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We took the 10 best selling cabin tents on the market today on a camping road trip and put them through their paces….
This is the ultimate guide to Cabin Tents for 2020, period!!!
In this comprehensive review we’ll cover:
- Features to look out for when you’re choosing a cabin tent
- Our in-depth comparison of the best ten different cabin tents on the market
- Our picks for tents that really impressed us – awards for Editor’s Choice, Top Pick, and Best Value
- Our 2020 (MUST HAVE) Buyer’s Guide
- Lots more…
So if you’re looking for a multi-roomed Cabin tent, and want to know the best cabin-style tents available, you’re going to love this guide.
Let’s get started.
- Best Pop Up Camping Tent
- Best 4 Person Cabin Tent
- Best Family Cabin For Camping
- Best Canvas Cabin Tent
- Best 4 Season Cabin Tent
- Best 6 Person Instant Cabin Tent
- Best 9 Person Cabin Tent
- Best 12 Person Cabin Tent
- Best Cabin Tents With A Screened Porch
- Best 3 Room Cabin Tent
- Buyers Guide:
- How To Choose The Best Cabin Tent
- Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
- Our Analysis, Comparisons & Test Results
- Our Final Verdict
A New Place to Call Home…
Lots of folks wonder how cabin tents are different from dome tents.
Sure, they look distinct from one another, but that’s mostly just cosmetic, right?
Beyond looking different, cabin tents are different, with their own pros and cons when compared with the more standard dome tents.
Because of this, we figured it’d be best to give cabin tents their own moment in the limelight, with an entire guide devoted to helping you explore the best cabin tents on the market, and (hopefully) find one that’s an exact fit for what you had in mind.
So here you go: everything you need to know about cabin tents – your key to having some great nights in the Great Outdoors.
Here’s how it works
We’ve gone ahead and identified our five most important aspects of cabin tent design and build.
These will ultimately decide which tents make the cut, and which fell short.
We believe these metrics are not only the most important for rating each tent but also balance out pretty well, not giving one particular type of tent too much of an advantage.
We also provide all the standard product information available for each tent – including capacity, weight, dimensions, and seasonality.
We’ll finish it off with a shortlist of pros and cons, mostly based on our own experience with the tent.
At the end of the review, we’ll aggregate each tent’s scores across these metrics, and rate all our tents from best to worst.
That way, you can find our top-rated cabin tents.
Without further ado, let’s get going!
Best Pop Up Camping Tent
1 – OT QOMOTOP 6 Person Pop Up Tent
- Very good price point
- Extremely easy setup
- Low weight for size
- Durable and tough in most weather
- Lower ceiling for size
- New/untested company
We take our testing very seriously, especially when we’re looking at products coming from new companies.
It often takes a camping gear outfit a few years to figure out their winning formula.
This couldn’t be further from the truth for QOMOTOP’s 6 person pop up tent.
Though initially hesitant…
…we quickly fell head-over-heels in love with this tent, with the ingenuity and uncompromising quality of QOMOTOP really shining through in every feature.
All in all, the tent’s affordably priced, stands up well in all sorts of weather and was in close contention with the other best cabin-style tents for ease of setup.
Somehow, QOMOTOP also balanced these excellent features with a solid understanding of weight management, as the tent comes in at just over 18 lbs.
So what are the drawbacks?
To be honest, there aren’t many.
The tent will get you through most weather with its solid Polyurethane coating in the tent’s corners, and the built-in rainfly canopy worked much better than most other versions we’ve experienced.
The only gripe we had with this tent was its internal height: many 6-person tents hit at least 6 feet at their center, and this tent didn’t quite reach.
If you’re a bit taller, you may have to stoop a bit when entering or exiting the tent.
At the end of the day, a few nights in the wilderness with this tent really sold us on it, and we can’t recommend it enough.
It’s no surprise that it ended up with our TopNotch Editor’s Choice Award.
