase at almost any time of the year.
- The setup is also very easy and fast, as this tent features color-coded clip construction that makes putting its two poles together simple.
Portability is also super easy and convenient, you have the compact, lightweight design of this tent to thank for easy use on the go.
It’s also very small once packed, measuring 11 inches by 14 inches, which is ideal for tucking away in the trunk of your car, you won’t know where you put it.
If backpacking is your thing this tent will be all you need to keep you comfortable, dry, and protected. If you are more than one, this tent is also available in a 2 and 4 person design. I have written an in-depth article about this design that you can check out here the Kelty Salida 2 Review.
2. Eureka Apex 2XT Tent
- Another lightweight tent suitable for hiking
- The rainfly provides good vestibule room for small items
- High rating of 4.2 from 5
- Hard to find a real negative review or opinion
It will last you many seasons, accommodate you and your partner or friend, and offer the comfort you would want out there. The Eureka Apex is one tent you don’t want to do without. And its range of features gives you a reason to take a closer look too.
You can also count on this tent to keep you dry even when the weather has the odds stacked against you. With a double-coated StormShield polyester fly, it can hold up even during strong downpours.
- It also features a bathtub floor design made of polyester, which prevents water from seeping in.
- To keep the breeze coming in, this tent comes with an outstanding one entire mesh wall. , and people on the outside can’t see through.
One thing about this tent that blows the competition away is its ease of portability. It is super easy to carry with you, since it weighs only 5 lbs 6 oz, making it lightweight enough to add to your luggage without weighing yourself down.
This tent also features full vestibules on the sides. Measuring 6.7 square feet each, they offer ample storage for small items. Also, it packs pretty small, at 18.5 inches by 6 inches, ideal for easy packing too.
From your phone to eyeglasses and other gear, you can simply stash them up there and keep things organized in your tent. Take a look at the Eureka Apex 2XT Review I have written
3. ALPHA CAMP Instant Cabin Camping Tent
- Easy setup and takedown
- The fly doesn’t completely cover the tent
Built for small family camping, it has virtually all you would ever ask for in a camping tent. The performance, comfort, and weather resistance in this tent perform very well.
Firstly the high-grade material is both waterproof and wear-resistant. Hence, you can use it on rainy days without the worry over leakage. Thankfully, this one comes with sealed flysheet seams that help keep moisture out.
Besides, the waterproof material gives it yet another line of defense against moisture. A rainfly also adds to this tent’s protection against the water. And with the wear-resistant canvas and frame material, you can be sure this tent will last you for many years.
- This tent has been fitted with the necessary features to ensure you get the best ventilation possible while still protecting you from the elements.
- With a “D” style door, and mesh windows on the sides, you can get the best of both worlds. These features offer ideal air ventilation and a clear view of the outside while offering much-needed protection.
Built to accommodate 4 to 6 people, this tent is so spacious that you can fit in a small family comfortably. It measures 10’ by 9’ with a center height of up to 72 inches so it offers enough room for one queen air mattress with room to spare.
However, at its size, it still fits easily in the carry bag that comes along with the package. Keep your stuff and light camping gear organized in two large side pockets in this tent.
For safe camping at night, you will need the reflective tent rope that this one comes with. What’s more, you don’t have to bring onboard a mud mat, this tent features one that you can count on when camping during the rainy season.
But that’s not all yet; it also features a cable port that you can use for an electrical cord. Galvanized tent pegs and tent stakes are among the other features that come with the package.
4. CORE 6 Person Cabin Tent
- Super quick setup
- D-style doors allow easy access
- This is another tent that the rainfly does not completely cover
Marketed as a 6 person tent this one is a sizeable tent that has enough room and comfort for 2 adults with two children and some gear.
This is the one that has all you need to transform your camping experience. Roomy, easy to transport and comfortable, it is one tent you need to consider if you want the best for your small family.
If you come in quite late after a long journey, then the last thing you want is to deal with a tent that takes hours to set up. That should not be anything to worry about with this tent, however, as it only takes about 60 seconds to pitch it.
- Thanks to the integrated frame system, the frame comes pre-assembled, which significantly reduces the time and work it takes to set it up.
