Festival season is with us once again and grabbing one of the best festival tents for the summer should be high on your list after scoring the ticket itself. Iron Maiden beer coolers with built-in speakers are a more exciting way to spend your cash, sure, but invest in the best festival tent for your budget and you’ll have a comfier camping experience. And with Download kicking off this weekend, it's the perfect time to buy a last-minute tent.
You’ll be sheltered from night time temperature dips and you won’t be blasted awake by the sun’s 5am siren call. Pick a great festival tent and you’ll also have a porch to stash your brews and inflatable chairs in.
Our team has spent decades working at music festivals all over the world, camping out in all conditions in the name of rock. So we really do know the best festival tents from the rest, and here we’ve picked this year’s top options for a range of budgets. Festival campers, let’s get camping.
Best festival tents: The Louder Choice
If you have a decent budget but want to keep plenty of it back for merch and lukewarm craft beer, check out the Decathlon Quechua 2 Seconds XL tent. This is the best festival tent for most people, including those with little camping experience. It’s fast to erect, has a porch and is designed with blackout fabric to diffuse brutal early morning sunshine. The material is breathable too, keeping festival pongs to a minimum. For the price it’s hard to beat.
For very tight budgets or people with zero patience, opt for the Regatta Malawi Pop Up Tent. It’s cheap, pops up (almost) instantly, and the waterproofing is decent for the price. It’s small though, so prepare to get cosy once you’re in there.
Best festival tents: Product guide
The Decathlon Quechua 2 Seconds XL Tent has been around for a few years yet it’s still the best festival tent for most people. Blackout material diffuses early-morning sunlight, so you can sleep off that hangover until the headliner hits the stage.
Decathlon’s festival tent is also waterproof and wind-resistant, with air vents for fresh airflow. The Vango and Heimplanet options further down this list handle weather better, but this festival tent punches above its weight for the price.
While it takes longer than two seconds to erect, the Quechua 2 Seconds XL Tent is fast to set up. Dump your boots and beer in the porch, and stash your earplugs in the bedroom’s mesh storage pockets. No earplugs? Tsk! Get protected with the best earplugs for concerts.
If you want a cheap pop-up tent for hitting a music-fuelled long weekender, this is a great option. There are two ways to play the Regatta Malawi Pop Up Tent: share it and get cosy with your significant other, or sleep solo and have more room for your festival kit.
It’s easy to pop open and comes with bright guy lines so you shouldn’t trip over them, unless you’ve been downing more Jäger than Tommy Lee. Peg out that base too, otherwise you’ll see it flying merrily down the field.
As a single-layer tent, you can expect some condensation in the mornings, but it’s waterproof enough to keep the heavens out. Overall, if you have a small budget and short fuse for camping gear, the Regatta Malawi Pop Up Tent makes festival camping easier on you and your bank balance.
This is a fantastic festival tent for the price and the best choice for anyone looking to camp long after the festivals have called last orders. We think it’s more durable and waterproof than the Decathlon Tent at the n.1 spot on our list, but it’s heavier and pricier, though spacious for three people.
If you tend to feel claustrophobic in tents, definitely go with the Coleman 3+ Coastline. It has three doors, large mesh windows and roof vents to maximise airflow. The storage area doubles as a porch for setting up chairs and your loudest Bluetooth speaker.
There’s a great waterproof rating here too, matching the Vango below, with a ‘dry-setup’ structure ensuring the inner section stays dry if you have the misfortune of pitching up in the rain. In short, the Coleman 3+ Coastline Tent is an excellent festival tent to see you through many summers.
If Vango was a headline act, it would be Metallica – these tents are built to see some heavy duty action and survive. This is the best festival tent for three to four adults (four is super-cosy), or for two adults and two kids.
The Vango Carron 400 is waterproof and breathable, with a well-sized bedroom boasting standing height for folks up to 5ft 11in. The bedroom also features the brand’s Nightfall material tech to keep your sleep space cool and dark, with large mesh vents encouraging airflow.
Vango has designed the Carron 400 to be fast to erect, with colour-coded fibreglass poles guiding you through the process. There’s also a small porch for extra storage, with lantern hanging points for camping lights.
The Coleman Blackout Octagon Tent is one of the heaviest picks in our best festival tents guide because it’s also one of the biggest. Courtesy of flysheet curtains, it also transforms from blackout tent to one with 360 views of the bogroll-strewn campsite.
Blackout material sees off the worst of the sun and keeps the tent up to five degrees cooler, with room for six people to crash down the middle and one on each side.
You may have a tough time storing lots of bags in the Coleman Blackout Octagon Tent when at max sleeping capacity though, so either pack light or strip back your crew to gain more in-tent storage. When it’s time to pack down, stuff the tent into the wheeled carry bag and roll it off-site.
The Heimplanet Original Cave is an icon in the world of camping and one of the first inflatable tents to hit the market. It has since transitioned to the world of luxury festival tents thanks to its sheer ease of use – it has a one-pump system, meaning the entire tent is inflated from one valve.
The waterproofing is excellent, and the Heimplanet Original Cave is also the best festival tent for withstanding wind speeds of up to 110mph. The only bugbear is that the five vents can’t be closed from the inside.
Five rain drains in the roof ensure good water run-off, with several sewn-in pockets and a tent vestibule serving up storage space for up to three people. Two would sleep the comfiest in here though.
Eurohike is another big name in the camping world and we have spotted many of its inflatable tents dotted around UK campsites. The Eurohike Genus 400 Air Tent is a festival tent favourite because its cheap in relation to the air tech, the quality of features and the spaciousness.
Check the camping guidelines of the festival you plan on attending first to make sure you can pitch a tent of this size. Get the green light and you’ll be staying in a home-from-home with the Genus 400 Air Tent. It has separate bedroom, living and porch areas, with lantern hanging points throughout.
It doesn’t offer the panoramic views you get with the Coleman Octagon festival tent, but it does have large windows to give the tent an airy feel. And like the Heimplanet Cave, it’s easy to inflate in around 15 minutes.
Best Festival tents: Buying advice
How to buy the best for your budget
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When shopping for a festival tent, it’s tempting to go straight for the cheapest option – and in our current cost of living crisis, some of us have no choice on that front. But you can still get decent features from a cheaper tent, as the waterproof Regatta Malawi Pop Up Tent proves.
Think about how many people will be sleeping in the tent and how much baggage everyone will have, especially if you’re taking lots of kit with you. If there are two of you plus bags, beer coolers and more, for example, consider a two-person-plus or a three-person tent. That way you get ample sleep and storage space.
When choosing the best festival tent for you, we’d recommend looking out for the following features:
- Blackout bedrooms to diffuse bright early morning sunlight
- A 3000mm hydrostatic head (fully waterproof)
- Built-in storage pockets to keep your tent tidy
- At least one window to let in light when required
- Ventilation to boost airflow
- Bright guy lines that are easy to spot
- A small vestibule for storing festival kit
If you have budget for a mid-range festival tent, you’ll have plenty of choice from top-rated brands including Vango, Decathlon and Coleman. There are some great tunnel and dome tents available this year, and you can expect to pay around $140/£120 for one of the best festival tents in this price bracket.
For luxury festival camping or a no-nonsense approach to pitching a tent, choose an inflatable festival tent. These take around 15-20 minutes to inflate on average, and all the hard work is done for you – just peg out the base. Rolling them up again to fit in the carry bag can be tricky though.
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