Best 4 Person Cabin Tent
2 – Coleman 4 Person Cabin Tent
- Very lightweight
- Very portable
- Extremely easy to set up
- Few moving parts
- Low height
- Ventilation could be better
Coleman is one of the better-known names on the market, well-renowned for creating solid tents at super affordable prices.
This is not a company that typically freerides on its reputation, and that shines through when it comes to their 4 Person Cabin Tent.
Rather than trying to create an all-around solid tent, Coleman went into this design with one thing in mind – easy setup.
So what they’ve produced here is a tent that pushes some of its boundaries to become an excellent product in a few key areas.
First and foremost…
…this tent succeeds in the areas where it really matters.
Both for our band of experienced campers, and a couple of our less-savvy friends, the tent practically flew up.
In total, even the most hapless camper can get this tent standing and ready for bed within a minute or two, thanks to an incredibly easy and intuitive setup system.
If you’re looking to get your kids outdoors, it’s the perfect first tent for them.
That easy setup does come at a cost: we had to rate livability a bit lower, especially since the 4-man tent has a little less than 5 feet of clearance at the center of the tent.
Cabin tents are generally marketed for their higher headroom and clearance, so you may start feeling cramped trying to navigate this tent if you’re a larger person.
Best Family Cabin For Camping
3 – Eureka Copper Canyon 6
- Very easy setup
- Spacious sleeping room
- Plenty of ventilation
- Excellent ceiling height
- High price point
Quality and simplicity are often closely tied, and that’s definitely the case with the Eureka Copper Canyon 6.
This tent doesn’t come with all the special features of some of the truly luxurious tents on the market, and that can turn off some of the aspiring campers who might otherwise really enjoy this tent.
Be that as it may…
…this tent is actually an excellent choice for those without a ton of camping experience – and that same simplicity is the key.
The tent is incredibly easy to set up (one of the main factors in our “ease of use” category), which is most likely a result of it not having many of the (often useless) bells and whistles of other tents.
Its simple design, intuitive setup and solid framework make this tent incredibly dependable, no matter where (or when) you’re hoping to go camping with the family.
And the Good news?
With a bit of experience, you can be pitching camp on a moonless night with your eyes closed, if you get my drift.
Now, all of this reliability does come at a cost… the literal cost of the tent.
However, given that the tent performed well in almost all of our metrics there’s an argument to be made that the Copper Canyon 6 is worth every cent.
Best Canvas Cabin Tent
4 – Kodiak Canvas Cabin Tent
- Incredibly spacious
- Rugged and dependable
- Great longevity if taken care of
- High internal ceiling
- Very heavy
- Higher price point
It’s hard to rate canvas cabin tents alongside the rest.
In a sense, these tents tend to play by their own rules, and the metrics we set out don’t always do them justice.
What Kodiak Canvas has created is a work of art and a significant addition to the canvas tent field.
Those who’re willing to commit to this tent will be rewarded for years down the line.
Which brings up this tent’s greatest pulls:
…its longevity, comfort, and durability.
I spent many summers in canvas platform tents at the local boy scout camp, and there is a truly unique allure of the high ceilings, analog design and spacious simplicity of these tents.
It was also nice having a completely waterproof living area, where we could get out of the rain and play cards as a group.
In fact, both the canvas tents on this list contend for our “best cabin tent for rain” spot.
Canvas also lasts a very long time, if you take care of it.
Imagine this tent as the cast iron cooking set of the canvas tent world; it’s much heavier and requires some special maintenance, but it’ll always do its job and you’ll never need to replace it.
Further, this tent also comes with a spacious front porch for when days are nice, adding to the already ample space available. If you don’t have to worry about storing your gear inside, you can stretch out even more.
The quality, durability, and longevity of this tent cost significantly more – and this tent is best-suited for people willing to put in the maintenance and who are going to be spending a lot of time outdoors.