- You only need to unpack your tent, unfold and extend the poles until they lock in place, throw in your special mattress and bedding and you’re ready for good night sleep.
That’s why this tent comes with a mesh ceiling that allows the hot air to exit the tent through the top. It also features adjustable air intake vents that allow cool air from the low end of the tent to get in for a refreshing breath.
The door and windows also offer essential airflow, while the CORE H20 block technology that is ideal for keeping you dry. It also has a rain fly that resists rain and to stops it from coming into your tent.
The fabrics are water-resistant, window and door seals also feature rain-resistant seals and the rain fly is fully taped. All of these add to the water-resistant performance of this tent.
With an impressive 11’ by 9’ tough polyethylene floor, this tent has all the space you need to accommodate a small family. You can even fit two queen air mattresses in there. The “D” style door allows easy entry and exit. The 72” height also offers good headroom.
5. Eureka Copper Canyon 4-Person Tent
- An excellent 3 season tent
- Plenty of ventilation through large windows
- Comes in a range of different sizes
- While it is a 4 person tent it would be more suited to a couple or with a small child
If you are looking for a small tent that keeps up to four people comfortably and well protected from the elements, then this one maybe it.
It comes with a good number of features that make it a great pick for an outdoor event. You need enough space inside your tent, you’ll definitely love the design that this one features.
Built to give you more space at its size, it is made with a 6-pole cabin style with vertical walls so you can easily place your favorite cot inside.
- This will help keep your gear and small items out of the way underneath the cot or in the
- High-stash pockets that this tent comes with. These help keep our essentials well organized and within reach for easy retrieval
- The tent also sports one of the most efficient waterproof designs possible. Its bathtub floor design wraps up on the sides, hence preventing entry or splashing or stagnant water into the tent.
- It will keep you dry through some of the worst downpours out there. When it comes to lasting, this tent is an icon.
With a combination of strong steel and fiberglass frame material, it is sturdy enough to take on some rough weather and stand for seasons on end. Its pole sleeves and ring/pin assembly makes the setup a breeze. But it still has another card up its sleeve. A yellow-to-yellow match on the tent and its fly also makes the setup fast and straightforward.
Check out my in-depth review on the Eureka Copper Canyon
6. Coleman Steel Creek Tent with Screen Room
- Color-coded hardware makes setup a simple chore.
- Love the screen room.
- No way 6 adults would sleep in this one comfortably.
- The rainfly does not do a good job of minimizing water accessing the tent.
It is large, comfortable, yet super easy to carry with you. This tent is an epitome of comfort away from home. And it comes with an array of features that rank it among one of the best options on the market.
Even on a rainy day, if you want to get a breeze of fresh air, the rain doesn’t have to stand in your way. The covered windows enable you to open the tent windows to let the air in while keeping the rain out.
One of the most impressive features that this tent has is the ample space it offers. Once again the manufacturer claims it will accommodate up to 6 people, the inside of the tent measures 10 ft by 9 ft, which is spacious enough.
- I feel very uncomfortable with 6 of us and gear.
- One thing that gives it more room is a very convenient screen room.
- At 10 ft by 5 ft, the screen room, which offers additional space for storing your luggage or sleeping on a warm night, also plays a useful part as a sitting area during the day.
- will also keep you out of the harsh wind or away from biting insects, this is a really nice feature that makes these tents a little bit different.
With this tent, you get an unparalleled easy setup thanks to its color-coded poles. These help you pitch your tent in a matter of minutes and with no guesswork.
And taking it down is every bit as easy, it comes with a wind-resistant strong frame, which should last you for several seasons. Then it also comes with a carry bag that makes portability a breeze too.
7. Coleman Soundome 4-Person Tent
- A very high rating of 4.4 stars from 5 by over 6500 customer reviews
- Comes in a carry bag with poles, Rainfly, ground stakes, and doormat
- A very good tent
- Very hard to find fault with this tent
Made as a dome design, this tent offers enough room on the inside so you can move around freely. It measures up to 9ft by 7ft with the center height going up 4ft 11 inches. That’s enough to offer you ample space within the tent for sleeping your family in comfort.
