For many families, quality time is spent together in the outdoors, embracing nature and taking the children on hikes and swimming under waterfalls.
Rooftop tents give families the freedom they require for camping excursions by providing them with comfortable accommodations that sit on top of their vehicle.
From hardshell to softshell, there’s a rooftop tent to suit every family’s budget and preference.
However, it can be challenging, determining which rooftop tent would be best for your family, so we’ve put together a helpful list looking at some of the rooftop tents catered towards families.
1. Roofnest Condor XL (Our Top Pick)
The top pick on our list of rooftop tents perfect for families is the Condor XL by brand Roofnest.
This brand is known for its quality hardshell rooftop tents and has been perfecting its hardshell design for years.
This rooftop tent is ideal for larger families as it can sleep between 3 to 4 people. With a price point of nearly $3,200, this tent might be more costly than other available, but it’s definitely worth the money.
With a larger than average interior space inside this tent, it’s perfect for families of four. The Condor XL is uber spacious with few rooftop tents managing to compete with this for the competitive pricing Roofnest has this set at.
Additionally, this fold-out rooftop tent can fit most vehicles, making it perfect for those with smaller cars and bigger cars alike.
Spacious for Families:
The Condor XL interior is incredibly spacious, evidenced by the 93-inch length and 74-inch width.
A custom built-in mattress provides enough space for all the occupants to sleep comfortably throughout the evening. The tent uses 3000mm waterproof Polyurethane polyester, which makes the tent more heavy-duty, meaning it can withstand even the stormiest of weather while you and the family are out camping.
The Condor XL is easy to set up, but some have complained that the ladder is too long for their vehicles. Additionally, the flysheet has presented a small issue to some buyers as it manually folds up and down from inside the tent.
Once inside the tent, however, you will be treated to a massive skylight where you and the family can lay and look up at the stars on nights where there is a clear sky. You also won’t have to worry about this tent’s durability as the materials it’s made with will ensure the tent is long-lasting.
As is the case with most hardshell tents, you will receive a constructed product using ABS plastic. However, the outer layer utilizes ASA for weather resistance, which allows this rooftop tent to be usable in all four seasons.
Moreover, the Condor XL is easily and quickly assembled in under a minute.
2. Thule X Tepui Explorer Autana 3 + Annex (Our Budget Pick)
The Thule x Tepui Explorer Autanna 3+ is the budget-friendly option on our list.
This family-friendly rooftop tent will set you back approximately $2,150. What’s great about this tent s that not only is it made by a reputable brand, but it also includes an annex. Additionally, this rooftop tent is also customizable and available in several different colors.
Now, this tent might be a soft shell instead of a hardshell, but that doesn’t mean it’s any less durable. The tent fabric is a 600D ripstop blend, which means it’s durable and able to handle most weather conditions. In addition to this, the tent is UV treated and resistant to mildew.
It truly is a four-season tent, no matter how you look at it.
Your small family of two or three will likely be comfortable inside the Explorer Autana 3+ has an interior height of 52 inches and a length of 96 inches with a width of 56 inches.
This tent also has well thought out ventilation, and if you or a family member requires that, then this rooftop tent is certainly worth a look.
There are four mesh side panels, and the roof of the tent also features a few mesh panels.
In terms of setup time, this model is slower than others of the brand but not by much. Some have found themselves unimpressed because the tent’s side awnings don’t roll-up, which has been a little troublesome for a few users.
In particular, families will enjoy the spaciousness and comfortable high-density foam mattress that this three-person rooftop tent offers.
Should your family require extra weather protection for all your camping gear, this tent would work brilliantly due to the large annex included in your purchase.
3. iKamper X Cover
This list wouldn’t complete if we didn’t have a rooftop tent by the brand iKamper.
The X Cover might be a softshell tent, but let me tell you, it can compete with the hardshell models on the market. With the ability to sleep four, large families are bound to love this rooftop tent and the features it offers.
You will often find that their designs are somewhat cumbersome with many rooftop tents, but this isn’t the case with the X cover by iKamper. This rooftop tent uses a patented design that eliminates the use of PVC that traditional rooftop tents utilize.
The X Cover is lightweight at 120 pounds and has a total length of 76.81 inches by a width of 47.09 inches. This spaciousness allows the tent to feature an extremely comfortable king-size bed.
Additionally, this rooftop tent’s clever design allows for top-mounted crossbars and accessories to be easily added.
One of the downsides to this tent is that the telescopic ladder has to be completely removed when the tent is stowed away. This takes away from the otherwise speedy setup and packing up time.
Moreover, families are slightly disgruntled because this tent can only hold very few bedding items and clothing when the tent is closed.
As far as weather protection is concerned, the X Cover ticks all the boxes. The 300gsm poly-cotton canvas is breathable and durable, and the rainfly is waterproof.
We know how safety is a top concern, especially for families out camping. Luckily the honeycomb aluminum panel flooring provides stability and durability, giving you and your loved ones that extra peace of mind.
4. Roofnest Sparrow XL
For a quality rooftop tent that’s perfect for smaller families, you can’t go wrong with choosing the Sparrow XL by brand Roofnest.
At roughly $3,095, your paying for a quality rooftop tent with the ability to sleep a family of three comfortably.
The new Sparrow XL features more headroom and legroom and has been manufactured to be compatible with a range of accessories. Should you wish, you can add on a 100W solar power panel, which will allow you to run your camping stove and charge your low power appliances while out in the wilderness.
The interior height is 40 inches when opened, and the interior dimensions are 83 inches long by 54 inches wide, which provides comfortable accommodations for the family.
Included with this model is a custom built-in mattress that has been designed to feel like a proper bed.
This hardshell rooftop is made with only the best materials, and the shell itself is an ABS outer shell that is reinforced with fiberglass. The Sparrow XL is also designed to be aerodynamic, which cancels out noise and reduces your gas mileage consumption.
This tent’s material is made with 3000mmwaterproof polyurethane-coated polyester, and the tent features a telescopic ladder.
However, note that some people have complained that the Sparrow XL ladder is awkward to use no matter where you place it, and it doesn’t allow for easy accessibility to your rooftop tent. The built-in gear storage area provides families space to store their necessities, and the larger windows and doors provide adequate airflow.
Families will enjoy the cooler accommodations and love that they can store bedding and clothing in their tent while traveling.
How Much Should You Really Pay For A Large Rooftop Tent?
When determining how much you should pay for a large rooftop tent, it will largely come down to how big your family is and what features you require.
Should you need a hard shell rooftop tent like the Roofnest Condor XL, you can expect to pay more than if you went for a softshell tent like the Tepui Explorer Autana 3.
All of the rooftop tents on our list are ideal for families due to their sleeping capacities and comfortability; however, as with most products, they do have their downsides.
Ultimately you will need to determine if you need a rooftop tent for a family of three or four people.
Moreover, you need to establish your budget, and if you need a rooftop tent that can be used in all our seasons.
Morten is the founder of GoDownsize. He has filmed and interviewed people living in tiny houses and RVs since 2011. He grew up on the coast where his dad took him boating from a young age. He has completely rebuilt two RVs in which he travels with his family for months at the time. Read more about Morten here.