Best 4 Season Cabin Tent
5 – Dream House Cotton Canvas Camping Tent
- Incredibly durable
- You can use it in almost any weather
- Great longevity if taken care of
- Extra high ceiling
- No stovepipe flap for hot camping
- Very high price point
As with the Kodiak, it’s hard to rate the Dream House Cotton Canvas Camping Tent without feeling like you’re selling it short: the truth is, these canvas tents are different beasts entirely.
Durability on any classic canvas tents is through the roof – far higher than with any standard nylon tents.
What does this mean for you?
There’s also the added benefit of being able to easily mend any rips or tears that may occur over time.
Dream House is known for its luxurious “glamping” tents (a term I wouldn’t be caught dead using under normal circumstances).
And though their prices are always going to be higher than a Coleman, Core or Ozark Trail, the quality and longevity pays for itself over time.
On top of that, this tent could weather a nuclear apocalypse (not actually) and if you can find a place to pitch it, you won’t be going anywhere anytime soon.
Pair that with a ceiling that brushes up on 10 feet, and set up that isn’t nearly as hard as it looks, and you get an idea of why people love the classic canvas tents.
Canvas is as heavy as it is weatherproof, so your options are limited to how far you’re willing or able to carry it.
At 84 lbs, this tent and the Kodiak dwarf all other tents on the list.
On top of that, not everyone has the money for this tent up-front, and pricing will always keep these tents out of the mainstream.
If you have the cash, treat yourself to this classic tent.
If not, start saving!
Best 6 Person Instant Cabin Tent
6 – Core 6 Person Instant Cabin Tent
- Very light
- Decently high ceiling for its size
- Helpful added features
- Very quick setup
- Less durable and weather-resistant
- Less insulation for colder camping
Our lightest tent on the list, the Core 6 Person Instant Cabin Tent didn’t initially blow us away, but it quickly grew to become one of our favorite tents in this review.
Like the other pop-up tents on this list, the Core was ridiculously simple to set up, both for our crew and for everyone else who tried it out.
The lightness of this tent can’t be overstated, and its portability meant we gave it great marks for all-around versatility.
It gets better…
At a pinch, you could even take this tent backpacking, especially if you plan on going with a decently-sized group of friends.
However, that lightness means the tent is less weather-resistant than some of the other models out there.
And while the waterproofing materials held up well during our unexpected rainstorm, the differences in temperature between the outside and inside resulted in walls that got a bit slick with condensation.
The ventilation is great for warmer temperatures, but during cooler campouts, the lack of insulation could definitely result in some cooler camping.
Best 9 Person Cabin Tent
7 – Ozark Trail 9 Person Instant Cabin Tent
- Very roomy, even for 9 people
- Great internal height
- Comes with a screened front porch
- Low price for its size
- Not very durable
- Very bulky when set up
As tents get larger they tend to run into a couple of issues.
First, it’s hard to keep the price low.
As a tent needs more material, the cost of producing it is higher, eventually becoming untenable for casual campers.
Large tents also struggle with weather resistance, especially during high winds. When you add in the straight walls of cabin tents, this issue is magnified even more, as the wind can tug and push against the straight surface.
It’s here that Ozark has made some innovative and effective adjustments with their Trail 9 Person Instant Cabin Tent.
The price of their tent speaks for itself: given the size of the tent, the price of a new model is completely affordable, opening this tent up to your friends and family for fun, casual campouts.
In addition to this, Ozark Trail smoothed out some of the sharp angles associated with cabin tents, making this version a bit more sleek and streamlined for high winds.
Though we still felt the gusts during our nights in this tent, it never felt unmanageable.
Finally, I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention the screened-in porch, which adds a good amount of extra space for gear storage, and for lounging in the shade, or out of the rain. This inclusion helped this tent become one of our best family cabin tents.
The Ozark Trail made some sacrifices with this tent to keep the costs low and shows in small ways.
The porch doesn’t include a floor, opening up the opportunity for water to flood the entire tent if the rain gets too bad.
The ten’s overall durability is also a bit questionable, as the manufacturer skipped some of the more formidable weather-proofing we saw in the other tents.
