Best 8-Person Tent for Family-Style Camping

Large tent in the woods, best 8-person tent for family camping

Last updated: December 21st, 2022

Short on time? Our pick for the best 8-person tent is the North Face Wawona 8.

The best 8-person tents to get everyone outside–whether you’re camping on the coast or heading to the mountains.

As a kid, sleeping in the same tent as all of my friends was fun. We crammed in like sardines. 

We didn’t know anything different from the good ol’ dome tent with sloping tent walls. We just knew that whoever slept in the corners was sure to wake up damp.

Thankfully as an adult, there are now better options for group camping trips. I can climb into my sleeping bag knowing I’ll stay dry and not feel claustrophobic.

In fact, there are so many options for 8-person tents that it can be overwhelming. 

That’s why I put together this guide to choosing the best 8-person tent, no matter your camping style.

In this article, I’ll cover everything from the best 8-person family tents to the most durable tents, as well as the best overall pick, all based on my many camping experiences over the years.

Read on to find the best tent for your next outdoor adventure!

Note: this post contains affiliate links, which help run this site at no extra cost to you so I can keep providing free travel advice and tips.

A woman setting up a large 8-person tent in the forest.

Here’s a Quick Look at Our Recommendations

#1 Core Instant Cabin Tent

Best Cabin Tent

Core 9 Person Instant Cabin Tent

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Floor area: 126 ft²
Weight: 30.5 lbs
Height: 78 inches
Waterproof: No, but water-resistant
Doors: 3Features: Quick setup, preattached poles, electrical cord access port, and room divider

If you’re looking for 8-person instant tents, you’re most likely not heading out on a big backcountry expedition.

Whether it’s a family camping trip or a fun weekend away with friends, the Core 9 Instant Cabin Tent is perfect for car camping in the middle of summer.

It can handle 8 to 9-person groups with ease–the tent is even standing height and fits two queen mattresses inside.

The Core also has a lot of premium features, such as a large T door that opens an entire side, a curtain to make two rooms, and full mesh ceiling panels.

The panels are ideal for staying at a campground since they allow for light and ventilation, even when the windows are closed for privacy.

Vents close to the ground allow cool air to circulate in while hot air rises out of the roof.

The Core 9 is also an instant tent–the entire tent pops together in under two minutes.

Overall, this is one of the best 8-person camping tents because it balances everything you’ll need for a summer camping trip. 

It’s a high-quality tent with lots of room and under 35 lbs. Plus, as far as 8-person instant tents go, this is a very affordable tent.

While it’s too big and heavy to carry around, the Core 9 is the perfect size and weight to throw in your car.

Otherwise, if you need a lighter or more waterproof tent, check out the Coleman 8-Person Instant Cabin Tent or the Eureka Copper Canyon

These are both awesome cabin-style tents with room dividers, a lot of interior storage, and still plenty of room for two air mattresses.

PROS

  • Panoramic mesh ceiling panels
  • Easy to set up
  • Room divider
  • Plenty of wall storage inside the tent

CONS

  • Heavy to carry
  • Only seam taped (as opposed to seam-sealed, which is more water-resistant)
  • Rainfly only offers partial coverage

#2 Gazelle T8

Best Pop-Up Tent

Gazelle T8 Pop Up Tent

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Floor area: 110 ft²
Weight: 56 lbs
Height: 78 inches
Waterproof: Yes
Doors: 2
Features: 90-second setup, 10 mesh windows, and extra heavy-duty design

The Gazelle T8 is one of the best 8-person tents on the market with pre-attached poles.

While it’s heavy, its extra tough design puts it well ahead of other pop-up tents.

The T8 has six oversized wall pockets, four large canopy nets, and designated spots for a lantern or nightlight.

It also has removable bathtub floors and a heavy 210 denier shell with a waterproof rating of 5000 mm HH, so you can be sure it will keep you dry.

Additionally, the shell carries a UV rating of 50+.

And for an 8-person tent, there’s enough interior storage to actually keep everyone’s camping gear organized and off the ground, even with a big group.

