What’s that saying. You know – the one the marines or someone says ‘if your stuff gets wet you’re….’ toast?
The same goes for camping. The last thing you want is for your gear in your tent to get wet. Things like your sleeping bag and sleeping mat are exceptionally important in terms of keeping you both warm and safe from illness, and if they get wet in a storm, well it could be a few days until you have a chance to dry them out.
At A Glance: Our Top 3 Waterproof tents
Even a cheeky leak that dribbles into your camping tent is an annoyance. You’ll end up with a damp end of a sleeping bag or stepping on it with your socks, giving you damp feet for the day. Any water inside a tent is just a big no-no. So how do we avoid getting water in our tents? There are a few little tricks of the trade but the main one is owning a waterproof tent.
All tents come with a waterproof rating, also referred to as a water column or index that is measured in millimeters. It’s a hydrostatic head measurement that tells you how many millimeters of water it takes to penetrate the fabric. Generally speaking anything with a rating of 1500mm and above will provide you with ample protection but obviously the higher the rating the better.
We have rounded up some of the best waterproof tents with a 1500mm rating or above and stripped them down in this review. We look at everything from practicality and portability to durability, weatherproofing, and more. Keep on reading to find the best waterproof tent for camping.
Best On A Budget
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Best waterproof tent for families
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Best For Backpacking
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Best waterproof tent 4 persons
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Best Of The Best
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If you’re in the market for a two-man tent that can handle weather but isn’t too expensive, then the Vango Waterproof Atlas is right up your street. It’s durable, affordable, not too heavy, packs down ok, and will keep you dry.
The tent is the ideal size for 2 people to sleep comfortably, it is rated for 3 people but this would be a bit of a squeeze. The tent is quick and easy to set up, just put the poles in, throw over the rainfly, and peg her down.
The rainfly has a waterproof rating of 3000mm, more than enough to protect you from heavy rainfall. It is also a full-coverage rainfly and comes all the way to the ground, leaving none of the inner tent exposed to the elements.
The floor of the tent is a bathtub floor, meaning it comes up to meet the tent 3-5 inches from the ground. This is an excellent addition as it stops any groundwater or puddles slowing seeping in as the rain builds.
The tent features two doors for greater accessibility and ventilation on a hot day. There is also one vestibule for storing your backpacks, giving you more space for lounging in the tent. The tent is also well ventilated to stop and condensation build-up, keep you dry as a bone.
Overall this is a great budget waterproof tent that will last and has all the features you need for a comfy camping trip.
The NTK Arizona GT waterproof tent is an awesome family option, particularly if you tend to camp in bad weather. It’s not a 4 season tent by any means but does have the design and capabilities to handle bad weather and the layout is perfect for privacy when you want to slip your camping party into two.
The tent is designed for 9 people but ideally, you would have 6 or less if you want enough space for some luxury camping. It comes in its own carry bag but it’s certainly too heavy for backpacking at 27lbs and you’ll want to use it car camping.
Setting it up is easy, just follow the color-coded instructions to pitch the inner tent, then just throw over the rainfly and peg. The rainfly is made from 190t polyester with a waterproof rating of 2500mm. It offers full coverage, is durable, and can handle some heavy rain.
The bathtub floor does a great job of stopping any puddles from getting inside thanks to the high edges that block and trickles trying to make their way in. The floor also features an anti-fungal layer to stop any odor or mold build-up.
Once pitched you’ll see the tent has two vestibules for storing all your gear and two rooms each with its own door for easy access and privacy. The only real downside to this tent is that it’s pretty expensive but you are getting what you pay for.
Overall this an awesome family tent with a great layout that is weather resistant. So often multi-room tents cant handle heavy rain or winds, so it’s nice to see one that can.
The MSR Hubba Hubba NX 2 is pretty famous in the tent world. It’s one of the lightest, spacious, practical, and weather-resistant 2 person tents on the planet, and it certainly deserves the reputation it holds.
It comes in two models, the normal model or with an Xtreme Shield polyurethane coating that keeps the rainfly waterproof for 3 times longer and includes Easton Cyclone poles that are made to never ever break. For most of us, the normal model will be just fine but, if you camp in extreme winds or torrential rain, you’ll want to get the upgraded option.