Overall, this tent is perfect for some fun and casual campouts, but won’t hold up as well to more intense camping adventures.
Best 12 Person Cabin Tent
8 – Core Lighted 12 Person Instant Cabin Tent
- Very spacious and comfortable
- Internal lighting
- Pre-attached poles mean easy setup
- Separate rainfly for better water resistance
- High price point
- Internal lighting requires batteries
A tent that can fit 12 people has already accomplished an unlikely feat.
A tent that can do it while providing comfort, space, and an internal lighting system?
It doesn’t seem possible…
Enter the Core Lighted 12 Person Instant Cabin Tent…
This tent is unapologetically cool, without sacrificing any comfort or convenience.
While the system of led lighting inside the tent may seem unnecessary, anyone who’s spent a couple of hours reading by flashlight or lantern will understand how groundbreaking this actually is.
On top of this…
…the tent is wide enough to allow campers to sleep head to toe in two rows, really expanding the potential for internal space.
And even given the huge capacity (we slept 10 without a problem, and had plenty of extra room for gear and air mattresses), you never feel cramped.
How can you beat that?
Well, on top of that, the roof canopy and rain fly can be removed, allowing you to turn off your lights and stargaze during clear summer nights.
This tent is meant for exactly that: fun and easy camping with a huge group of friends, extended family or classmates. You won’t be hauling this tent up the Rockies, but anyone shopping for a 12-man tent already knows that of course.
However, with the high-tech lights comes a high price point.
You’ll be paying for more than the LED lights: you’ll be paying for a massive, high-ceilinged tent that assembles and breaks down quickly, and that all but guarantees some great nights in the campground.
Best Cabin Tents With A Screened Porch
9 – Coleman Elite WeatherMaster Screened Tent
- Screen porch included
- Internal LED lighting
- Easy-open windows
- Good weather resistance
- Lots of weight for its size
- No instant setup features
Though this is the second Coleman tent on our list, the two couldn’t be more different.
Whereas the last tent was a solid and dependable cabin tent, light on features, but including all the basics for a good night, the Coleman Elite WeatherMaster resembles a high-tech bunker with everything you could ever hope for.
Its main feature…
…and the one Coleman clearly markets for this tent – is its system of LED lighting.
While we’ve seen this feature in some of the larger tents, it’s uncommon that such a relatively small tent would include it.
In addition, the tent also includes a screened porch on its left entrance, where you can hang out on a rainy morning or after the fire has died down.
Add in some easy-rolling windows and a specially-designed port for an extension cord, and you have a cabin tent where you’ll feel like royalty!
Yes, you read that right!
On the other hand, the tent doesn’t include instant pop-up features like many of its competitors, so you’ll need to take a little longer to set this one up.
And all the extra materials for the special features bring this tent to a beefy 42 lbs.
Bottom line is – you won’t find another tent of this size with as many special features to increase your camping comfort.
Best 3 Room Cabin Tent
10 – Ozark Trail 3-Room Instant Cabin Tent
- Convenient entrances on three sides
- Fun and innovative design
- Quick and easy setup
- Lots of internal space
- You need to weatherproof it
- Large external surface area for less internal space
We’ve reviewed a few of the largest tents on the market, and up to a point they all have similarities.
They were all basically the same design: with one large, central living area and two attached “bedrooms” on the sides.
Then we came to Ozark Trail’s 3 Room Instant Cabin Tent and everything changed.
Unlike our other tents, the Trail’s three rooms are all roughly the same size and connect in the middle.
And the separation is actually a breath of fresh air from the rest of the field.
Whereas most of the other tents make you feel a bit cramped and constrained – with your sleeping bags laid out side-by-side in the main sleeping area – this tent provides a sense of privacy, which can go a long way when you’re stuck in the woods together.
But wait – there’s more:
…the three separate entry doors are also a nice touch, letting you head outside for the bathroom without stepping over (or on) your friends and family in the process.
Want a cool idea?
You can also isolate the night owls from the early risers, and really customize your tent space in ways you couldn’t otherwise.