- You don’t have to worry about rainwater making its way into the inside of your tent. With a WeatherTec system featuring welded floors, it helps keep rainwater at bay.
- Another crucial feature in this design is the inverted seams, which also ensure you stay dry.
- Zipper protection with weather-resistant fabric also comes in handy, as it protects the door from the elements.
Setting up your tent should take you less than 10 minutes as it features snag-free pitching with continuous pole sleeves so you can pass through the fabric only once, this gives you a super-fast setup.
To give you sufficient ventilation and a clear view of the outside, this tent comes with significantly large windows. Besides the windows, it also packs in a ground vent, which allows entry of fresh air.
Keeping your small items organized becomes a breeze with the inbuilt pockets in this tent. They are well located on the tent’s walls, making it easy to keep your gizmos off the ground but still within reach.
8. ALPS Mountaineering 2-Person Tent
- Rainfly goes all the way to the ground
- Great tent with a high rating
- Be sure to use a groundsheet to place the tent onto
Among its array of outstanding features is the polyester made tent fly, which is water and UV resistant. Besides helping keep the rain at bay, this feature also adds two vestibules that ensure you get additional space as well.
- With a base size of 5 feet by 7 feet 6 inches, it is very roomy, enough to accommodate two people with room to spare. When it comes to housing two people without compromising the comfort, this tent lives up to its word.
- The set up will never have to be a struggle. Since it’s a freestanding tent, setting up this tent is child’s play. It all comes down to its aluminum two-pole design, which is super easy to put together.
For ultimate ease of getting in and out of your tent, this one comes with two doorways. Besides, it also sports storage pockets, and a gear loft that helps keep your stuff off the ground, and well organized.
Portability is also as easy and fun as the setup and use of this tent since it features a lightweight design. Weighing only 5 lb 15 oz, it’s a perfect choice if you want to go light.
9. Marmot Crane Creek Backpacking and Camping Tent
- This is a great lightweight tent good for hiking
- Nice flow-through ventilation
- I thought it was a little highly-priced
This backpacking and camping tent is something any avid camper would never leave at home. It is spacious enough to accommodate up to 3 people, comfortable, and durable.
To enter and exit the tent with ease, it comes with dual D-shaped doors which also opens the tent right up to catch the breeze. These have long zippers to offer you plenty of space, and you can roll them out of the way to the side. It also has toggles that you can use to secure the door in place.
- Its two vestibules on the roof offer additional storage for a few small items. But you can also use them as a windbreaker when you are cooking.
- What’s more, they have a zipper, so you can draw one vestibule and leave the other one in place.
Thanks to a full-coverage rainfly that helps prevent water from getting inside you will remain dry during a wet night. This feature is built with a waterproof material and a seam-taped design that helps keep water from entering your tent.
Another thing you will love about this tent is that it’s got a trail weight of 5lb13oz, so will not weigh you down. And with a spacious interior of up to 42 square feet, provides enough sleeping space for 2 people and room to move around.
This tent comes with three robust poles which are made of a strong 7000 series aluminum, which is also very durable.
It features three poles, with two of those making a sturdy X-shape dome that is self-supporting, and the remaining one, a short brow pole, crosses the two, and then you can attach the tent.
10. MIER 2-Person Backpacking Tent
- This is a high-quality tent with air vents for ventilation which is good
- Very lightweight at only 4lb 6oz
- Fast and simple setup
- Strong 40D material on the floor
- No Gear Loft
- Poles seem very fragile but this is an observation only
It’s super easy to transport, set up, and use, and you can’t beat the comfort. This tent comes with everything it takes to take your camping to a completely new level.
One of the features of its heavy-duty construction for use outdoors is the heavy-duty and waterproof 15D Nylon silicone-coated rainfly. It also features a reliable waterproof 20D Nylon silicone-coated bathtub floor design.
- This construction ensures you stay dry even in the rainy season but which gives the tent strength which is also worth keeping an eye on when going for any tent.
- Thankfully, this one pushes the limits with this aspect to offer you the best performance possible. The poles feature a robust 7001 aluminum material for ultimate stability and strength.