Lastly, roll-up sides on the rainfly offer protection when you need it and ventilation when it’s dry.

The T8 is one of the best 8-person tents on this list because it’s the toughest pop-up tent you’ll find.

Most pop-up tents just aren’t that rugged–they’re designed for convenience over performance.

However, the Gazelle T8 excels in both categories, giving you a secure, comfortable shelter in all weather conditions that snaps together in under 90 seconds.

PROS

  • Removable floors–ideal for cleaning or creating a “wet room”
  • Exceptional interior storage pockets and organization
  • One-year warranty

CONS

  • No footprint included
  • Heavy, even for an 8-person tent
  • Fiberglass tent poles are prone to snapping in freezing temperatures

#3 Coleman Instant Cabin Family Tent

Best Family Camping Tent

Coleman Instant Cabin Family Tent

⭐⭐⭐⭐
Floor area: 140 ft²
Weight: 41.8 lbs
Height: 77 inches
Waterproof: No, but water-resistant
Doors: 2
Features: Fits two queen-sized air mattresses, WeatherTec system, and pitches in under a minute

The Coleman 8-Person Instant Cabin Tent is another one of the fastest-pitch tents on this list–it pitches in under a minute!

With the Coleman Instant Cabin, you can set up camp quickly without arguments and before the kids go stir-crazy, which is essential for enjoying family camping trips.

Plus, it’s a big tent, a giant actually. This freestanding tent is only second in size to the Vango Marino II Air 850XL.

If you’ve been on a camping trip with the whole family before, you know that having a large tent with room for everyone’s stuff is important.

One thing to note is that this tent isn’t the best for rain because there isn’t a separate rain fly, but the extra thick nylon walls at least offer wind resistance.

And as I mentioned above, the setup is fast, but it will probably take two people because of the weight. Since it’s on the heavy side, don’t plan to take it very far from the car. 

Overall, the Coleman 8 tent is the best family camping tent on this list because it’s just so simple.

Family tents should be big, roomy, and make life easier, which this Coleman tent certainly does.

With this tent, you’ll have a shelter that makes you feel like you’re at home within minutes of getting to camp.

And the nice thing about this tent is that it also won’t break the bank if you’re on a budget but don’t want to sacrifice high-quality features.

PROS

  • Sets up in under a minute
  • One-year warranty
  • Interior storage pockets
  • Big tent features without the expensive price tag

CONS

  • No full-coverage rainfly
  • Fairly heavy

#4 Coleman Montana

Best Tent Under $200

Coleman Montana Tent Under $200

⭐⭐⭐
Floor area: 112 ft²
Weight: 24.5 lbs
Height: 74 inches
Waterproof: Yes
Doors: 1
Features: Hinged door with extended awning, room for three queen-sized air beds, WeatherTec system, and storage pockets

The Coleman Montana is one of the most affordable tents on this list, but it still has a surprising amount of special features.

This 8-person Coleman tent comes with a hinged door and awning, mesh ceiling panels, and good ventilation.

While the rainfly isn’t full coverage, it covers most of the tent. Plus, you can still see outside, even in the rain.

This feature isn’t common for a cheap 8-person tent–most have either a stuffy full-coverage fly with no ventilation or a subpar “built-in” rainfly.

You’ll also fall in love with the ease of the hinged door, which makes getting in and out of the tent easier. 

The Montana’s peak center height is 74 inches, but due to the dome shape of the tent, adults probably can’t stand up near the walls like they can in cabin tents.

The Coleman Montana 8-person tent might not be the biggest or fanciest tent on this list, but it will get the job done for a weekend in nature.

And at less than $200, this is a great choice for anyone looking for inexpensive family tents.

PROS

  • Hinged door and included awning
  • Can still see outside with the fly on
  • Lighter than many tents this size
  • Trusted Coleman WeatherTec system

CONS

  • Slow conventional pitch–takes about 15 minutes to set up
  • Only one door
  • Because of the dome tent style, you can only stand up entirely in the center of the tent

#5 Wenzel Klondike Tent

Best Tent With a Screened Room

Wenzel Klondike Tent With Screened Room

⭐⭐⭐⭐
Floor area: 98 ft²
Weight: 27.3 lbs
Height: 78 inches
Waterproof: Yes
Doors: 1
Features: Large screen room, mesh ceiling panels, and room for two queen air beds

The Wenzel 8-Person Klondike Tent features a large screen room for flexibility and comfort at camp.