The tent also comes with plenty of helpful additions – from an electrical port to ceiling and wall pockets and mesh for storing your wallets, keys, etc.
The three separate rooms give this tent a much larger surface area than other 12-man cabin tents, and that means you’ll need a good amount of base space wherever you decide to pitch.
Why Trust Us?
Now you’ve read our overview of some of the best cabin tents on the market, you’ll be ready to hone in on the perfect choice for your idea of camping.
The first thing I want to bring up is my love of the outdoors and camping. All camping.
I’ve camped in KOAs, backwoods sites, local stomping grounds, unmarked sites and basically anywhere else I could throw up a tent. I’ve camped next to a buffalo herd outside Calgary, beside a river in Montana, and in a public park in Tacoma.
And that’s not to mention the different tents I’ve used as well; canvas platform tents, one-man backpackers, expansive dome tents, my trusty green 4-man, and even a rented teepee in Michigan once upon a time.
In other words, I’ve spent enough nights in enough different places to know a little bit about camping – and I always look forward to new experiences coming down the line.
The whole TopNotch team and I bring all our experience to our testing and reviews, so you can rest assured, you’re benefiting from our expert and unbiased opinions at all times.
How To Choose The Best Cabin Tent
How To Choose The Best Cabin Tent
What Are The Different Types Of Cabin Tent?
Cabin tents are typically split into two main categories – traditional canvas, and modern nylon tents.
These tents are different enough that they could even be considered two distinct varieties.
As far as similarities go, what designates a cabin tent is its straight walls, clear angles, and boxy shape, as compared with the more streamlined dome tents.
The squared and angled shape of these tents provides a higher ceiling, but overall the wind resistance is less.
However, this is where the similarities end.
Traditional canvas cabin tents are usually heavier, more durable, and can easily weather all four seasons with proper setup and modification.
That said, they tend to be more expensive.
They also take a bit longer to set up, as they don’t come equipped with instant pop-up features.
Conversely, nylon tents are much lighter and often come with pop-up technology and pre-attached poles that allow you to set them up in a matter of seconds.
However, the lighter material doesn’t have the same ruggedness or longevity of canvas.
Features To Look Out For
Nylon cabin tents have several innovative features that set them apart from many of the other tents in the field.
If you’re looking for a tent that’s easy to set up, nylon cabin tents are always a great choice: many come with pre-attached poles and a pop-up center, meaning you can have the tent standing and be ready for bed within a minute or two of arriving on a Friday night.
A couple of companies have also experimented with internal tent lighting, using batteries – so no extension cords are necessary.
These systems provide solid lighting throughout the tent, so you can stay up long after the sun has gone down.
How can you beat that?
Winter camping is one of the major benefits of having a canvas tent – which will be able to handle pretty much any weather for a long period of time.
However, their internal temperatures can get frosty without a heat source.
With that in mind, many canvas tents also have openings or flaps for tent stoves.
Product & Specifications Explained
A tent’s specifications can provide valuable information on the kind of camping your tent excels at.
Capacity: Tents with a larger capacity will hold more people, and also more gear and supplies. Typically, the number of people listed takes into account average-sized people and doesn’t leave much room for gear or amenities. Deduct one or two people from the manufacturer’s capacity and you’ll be about there.
Dimensions: This is the overall size of your tent. There are no standard rules for how much space each person requires when companies list their capacity, so dimensions can give you a more complete picture of the tent’s internal space and ceiling height.
Seasons: This refers to how many seasons you can use your tent. Most modern tents are equipped to handle 3 seasons – Fall, Summer, and Spring.
Snow and freezing temperatures require a tougher tent.
Weight: A tent’s weight can tell you how far you’ll be able to carry the tent, especially if you’re backpacking or attempting to hike to your site off-road.
How To Take Care Of Your Cabin Tent
Once again, nylon and canvas cabin tents need different care and maintenance.
