When you’re planning on spending a day outdoors, whether it’s at the beach or at the kid’s soccer game, protecting yourself and your family from the elements is important. While you can lather on SPF to protect you from most UVA and UVB rays from the sun, you’ll need additional protection if you plan on staying outdoors for long stretches of time and are at risk for heat exhaustion. One great tool to help keep your family safe and comfortable are beach tents.
Beach tents come in many shapes, sizes, and functions. There are many on the market, so it’s easy to get overwhelmed. Here’s a round up of some of the best beach tents available to meet you and your family’s needs.
Table of Contents
- Best Rated Tents for Beach Camping
- 1. Best All-Around Beach Tent – Pacific Breeze EasyUp Beach Tent
- 2. Best Beach Umbrella Tent – Sport-Brella Umbrella – Portable Sun and Weather Shelter
- 3. Best Lightweight Beach Tent – iCorer Automatic Pop Up Instant Portable Outdoors Quick Cabana Sun Shelter
- 4. Best Beach Cabana – Lightspeed Outdoors Quick Cabana Beach Tent Sun Shelter
- 5. Best Sport Tent – Genji Sports Instant Beach Star Tent
- 6. Best Beach Canopy and a Solid Family Tent – Outad Beach Tent and Sun Shelter
- 7. Best Option for Transporting – Thermalab Tent World Anti UV Beach Tent
- 8. Best Option for Setting Up and Sun Protection – Lightspeed Outdoors Quick Beach Canopy Tent
- 9. Best Option for When You Want a Different Feel to Your Sun Protection – Otentik Beach SunShade
- 10. Best Baby Beach Tent – BATTOP Baby Pool Tent Pop Up Beach Sun Shelter
- 11. A Deluxe Twist on an Old Classic – Abco Tech Pop Up Tent Automatic Instant Portable Cabana Beach Tent
- 12. A Tried and True Brand for Extra Versatility – Coleman Instant Beach Canopy
- 13. A Good Umbrella Option – Coleman DayTripper Umbrella
- 14. Best Family Beach Tent – WildHorn Outfitters Quick-Up Cabana Style XL Beach Tent
- Buyers Guide-What to Look for When Buying a Beach Tent?
- Advantages of Owning a Beach Tent
- 10 Tips for Choosing the Right Beach Tent
Best Rated Tents for Beach Camping
1. Best All-Around Beach Tent – Pacific Breeze EasyUp Beach Tent
If you’re looking for easy set up and break down, look no further than the Pacific Breeze EasyUp Beach Tent. It’s specially designed with the EasyUp Hub System which allows for the fastest and easiest set up and take down of all its beach tent competitors. This lightweight, compact beach tent offers UPF 50+ sun protection and gives you shelter from the rain and wind during your outdoor activities. It also features large windows for extra ventilation.
The tent is spacious at 87” x 47” x 49”, and it has interior pockets to store your personal items. It’s made of a durable and lightweight fiberglass frame and has waterproof PE flooring. Includes a carrying case, sand pockets, and stakes. For your convenience, the Pacific Breeze EasyUp Beach Tent comes in an XL version.
2. Best Beach Umbrella Tent – Sport-Brella Umbrella – Portable Sun and Weather Shelter
Want more of a beach umbrella rather than a beach tent? The Sport-Brella Umbrella fits the bill. Made in the USA and composed from durable Polyester, the Sport-Brella offers UPF 50+ sun protection, and will keep you safe from more than 99.5% of UVA and UVB rays. This oversized umbrella features side panels for extra protection from wind and rain. The large canopy features windows to protect you from the elements and the side-zippered windows allow for easy airflow and visibility.
Rugged and durable, this 8-foot canopy is made of 210 D Polyester for all-weather protection. It has 4.5 mm steel ribs and a 5 mm steel stretcher. When broken down, the Sport-Brella stores as 54” x 4” x4” and weighs around 9 pounds. Comes with everything you need: a carrying case, 8 steel ground stakes and 3 8-foot tie-down cords.