Use the screen room as a convenient sun shelter, picnic room, bug-free porch, gear storage area, or another place to sleep once the sun goes down.

Zip-up windows provide privacy when you turn the screen room into a second bedroom. In order to fit eight campers comfortably, three people would need to sleep in the screened room.

And the Wenzel is more than a large camping tent with porch features. 

It also has extra sturdy fiberglass poles and an included rainfly, so the tent’s interior will stay dry even in light rain.

Plus, the multiple vents along the ground and roof maintain air circulation when the rain fly is on. 

Air circulation is a key component of the best 8-person tents because good ventilation is super important after a week of no one showering. 

When it’s not raining, you can remove the fly and enjoy the views and stargaze through mesh roof panels.

Mesh ceilings are also great for privacy–you can close the side windows so no one can see inside, but still get light and ventilation into the tent.

The screen room is the stand-out feature of the Wenzel Klondike. In fact, it has the largest screen room of any tent on this list. 

However, take note that it’s a couple of inches shorter than the rest of the tent.

So, if you have extra-tall campers or if standing height is a priority, you’ll want to keep that in mind.

Prefer to have a separate screened room or more screened space? Read our guide to the best screen rooms for camping.

PROS

  • Low-high ventilation–ground and ceiling vents for air circulation
  • 10-year warranty
  • Large screen room
  • Full mesh ceiling
  • Shock-corded fiberglass poles for a sturdier frame

CONS

  • Can’t sleep all eight people in the main room
  • Only two interior pockets

#6 Coleman Tenaya Lake

Best Luxury Tent

Coleman Tenaya Lake Tent

⭐⭐⭐⭐
Floor area: 117 ft²
Weight: 33.8 lbs
Height: 80 inches
Waterproof: Yes
Doors: 1
Features: Built-in closet, hinged door, WeatherTec system, electrical port, and can fit two queen mattresses

The Coleman Tenaya Lake Cabin Tent is one of the best luxury camping tents on the market.

It offers an unmatched balance of low price and light weight among large two-room tents. Plus, nothing says “glamping” like having your own closet.

The Coleman Tenaya Lake features a unique 2×2 ft closet with shelves and a hanger rod, so you can keep your clothes organized and wrinkle-free.

A closet might seem like overkill for camping, but it’s actually a practical feature.

Having a closet means your gear will stay dry, organized, and accessible from the inside, without taking up living space in the tent.

With this tent, you can sleep eight people comfortably. 

You can also enjoy the standard features of Coleman tents like WeatherTec waterproofing system, interior pockets, mesh ceiling panels, and an electrical cable port.

One thing to note is that the Tenaya Lake tent is advertised as an instant tent, but it actually takes about nine minutes to set up. 

With that said, compared to other tents of this size, nine minutes is still pretty fast.

If you’re looking for an affordable luxury tent, the Coleman Tenaya Lake is a stand-out pick.

PROS

  • Color-coded poles and hubs
  • Wheeled carry bag
  • Included rainfly (better than an integrated rainfly)
  • Electrical cord port and storage pockets

CONS

  • Not fast-pitch
  • Only one door
  • Fiberglass poles add weight

#7 Nemo Wagontop 8

Best Lightweight Spacious Tent

Nemo Wagontop 8 Tent

⭐⭐⭐⭐
Floor area: 125 ft²
Weight: 26 lbs
Height: 80 inches
Waterproof: Yes
Doors: 2
Features: Unique pole design, lightweight, and large vestibule.

The Nemo Wagontop 8 is a solid choice for anyone who likes a lightweight roomy tent. 

Nemo is known for their kick-ass backpacking gear and its Wagontop tent is no exception. 