Without a doubt, nylon tents are much easier to take care of and are typically very low-maintenance. If your tent gets wet, it’s fine to repack it in the bag – just make sure you set it up and air it out during the next warm and sunny day.
For canvas tents, always make sure you precondition your tent before going out. This means setting up your tent, then wetting it down thoroughly.
Canvas is made from cotton, meaning it’ll shrink when it’s wet for the first time, becoming waterproof afterward.
Never store a canvas tent while wet.
Instead, leave your tent standing until it’s dry, or if this isn’t possible, spread it out as much as you can on your way home, then set it up again immediately to dry.
There are also many helpful guides on mending a canvas cabin tent, should you need them.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Q : What Is A Cabin Tent?
A : A cabin tent is a broad classification for any tent with straight walls and clear angles. This gives the tent a more structured look, similar to a solid cabin.
Q : What Is The Largest Cabin Tent?
A : Cabin tents range anywhere from 2-person all the way up to 16-person tents. Technically, huge wedding pavilions could be considered a form of cabin tent, placing their capacity in the triple-digits!
Q : What Is The Easiest Tent To Put Up?
A: There are several nylon cabin tents that include pop-up technology and preattached poles, meaning you can have your tent standing within 60 seconds (for smaller sizes). Both Ozark Trail and Core make tents with these features. Also, make sure you understand the difference between a “fast pitch” tent vs. an “instant” tent.
Instant tents are those which you don’t really have to do anything but unfold – the poles are pre-attached and will flip open independently. All you have to do is stake them down.
Fast pitch tents are a little faster than usual but you’ll still have some assembly.
You’re now able to make a truly informed decision about which cabin tent’s perfect for you.
But the best part?
You don’t need to!
As you’ll see shortly – we’ve done all the hard work for you.
From researching the best deals to ranking each tent against its competitors, we’re giving you the best resource on the market for finding your perfect tent.
All that’s left is to put all of our ratings, tests, and observations together, showing you how each tent fares against the others in each of our metrics.
Our Analysis, Comparisons & Test Results
Value For Money
For this one, we compared tents based on how much they cost, versus their features.
A tent that costs more could still end up higher on the list, assuming it offers better durability or more helpful amenities than its competition for example.
Value for Money Rating
Ease Of Use
Several of these tents included quick setups, which does factor heavily into the tent’s overall ease of use. Other things to consider include any tricky amenities (lighting systems, etc.) and inconvenient features (zippers that stick, etc).
Ease Of Use Rating
We tested durability by pushing each tent to its limits – and then some.
Mostly, we looked for how well the tent could stand up to ripping and tearing, extreme weather, and other common hazards when you’re in the woods.
Livability is all about comfort, and we rated each tent based on its internal space (and amount of room per sleeper), as well as any added amenities, and how they improved the overall camping experience.
Our best-rated cabin tents were extremely comfortable.
Versatility is a pretty straightforward measure: we’re looking at how many different places you can easily camp with this tent.
For measuring this particular metric, we also looked closely at portability and weight, as these impact how far you can carry the tent off-road.
We also looked at the tent’s durability and weather resistance, for more diverse climates and weather.
Our Final Verdict
Well, we’ve finally made it…
With all the testing, rating and describing out of the way, we can finally cut to the chase and find the very best cabin tent the market has to offer this year.
And… that’s all folks!
Thank you so much for reading our complete guide to cabin tents in 2020; it was plenty of fun testing each of these tents, and there’s so much to take away from the entire experience.
Overall, there are many benefits to buying your very own cabin tent – whether you decide to go with canvas or just regular nylon.
And while these two varieties have their own list of pros and cons, you really can’t go wrong with either.
In the end, you want to find a tent that’ll cover you for the kind of camping you enjoy the most – whether that’s a well- lit campground with your friends or a solo trip to a snowy mountainside.
Whatever you want, a cabin tent’s higher ceilings and straight walls can make you feel right at home!
Here’s a reminder of our TopNotch top three favorite tents – they’re all awesome – we’ve made our choice – now it’s over to you.