Spending the day at the beach, either with family or friends, is always a good idea, I can’t argue with that. But in the hot summer days you need something to protect you from the sun, and sometimes the sunscreen lotion just isn’t enough, no matter how high the SPF is.
On the occasions when you want to spend the day not worrying about the harsh nature’s elements, it’s best to bring a best beach tent with you.
- Why You Need a Beach Shade Tent?
- Best Beach Tents on the Market – Reviews
- Best Baby Beach Tent for All Your Outdoor Activities
- Before Buying a Beach Tent, Ask Yourself these Questions:
- Does the tent provide UV protection or will it only create shade?
- Does it have proper ventilation?
- How easy will it be to set up the tent?
- How much does the tent weigh when it’s packed?
- Does it have added features that will provide stability?
- How big do you need the tent to be?
- Is it durable enough to withstand wind and rain?
- How much money do you plan to spend for a beach tent?
- To Sum It All Up
Why You Need a Beach Shade Tent?
In everyday life, our skin is not exposed to direct sunlight as much as it would be on the beach. Think about it – you cover up your skin by wearing clothes and probably have a job or go to school, which means you spend a good part of your day indoors.
Once you decide to spend the day outdoors – in this case, at the beach, you’re putting your skin in an environment that can cause a lot of damage if you’re not careful enough.
Some of the reasons why using sunscreen lotion as the only means of protection from UV rays won’t cut it and why you need to consider getting a beach tent are:
Sunburns – The higher the number of sunburns you’ve had, the more prominent chances you have of developing melanoma. That alone should seem like reason enough to go and buy a beach tent.
Pale Skin – Those who, after spending time in the sun, turn red rather than getting a tan, typically lack the melanin needed to protect the skin from UV rays.
If that’s the case with you, you should provide your skin with the protection it needs; a beach tent is a way to go.
Bringing Kids to the Beach – When going to the beach with your family, you should consider what’s the best protection for your children’s delicate skin.
Sunscreen lotion with a high SPF is a must, but it’s not enough; a beach tent will give your child’s young skin some time to relax from the sunlight.
UV Reflection – Many surfaces have the ability to reflect UV rays, sand and water included. Research has shown that sand has one of the higher percentages of UV reflection – around 15 per cent; sea foam, on the other hand, reflects up to 25 per cent.
If you don’t get any shelter while on the beach, you’ll be exposed to a significantly high amount of UV radiation – direct and reflected.
Sunscreen Lotion isn’t Enough – When you use creams and lotions with a very high SPF, you might often neglect other ways to protect your skin, because you feel confident enough that the sunscreen product will do the job.
However, recent studies show that these products are not nearly enough – partly because of their ineffectiveness and partly because people often don’t know how to use sunscreen lotions properly.
Best Beach Tents on the Market – Reviews
I offer you a list of top 4 family beach tent models available on the market at the moment, in my opinion. Read the pros and cons of each design carefully and give this purchase some thought before you make the final call. Hopefully, the list I provided will make the decision-making process a lot easier.
Editor’s Pick - Sport Beach Tent
Available in two colors – blue and red, the Sport-Brella canopy has everything you need from a beach tent, while providing a set up as effortless as opening an umbrella.
It is made out of a durable material (polyester), that is resistant to weather conditions like rain and wind.
And when it comes to spaciousness, hardly any model on this could compare to the big tent for the family. The perfect example is Sport-Brella – an entire family can comfortably fit inside.
The fabric is coated with a UPF 50+ to protect you from the harmful UV radiation; the manufacturer promises you’ll be protected from up to 99.5 per cent of UVA and UVB rays.
Besides protecting you from the elements, this canopy will also ensure you feel comfortable while spending a hot summer day on the beach.
An open design and two mesh screens on the sides will provide enough air flow inside the canopy, to make sure you enjoy even the slightest breeze.
The only thing I consider a flaw is the fact that this is essentially a beach umbrella and if you don’t weigh it down properly, it may act as umbrellas usually do in case of heavy wind. Weigh it down to make sure it doesn’t turn inside out or tip over.