As I mentioned above, this baby is lightweight for an 8-person tent but still oh-so-spacious, which is hard to find. In fact, Nemo’s Wagontop is the lightest tent of this size. 

And although it’s not a cabin-style tent, the unique pole formation creates near-vertical walls. 

Additionally, panoramic windows and clip window closures (instead of zippers) provide more ventilation even when the windows are closed for privacy.

The rainfly is also integrated into the waterproof exterior of this tent. With 1500mm waterproof polyester sides and floor, you’ll be fine in summer sprinkles.

With that said, despite being advertised as a four-season tent, I don’t recommend the Nemo Wagontop for winter downpours. 

The single-wall weatherproofing and clip-closure windows just don’t offer as much protection from the elements as an additional rainfly and zippers.

Serious all-weather campers should consider ordering a footprint for extra protection from ground moisture or looking at other more waterproof tents.

PROS

  • Super lightweight for its size
  • Simple quick-clip setup
  • Big vestibule for even more space

CONS

  • Built-in rainfly with single-wall weatherproofing
  • Clip-closure windows instead of zippers are less waterproof

#8 The North Face Wawona 8

Best Tent with a Vestibule

The North Face Wawona 8 Tent

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Floor area: 112 ft²
Weight: 24 lbs, 3 oz
Height: 78 inches
Waterproof: Yes
Doors: 3
Features: Waterproof material, rain fly, and large vestibule

The North Face Wawona 8 is the best tent with a vestibule and–dare I say–the overall best 8-person tent on this list.

It has tons of useful features, including a giant vestibule that will provide shade and keep your shoes and gear dry in any rain storm. 

Vestibules are an important feature in any tent that I purchase. They add storage space and give me a chance to take off my shoes or muddy gear before entering the tent.

Just note that while screened rooms offer a fully sectioned-off space for hanging out away from bugs, vestibules typically aren’t screened in. 

If bugs aren’t a deal-breaker in your area, the Wawona vestibule has enough space for a dinner table or lounging with a book away from the sun or rain. 

You can even cook meals under cover without the danger of lighting a camp stove inside the tent itself.

The weatherproofing on this tent is also a step up from some of the cheaper two-room tents on this list. 

To reduce carry weight, the rain fly isn’t full coverage. Still, the waterproof side panels offer weather protection that will keep you dry day after day.

Lastly, the Wawona is a 3-season tent with DAC MX poles that are lightweight with the strength and flex to survive heavy winds.

Looking for even more sun protection or a separate shaded hangout space? Read our guide to the best camping canopies.

PROS

  • Large vestibule
  • Lightweight DAC MX poles
  • Room dividers

CONS

  • Rainfly is not full coverage
  • The vestibule isn’t screened in

#9 Eureka Copper Canyon LX 8

Best Multi-Room Tent

Eureka Copper Canyon LX 8 tent.

⭐⭐⭐⭐
Floor area: 130ft²
Weight: 34 lbs
Height: 84 inches
Waterproof: Yes
Doors: 2
Features: Screened windows and roof and cabin-style design

If your family is looking for a roomy multi-room tent, look no further than the Eureka Copper Canyon LX 8

Two doors, one on either side, and a room divider make the Eureka Copper Canyon feel like two tents in one. 

Let the kids sleep in one room while you sleep in the other, without being too far away. Or you can share the tent with another family and sleep in separate rooms for added privacy.

The Eureka Copper Canyon XL is my top pick for multi-room tents because it’s optimal for families who enjoy warm weather camping and the cabin walls optimize standing height. 

It has plenty of interior space for eight people. Plus, the mesh roof and mesh windows provide ventilation to keep everyone comfortable, even on hot nights.

There are no vestibules quite like the one on the Wawona tent, but a small overhang protects the front door when entering and exiting in the rain. 

This cabin tent stands at a whopping 84 inches, comfortable for your tallest friends to stand without hitting their heads on the gear loft. 

There are also plenty of pockets to help keep track of everyone’s personal items. And only three tent poles and quick clips make for a straightforward step up.

The Eureka Copper Canyon is all-in-all one of the best multi-room 8-person tents on this list.

