Best festival tents for 2022: Get your camping setup sorted with two man tents and larger options

·11-min read
 (Glastonbury Festival)
(Glastonbury Festival)

A weekend (or longer if you can spare the annual leave days) spent in a field, listening to great music with your best mates, trying your best not to let a cold pint trickle down your fingers - what could be better?

Up and down the country, festival goers are preparing for some of the summer’s greatest parties as we make up for time lost. Whether you’re headed to Worthy Farm for Glastonbury, Cambridgeshire’s freshly revived Secret Garden Party, or smaller affairs like Noisily in Leciestershire, there’s one thing you’ll need above all else: a lightweight but robust festival tent. Because even if you’re not planning on doing much sleeping, you’ll need somewhere to put your stuff.

How to shop for the perfect festival tent

If you’ve never shopped for a tent before, much less one for a festival, there are a couple of crucial things to remember.

Size is everything

For one, whatever number of people the tent claims it can fit - halve it immediately. The figure never seems to take into account bulky bags, sleeping bags or having any room at all aside from lying completely still, side-by-side, like sardines wedged inside a tin.

Weight matters too

Two, weight. Whether you’re planning to drive or get to the festival site by public transport, you’re going to have to carry everything yourself to the best pitch you can find. While your chosen tent may not feel so heavy on its own, once you factor in your full backpack, a camping chair, and various totes carrying wellies, food and cans of drink, you’ll soon feel every kilo.

Of course, you can split the burden if you’re planning on sharing, but a bigger tent naturally will mean more weight.

We’ve rounded up the best festival tent options below to help you choose.

Leave no trace

But before we dive into the in-tents (sorry) world of festival camping, a quick word on responsibility. According to the Association of Independent Festivals, some 250,000 tents are left abandoned at the end of British music festival every year. Although organisers employ teams to collect them and they’re recycled where possible, that’s a hell of a lot of unnecessary waste, not to mention money squandered.

Tents are a great investment and with good care will serve you a good few festival-filled summers, not to mention spontaneous trips to the countryside when you fancy a mini break. With landfills at tipping point and avoiding single use plastic high on everyone’s agenda, do yourself and the planet a favour, and stick by the age-old festival motto: leave no trace.

See our selection below

NEMO Equipment Dagger Ridge Porch 2 Tent

One of the best tents we’ve pitched, the size and dimensions of this ultra-compact and super lightweight tent will have you worried when you take it out of the delivery box. It’s twice as tall and wide as a pint glass (the only instrument we had to hand) - 53 x 17cm packed.

But have faith, and you shall be rewarded; it opens into a tent with an entryway so generous that  we, at 5”6 tall, were able to stand up straight. Quite remarkable when you consider it weighs just 2.44kg packed.

Unusually, the inner sleeping compartment needs to be built first; it’s held up using intuitive multi-bar colour-coded poles that slot into each corner of the compartment with minimal grunting on your part.

Once that’s been pegged down, slip the 15D ripstop nylon flysheet over the top, attach one more pole to the top of the porch, et voila! An unbelievably spacious tent that’s big enough for two, but comfier with just one sleeper.

Cons are few and far between, but one clanger is the lack of groundsheet in the living area - still, its absence is one of the reasons why this NEMO tent is so light and packs down so small. Take a spare groundsheet or piece of tarp if you don’t want to roll out of your sleeping bag straight into grass, but if it rains, you may be better off without.

Given its size, double entry doors, and abundance of helpful pockets for lights and essentials, this is an incredibly well-designed tent for all uses, in almost all seasons barring the coldest of winters. We tested it during 40mph winds and hard rain, and it held its own against the elements triumphantly.

It’s pricey but if you camp often, it’s a winner. For a weekend break, the NEMO Dagger Ridge Porch tent left us one happy camper.

Buy now £329.99, Trekitt

Halfords 4 Person Double Skin Tent

You know the drill by now - claims of accommodating four people means its really good for two. So pick a tentmate for the festival and split the burden of the weight, as well as the price for this super-affordable tent.

Sporting two layers (double skin) means that you shouldn’t experience that annoying drip-drip-drip of condensation in the mornings, and wet days should see you home and dry too - this tent is waterproof to 1500mm.

When it’s dry though, you can extend your tent space by converting the front door into a canopy with your extra poles. The dome-shaped tent packs down to  66 x 19 x 19cm and weighs 5.7kg.

Halfords also have a six person option too that has different compartments. The sides sleep three each as well as an interior living room area. If you’re living the luxe festival experience, invest in this for just two and have an section for your dressing room.

Buy now £55.00, Halfords

Vango Omega 250 tent

Weighing a sprightly 4.15kg, the 2018 Omega 250 basecamp tent may be designed for expeditions but it serves perfectly well as your festival HQ too.

Average pitch time is just 12 minutes, and for once the listing as a two-man lives up to the hype - thanks to the compartment design. The zipped sleeping compartment is separated from the large living area giving you dedicated spaces to sleep and change clothes so you always look your festival best. It’s a necessary addition if you want to keep the mess to a minimum and sleep in a mud-free zone.

Buy now £204.00, Blacks

Vango Galaxy 300

It takes just 18min to pitch this "three-man" tent, and you can actually house that quantity of people inside. The tunnel design's spacious outer chamber means you could indeed fit snuggle up with two friends in the 210 x 180cm sleeping compartment.

Breathable yet 100 per cent waterproof, it weighs 5.55kg and packs down to 55 x 22cm, which feels remarkably small when you realise how spacious it is once fully set up.

