Beach Tents: A Comprehensive Guide for Coastal Camping

Beach Tents: A Comprehensive Guide for Coastal Camping

21/07/2021 Off By chadmin

Nothing puts a damper on a great beach day like getting too much sun and looking like a lobster the following morning. We all know how uncomfortable a sunburn can be—not to mention the possible long-term health risks. One simple solution to an overexposed beach day is a beach tent, designed to give you that very much-needed protection from the sun and UV rays—and frustrating wind gusts, too.

A beach shade tent can be used as a base camp or beach shelter while you spend time on the sand, and the effect is always worth the effort. Like traditional camping and backpacking tents, there are a variety of different beach tents available, all with various features sure to make a day at the beach that much more enjoyable.


The types of beach tents have already been discussed in detail here.

Below we break down the ins and outs of beach tents, from designs and materials, pros and cons, to what to look for when shopping and how to use whichever you end up with.

Features to Look for in Different Types of Beach Tents

When you are looking for a beach tent, you need to consider the features that each model offers and how those features correspond with your future beach needs. The tent that is best for someone else may not be practical for you. However, there are some general features that you need to look at when searching for a beach tent. Below, we dig in.


Intended Use

The type of beach tent that you buy greatly depends on how you plan on using it, how many people will need to be covered, and the conditions in which you will be using it. Bigger tents can accommodate more people, but they also tend to have higher sides with a larger footprint, which may make them hazardous and impractical on beaches that tend to be windier. On the other end of the size spectrum, kid beach tents and baby beach tents work great if your sole intention is to keep your little one safe in the shade.

Some beach tents only have a roof to create beach shade and provide cover from the sun. Others have three walls to protect you from the elements while giving you a clear view of the ocean, as explained above.



When considering the size of your beach tent, you need to think about a number of aspects. The footprint of the tent—how much space it will take up—is likely the most pressing factor, especially if you intend to pitch it on a busy beach. If you plan on using it on a relatively empty beach, larger tents can work well. On the other hand, a sun shelter with a smaller footprint would be a more practical way to get some beach shade on more crowded beaches.

Your beach tent also needs to be large enough to accommodate your whole beach crew. Size accordingly.


Ease of Use and Transport

A beach tent should enhance your beach days while giving you some protection from the elements. It should be easy enough to set up and break down so that you can spend more time enjoying the beach instead of struggling to put up your tent or haul it to your preferred spot in the first place.

Beach tents generally fold up into compact bundles and small carrying bags that are easy to pack into your car and carry to your beach camp. Some may be heavier and bulkier than others. Their packed size and weight should be taken into consideration—especially if your usual spot requires you to carry your tent for some distance.

Sand Pockets

One of the more unique and useful features of beach tents is sand pockets. These sand pockets can be used instead of (or along with) guy lines, rope tie-downs, and tent stakes. Available on each corner, these sand pockets can be filled with a substantial amount of sand to anchor your beach tent by weighing down the corners. Built-in sandbags are especially handy if you are setting up on a beach with very soft or loose sand where guy ropes and tent stakes may not anchor effectively. Sand bags are located on the outside of beach tents, so they do not take up any floor space on the inside.

Level of Weather Protection

Most beach tents are made from fabric that blocks ultraviolet (UV) rays. Although this is the case, they have different ratings of sun protection. The sun protection of a UV beach tent is usually expressed according to the SPF protection level that it provides, similar to what you will see on a sunscreen container. The beach tents that offer the best UV protection are constructed from fabric with an SPF50 factor or higher.


Some beaches can get extremely windy. A three-sided beach tent will offer greater protection from the wind—and accompanying flying sand. Solid tent walls will catch the wind and could end up tearing, especially if you sacrifice quality and durability for price. Tents with mesh windows or wind vents that you can open or close will give you protection from the elements while easing the tension placed on the tent walls when wind picks up.



Having protection from three sides is great on windy days, but these sides could keep the heat inside the tent on hot days, too. Mesh windows, mesh panels, or air vents can be opened to let a ocean breeze flow through the inside of the tent to cool it off on those hot summer beach days. Zip-able windows also give you some degree of privacy while on the beach. This is very handy when you want to change into or out of swimwear—or take a nap in peace. Some beach sun shelters have removable walls. You can use the structure as a simple beach canopy tent and attach the walls if you need added protection or privacy.
Beach sand reflects about 15% of harmful UV rays, and seafoam can reflect 25% of UV rays. That means that even when you are sitting under a sun canopy, you can still unknowingly be exposing yourself and your family to UV rays. Beach tents with additional sides will give you added protection from UV rays reflected by the sand and the sea.




Besides protecting from the sun and the wind, your beach tent should also protect you from water. This includes rain, but also spray from the ocean. A beach tent that protects you from sea spray helps to keep your towels, clothes, snacks, books, and gadgets clean and salt-water-free while they are inside your tent. Beach tents with taped seams and a waterproof coating will give you added protection in rainy weather. This is especially a feature that you need to look for if you plan on camping in your beach tent.



Other Features

Beach tents offer a variety of other features, and whether they are nice-to-haves or something you absolutely need will depend on your own personal preferences. Some tents will have built-in pockets on the inside, too. These are convenient to store bits and bobs and keep essential items sand-free. Mesh pockets are convenient as the sand falls through them instead of collecting in difficult to clean corners.

A tent floor or groundsheet could help you to have a sand-free space on the beach. Some extend past the walls of your beach tent in the front. It gives you a bit more space to spread out and enjoy the sun without walking or lying on hot sand.

A beach tent gives you sun protection. Besides working as a sun shade, it shelters you from UV rays and other elements. They elevate a day at the beach and add that element of safety to the fun. Investing in a beach tent will give you the shelter you need to keep you and your family having fun and getting the most out of each and every day you spend on the beach or when you go on a beach camping trip.

You can buy a beach tent in our online store.