The best rooftop tents you can buy
- Rooftop tents attach to the roof of a vehicle or in the bed of a truck to give you an elevated and secure place to sleep while camping.
- Yakima made its name manufacturing and selling high-quality roof racks, and its new rooftop tent is the best one we've tried.
- With the SkyRise Rooftop Tent, Yakima found a way to offer an accessible rooftop tent to both newcomers and veteran campers.
- With an easy-pitch design, a built-in telescoping ladder, durable construction, and a price tag that won't break the bank, it's hard to find a rooftop tent more suitable to a wide range of campers than the SkyRise.
Rooftop tents originated as an alternative method for campers to sleep off the ground while camping. Though the earliest versions existed in places like Australia or Africa to protect campers from predators, many of today's models are geared towards comfort and ease-of-use. For the camper who doesn't exactly like the idea of "roughing it," they're a lifesaver.
Standard rooftop tents attach to a vehicle's roof rack and crossbars and are often placed either on top of the cabin of an SUV or crossover or over the bed of a truck. There's no lack of variety but many of the tents function in a similar way in that they're able to pitch in a matter of minutes, feature a wall-to-wall mattress, and come with a built-in ladder for entry.
A rooftop tent's ability to improve both the comfort and efficiency of camping does come at a cost, however. Most rooftop tents tend to run in the $1,000 to $3,000 range, which is significantly more expensive than a traditional ground tent. But as they continue to grow in popularity, it's not hard to see why they're worth the extra investment.
Pitching and packing a ground tent is as much a test in patience as it is deciphering a puzzle. Newer ground tents do feature easy-pitch designs but compared to a rooftop tent, even the simplest setup could be considered challenging. Rooftop tents often take just one person to pitch and can be fully set up in less than five minutes.
Once set up, rooftop tents offer more than just a comfortable place to sleep. Its high perch creates a unique vantage point for taking in your surroundings, and some even have a window on the roof for nighttime stargazing. Since most have a built-in mattress, there's no need to toss and turn in a sleeping bag either. Use sheets and a comforter, and you'll feel like you never left home.
With so many options, it's hard to pinpoint the cream of the rooftop tent crop. To help, we've took to the task of physically testing and pouring over reviews of the top models currently available. From brands like Yakima and Tepui to Smittybilt and Front Runner, here are the best rooftop tents for every type of camper.
Here are the best rooftop tents you can buy:
- Best rooftop tent overall: Yakima SkyRise Tent
- Best hybrid rooftop tent: Tepui Hybox
- Best multi-person rooftop tent: Freespirit Recreation High Country
- Best rooftop tent for overlanding: Smittybilt Overland Tent
- Best low profile rooftop tent: Front Runner Rooftop Tent
Keep scrolling to check out our top picks.
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Disclosure: This post is brought to you by the Insider Picks team. We highlight products and services you might find interesting. If you buy them, we get a small share of the revenue from the sale from our commerce partners. We frequently receive products free of charge from manufacturers to test. This does not drive our decision as to whether or not a product is featured or recommended. We operate independently from our advertising sales team. We welcome your feedback. Email us at email@example.com.
The best overall
The best hybrid rooftop tent
The best for multiple people
The best for overlanding
The best with a low profile
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