The Hubba Hubba NX backpacking tent arrives in its own carry case and weighs just 3.5 lbs. It packs down very small and is ideal for backpacking and thru-hiking. Setting up the tent is easy, simply follow the color-coded instructions and you’ll have your freestanding tent up in no time. Then just throw over the rainfly and peg her down.
The rainfly is rated to 3000mm and the bathtub floor is, even more, so you’ll be dry even in heavy rain. The layout of the tent is excellent, you couldn’t have more space in a 2-person tent. There are two doors for easy, personal access plus two vestibules for camping storage, keeping the inside of the tent free for sleeping.
The inner mesh ceiling keeps you ventilated while the near-vertical walls mean that two people can sit up inside at the same time and sleep comfortably. The only negative to this tent is that it is expensive but worth every penny.
See our full review of the MSR Hubba Hubba NX 2
The Geertop Waterproof Tent is one of the only 4-season tents in the review and finding a good 4 season tent for this price is quite tricky. So it the Gerrtop worth considering?
Well if it’s convenience you want and rainfall you want to be protected from, then absolutely. The tent comes with a 210D PU 5000mm oxford floor that is damn durable and almost impenetrable to any weather. The inner tent material is 210T breathable polyester and the rainfly is 3000mm 210T PU anti-tear polyester. Together this makes a tent that can handle some serious rainfall with no problem.
This camping tent comes with aluminum poles that flex a little in heavy winds but hold a solid structure. They don’t however manage snow very well and can begin to bend in on themselves under pressure at those extremely cold temperatures.
Setting up this waterproof tent for camping is a piece of cake. And, once set up it has two doors for easy access with a big front vestibule for storing your gear in. You can use walking poles to hold the vestibule door up and make an awning too.
Inside the tent is one big room that is an ideal space for 2-3 people. Trying to put 4 in there will be. squeeze for sure. Overall a great value 4-season waterproof tent for camping.
The NTK Indy GT is a 5/6 person tent that uses excellent materials and technologies to give you a spacious camping experience while not having to worry about the weather.
The rainfly is made from durable 190T polyester with a 2500mm waterproof rating. It’ll handle any storms that come it’s way while the thermoplastic coating reflects harmful UV rays away too.
The floor is anti-fungal, waterproof, silver-lined, durable, and comes in a bathtub design to ensure no puddle build up outside it seeps in. It sounds better than my floor at home, to be honest.
Pitching the camping tent is quick and easy. once pitched you have a large front porch/vestibule with an awning. The front porch also includes a floor so you can use it for relaxing too if you like. Then there is one large door that goes into the tent where you’ll find some good storage and ventilation.
Overall this tent is great for the price and it’ll certainly protect you from heavy weather. But it lacks the extra useful features like an extra door and vestibule that makes life a lot easier.
The Vango Odyssey Air 500 is one of our favorites when it comes to overall design and performance. They really have thought of everything except how to make the tent portable. At 40lbs, it’s not going to get carried very far from the car, lets be honest.
But, whilst car camping this tent will have you back no matter what comes along. It’s been designed to handle heavy winds thanks to its tension system. And when it comes to rain, the 4000mm full-coverage rainfly has got your back, no worries at all.
Setting up a tent is easy and requires no poles. You simply pump up the tent, the poles are built-in and inflatable, and in two minutes it’s ready to go. Once up you’ll see what we mean by an awesome layout.
There is a huge front room for storing gear, having a dining table, relaxing on chairs, you name it. There are two doors to access this area with and it gets a lot of natural light from the clear windows.
Then you have the sleeping area that is split into two rooms each with their own door for easy access. The sleeping area also uses lights out fabric to stop the morning rays from waking you up so early.
The only downsides to this tent are that it’s heavy and expensive. Otherwise, it’s one of the best waterproof tents around in terms of weather, layout, practicality, and more.
The Coleman WeatherMaster is pretty much a more affordable version of the Vango above but without some of the cool features. But for the drop in price, we think it’s worth missing out on those luxury extra’s.
The tent comes with a fully integrated waterproof groundsheet that not only keeps you dry and warm but lasts and keeps the bugs out. The rainfly offers full coverage and is waterproofed to 3000mm meaning it’ll handle some heavy rain just fine.