3. Best Lightweight Beach Tent – iCorer Automatic Pop Up Instant Portable Outdoors Quick Cabana Sun Shelter
Don’t delay your family’s fun: Set up this tent within seconds. The Automatic Pop Up Instant Portable Outdoors Quick Cabana Sun Shelter boasts an innovated pop-up design with no assembly required. The folks at iCorer have made this shelter so that it can pop up within 1 second and fold down within 3 seconds. Its flame-resistant nylon fabric has a UPF 50+ rating to protect you and your family from the sun’s rays.
The large mesh window allows for good ventilation. The Automatic Pop Up Instant Portable Outdoors Quick Cabana Sun Shelter is strong: it has a double type B dense interwoven mesh, enhanced ventilation, and a sleek design. The iCoreer measures 65” x 59” x 43.5” and weighs a miniscule 2.2 pounds. The tent comes with 6 metal ground stakes, sand bag pockets on both side panels and a full-size carrying bag with shoulder strap.
4. Best Beach Cabana – Lightspeed Outdoors Quick Cabana Beach Tent Sun Shelter
Have your tent ready to use at the speed of light! The Lightspeed Outdoors Quick Cabana Beach Tent Sun Shelter has an easy up and down compression hub system that makes set up a breeze. This sun canopy offers a maximum UPF 50+ sun protection and the 3 mesh windows with shades offer maximum ventilation and privacy. It’s kid and dog-durable with a PE floor, thick 8.5 mm fiberglass poles for added stability, and the umbrella has rated 450 mm PU coating for wet conditions.
The Lightspeed Outdoors Quick Cabana Beach Tent Sun Shelter is lightweight at 6.1 pounds and measures 8’ W x 4.5’ H x 4’ H. It also has an additional 4-feet of porch space for children or 2 adults to lounge in. This tent packs down to 40” x 5” x 5” for easy carrying and storage, and comes with an oversized carrying bag, sand pockets, 8 heavy duty plastic stakes, and guylines.
5. Best Sport Tent – Genji Sports Instant Beach Star Tent
Just like opening and closing an umbrella, the Instant Beach Star Tent by Genji Sports can be set up in 2 seconds and folds down in 5 seconds. One of the easiest tents to set up on the market, the Genji Sports Instant Beach Star Tent is durable and lightweight. It offers UV 50+ protective coated 190T Nylon material to protect you and your family from harmful UV rays and it is made from a fiberglass frame and a waterproof PE floor.
Two fine mesh screens block sand and add ventilation to keep you comfortable. The tent and flooring materials meet CPAI-84 fire retardant standards for added safety. The Genji Sports Instant Beach Star Tent weighs only 4.5 pounds and measures 84” x 48” x 53”. Comes with a carrying case, 3 built-in sand pockets, and 4 sand stakes to keep your tent secure against the wind.
6. Best Beach Canopy and a Solid Family Tent – Outad Beach Tent and Sun Shelter
The Outad Beach Tent and Sun Shelter’s innovative design helps maximize your protection from the sun in one simple unit. Wide enough to fit 4 people, this beach tent comes with door curtains, and it’s perfect for the beach, camping, gathering in the backyard, or attending a picnic. The 4 sides come with mesh windows for added ventilation, so you can enjoy a cool breeze as you socialize or relax.
Measuring 84.65” X 84.65” x 49”, the tent is made of 190T polyester material on the outside, and the inner material is 210D Oxford cloth for increased durability and comfort. The Outad Beach Tent and Sun Shelter can be folded into a small size for easy storage and comes with a carrying case for the tent, 8 tent pegs and carrying bag, 4 ropes, and 2 support metal rods and carrying bag.
7. Best Option for Transporting – Thermalab Tent World Anti UV Beach Tent
Handling this tent is a breeze. It’s quick to set up and compact to carry – it pops open automatically and folds back up for easy storage within seconds. Setting this tent apart from the competition is the security buckle that helps protect you and your kids from injury when you remove it from the carrying case.
