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.
The best tents and shelters, reviewed and curated by the Trailspace community. The latest review was added on June 16, 2019. Stores' prices and availability are updated daily.
Recent Tent/Shelter Reviews
GoLite Hex 3 Shelter
I use this on short duration backpacking trips and it is great fro 2 people or 1 person and a bike/dog. Combine with the matching nest and it is excellent in buggy climes. I use it mostly without the nest.. I love this tee-pee ( single pole ) design over the dome type tents I've had this tent for a number of years and among the dozen tents I own it is still my favorite. Best combination of space and lightweight .. In buggy areas the nest ( bug net and floor) are a good idea .. I mostly use it… Full review
Six Moon Designs Gatewood Cape
Why I no longer use this as rain gear: In wind it blows all over the place unless tied at the waist. Hand and arms are exposed. Maybe not an issue for some, but if you are using hiking poles, your arms will be constantly exposed and rain will most like seep further up into your clothing. Want to get something out of your pack while it is still raining? It is possible, but not convenient to get your pack on and off without getting wet. Next, suppose it is still pouring rain when you want to put up… Full review
Big Agnes Rabbit Ears 6
Bring the whole family and the dog! Plenty of room for all, ample headroom to maneuver without hindrance...and rainfly awnings over the front door and rear window for protected airflow in any weather. Big Agnes Rabbit Ears 6 https://www.bigagnes.com/Rabbit-Ears-6_2 What I love about the Big Agnes Rabbit Ears 6: Spacious interior design Generous height (6’9”+) Ample fly awning… Full review
Eureka! Timberline SQ Outfitter 4
Very weather resistant, easy to setup, and durable. Best for canoe country. Highly recommended. Assembly is very easy and fast even with terrible light conditions. Very easy to take down and stuff back into bag. Bag about 8 inches extra room on top with tent in bottom for some extra storage. Good place for flashlights and toiletries. Window screens are well made and keep out even the smallest of insects. Tie downs on rain fly are well built and seem to handle wind well. Properly staked, the fly… Full review
Nature’s Hangout DoubleHang Camping Hammock
The Nature’s Hangout XL Double Hammock is amazing. For a great price, you get a quality product that is super easy to set up. It makes camping or just hanging out a whole easier and so much more fun! The Nature’s Hangout XL Double Hammock is amazing. It’s very lightweight, yet surprisingly extremely durable. It’s great to take to hang in a park or take with you camping or backpacking. I love this hammock because you don’t need to tie any knots. You just need to take out the tree straps… Full review
Six Moon Designs Gatewood Cape
Shelter AND rainwear in one svelte package! For those looking to shed serious weight, it's tough to beat a beat a shelter AND rainwear that weighs in at 13 ounces for both! The new Gatewood Capes are made from a slightly lighter fabric and now weigh in at a very svelte 10 ounces (15% lighter than the previous version). My entire setup consists of the Gatewood Cape, six lightweight stakes, guy lines and 5 mini biners for a total weight of 13 ounces. The biners are used to facilitate a quick change… Full review
Jeep 3-Room Screen Combo Dome Tent
Spacious and one of the easiest tents I've ever set up. Been using mine for nearly 20 years. This was originally a Father's Day gift, nearly 20 years ago. Although it was not always needed when on scout camping trips, I would opt for it anyway, since it is one of the easiest one-person-setup tents I've ever set up. The front screened-in area was handy for playing games during rainstorms. Have used this tent more than once in high winds and it never faltered. The floor is very durable, but did eventually… Full review
Big Agnes Bitter Springs UL1
A very lightweight and spacious one-person tent with a generous porch. Pack size is very small and makes use of trekking poles to save extra weight. I used this tent when I hiked along the Brecon Beacons Way, in Wales. It is very lightweight and makes use of trekking poles to create a very sturdy and spacious tent with a generous porch/vestibule. This was useful during the walk as Wales is often quite wet so prolonged periods spent in the tent were quite frequent. It is very fiddly to pitch and… Full review
Six Moon Designs Lunar Solo
A superb weight-saving tent that offers unprecedented head height and stability in high winds. Having put my doubts about single-skin tents aside, this is fast becoming my favoured tent for backpacking. Its combination of low weight, small pack size, and generous view thanks to the side entrance mean this is an excellent choice for lightweight backpacking. The website says that it takes time to practise erecting the tent correctly—they are not wrong. I chose a short trip with fine weather… Full review
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.