Sleeping in a tent is one of the best ways to truly experience the great outdoors and connect with nature. And for a growing number of outdoor enthusiasts, rooftop tents are becoming the go-to recreational shelter, raising the all-important question: are rooftop tents comfortable?
Rooftop tents are comfortable because you sleep at a safe and elevated height, the setup is quick and easy, and the robust construction provides better protection against weather conditions than a normal tent. Most rooftop tents have a built-in foam mattress, and all valuable gear can be safely secured in the vehicle.
With sturdier frames and thicker materials, rooftop tents are a recent development in the evolution of camping shelters. And because they are compatible with just about any type of vehicle, rooftop tents are popular with many people who enjoy camping on the go. They also provide an added dimension of comfort not found in conventional tents, and here’s why.
1) Flat Surface
As anyone who has ever slept outdoors in the wilderness can attest, sleeping on the ground can be a nightmarish experience as rocks, and uneven surfaces can make for sleepless nights; rooftop tents provide a flat, even surface (some models even feature cushioned floors) for restful and comfortable sleep no matter the location.
2) Comfortable Sleeping Off The Ground
Not only is sleeping on the ground uncomfortable but it can also be very cold and cause campers to lose precious body heat quickly; by sleeping well above the ground, rooftop tents can provide a significantly warmer space for those chilly nights. And it gets a lot less messy.
3) Rugged Construction
Rooftop tents are typically made from thicker materials than conventional tents and this robust construction provides better protection against challenging conditions like wind, rain, or even snow (many models can be fitted with insulation that covers the walls and roof for additional warmth in harsh weather).
Also, unlike standard ground tents, rooftop tents material is thicker, more durable, and long-lasting, because it doesn’t have to be lightweight for easy carrying. And thicker material keeps more warmth in for a comfortable night’s sleep.
Another benefit of rooftop tents that cannot be overlooked is the peace of mind they provide by sleeping well off of the ground, properly distanced from wildlife, crawling critters, and any water runoff from unexpected storms in the area.
6) More Storage Space
One aspect of camping in a rooftop tent that is easy to overlook is the amount of space it creates. You have more storage space in your car when you have a rooftop tent installed on your roofrack. And in many rooftop tents you can storage extra accessories such as poles, sleeping bags, and other gear. Also most rooftop tents have an in-built mattress you don’t need to carry around.
With the ability to securely stow away practically all your gear in your car, truck, or SUV, instead of inside your tent, there will be less clutter and more space inside your rooftop tent for you to stretch out and relax.
7) Easy And Quick To Set Up
Once installed on top of your vehicle, rooftop tents can be set up in a matter of minutes, with many models simply unfolding or popping up with minimal effort (they can be broken down just as easily too), thus eliminating the hassle that often comes with pitching a tent on the ground.
8) Pitching Ease
The advantage of a rooftop tent on your car is that you are more mobile and gives you a lot more freedom to move from place to place and set up camp anywhere your vehicle can legally park. There is no need to book a campground in advance you can just go where the adventure is taking you.
9) Comfortable Matress
Most rooftop tents have a standard foam mattress between 1.1 inches and 2/3 inches thick (around 3 – 6 cm).
It is not a thick as the mattress you might sleeping on at home, but it is way more comfortable than sleeping on a sleeping matt or air mattress!
You also can use your own bedding. You don’t need to use a sleeping bag while sleeping in a rooftop tent. We always use our own bedding and pillows. And when it is to warm at night, we just put the duvet in the car and only sleep under the duvet cover.
Tips To Elevate Your Rooftop Tent Comfort Level
While rooftop tents, by their design, offer several major benefits from a comfort standpoint compared to conventional on-ground tents, there are additional measures that you can take that will elevate (no pun intended) the coziness level another notch or two. Here are a few ideas to consider:
- Improve your sleep by putting in an insulated mattress
- Minimize night chills by using anti-condensation bedding
- Leave the sleeping bag at home and go with a plush comforter (and bring your own pillows for good measure).
- Enhance your rooftop tent space through the addition of good interior lighting.
- Using an old-school hot water bottle tucked away in your sleeping bag which provides an immense amount of warmth.
- Enjoy your surroundings even more by creating an outdoor space for lounging around (for instance, try hooking up a hammock for a nice afternoon nap or installing an awning for shade).
- Keep the dirt and grime outside where it belongs by hanging a shoe bag by the tent door
- Reserve one of your evenings for a movie night using one of the rooftop tent’s walls as a screen
With a little bit of additional planning and some creativity, your next rooftop tent camping experience will not only be the adventure of a lifetime, but also a very comfortable one.
Why Rooftop Tents Are Worth It
When it comes to overnight camping outdoors, comfort is a relative term. After all, if the point of camping is to connect with nature and experience all of its splendor up close and personal, then certain creature comforts are probably the last thing on a camper’s mind.
But certain aspects of camping can make or break an entire trip; this is true whether you are pitching a tent in the ground or going the rooftop tent route. For instance, the importance of getting restful sleep, staying warm in cold conditions, and camping with peace of mind cannot be overlooked. Rooftop tents check all of these boxes and more.
Generally speaking, rooftop tents offer benefits not found in conventional tents, and many of them relate in some way or another to comfort. From this perspective rooftop tents can make your next overnight trip in the great outdoors a more comfortable and memorable experience.
Rooftop tents can accommodate one to four people depending on their size (which in turn depends on the vehicle on which they are mounted).
Almost all rooftop tent brands have extra accessories such as an annex-type compartment that creates an enclosed space underneath the tent that can be utilized for a dry cooking area, lounging around on the ground level, drying out wet clothes, as a dressing room or staging gear for a day’s activities.
Comfort may not be the first thing that comes to mind when planning a camping trip, but a certain level of it can enhance the outdoor experience. Camping in a rooftop tent can allow for all of these things, which is why its popularity is growing.
Read more: Top 10 Best Advantages Of A Rooftop Tent