Perfect for up to 3 people (2 adults or 1 adult and 2 children) in the Thermalab Tent World Anti UV Beach Tent. It measures 75” x 39” x 42”. Coated for UV-protection, this tent will keep you safe in the sun, and features waterproof material for added comfort. The unit comes with a compact carrying case, 4 hanging sand pockets, pegs, and guide ropes.
8. Best Option for Setting Up and Sun Protection – Lightspeed Outdoors Quick Beach Canopy Tent
Pre-threaded poles and an easy up and down hub system makes set up as much of a breeze as the one you’re going to enjoy. This lightweight and simple tent weighs only 7 pounds and measures 8’ x 8’ x 5’ for a good amount of sun protection. Speaking of sun protection, this tent has the maximum UPF 50+ so you can be sure you and your family are protected from the sun’s rays. When you’re ready to take the tent down, it measures 50” x 5’.
The built-in sidewall offers protection from the elements, while the three remaining sides are open for unobstructed views of your family. PE floor is perfect for those with kids or dogs, and the umbrella is rated 450mm PU coating for those instances when you get rained out. Includes an oversized carrying bag, sand pockets, stakes and guylines.
9. Best Option for When You Want a Different Feel to Your Sun Protection – Otentik Beach SunShade
Simplicity is the name of the game with the Otentik Beach SunShade. Weighing only 5 to 6 pounds and similar to the size of a beach towel, it’s convenient for one person to set up. Featuring sandbags in addition to stakes, it’s wind resistant in up to 18 knot winds and offers UPF 50 sun protection. Made from next level materials, the SunShade is made from Italian Sport fabric.
Available in several colors, set up is as easy as 1-2-3. Fill the bags with sand, dirt, or rocks (you can also utilize the stakes for use in grass or snow). Then stretch the SunShade out and place the poles to your desired location. Adjust the position of the poles throughout the day as the sun moves.
10. Best Baby Beach Tent – BATTOP Baby Pool Tent Pop Up Beach Sun Shelter
You want only the best for your baby, so why not give them the best option of beach tents that’s made for them? Designed for babies under 9-24 months, this tent doubles as a mini pool when on the beach. Just dig a little tough in the sand and fill the bottom of the attached pool with water.
Special eco-friendly silver coated fabric ensures sun protection up to UPF 50+ so your baby can stay safe from harmful UV rays. The large mesh window allows air to flow through for easy ventilation. When open, the tent measures 46” x 31” x 28”. Comes complete with 1 tent, 4 pegs, and 1 carrying case.
11. A Deluxe Twist on an Old Classic – Abco Tech Pop Up Tent Automatic Instant Portable Cabana Beach Tent
Auto-setup makes getting this tent ready for use super easy. What’s better? It’s easy to fold into a compact form, too. Fitting 1-2 adults, it is perfect for the easygoing camper. Double doors on the left and right side make it easy to get in and out of this tent.
Don’t sacrifice breathability or privacy: The inner zippered screen and outer zippered nylon layer make it easy to switch between a screen for ventilation and a solid screen to get away from it all. Two additional mesh windows on the front and the back also help circulation. The Abco Tech Pop Up Tent measures 88.6” x 47.2” x 37.4” and comes with a carrying case for the tent, stakes, and rope, and an additional carrying case for accessories.
12. A Tried and True Brand for Extra Versatility – Coleman Instant Beach Canopy
Set up the Coleman Instant Beach Canopy in 3 minutes with 3 steps. 10’ x 10’, this beach canopy offers 100 square feet of shade from the sun’s UV rays and the elements with its UVGuard™ material. Featuring a square canopy and vaulted ceiling, the Coleman Instant Beach Canopy has welded steel feet to keep poles steady on hard surfaces, pre-attached poles with comfort grips to lock the canopy into position, and 2-way roof ventilation keeps the air circulating. Comes with a wheeled carrying case for easy carrying and storage.
13. A Good Umbrella Option – Coleman DayTripper Umbrella
The Coleman DayTripper Umbrella is a throwback to the classic beach umbrellas of days past. Keep it simple: Use a beach umbrella! Measuring 5 feet, 6 inches in diameter, this highly portable shade is perfect for a day lounging on the beach or sitting at the park on the sidelines. Gain powerful protection from the sun with Coleman’s UVGuard™ material. Nearly 7 feet in height, this umbrella pops up and down quickly and easily — you could almost do it one-handed. Gain 24 square feet of shade and tilt to adjust the umbrella for the best sun blocking.
