Tents and Shelters
Ready for a night out? Whether you’re an ultralight alpinist, family of backpackers, devoted hanger, or comfort camper, you'll find the best tents, tarps, and hammocks for your outdoor overnights right here.
Check out our top picks below—including price comparisons—to shelter you in any terrain, trip, or season: winter mountaineering, three-season thru-hiking, warm weather car camping, hammock hanging, alpine bivys, tarps, and emergency shelter.
Or you can browse our thousands of independent tent and shelter ratings and reviews by product type, brand, or price. Written by real-world hikers, backpackers, alpinists, climbers, and paddlers, Trailspace community reviews will help you select a dependable, field-tested, outdoor abode just right for your next adventure.
3-4 Season Convertible
Tarps and Shelters
BrandEagles Nest Outfitters
Priceless than $25
$25 - $49.99
$50 - $99.99
$100 - $199.99
$200 - $299.99
$300 - $399.99
$400 - $499.99
$500 and above
Recent Tent/Shelter Reviews
Sierra Designs Half Moon 3
For an older model tent, this one still stands strong even now. Tough, reliable, easy to set up, with a reasonable weight; what's not to like? Setup: The tent has a basic cross pole design with a shorter top pole that fits into two grommets. The apex pole clip holds the top cross pole in place with respect to the other poles (see pic). The poles use clips and don't require any sleeve insertion. This cuts down setup time and headaches. They fit into standard brass corner grommets. The footprint… Full review
Eagles Nest Outfitters DoubleNest
Easy to use, comfortable hammock. Received as a gift two years ago. In addition I own the Atlas strap system for simple and quick connection. Disclaimer—I have yet to use this as a sleeping option (save for naps). I enjoy taking it while backpacking as restful seating option at camp, but prefer the tent for bug/rain protection. Have not owned or used the meshing or tarp in conjunction. Haven't embraced cowboy camping as of yet. I'm a bigger guy (6'3" 200 lbs), so two people lying inside is a bit… Full review
Hilleberg Nammatj 3 GT
Fantastic base camp tent for one or two people. I will not review the tech specs. These are available from Hilleberg. Suffice to say their specs match my observations. Have used this tent three times now. Extremely easy to set up. Three hoops and four pegs, that’s it for initial setup. There are many more pegs to make this tent completely sound. Very roomy and nice high vestibule. Constant height inner tent and vestibule are benefits. I have had no problems with condensation. It is very strong. Full review
Kelty Outfitter Pro 2
Two-person bomb shelter. This tent is like a palace. The two doors are epic. Heard the wind howling and the tent never budged. Drug this thing up Mt. Shasta and the weight was obvious. Split between two people though it wasn't even noticed (I carry more weight than that in whiskey alone). Full review
REI Base Camp 4
A very strong family/base camp tent with an excellent backpack style carrying bag. Due to privacy walls, the mesh screens are higher up and there is reduced airflow in hot weather. Best in inclement weather or where you might experience wind/rain. The fly is color coded but the footprint does not come with tent. Need two people to install. Best for 2-3 adults or comfortably two with cots. As a long serving (suffering?) Scout leader, I've got tents galore. I own an REI Kingdom 8, Base Camp 4, Half… Full review
Kelty Streamside 4
Solid tent. After over 50 uses, I knicknamed it "ole trusty". I bought this tent in 2001. I've used it several times per year for leisure camping to spike camping for hunting. Solid tent. I'm going to replace the poles and keep using this bad boy until it disintegrates! Full review
REI Kingdom 6 Tent
A massive, incredibly well thought out 6-person tent. Ideal for car camping luxuriously. Purchased in spring of 2017. Used for car camping and backyard sleepouts with kids. Very easy to set up. I can single-handedly set this up in less than 10 minutes—quicker with assistance. Three separate collapsible poles that don't require forced-fitting. I'm 6'3" and can stand up straight inside. Footprint is like a small apartment, can absolutely fit six adults comfortably. Purchased as a "lifetime"… Full review
Tarptent Double Rainbow
Lightweight, spacious two-person backpacking tent. Easy to set up and pack. Purchased in 2013, have used six times on backpacking trips and several car-camping ones. Wanted to use for a few years before I reviewed. Opted to purchase after lots of research and have been very pleased. Incredibly easy to set up and pack down. One long collapsible pole will split the length, with corners guyed out with stakes or free-standing with trek-poles. I've always opted to stake as I had that option each time. Full review
Sierra Designs Lookout
Perfect for motorcycle, snowmobile, sled, and canoe camping. Setup is easy—two straight poles, grommet front and back and do the same with the other two arched poles on each side of the body, cross them at the back and use the clip with the little bungee cord to lock them together at the X. Then start clipping on the clips. Start at the middle of each pole and work your way around. Arch pole, put it in one grommet on one side hold onto the pole, bring it around to the other grommet on the other… Full review
Top-Rated Tents and Shelters
What’s the “best” tent or shelter for you? Consider your personal outdoor needs, preferences, and budget:
First, and most important, in what seasons, conditions, and terrain will you use your tent, tarp, or hammock? Choose a shelter that can handle the conditions you expect to encounter (rain, snow, wind, heat, humidity, biting insects, an energetic scout troop), but don’t buy more tent than you truly need, and don’t expect one tent to do it all.
Tents are typically classified by sleeping capacity (i.e. one-person, two-person, etc). However, a tent's stated sleeping capacity usually does not include much (or any) space for your gear and there’s no sizing standard between tent manufacturers. Some users size up.
Will you use the tent as a basecamp or is it an emergency shelter only? To determine if you and your gear will fit, look at the shelter’s dimensions, including floor and vestibule square areas, height and headroom (including at the sides), plus the number and placement of doors, gear lofts, and pockets, to assess personal livability, comfort, and footprint.
- Weight and Packed Size:
If you’ll be backpacking, climbing, cycling, or otherwise carrying that shelter, consider its weight, packed size (and your pack it needs to fit in), and its space-to-weight ratio before automatically opting for the bigger tent. Paddlers and car campers have more room to work with, but everyone should consider how the tent and its parts pack up for stowage.
Tents come in various designs. Freestanding tents can stand alone without stakes or guy lines and can be easily moved or have dirt and other debris shaken out without being disassembled, though they still need to be staked out. Rounded, geodesic domes are stable and able to withstand heavy snow loads and wind. Tunnel tents are narrow and rectangular, and large family cabin tents are best for warm-weather campground outings.
- Other features and specs to consider include single versus double-wall, ease of setup, stability, weather resistance, ventilation, , and any noteworthy features.
- Read more in our guide to tents.