- The canopy is made out of durable polyester and offers fundamental protection in different weather conditions
- The fabric is covered with a UPF 50+, which absorbs 99.5 per cent of UVA and UVB radiation
- The open design and two windows regulate the air flow in the canopy
- Easy to set up – it’s just like opening an umbrella
- It won’t hold up as well in heavy wind
Alternative Pick - Buget Beach Tent for Family
With this model, for a reasonable price, you’ll get a well-made beach tent, that will not only create enough shade but also protect you from harmful UV rays.
So, if you’re looking to save some money, this tent might be a suitable choice for you.
When it comes to setting it up, it’s easy, but it may take some time, at least until you get the hold of it.
It shouldn’t take more than 5 minutes, though. If you choose this model, you’ll be trading the ease of setting it up (since it’s not a pop-up) for a bit more stability.
It’s very light, and when it’s folded and packed in its bag, it doesn’t take up much space, so it’s easy to carry around.
It comes with sand pockets and stakes so that the tent can remain stable enough. Keep in mind that it won’t hold up as well in case of heavy wind, mostly due to how lightweight it is.
When it comes to ventilation, it has a mesh screen in the back, but if you zip it, the temperature inside will rise significantly.
If you’re bringing your kids to the beach with you, maybe consider buying a thermometer so that you can make sure that it doesn’t get too hot inside the tent.
The difference in price between the top pick and this model isn’t a big one, so it shouldn’t even be a deciding factor. Base your decision on what style of beach tent you’re looking for because, when it comes to design, these two are considerably different.
- When packed up, it’s light and doesn’t take up a lot of space
- It has stakes and sand pockets for added stability
- Has a mesh screen in the back for ventilation
- If the wind gets strong, it may not hold up as well
- When you zip the back screen (there are no side screens), the temperature inside rises quickly
Budget Pick - The Best Product with Limited Budget
This beach tent is one of the budget-friendly models on this list. It’s available in two colors – blue and green; it’s always great to be able to choose the little details like the color of your tent.
The tent is made from a polyester fabric similar to the one that umbrellas are made of, so you should be somewhat safe in case of rain; keep in mind it’s not waterproof.
Also, it is coated with a UPF 50+, so it doesn’t only create shade, it protects you from the UV radiation.
The tent is unbelievably light, weighing only two pounds, which is both an advantage and a disadvantage at the same time.
On the one hand, it’s not difficult to carry it around, on the other, it runs at a higher risk for being blown away by the wind.
It doesn’t come with sand pockets, so you’ll need to anchor it using the six stakes provided by the manufacturer.
You can set it up in a matter of seconds due to the Automatic Pop Up design of the tent; it’s great not to have to worry about being able to set it up.
When it comes to design, this is a rather simple one; it will do what it’s supposed to, but compared to other models, it doesn’t offer much in terms of aesthetics or spaciousness.
- Automatic Pop Up design which makes it easy to set it up
- It has a UPF 50+ to protect you from UV rays
- It’s easy to carry it around because it weighs only 2 pounds
- You only get six stakes for anchoring it to the ground; no sand bags are included
- Provided stakes should be a bit longer
- It can’t be closed in case you need some privacy
- Some users have mentioned that it’s hard to fold it up and put it back in the bag
Highest Quality Beach Shade Tent
As the name says it, this one is easy to set up; all you need to do is take it out of the bag and pop it open.
That is the result of the EasyUp Hub System, which means there’s no need for you to bother with inserting poles.
Once you set it up, you can use the stakes that come with it (along with external sand pockets) to anchor it to the ground, and you’re ready to start your day at the beach.
Another advantage is that it’s lightweight (around 4.5 lbs), so it’s easy to carry it around, and it won’t take up a lot of space when it’s folded.
We’ve talked about the importance of Ultraviolet Protection Factor, and this tent has that covered too – with a UPF 50+, it will absorb most of the UV radiation.
The material that the floor of the tent is made of is waterproof, which means your stuff can’t get wet in case of sudden rain.