PROS

  • Ventilation from large mesh windows and roof
  • Large floorspace
  • Cheaper than similar tents
  • Zippered electrical port

CONS

  • Steel and fiberglass poles are heavier than aluminum
  • Rainfly isn’t full coverage
  • Windows close using hook/loop fasteners

#10 Vango Marino II Air 850XL

Best Inflatable Tent

Vango Marino II Air 850XL inflatable tent.

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Floor area: 193.6 ft²
Weight: 58.7 lbs
Height: 79 inches
Waterproof: Yes
Doors: 2
Features: Fits four queen air mattresses, dark room technology, and a 60-second setup

The Vango Marino II Air 850XL offers something that other 8-person tents on this list can’t: no poles. It’s also a goliath with room for the whole family.

Don’t be intimidated by this air-beam technology. The setup is as simple as inflating the air beams and staking out the guy lines. 

I don’t know about you, but I have pets and I’d nearly given up on the idea of owning anything inflatable. 

This isn’t an air mattress though: there are no air compartments that your dog might step on.

As far as durability, air beams are also an excellent option for windy weather. They’re able to flex without snapping and bend and return to their original position.

Vango’s Marino II is also made with a 4000mm waterproof coating. That’s even more than the Ayamaya Camping Tent, which has an outstanding 3000mm. 

In addition to the sound structure, Vango designed this tunnel tent with two bedrooms on either end and a living room space in the middle. 

Believe me, with eight people, you’ll appreciate having separate rooms for sleeping and relaxing.

Additionally, the entryways to the bedrooms are made of nightfall fabric to block out light.

This means you won’t wake up at 5 am with the sun, or at 3 am when someone from the other bedroom uses their headlamp to make a portapotty run.

Inflatable tents are still relatively new technology, which means most are still in the $1000-$2000 range. 

However, the Vango Marino II is surprisingly in the $600 range, comparable to similar (and lesser) conventional tents of the same size.

If you’re looking for an inflatable tent, this is the best 8-person tent you’ll find without having to sell a kidney to pay for it.

PROS

  • No confusing poles to attach, inflate and go!
  • Darkroom tech
  • 4000mm waterproofing
  • Giant floor space

CONS

  • Bedrooms have minimal ventilation without opening the doors
  • Very heavy

#11 Whiteduck Canvas Cabin Tent

Best for 4-Season Camping

Whiteduck Canvas Cabin Tent for 4 seasons.

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Floor area: 140 ft²
Weight: 66 lbs
Height: 78 inches
Waterproof: Yes
Doors: 2
Features: Optional fire retardant material, double-layered windows and doors, and galvanized steel poles

The Whiteduck Canvas Cabin Tent is not like the other tents on this list: it’s rugged, simple, and ready for 4-season camping.

For a simple cabin tent, the Whiteduck canvas tent is packed with features. 

If you’re looking for a truly durable tent for eight people, this is it. 

It’s made from high-quality materials and is one of the most durable 8-person tents on this list. Plus, it’s a truly massive tent.

All seams are double-stitched, corners are reinforced, and the fabric is treated for water, mildew, and UV resistance.

You can also choose the fire retardant finish if you want more peace of mind (especially while camping with kids).

Additionally, the sun reflective roof keeps you cool during hot-weather camping and the canvas is breathable.

The doors and windows also have integrated No-See-Um mesh for privacy and to keep the bugs out, which isn’t standard for a canvas tent.

Lastly, this quality tent includes an electrical outlet port and organizer pockets. 

If you want luxury all year, Whiteduck 8-person tents are where it’s at.

PROS

  • Breathable fabric that’s ideal for 4-season camping
  • Plenty of windows for ventilation and viewing
  • High-quality and durable

CONS

  • Very heavy
  • Awning, but no vestibule

#12 Big Agnes Bunk House 8

Best for Wind

Big Agnes Bunk House 8 tent

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Floor area: 104 ft²
Weight: 22 lbs. 15oz.
Height: 82 inches
Waterproof: Yes
Doors: 2
Features: Aluminum poles, two vestibules, room dividers, and 16 storage pockets

The Big Agnes Bunk House is the best 8-person tent for wind for a couple of reasons. There are two key factors in wind and weather protection on a great tent: pole material and the rainfly.

