Best Basic Tents For Camping – 2017 Edition

Lake Camping

When you’re just camping out in the backyard or by yourself, you don’t need a fancy tent with LED lights, an electric charging station, or any other bells and whistles.

All you need is a basic, entry-level tent for you to sleep on. While there are hundreds of these tents out there, we’ve found two that are great for the most basic camping trips:

Kelty Discovery 2-Person Tent 

Kelty Acadia 2 Person Tent
39 Reviews
Kelty Acadia 2 Person Tent

  • 75D Polyester.
  • Packed Weight: 7lb 8oz / 3.4kg.
  • Minimum Weight: 6lb 9oz / 2.98kg.
  • Floor Area: 32ft2 / 2.9m2.
  • Dimensions: (l x w x h): 88″ x 52″ x 43″.


The Discover 2 Person Tent from Kelty offers exactly what you’d expect from a basic tent. It’s a simple two-person tent that takes two minutes to set up and it provides you no more and no less than exactly what it claims to offer.

This standard tent is a lightweight, versatile tent with mesh lining at the top to let air in to keep you cool. If it rains, you can attach the full rain fly with a vestibule to keep you dry.

This tent isn’t anything fancy, but it is a high quality, basic tent that’ll get the job done.

Big Agnes Rattlesnake SL3 mtnGLO 

Rattlesnake SL Tent with mtnGLO Light Technology
8 Reviews
Rattlesnake SL Tent with mtnGLO Light Technology

  • Constructed of breathable nylon and polyester mesh.
  • Durable and flexible light source integrated into the seams of the tent.
  • The steep wall construction makes for an expanded living space.
  • Simply push a button to activate three different setting choices.
  • All seams on tent are lined with waterproof tape to keep inclement weather out.


While the name may be confusing, there’s nothing confusing about the quality of the Big Agnes rattlesnake SL3 mtnGLO. This basic tent is perfect for the backpacker who wants a super-light tent and doesn’t require all the bells and whistles of the more luxurious tents.

This tent will fit two adults comfortably and three adults snugly. It does have two internal media pockets for handling electronic devices and it is compatible with an add-on feature known as the SL3 mtnGLO Footprint, which is just a fancy term for lighting.

Like the Discover tent, this tent does nothing fancy or extreme, but it does provide comfort and durability for the everyday camping trip.

Best Tents for the Family

If you’re camping with the family, then your basic, bare-bones tent is probably not going to cut it. Instead, you’ll want a larger, slightly more luxurious tent – perhaps with some amenities you might not otherwise think about. We’ve found a number of camping tents for the family and these were our favorite:

Docking Station by The North Face 

The North Face Tent
12 Reviews
The North Face Tent

  • Dry entry.
  • Maximized interior space.
  • High-low ventilation for better breathability.
  • Hubbed poles and color-coded webbing make for quick, easy setup.
  • Fully seam-taped canopy and floor.


The Docking Station by The North Face is the ultimate tent for the family because you can essentially set it up however you desire. It starts off as a modular tent with a main room that operates as a tent by itself. However, the company sells separate 2 and 4 person attachments that attach to the main room if you want. So basically, you can mix and match the Docking Station with however you want. It provides you with the ultimate versatility to customize the tent, and it’s simple install and takedown will leave you wondering why you didn’t buy it sooner.

Kingdom 8 by REI

Big Agnes Flying Diamond 8 Person Tent
53 Reviews
Big Agnes Flying Diamond 8 Person Tent

  • The Flying Diamond series of shelters are much more than standard tents.
  • They are Everest base camp dining rooms.
  • Big Agnes’ biggest base camping design.
  • All-season two room condo with plenty of space to stretch out and relax.
  • Trail Weight: 22 lb 6oz.


The Kingdom 8 by REI is a fully functional camping tent with an optional garage and divider wall you can put up if privacy is a concern. The 77” height allows most individuals ample room to stand up and change, while the rectangular floors make it easy for the whole family to get situated and sleep comfortably at night.

The garage attachment is definitely something to consider, and it adds a nice additional space to get some shade from the hot sun or protection from harsh winter winds.

Despite it’s size the tent is easy to set up too, a family of four can be setup in just minutes.

Best Oversized Tents

What do we mean by oversized? We’re talking about the massive, large-scale tents that can comfortable sleep 8+ people. These tents often have all the bells and whistles, and they’re the tents you use when you’re looking for the ultimate comfort and luxury when you’re camping. There aren’t nearly as many of these tents, but we’ve still managed to find some of the best.

Slumberjack Grand Lodge Eight Person Tent

Slumberjack Grand Lodge 8-Person Tent
4 Reviews
Slumberjack Grand Lodge 8-Person Tent

  • 40D Polyester.
  • Packed Weight: 39lb 2oz.
  • Minimum Weight: 36lb 5oz.
  • Dimensions: (l x w x h): 156″ x 144″ x 89″.
  • Pole Type: Steel / Fiberglass.


The Slumberjack Grand Lodge Tent is exactly what it sounds like it is. This large, luxurious tent sleeps eight people comfortably, and there’s a detachable nylon divider that can split the tent into two rooms if you do desire.

In total, there is 156 square feet of space, and the ceiling is high enough for most adults to stand up to change clothes, pack, arrange sleeping bags, and move around. A rain fly can be thrown on top of the tent to protect you from rain and snow.

Due to its’ enormous size, the tent weighs an astounding 39 pounds when packed. Overall, the tent is well-ventilated and well constructed and it’s reasonably priced given its’ size.

Barebones Outfitter Tent

Barebones Living Safari Tent, Sand
6 Reviews
Barebones Living Safari Tent, Sand

  • 120 square feet and well ventilated.
  • Custom poly/nylon fabric that doesn’t require chemical treatment.
  • Front door has a wide panoramic opening with magnetic closing screen door.
  • Strong frame holds up to 1000 lbs. of weight.
  • 6′ walls and 9′ ceiling means you have room to breath and store your gear.


Despite its’ name, there’s nothing bare bones about the Outfitter Tent. Although slightly smaller than the Slumberjack Grand Lodge at 126 square feet, the Barebones Outfitter Tent is one of the most luxurious camping tents money can buy.

Custom waterproof fabric, screened winds, and doors provide excellent ventilation, while front and back doors provide easy access.

An attachable floor, all-weather cover, zippered mesh windows, and magnetically closing front door are all included with the tent, and a stove port allows you to keep heat in and smoke out all year long.

The Barebones Outfitter tent brings camping to a whole new level, and you’ll find that sleeping in a tent has never been more comfortable than a night in the Outfitter.

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