Best tents: compare camping, hiking, swag, family, pop up tents and more

Everything you need to know to buy the best tent for your next camping trip.

It’s no secret that Australians love camping and with the right tent, your next trip can be stress-free. Your gear will stay dry, you won’t waste precious time trying to figure out which pole goes where and you’ll sleep like a baby. The wrong tent, on the other hand, could turn your trip into a disaster.

Our guide will walk you through all the steps of buying a tent to make sure your money is spent wisely. We cover styles, sizes, weather durability and key features. Find out where you can buy your next tent and how much it will cost.

Read on to compare all the options and choose the best tent to suit your needs and your camping style.

Compare popular tents for 2018

Data obtained at time of publication. Prices are subject to change and should be used only as a general guide.
Name Product Price (AUD) Sleeping Capacity (# of people) Dimensions (L x W x H, cm)
BlackWolf Turbo 450 Lite
BlackWolf Turbo 450 Lite
$1,899.99
10
450 x 300 x 230
This large cabin tent features plenty of headroom and a broad front awning for extra space.
Caribee Spider 4 Easy Up
Caribee Spider 4 Easy Up
$289
4
275 x 245 x 138
The Caribee Spider 4 Easy Up tent can be assembled in just a few minutes.
Darche Air Volution AT-4 (2017)
Darche Air Volution AT-4 (2017)
$999.96
4
260 x 300 x 215
Includes a a 2.8 metre zip-on awning and poles for additional shade and rain protection.
Diamantina Explore 2
Diamantina Explore 2
$299.99
2
210 x 140 x 115
A compact hiking tent with durable material for cold weather camping.
Exped MIRA II HL
Exped MIRA II HL
$749.95
1-2
215 x 125 x 110
This 3-season tent has an entirely mesh canopy that can be used as an a bug tent.
Explore Planet Earth Maximus 6
Explore Planet Earth Maximus 6
$700
6
520 x 360 x 170
Features 3 internal room and includes poles to turn the front door into an awning for additional room.
Kathmandu Retreat 150
Kathmandu Retreat 150
$799.98
3
566 x 275 x 195
This roomy 3-person tent is larger than many other manufacturers 4 or 5-person tents.
Outdoor Connection Escape 4 Plus
Outdoor Connection Escape 4 Plus
$199
4
240 x 240 x 170
An affordable dome tent with 2 doors, windows and floor vents that provide plenty of ventilation for hot weather.
OzTrail Sundowner DTMSUN-C
OzTrail Sundowner DTMSUN-C
$339.95
6
220 x 360 x 200
A lightweight tent that can be divided into 2 rooms.
The North Face Talus 3
The North Face Talus 3
$550
3
226 x 160 x 116
The North Face products come with a lifetime warranty.
Coleman Instant Up Gold Series 10P
Coleman Instant Up Gold Series 10P
$499
10
430 x 350 x 200
Pops up in just a few minutes and fits 3 queen size air mattresses.

Compare up to 4 providers

What types of tents are available?

If you’re looking for a tent for your next camping trip, you have several styles to choose from. Each type of tent is suited to different activities.

Check out descriptions of some of the most common tent styles below:

How to compare tents

When searching for a tent, look for something that is user-friendly, big enough for your group and is suited to the weather you’ll be camping in.

To get started finding your perfect tent, consider the following questions:

  • Can I easily set up the tent?
  • How many people will be using the tent?
  • What weather will I be camping in?

One of the most important, and often overlooked, factors when choosing a tent is how easy it is to set up. Try setting up the tent in the store or at home before you take it on a trip to make sure you know what goes where.

Additional features to look for

Hopefully, you’ve found a tent that is easy to use, roomy enough for your party and gear, and suited to the weather you’ll be camping in. Next, check if it includes these extra details:

How much does a tent cost?

You can find a two or three person tent at Kmart or Big W for less than $100 that may be suitable for backyard camping or shade at the beach but it probably won’t hold up to regular use or moderate rain. If you’re looking for a large, durable tent that will survive many seasons worth of camping trips, you could spend thousands on a quality tent. There are also many options in the middle. Retailers like BCF, Tentworld and Snowys sell tents from a wide range of manufacturers and offer regular sales and discounts.

Which tent is best for me?

Australians are camping more than ever, which means there is a lot of competition in the market for quality, affordable tents. We’ve compared some of the most searched-for tents in Australia below to help you wade through the options and find your ideal tent:

The goodThe bad
OzTrail Sundowner DTMSUN-C
  • Lightweight.
  • Interior can be divided into 2 rooms.
  • Features 4 awnings, but awning poles are not included.
  • Some users claim the included pegs are short.
BlackWolf Turbo 450 Lite
  • Cabin design allows plenty of headroom.
  • Includes a large front awning, roof vents and windows.
  • Costly.
  • Set-up is time-consuming and requires at least two people.
Coleman Instant Up Gold Series 10P
  • Set up takes just a few minutes.
  • Fits 3 queen-sized air mattresses.
  • Affordable.
  • While the sleeping capacity is up to 10 people, the “comfort rating” states only 4 adults with living area.
  • Interior divider isn’t removable.
Explore Planet Earth Maximus 6
  • Features 3 internal rooms.
  • Includes poles to turn the front door into an awning.
  • When sleeping 6 people, the layout means those sleeping on the outside must step over those in the centre to enter and exit the tent.
  • Assembly requires at least 2 people.
The North Face Talus 3
  • Includes a footprint for added waterproofing.
  • Comes with a lifetime warranty.
  • Costly for a 2-3 person tent.
  • Does not have enough room for an adult to stand up inside.

Where to buy a tent

Some manufacturers including BlackWolf, The North Face and OzTrail allow you to buy tents directly from their websites or stores. Other brands like Coleman only sell their tents via third-party retailers such as Tentworld, Snowys and BCF.

The following sites sell tents and other outdoor gear:

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Sarah Brandon

Sarah Brandon is a writer for finder.com.au and loves the challenge of tackling a new comparison. When she’s not at the office, she can be found writing novels or searching for the perfect artichoke dip.

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