A good choice for all sorts of outdoor activities, the ability to stand up at the entryway makes it a winner for us. We also liked the thoughtful cable entry point, which allows you to charge your phone and devices from outside the sleeping compartment.

Buy now £260.00, Blacks

Decathlon 2 Person Blackout Pop-Up Tent

Pop up tents seem like a good idea at the time - practically set up in two seconds flat, what’s not to like? Well, we’ll tell you. The pack up can be like wrestling with a demon made of tarpaulin or requiring a masters degree in origami.

No such trouble with Decathlon’s time-saving design, which promises easy dismantling as well as construction. It’s an eco-design too, thanks to the greige and rope dyeing processes (leaving them in their raw state sidestepping the need for harmful chemicals).

A handy thing to have in the cupboard for hiking and fishing trips as well as weekends away, the single internal chamber has space for two but we think it’ll be more comfortable for one sleeper - and it should be easy to carry solo at 4.7kg.

Best of all, if you’re trying to get a few hours kip between bands, the blackout fabric means you can expect to enjoy 99 per cent darkness inside, even in broad daylight.

Buy now £119.99, Decathlon

Eurohike Tepee Tent

Don’t underestimate the glorious ability to stand upright in your tent: we’ve been bent double trying to change in our fair share of tents over the years to know that this feature is priceless. Teepee-style tents, while offering plenty of glamping vibes, are notorious for their weight - which is why this one, at just 4.6kg, is such a find. Why so light? It’s down to the single support pole and light fabrics rather than heavy canvas as seen on other tepee tents.

Ideal for a couple or a pair of friends, you should have no trouble splitting the weight until you find the perfect festival pitch. It’s an old school tent with plenty of modern features: waterproof fly and groundsheets and a hydrostatic head to keep the elements from your living quarters.

Buy now £105.00, Blacks

Regatta Malawi 2 Pop-Up Tent

At nearly half the weight of Decathlon’s pop-up tent, this 2.5kg is an attractive proposition for first-time festival-goers; but make sure you watch an instructional video showing you how to fold it away after use.

The design is kept lightweight thanks to a single skin and fibreglass poles. While this style of tent claims to sleep two people, from experience, we say it’s more of a single-berth situation - especially when you factor in clothes, shoes, wellies and your other festival bits.

There are internal pockets to help you organise essentials like your toothbrush, wallet and contact lens kit, and plenty of mesh panels to allow air to circulate without letting rain in. Hydrafort fabric on the flysheet acts as a further shield to stormy skies. It packs down to 75 x 10cm.

Buy now £100.00, Cotswold Outdoor

Coleman Unisex Adult, Darwin 2 Tent

If you’re looking for a roof over your head for just a few days, Coleman’s Darwin tent is an attractive option - mostly thanks to the fact that when packed it weighs just 2.8kg and measures 46 x 15.5 x 15.5cm, slightly bigger than a 10-inch iPad.

Once constructed though, the spacious interior has enough room to insert a double airbed. It has plenty of other magic tricks up its sleeve, from a roomy porch area to store your stuff and shoes, as well as a place to sit and relax before you head out to the festival.

Pitch time, it’s not as fast as a pop-up tent but it’s still fairly quick, using a ring and pin pole attachment to get the extended dome structure up and ready to party.

Buy now £78.96, Amazon

Clostnature Waterproof Camping Tent

To say this tent can fit up to six people is a stretch of the imagination, unless you’re counting your childhood set of Sylvanian Families. It does, however, offer plenty of space for two but with no outside area of porch, you’ll have to be packing light or storing your stuff elsewhere to be comfortable inside.

That said, it has lots going for it, from the fast set-up time of 10min (even if you’re on your own) and 2.72kg in packed weight. It’s also waterproof and has factory-sealed seams to protect against the infamous British weather.

The inner tent is the star of the show here, with a shorter second layer, the flysheet, protecting the mesh panels from the elements. Also available in forest green.

Buy now £40.79, Amazon

Easy Camp Moonlight Yurt - 6 Person

Sure, a yurt may seem a little OTT for the festival experience, but this one can comfortably sleep at least four, including luggage so if you’re only going with a few pals and want to cut down on bags - this may be a worthy option for you.

It’s heavier than the other options on our list (10.6kg), but that’s pretty much the only drawback. Pros include a hydrostatic head, waterproof to 3000mm, 220cm of full head height and plenty of mesh inserts to keep airflow at a pleasing level. It packs down to 69 x 21cm and comes with a 100 per cent polyethylene groundsheet to protect against the damp ground if its been raining before your arrival.

Buy now £185.00, Halfords

Naturehike Mongar Ultralight 20D Silicone Backpacking Tent

In a world where all tents seem to be a variation of green or blue, opt for something that stands out - if only to help you spot your temporary home in the festival’s sprawling tent city.

Available in a vibrant violet hue (although white and two shades of green are also available), this lightweight tent is low and wide, offering enough space for one to sleep or sit cross legged inside with a max height of 100cm. It’s dinky at just 1.8kg and the flysheet offers great wraparound, keeping your inner tent protected from the weather, whatever the conditions are like outside.

Buy now £149.00, Amazon

Verdict

If you’re prepared to invest in festivals now and in the future, we love NEMO Dagger Ridge Porch tent for its practically pocket-sized dimensions and barely-there weight.

Similarly, the Vango Omega 250 tent and Vango Galaxy 300 offer ample space from teeny packed proportions. Buy well, buy once (in a blue moon).

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