Besides the price, the only disadvantage is that it can’t be zipped up in the front, so you can’t count on having some privacy on a crowded beach.
All in all, if your budget allows it – since this is the priciest beach tent model on the list – consider getting the Pacific Breeze; I’m sure you’ll find that it was money well spent.
- EasyUp Hub System makes it easy to set up or take down the tent
- The material has a UPF 50+ which means the fabric will absorb some UV radiation
- Sand pockets and stakes are included for stability
- Windows for ventilation
- Can’t be zipped up in the front for added privacy
Best Baby Beach Tent for All Your Outdoor Activities
MonoBeach Baby Beach Tent - Pop Up Baby Shade Tent
Another pop-up tent on our list, this MonoBeach model could be a good choice for protecting your kids on the beach, on camping trips and in the backyard, too.
It is lightweight; weighs only 1.8 pounds and you can bring it with you anywhere you plan on taking your kids.
Keep in mind that, because it’s so light, you’ll need to weigh it down on windy occasions.
The fabric the tent is made of has a waterproof coating, to protect your little ones in case of sudden rain; it also has a UPF 50+ and absorbs the maximum amount of harmful UV rays.
The floor of the tent is made out of a waterproof polyethylene, which not only keeps the inside dry but cool.
Overall, this is a simple, budget-friendly beach pop-up tent, that does what is advertised – keeps the youngest visitors of the beach safe.
- It’s very lightweight and easy to carry around
- The UPF 50+ absorbs up to 98 per cent of harmful UV radiation
- It’s easy to set it up as it’s a pop-up tent
- Since it’s lightweight, you need to be cautious about it not being blown away by the wind
- The only way to stabilize it are the stakes
Baby Beach Tent Pool UV Protection Sun Shelter Pop Up - Buget Baby Beach Tent
This one is a great, affordable two-in-one model, made for children up to 3 years of age. By two-in-one I mean it doesn’t only work as a beach tent to provide shade – it also has a built-in pool inside.
Use of the pool is optional, meaning that if you decide not to fill it with water, it still acts as a floor of your toddler’s beach tent.
The tent is made out of waterproof polyester and has a 50+ UPF, to ensure your child’s safety in the sun; it will block up to 98 per cent of harmful UV rays.
It is equipped with a large mesh screen in the back which, when combined with the open design of the tent, creates constant air flow through it, so the temperature inside won’t rise to dangerous levels, and your child will be safe and comfortable.
I find this tent to be somewhat of a necessity if you plan on taking your kids with you on the beach; the great thing is you can always use it in your backyard or even inside your home, too.
- It’s a pop-up tent, which means you can set it up fast
- It’s made out of waterproof polyester that has a UPF 50+
- Mesh screen in the back and open front provides good ventilation
- It’s a two-in-one model – baby beach tent and a pool
- The tent, weighing under 2 pounds, is light enough to carry around with ease
- The fact that it’s so lightweight means there’s a risk of it being blown away
- The top might need some additional reinforcement bars as it tends to cave in
LEBE Baby Beach Tent - Quality Beach Tent for Baby
Another two-in-one model on my list, because honestly, I find them to be amazing – providing shelter and working as an optional pool; I can’t imagine a better way for a toddler to spend the day on the beach.
Even though it is a baby beach tent, it’s wide enough for you or an older sibling to keep your toddler company.
The tent is made out of polyester and again, has a UPF 50+, so you’re sure it will protect your child’s sensitive skin from direct sunlight and UV rays.
I feel like I should mention that, since it’s made out of polyester, there may be a characteristic smell to it once you open it for the first time.
That isn’t a big issue, though, since you can always leave it outside to air out; that will solve the problem.
Ventilation and over-heating of the inside of the tent are taken care of by the open design and a window in the back – these create enough air flow for your toddler’s comfortable stay inside the tent.
This one is also the lightest beach tent on my list; weighing around 1.55 pounds and being a pop-up model, it makes carrying and setting it up a child’s play (pun intended).