In terms of the first key factor, the aluminum poles on this tent are fantastic and create a strong frame. 

While fiberglass tent poles are prone to snapping under too much pressure, aluminum poles will bend. 

Though both are undesirable, a bent pole that can bend back is much better than a broken pole. 

In terms of the second factor, the full-cover rainfly on this tent does a good job of keeping the wind out. The rain fly reaches all the way to the ground, covering both vestibules. 

And with 1,500mm polyurethane-coated waterproofing, you’ll be ready for surprise storms in spring, summer, and fall. 

Big Agnes doesn’t skimp on storage space either. There are two vestibules for storing gear out of the way and out of the weather.

The sleeping area also has two corner bin pockets and 16 smaller pockets for personal items. Plus, ceiling loops allow you to add gear lofts. 

On top of everything, the Big Agnes Bunk House has two doors and a removable room divider for ease of entry and added privacy.

And as a bonus, for fair-weather camping in the summer, you can pitch the Bunk House like a canopy and use it for shade at picnics and festivals. 

Lastly, at 22 lbs, it’s lighter and more portable than most other 8-person tents. 

The Bunk House might not be realistic for backpacking expeditions, but backpack straps on the carry bag make it possible to at least reach the most secluded site at the campground.

PROS

  • Tons of storage
  • Lighter than most 8-person tents
  • Aluminum poles are durable in low temperatures and wind
  • Good waterproof protection

CONS

  • The poles that turn the front vestibule into an awning are not included
  • Footprint sold separately

#13 Ayamaya Camping Tent

Best Tent for Rain

Ayamaya Camping Tent

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Floor area:  100 ft²
Weight: 26.9 lbs
Height: 65 inches
Waterproof: Yes
Doors: 2
Features: Ultra waterproof rain fly, double-walled, two vestibules, and rear vent

With double the standard water resistance, the Ayamaya Camping Tent is one of the best waterproof 8-person tents on the market.

This waterproof tent has double-sided zippers, allowing you to close the vestibules and windows from the inside and hunker down to wait out the storm.

The full-coverage fly with integrated vents also ensures cross ventilation even in the rain, which is necessary for long camping trips with eight people.

Additionally, guy lines extend out in all directions to secure this tent to the ground on windy days.

With that said, if your main concerns are wind and freezing temperatures, consider purchasing aluminum replacement poles or check out the Big Agnes Bunk House or Vango Marino II Air 850XL.

However, if staying dry is your top priority, what really matters is the 3000 mm waterproof rating.

Ayamaya has double the base standard waterproofing, which is very rare for a large family tent.

Roll up the windows and stake out the vestibules for fresh air and sun protection or take the fly off completely for panoramic views on warm days.

I’ve found that most other tents advertising durability in heavy rain have oversights like windows that don’t zip closed or a partial coverage rainfly. 

That’s not the case with the Ayamaya camping tent. This tent is built like an above-ground submarine.

PROS

  • Unparalleled waterproof coating on the fly
  • Designed for cross ventilation
  • Double wall design

CONS

  • Lower standing height than other tents
  • Fiberglass poles instead of sturdier aluminum
  • With the rainfly fully zipped, it can get stuffy

#14 Whiteduck Alpha Canvas Wall Tent

Best for Cold Weather

Whiteduck Alpha Canvas Wall Tent

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Floor area:  120 ft²
Weight: 88 lbs
Height: 99 inches
Waterproof: Yes
Doors: 1
Features: Aluminum poles with steel reinforcement and clear polyvinyl windows to keep warmth inside

The Whiteduck Alpha Canvas Wall Tent is meant to be lived in and enjoyed all year round. 

It’s hard to enjoy camping when you’re shivering and miserable, which is where the Whiteduck Alpha Canvas tent comes in to make sure that never happens. 