14. Best Family Beach Tent – WildHorn Outfitters Quick-Up Cabana Style XL Beach Tent
If you’re looking for versatility, consider the WildHorm Outfitters Quick-Up Cabana Style XL Beach Tent. It’s multi-functional: Use it as a beach tent, canopy, cabana or as a camping tent. With 56 square feet of floor space and 4’ 8” tall, you’ll have room to spread out and have fun with your family.
WildHorn’s QuickUp automatic frame means you can set up this dynamic tent within seconds, so you can get back to relaxing wherever you are. It’s waterproof with 210T Polyester Ripstop, boasts thick 300D Oxford flooring, and has a sturdy 9.5mm fiberglass frame. This tent is built to last. Chill under the canopy or lounge inside the breezy, well-ventilated tent — the choice is yours. The tent includes 2 extendable canopy poles, 2 detachable side shades, 2 sand screws, 8 stakes, and a carrying case.
Buyers Guide-What to Look for When Buying a Beach Tent?
Beach tents come in all shapes, sizes, and materials. Which one you should choose will vary depending on your family’s size and needs. Plan on heading to the beach often? Pick a beach tent that has a sturdy, waterproof bottom with pockets to hold sand, dirt, and rocks in order to anchor it to the ground. Want to be able to use the tent on different surfaces, such as your backyard? Pick a tent with solid stakes for added security.
Another thing to consider is the amount of shaded area that you want. Most beach tents can comfortably fit two adults at a time, or one adult and two children. Some tents are made for children, like the BATTOP Baby Pool Tent Pop Up Beach Sun Shelter, and some are made for larger groups, like the Coleman Instant Beach Canopy. The size of the tent will depend on the size of your party.
Another key feature of any prospective beach tent that you purchase will be the UPF rating. The UV Protection Factor, or UPF rating, measures the UV protection that a particular fabric provides. It’s similar to the SPF rating used in sunscreens. The best beach tents have a UPF rating of 50+. What does that mean? A fabric with a UPF of 50 only allows 1/50th of the UV radiation that it encounters to pass through it. Put another way, it blocks 98% or 49/50ths of the UV radiation. Pretty good protection. The highest UPF rating is 50+.
There are a number of factors that combine to make the UPF of a fabric. The weave of the fabric, color, and weight/cover factor play a part in determining the UPF rating. The tighter the weave, darker the color, and heaver the weight, the better the material is at deflecting the sun’s rays. Be sure to check the UPF rating of any beach tent you purchase, and aim for a tent that has UPF 50 or better.
Advantages of Owning a Beach Tent
You want to keep your family safe, which is why you use the highest SPF sunscreen to protect your skin from harmful sun rays which can cause cancer. You practice all sorts of good practices for staying safe outside, such as staying hydrated, and trying to remain cool. A beach tent can help you achieve all these goals.
Choosing a beach tent can help keep your family safe from UVA and UVB rays. Prolonged exposure to the sun without proper protection increases the risk of sun spots, heat exhaustion, and skin cancer. Sun or age spots are a type of skin damage that occurs from prolonged exposure to the sun. While they’re generally benign, they appear commonly on the hands, face, and neck, and will increase in number with the more exposure to the sun your skin gets.
Heat exhaustion is caused by your body overheating, and can be a medical emergency if not treated immediately. The most common culprit is prolonged exposure to high temperatures or physical exertion in high temperatures. The summer months are the most common time for the condition.
Heatstroke is the most serious form of heat injury, and occurs when the body’s temperature rises to 104 F or above. Left untreated, heatstroke can cause organ damage and other serious complications.
There are different types of skin cancer, however, the condition is related to the overgrowth and abnormal growth of skin cells. It often is caused by damage to skin cells, such as from ultraviolet radiation. UV exposure can cause the cells to multiply and form malignancies in your skin.