- Pop Up tent, which means fast set up
- It has a UPF 50+ and absorbs up to 98 per cent of UV radiation
- It’s a two-in-one model – baby beach tent and a pool
- Mesh screen in the back for ventilation
- There may be a characteristic polyester smell once you open the tent for the first time
Before Buying a Beach Tent, Ask Yourself these Questions:
Does the tent provide UV protection or will it only create shade?
Some beach tents are made only to create shade; their fabric doesn’t have a UPF (Ultraviolet Protection Factor). Other tents do have a UPF 50+, which means they reduce the UV radiation; they block up to 98 per cent of UV rays. Obviously, it’s better to opt for the latter.
Does it have proper ventilation?
It’s important that the beach tent has some mesh screens (also referred to as windows) so the air can flow through it; otherwise, it can get dangerously hot inside.
How easy will it be to set up the tent?
You don’t want to spend too much time trying to set up the tent or take it down. Fortunately for you, most manufacturers nowadays provide detailed instructions for setting up the tent or develop particular design characteristics that make putting the tent up fast and easy.
How much does the tent weigh when it’s packed?
Since it probably won’t be the only thing you’re going to take with you to the beach, it’s vital for the tent not to be too heavy when it’s packed up in its bag. All the tents on our list don’t go over 6 pounds when they’re folded in their bags.
Does it have added features that will provide stability?
To make sure your beach tent can withstand heavy wind, opt to buy a model that comes with added features such as sand bags and stakes, that will provide some added stability in such conditions.
How big do you need the tent to be?
That is an important question since it will determine how many people will be able to fit inside comfortably. If your trip to the beach is with a toddler, you can always buy a baby beach tent – it’s the same as the regular one, only smaller and it’s ideal for providing shade and UV protection for the kids.
Is it durable enough to withstand wind and rain?
In the case of rain or heavy wind, you need a tent made out of fabric that is strong enough to survive such weather. It would be best to get a beach tent that is waterproof, so you know that you and your stuff, especially things like mobile phones, won’t get wet.
How much money do you plan to spend for a beach tent?
Whenever you’re about to purchase something, it’s important to consider how much you’re ready to pay for it. There are a lot of available models of beach tents on the market, and they all have different prices - you can easily find one that will fit within your budget.
To Sum It All Up
All of the beach tent models mentioned on this list have things in common – they will offer you shade and protection from the harmful UV rays, while also giving you some privacy on a crowded beach. Declaring the winner is hard, even for me, since they all have some similar specifications.
But, since my job here is to make the decision, I’ve decided that the best beach tent on the market right now is Sport-Brella Portable All-Weather and Sun Umbrella.
It offers all the qualities of a beach tent and at a reasonable price, too. Extraordinary protection and comfort are what you can expect from this model if you decide on buying it.
- UPF 50+ PROTECTION. The Sport Brella will keep your skin safe and protected from UVA and UVB rays; With side panels for extra coverage and wind flaps for ventilation and airflow, you’ll get everything you need
- RUGGED AND DURABLE COVER: 8 foot canopy is made of 210 D Polyester for the fundamental all weather protection; It is supported be 4.5 millimeter steel ribs and a 5 millimeter steel stretcher
- LARGE CANOPY W/ WINDOWS: This easy set up shelter protects you and your team, anytime, anywhere; The side zippered windows are for easy airflow and visibility; Perfect for spending your days at the field, or the beach
- WATER REPELLENT AND WEATHER PROTECTION: Protect yourself from rain, wind, or sun with the Sport Brella; The water repellent structure will keep you dry and relaxed on rainy game days, or cool from the warm summer sun at the beach
- EVERYTHING YOU NEED: When broken down it stores as a simple 54 inch x4 inch x4 inch unit and weighs 9 pounds; Keep everything in the easy carry bag, including the 8 steel ground stakes and 3 tie down cords (8ft each)
In the end, to be honest, any of these tents would be a great choice for you and your family, so the final decision is on you; and no matter which one you choose, remember to enjoy the time you spend at the beach.