The poles are made from fiberglass and flex nicely in the wind while maintaining the structure of the tent. It’s pretty easy to pitch, just like most normal tents, poles fly, and inner lining.
Once it’s up you’ll notice the large porch area with an easy-to-use hinged door for accessibility. The porch area is perfect for storing gear, hanging out it, and even putting a table and chairs in. From there you’ll find the sleeping area of the tent that is divided into two rooms, which can fit 3 queen size inflatable mattresses (or be used for something else if you need).
This camping tent is too heavy for backpacking but it’ll be fine for car camping. It doesn’t have all the extras like the Vango, like lights-out fabric, inflatable poles, etc. But it is significantly cheaper and still very weather resistant.
The Quechua Waterproof Pop Up Tent is a great choice if convenience is your game. It pops up in literally two seconds and then all you have to do is peg it down. How easy is that? It couldn’t be easier.
The ground, fly, poles, are all in one in this waterproof tent. It features a full-coverage rainfly that has a 2000mm waterproof rating that will do you just fine in heavy weather. It’s also been designed to handle 50km/h winds, so I wouldn’t worry about the weather with this tent.
It’s quite a light tent too at 7.3lbs but it is a pain to take backpacking due to the packed circle shape. The layout when pitched is just a tent with one door and that’s about it, there are no vestibules or anything like that for storage or an extra door for access.
The material does block 99% of light though, so if you like to sleep in then this might be the tent for you.
Well, the first thing to look for in a waterproof tent is the waterproof rating, as we discussed at the beginning. You should choose a tent that has a rating of 1500mm or higher to ensure you’ll be dry in heavy rainfall. All the tents in the review have a rating of 2000mm or above.
Not all tents are made equal and you should choose one that will provide the most comfort for your situation. Some of the tents in the review have 4 doors, others have 1. Some have 3 rooms, others have 1. Make sure to pick a tent that has the right setup for you. If you’re car-camping you can opt for a heavy tent that gives you a lot of privacy. If you’re backpacking you’ll be looking at weight and convenience more than anything.
Vestibules are really important when you’re camping. They are your outside storage area so you don’t have to sleep cuddled up to your backpack or take up valuable space inside the tent. Every tent in the review bar one has a vestibule, some have two. We highly recommend picking a waterproof tent with one.
Water doesn’t just come in from the outside it also comes from the inside as well. Your warm breath and the warm air in the tent will condense on the inner lining and cause a drip if you don’t have the right amount of ventilation. Make sure to choose a tent with great ventilation, like all the ones in the review to avoid an internal drip shower.
The best waterproof tent for backpacking is the MSR Hubba Hubba NX 2. Weighing just 3.5lbs this 2 person tent is made for back[ackng through the harshest of environments and weather.
The Xtreme shield version is made for torrential rain and extreme winds, while the normal version is great for heavy weather. Being a 2-person tent it is still freestanding, has 2 vestibule, 2 doors, and is actually spacious enough inside for 2 people. If you’re looking for a tent to take on an adventure, this is it.
The best waterproof tent of them all is the Vango Odyssey Air 500. The Air 500 has everything you need to handle any heavy weather in style. With a waterproof rating of 4000mm, 3 rooms, 4 doors, and blackout blinds, this tent gives you a little bit of luxury no matter where you are or how much it’s raining. It sets up in minutes and is designed to handle the wind too.
The best waterproof tent if you’re on a budget is the Vango Waterproof Atlas. This tent has enough storage, a great waterproof rating, and enough space for two people to camp comfortably. There are two doors, one vestibule, and a full-coverage rainfly and that’s all you really need.
There is no such thing as a fully waterproof tent, however, there are tents that are waterproof in most situations. The outer material of a tent varies in how waterproof it is, but some companies make models that are far more waterproof than others.
A tent made with 3000mm material is very waterproof and can withstand rain in almost all situations. The larger the HH (Hydrostatic head) of a tent in mm, the more waterproof it will be.
Tents stop being waterproof over time because the outer layer fabric coatings degrade. These coatings are subject to UV light and acidic rainwater which can reduce the effectiveness or wash away the waterproof coating over time.
Tents can always leak in the rain if something is pushing against the side of the tent inner or if the waterproof coating has degraded enough to reduce the waterproofing. To help avoid a leaking tent make sure there is nothing pushing the side of the tent from the inside.