There are two kinds of vacationers in this world:
those who like crashing in a room, with an actual bed, and those who enjoy sleeping under the stars, with the sounds of cicadas and waves surrounding them.
If you are part of the second group of travelers, you probably know at this point that a beach tent is something you could never live without. And since it will literally be the place where you’ll spend pretty much all of your time, you need to make sure it’s as comfortable as it can be. And this buying guide will help you choose the best tent.
What’s a Beach Tent and Why Would You Need One?
Technically, a beach tent is not that different from a regular camping tent. Both of them are made from water-resistant nylon or polyester, and they all have zipped entries to ensure easy access.
The difference between beach tents and regular camping tents, however, stands in its ability to withstand UV rays. You probably know the struggle of going camping in summer and waking up in the morning, gasping for air because your tent suddenly turned into a sauna. This can be prevented to some extent if you pick a shaded area; however, if you are unlucky enough to not have the luxury of shade, then it’s going to get hot and steamy in the morning.
Beach tents, on the other hand, are the exact opposite of regular camping tents, since they provide shade rather than cooking you alive. Also, beach tents have larger openings that allow for a better airflow – once more preventing the damage of the sun from kicking in.
These tents are generally not meant for nighttime sleeping, but depending on the model, you could also get something with a zipped entrance. This way, the beach tent will be converted into a camping tent, and you will have all the privacy (and security) that you need.
Types of Beach Tents
There are mainly three types of beach tents that you could go for. Each of them has its own pros and cons that will help you decide based on your vacation plans:
If you are not into camping, fancy things, or generally dislike any kind of trouble, then you might want to go for the pop-up canopy design. It’s one of the easiest to install, only taking a few minutes to install or put away. Plus, since it generally uses sandbags for weighing down the corners, it is also fairly easy to carry around.
Pop-up canopy tents generally have no walls, and they act mainly as an umbrella – but depending on the model that you choose, you may get one that can be enclosed.
These beach tents are generally sturdier than pop-up canopies since they use poles – as well as cords – to make things steadier. These tents are great for bigger families, and they may even host entire parties inside.
Like pop-up canopies, these are generally just a roof – but you can also go for an enclosed one that uses a zipper. Depending on the model that you pick, it may look just like a little house.
These are the most similar to regular camping tents since they have their own frames. Because of this, they are also the most difficult to carry and/or install. However, frame canopies are the sturdiest of them all, and they can resist even in the strongest of winds.
Depending on your preferences, traveling conditions, as well as the weather, you may choose the one that fits your needs the most.
Factors to Consider When Buying the Best Beach Tent
You may have chosen a style for your beach tent – but there are several other factors to consider as well. Some of them include the following:
- Size: Are you going by yourself, or do you have a larger family? If you’re only on vacation with your partner, then a small tent should be just enough – and also easier to carry. If you are traveling with children, on the other hand, you might want to pick a larger model – especially if you’ll want to have chairs put in the tent.
- Material: Generally, every beach tent has some sort of protection against the sun rays. The top will always have a protective coat, but you can choose whether the sides are protected as well or not. Unprotected sides may allow for better ventilation, but they may not keep the sun off you at all times.
- Ease of Use: How are you going to carry it? Will you travel by car, or do you have to carry it yourself? Also, how are weather conditions there? Depending on the answers to this question, you may go for a lighter yet delicate beach tent, or a heavier and sturdy one.
- Color and Design: You may want to pick a color that will provide shade and at the same time won’t attract the sun. Black or dark colors are obviously not recommended. At the same time, you may want to pick something with a bold color that will allow you to quickly find your tent in a crowd. So, next time you think of passing that hot pink tent, you may want to think again. It will stick out immediately.
By taking each and every one of these factors into account, you will have found the best beach tent for you and your family.
Beach tents are a great way to ensure that you can stay on the beach – or any other sunny place – without suffering the effects of a heat stroke. If they are made right, not only that they can keep you safe from the sun, but they can keep you away from prying eyes (and hands) as well.
If you have decided on all of the factors above, then chances are that at this point you already settled on a beach tent. All you have to do now is browse through Guideline for Buying a Beach Tent and find a model that suits your needs.