Whiteduck went the extra mile to make sure that heat stays in and rain, wind, and snow stay out. 

Double-layered doors and triple-layered windows prevent heat from escaping and drafts from entering. 

A stove jack with a flap in the ceiling allows for indoor heating with a tent stove. Meanwhile, clear polyvinyl windows make it so that you can see outside without sacrificing warmth.

During the summer, open up the windows and doors for ventilation. A mesh screen will protect you from bugs while you enjoy the fresh air. 

There are so many sizing options for this tent that you can easily bump up to the 10, 12, or even 18-person tent if you like extra room for glamping or living all year.

The use of aluminum poles is very important for camping in freezing temperatures. 

Fiberglass poles run the risk of snapping or shattering if they get too cold. And steel poles are stronger than fiberglass or aluminum, but much too heavy. 

However, aluminum poles offer the optimal amount of strength and portability.

As mentioned with the previous canvas tent, canvas is more breathable than typical polyester or nylon tents. 

Canvas tents do well in all weather, but if you want extra waterproofing (I always do!) you can easily purchase this tent pre-treated with water repellent.

PROS

  • Aluminum poles are lightweight and durable
  • Canvas is breathable–best for four-season camping
  • Multiple layers to keep warmth inside
  • Stove jack with flap

CONS

  • Extremely heavy, not easily portable
  • No room dividers
  • The floor space is less than expected for the weight and pricepoint

What to Look for in an 8-Person Tent

Large white 8-person tunnel tent set up in the mountains.

Size

The average 8-person tent will hold eight people, but not necessarily in comfort.

Most tents (regardless of their rated size) feel cramped with the full number of people in them.

If you want every camper to have adequate personal space, check the tent’s diagram of how it’s supposed to be used for sleeping.

If there’s no open floor space while eight sleeping bags are rolled out, it won’t be the easiest tent to move around in.

Make sure to size up to a large tent with plenty of extra space for maximum comfort.

Weatherproofness

If you want your tent to be waterproof, make sure it has an external rainfly, not an “integrated” fly (which is actually no rainfly at all, just waterproof fabric and zipper covers).

A full-coverage fly is best. It will cover the entire tent, ground to ceiling.

Look for fabric rated to at least 1500mm in a hydrostatic head (HH) test, which is the baseline requirement for waterproof fabric.

However, even the best tents will need to be re-waterproofed from time to time (these are our picks for the best tent waterproofing products).

Wind resistance is another problem.

Make sure the tent uses strong poles that won’t snap (aluminum is best) and has plenty of tie-down points or guy lines.

Using aluminum poles also helps manage the weight of an 8-person tent.

How Easy It Is To Set Up

Fast-pitch tents are the quickest to assemble, but you’ll be pressed to find an 8-person tent that doesn’t need at least two people to set it up, even if they’re instant tents.

If easy setup is important to you, go with a pop-up tent, instant tent, or inflatable tent.

Ventilation

More ventilation is almost always better, especially with an 8-person tent.

The most effective tents will have ground and roof vents to encourage air circulation through the whole tent.

Make sure your tent can still ventilate even with the fly on. 

Number of Doors

Like vents, more doors are usually better when camping in an 8-person tent.

At least two doors on opposite sides of the tent help people get in and out easily.

Durability

Durability rests on multiple components of a tent standing up to abuse: the tent fabric, floor, poles, and all of the joints need to be tough.

The best 8-person tents are usually made with aluminum poles and ripstop fabric (nylon or polyester).

Cotton canvas is extremely durable but significantly heavier than other fabrics.

Most tents are made with 75-150 denier fabric shells and heavier floors.

If a tent uses lighter fabric than this, it will likely be an ultralight offering (which is rare for big shelters).

Be careful with lighter-weight fabrics and use a ground cloth to protect the floor.

Portability

The average 8-person tent is quite heavy–some weigh more than 50 lbs!

If you plan to move your tent more than a short distance from your car, make sure it comes with backpack straps or a wheeled carry bag.

Features

There are a handful of features that are especially important when looking for the best 8-person tent.

Windows – Ideal for ventilation and to see outside. Make sure you have at least one or two.