All of these medical conditions are affected by exposure to the sun and high summer temperatures. By practicing sun safety, such as staying hydrated, applying a solid SPF sunscreen, and having proper shelter in place to take breaks when playing in the sun, you can put your best foot forward towards keeping your family safe and healthy.
10 Tips for Choosing the Right Beach Tent
Still overwhelmed by your choices for beach tents? Here are some quick tips to help you narrow down your choices.
1. Think of your group
Do you have a large family, or will you be using the tent frequently? While some tents will claim they can support several people, realistically look at the dimensions of the tent to determine if it will work for your family. Most beach tents will comfortably fit up to two full adults or one adult and 2 children. Think about if you need add-ons from a tent such as the WildHorn Outfitters Quick-Up Cabana Style XL Beach Tent, which features a beach tent and added canopy for extra sun coverage.
2. Consider the conditions
Most of the best beach tents are waterproof to some degree, but not all. Check the specifications on the materials to see if they’re designed to be used in different weather conditions. Durability in high wind is also important. For instance, the Otentik Beach SunShade has been tested to withstand winds up to 18 knots according to the manufacturer. If you plan to use your beach tent in places other than the beach, make sure the materials are graded to withstand a variety of conditions.
3. Make sure it’s easy to use
When you’re toting kids, pets, and an ice cooler, the last thing you want to worry about is setting up several pieces to a beach tent. Many beach tents have easy or auto pop-up, so they come already assembled in one main structure. You can set up the tent within seconds and get back to enjoying your time in the sun.
4. What’s it made of? (Materials matter)
Highly durable Polyester and PE materials are standard for most tents. While beach tents can come in a variety of materials and fabrics, the important thing to consider is the UPF rating. The higher the UPF rating, the better the material is at protecting you from the sun. Choose a beach tent that has a UPF rating of 50+, as this will provide the maximum amount of coverage and block out 98% of UVA and UVB rays.
5. Weight matters.
You don’t want to lug around another 10 to 15 pounds with all your other vacation tools. Find a beach tent that isn’t too heavy for you to carry around. Many beach tents are easy to set up in either one or just a few steps, and some even come with wheeled carrying cases, such as the Coleman Instant Beach Canopy. Many beach tents weigh only a few pounds. If the tent is made from fiberglass rods, you can reasonably expect the tent to be more portable than competitors.
6. Ventilation is key
In the hot summer days, beach tents that have extra windows for ventilation are key. Using the natural breeze will help you and your family stay cooler in the sun and combat the warm temperatures and heat exhaustion. A good beach will either have an open design for free movement of air, or one or more windows with mesh screens. If you plan to be in an area with mosquitoes, the mesh screens will come in handy for keeping your family free of bites.
7. Do you need additional add-ons and features?
Interior pockets for storage of your personal items, side canopies, and other add-on features are nice to have, especially when you’re trying to keep a large group comfortable. Think about what you and your family need and value when relaxing.
8. Flooring is the foundation
A durable floor is key when you’re dealing with kids and pets. Look at the weight and type of material used as part of the flooring of your beach tent. Will it hold up to dirty paws, puppy claws, and excited kids? Can it withstand multiple uses throughout different summers? Also, if you plan to use your tent primarily at the beach, is the floor waterproof? These are all important questions to ask when looking at a potential beach tent.
9. How versatile is the tent?
If you want to use your beach tent for places other than the beach, you’ll want a beach tent that’s versatile, spacious, and easily transportable. Choose a beach tent that’s lightweight and comes with a durable carrying case. You need a tent that can withstand a variety of weather conditions, too, so make sure it’s rated to withstand wind and rain.
Price is often a key factor in making a decision on any product, including a beach tent. While there are a number of excellent beach tents on the lower end of the spectrum, look at all the factors above to determine what type of tent is truly best for your family and their needs. From there, create a budget that’s realistic for you and determine what type of beach tent will be the most useful for you and your family.
Buying a beach tent doesn’t have to be a hard task. Find a beach tent that can fit your family and your budget for years to come.