- The interior space is more than you can ever ask for, but that’s not all yet.
This tent also comes with two vestibules and two storage spaces for keeping small items, you also get a lantern hanger that helps keep your lantern well off the ground.
Portability is a breeze, as this tent is super light, weighing only 4.6 lbs, so you never have to worry over it weighing you down.
Easy set up is the other aspect that you can’t miss in this tent. The easy pole configuration with snap clips design makes the set up super easy, even for novice campers, plus it measures a mere 16.7 inches by 6.3 inches once packed so it won’t create unnecessary bulk in your gear.
11. Wenzel Alpine 3 Person Tent
- Gear loft is always good
- spacious and easy to erect
- Spacious and compact
- Lightweight material could prove inferior
- A small rainfly is a pet hate of mine
If you are on the hunt for a light but robust camping tent, then this one could be your best bet. It comes with a long list of exciting features that you will find handy while outdoors.
And one such feature is the integrated mud mat, which helps keep your tent floor clean even during rainy seasons. It also features a drainage strip that you will need if you want to keep your tent clean.
Ventilation is of the essence when it comes to having the best time inside a tent. And this one goes to extreme length to ensure you won’t ever have to worry about getting a breath of fresh air. Thus, it comes with two mesh windows and a D-style door that offer efficient ventilation.
- The set up is always worth considering when shopping for a tent. The good news is, with its shock-corded fiberglass frame, pitching this tent is as easy as you could ever want it.
- The simple three-pole design also makes it very easy to set up but very strong.
Transporting this tent never has to be a struggle even when you have a heavy load of other camping gear. It has a very lightweight design that will never weigh you down. Moreover, it’s also very compact once packed, which adds to its ease of portability. It also comes with a carrying case that features ideal handles and roomy enough to fit the tent easily.
12. Featherstone Backpacking 2-Person Tent
- Comes with a waterproof footprint
- 3 season tent
- Great for hiking and made by an American company
- Once again the fly is very snug against the tent walls restricting any breezes from entering
Featherstone has one of the top quality tents you have to check out if performance and durability are among your top priorities. This tent’s outstanding uniqueness is attributable to several factors, one being its awesome construction.
For ultimate protection from some nasty downpours out there, this tent features a seam-taped construction that ensures no leaks even under heavy rain.
The floor has a bathtub design with a 210D nylon material that ensures no leaks from the ground. Another notable aspect to look out for in this tent is the breathable and robust design.
- Thanks to its micromesh and tear-resistant fabric, which not only gives great comfort but also makes this tent very strong.
- When it comes to space, this tent really lives up to the name, as the 84 inch by 51-inch floor space offers ample space for two people without sacrificing comfort.
- As a three-season tent, you can use it for an outdoor adventure through the better part of the year. Also, it’s worth noting that it’s ideal for different types of activities, from fishing to hiking, camping, and backpacking.
The other aspects worth checking out in this tent include internal storage spaces as it features two vestibules. It also boasts robust aluminum stakes, an easy fast set up as well as reflective guy line rope.
Lightweight design at 6 lbs makes the transportation of this tent super easy, you can take it anywhere you need it.
Not forgetting, you also receive a limited lifetime manufacturer warranty from a US company so this is something to consider but like all warranties be sure to check what it is you actually get.
13. Eureka! Timberline Three-Season Tent
- Good ventilation
- Packs down for easy transport
- Good in wet weather
- Excellent backpackers tent
- Not too many problems with this one
Among the long list of amazing features in this tent is its robust construction. The poles are made of a strong DAC DA 12 aluminum that produces a unique and sturdy frame design.
The ease of entry and exit is also quite remarkable, as this tent comes with two large D-style doors, each with large windows that let you have an impressive glimpse of the area around you.
- Ventilation is also notably perfect, as a high and low vent design gives this tent a reliable air exchange system.
- You can make the most of the controlled airflow into the tent to enjoy a refreshing breath in any weather, having good ventilation makes all the difference
- Space is crucial when it comes to tents, and this one doesn’t disappoint at that.
- To ensure there’s enough room for two, this tent offers up to 35.7 square feet of interior space.