Multiple doors – With a large group, it’s helpful to have multiple entry and exit points.

Room dividers – Group camping is much more comfortable if you can get some privacy when you need it (especially for tired parents or feuding siblings).

Awning/vestibule space – It’s best if there’s extra space to store gear and other items inside the tent. When you have eight people, stuff adds up quickly.

Looking for more tent options? Read our guides to the best 4-person tents, 6-person tents, 10-person tents, 12-person tents, 3-room tents, large camping tents, instant tents, pop-up tents, inflatable tents, canvas tents, waterproof tents, insulated tents, winter tents, tents with a stove jack, tunnel tents, and cabin tents.

FAQs About 8-Person Tents

Blue and brown 8-man tent set up on grass.

How Big is an 8-Person Tent?

Most 8-person tents have a floor area between 100-150 square feet.

Some are long and rectangular, while others have more of a square shape.

Be aware that shape affects overall size–an 8-man dome tent has less interior space than a cabin-style shelter with vertical walls.

Most family dome tents for camping weigh between 20 and 50 lbs, which is too large for backpacking or carrying long distances.

If you want an 8-person camping setup that offers more flexibility for trekking, consider buying two smaller tents instead of one large one.

Smaller tents are built to be lighter and more portable, and they’re easier to split up amongst your group so no one has too much weight.

There are a handful of other advantages to using two small tents over an 8-person tent.

Fewer people in a sleeping area mean fewer disruptions and less weight on a small group trip.

How Much is an 8-Person Tent?

Like any tent, build quality and features affect the price more than size.

The most inexpensive family tents will cost around $100-$150.

However, if you want a durable, weatherproof tent, be prepared to spend $500 or more.

The best all-around standard tents, with a few extra features for added comfort, typically go for $200-$400.

Most people will want to be looking in this price range.

How Long Does it Take to Assemble an 8-Person Tent?

The easiest 8-man tents to set up are instant pop-up tents–they come practically preassembled. It takes less than a minute to set up most pop-up tents.

The next quickest is fast-pitch tents. They come with color coding and pre-linked poles. Usually, they can be set up in under 10 minutes.

Conventional big camping tents will usually take at least 10 minutes or more to set up.

What is the Best Tent Brand for 8-Person Tents?

If you want a standard, simple, reliable family tent, Coleman is the best choice. They sell millions of tents a year for a reason.

If you need a high-performance tent, pick one from a mountaineering-oriented brand like Big Agnes. It will come built to withstand bad weather and likely carry a warranty.

Conclusion – What is the Best 8-Person Tent?

A group of campers hanging out around a fire at night.

Our pick for the best 8-person tent overall is the North Face Wawona 8

The Wawona is more weatherproof than most of your basic family tents so you won’t have to worry about camping over spring break or late fall. 

Trust me, you don’t want to wake up to a leaky tent dripping water on your forehead. 

It’s not considered a cabin tent, but near-vertical walls make it so you can stand up to walk around. 

The Wawona is also fast-pitch and versatile with mesh windows, three doors, and a removable room separator. Set the kids up in their room and enjoy a full night of sleep.

However, my favorite aspect of this tent is the vestibule. 

The Wawona has a large vestibule that acts as a third covered space for relaxing with a book or eating dinner in the shade or out of the rain. 

The main downside to the Wawona is its price–while it’s certainly worth the investment, it’s not the cheapest tent on this list.

If you’re looking for a more affordable 8-man tent, the Coleman Montana is perfect for any backyard or summer camping adventures.

It will keep you dry and comfortable in mild weather conditions for a fraction of the price.


About the Author

Kristi Allen

Kristi Allen is a freelance journalist and travel writer from the US specializing in all things outdoors. She grew up hiking and backcountry skiing in the North East and has driven 15,000 miles across the US and Canada in an ongoing quest to visit every national park. Kristi covered politics before moving abroad and lived in Peru, Italy, and China. She is currently exploring the US by van with plans to return to Asia in 2021.


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Best 8-Person Tent for Family-Style Camping

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