And it comes with everything you need, including the stakes, guylines, poles, fly, and the tent body. For easy portability, the tent packs small at 6 inches by 24 inches and weighs only 6 pounds.
When setting out to get a tent that you can count on for all your outdoor adventure, you need to make sure you get one with the right features and construction to take on the rigors of the wild.
And Eureka! is one such tent. It has a very high rating of 4.6 Stars from 5 from 39 reviews, and some very good comments.
14. ALPS Mountaineering Lynx 4 Person Tent
- On Amazon’s best sellers list
- Vestibules give extra storage space
- Good weather resistants
- Great for backpacking
- Always check the stakes and replace with stronger ones if needed
You have several features to thank for its outstanding heavy-duty performance, one of them being the water and UV-resistant fly, which doubles as an additional storage space. The fly has two vestibules that ensure you get more space for your camping gear.
It’s light, simple, and cozy on the inside, but one thing you can’t beat it at is the performance. It’s also a darling if you don’t like the idea of struggling with the assembly of any tent.
- Thanks to the freestanding design with two poles, the set up is as easy as you can think of.
- Size is yet another thing you can’t afford but notice about this tent. Measuring 7 feet 6 inches by 8 feet 6 inches on the base, it’s undeniably roomy enough for four.
- The height is also satisfactory, as it stands at 52 inches at the center, and with enough clearance all around as well.
And since the poles are made of aluminum, you can expect this tent to be a tough option, capable of taking on the rough outdoors over the seasons.
Weighing only 8 lbs 10 oz, it’s just the right weight for such a robust tent, so transporting it doesn’t have to be a problem at all. It also packs considerably small, you can easily strap it on the top or bottom of a pack and off you go.
15. Naturehike Cloud-Up Freestanding Tent
- This is another great backpacking tent
- Super Lightweight 4.4 lb
- A lifetime guarantee is extremely useful
- I like this one a lot
- This tent has been built to perform and last, with no major flaws
Lastly, here’s one tent every camper out there needs to check out for flexibility and ease of use. But that’s just part of it; this tent also delivers impressive performance.
It is a 4 season tent It comes in one two and three-person configurations, truly a backpacking tent at a mere 4.4 pounds including all accessories.
- One of the remarkable aspects that make this tent stand out is the material. The inner side of the tent features an anti-scratch 210T nylon mesh that is both strong and breathable.
- It also has a waterproof rainfly, made of 210T rip-stop nylon with a silicone coating as well as guaranteed 50+ UV protection.
- The tent poles are every bit as sturdy, thanks to a lightweight but robust 7001 space aluminum material, capable of withstanding windy rain as well as snow. And you’ll find the same strong material on the tent stakes too.
Transportation and set up as very easy with a lightweight tent that weighs only 4.4lb along with all the accessories. It also packs small, measuring 17.77 inches by 4.7 inches by 4.7 inches.
You get an ultra-compact compression bag for carrying and storing it. And once you get to the campsite, the freestanding design comes in handy, as you can pitch this tent in as little as two minutes.
Its double layer design makes it the perfect fit for a 4-season tent. You can use both the inner and outer layers together for water and windproof solution for the rough winter weather.
Most importantly, you get a lifetime guarantee for every purchase; you can get a full refund if you’re not happy with the tent, or get a replacement on the accessories at any time, this is an excellent warranty.
MY TOP CHOICES:
Best 1 Person Tent Kelty Salida Camping and Backpacking Tent
Best 2 Person Tent Eureka! Timberline Three-Season Tent
Best 4 Person Tent ALPS Mountaineering Lynx 4 Person Tent
Best Small Family Budget Tent Coleman Soundome 4-Person Tent
There are a huge amount of tents available and many more than anyone can put on a list, but what you need is the only thing that really matters. Good quality and comfortable shelter in all seasons and weather.
If you are in the market for a small family tent, or a tent for you and your partner or maybe just a single backpacking tent, there is one here on this list that will give you everything you need.
If you have any more questions about the Small Tents for Camping, I’ll be more than happy to answer them in the comments section below and join our community with your favorite tent on Facebook
Remember! Leave it cleaner than you found it, only footprints not rubbish.