Looking at a the water from the inside of a tent on a sandy beach

The Best Beach Tents: 7 Canopy Tents for Hot Summer Days

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The days are getting longer and the nights are getting hotter, which means summer is here. For most people, this involves going to the beach, lounging around in the sun, and soaking up some rays.

However, summer’s not all fun and games.

Staying out in the sun can cause freckles, sunburns, and even heat stroke. That’s not even the worst of it. Did you know that about 90% of nonmelanoma skin cancers are associated with exposure to UV radiation from the sun?

UV rays are ultraviolet radiation from the sun that reaches the earth’s surface. Every time you go outdoors, you’re exposed to it.

Luckily, UV rays aren’t harmful in small doses. So it’s okay to get your fun in the sun, as long as you minimize the amount of time spent doing it.

One of the best ways to enjoy the summer heat without having to worry about harmful sun rays is by using a beach tent.

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Benefits of Beach Tents

Beach tents are your first line of defense from UV rays on a hot summer day. They are a tent or canopy that give you a shady spot anywhere on the beach that you choose.

They keep you cool

Beach tents are extremely useful during those hot summer days. You may be saying to yourself…

“Why would I need a beach tent? I’m trying to get my tan on!”

Which is great and all, but what about when you’ve been on the beach for a few hours and you’re beginning to look like a boiled lobster a beach tent comes in handy.

Not to mention, if you bring drinks or food onto the beach, keeping them in the shade of a beach tent will keep them a little cooler. If you bring a cooler with you, storing it under the shade will help to preserve the contents for a longer time.

Beach tents keep you out of the wind

Have you ever been out on the beach on a windy day? It’s no fun. The wind starts blowing your belongings away, the sand begins to whip at your face and legs, and you can’t enjoy just sitting out on the beach. A windy day at the beach is enough to ruin any trip.

But, not if you have a beach tent.

A beach tent will keep you out of the wind and your stuff sand free (for the most part). While a sandstorm whips around you outside, you’ll be inside your safe haven, lounging around and enjoying the smell of the sea.

They Give You Privacy

When you’re out on the beach, there isn’t much privacy. This can make changing out of wet swimsuits a real pain, especially if you have kids.

However, with a beach tent, you can duck in real quick and change into some clean clothes without having to hike back to your car or the public restroom. This is especially handy when you’re at a crowded beach and there’s a line of people waiting to steal your awesome spot on the shoreline.

Advantages of beach tents:

  • Keeps you out of the sun
  • Prevents sunburn and heatstroke
  • Keep food and drinks cool
  • Wind protection
  • Keeps things from blowing away
  • Increased privacy

A red tent on a sandy beach at sunset

Beach Tent Buying Guide

When considering a beach tent for your friends and family there are a number of factors to consider. Things such as size, UV protection, and difficulty to set up are just a few of them…

Do I Need a Beach Tent?

Do you have skin? Then the answer is, yes.

Even those of us who don’t burn easily need to be careful when out in the sun. Although you may not get sunburnt, you can still be exposed to the danger of UV rays which can lead to problems later on down the road.

Having a beach tent doesn’t just benefit you. Your friends and family at the beach will thank you for it too since they’ll have a spot to sit when they get too hot and a place to keep their food and drinks cool too.

Will It Protect Me From UV Rays?

Beach tents can block up to 99% of incoming UV rays. So yes, they can definitely protect you.

“I don’t need that,” you might say. “I’ll just wear sunscreen!”

Well, actually, sunscreen has been proven to really not be that effective.

Studies suggest that sunscreen users need to apply the equivalent of a shot glass of sunscreen for it to be effective, and that doesn’t even count the amount you’ll have to reapply every few hours and after you go swimming.

If you want protection from UV rays, using a beach tent is a much easier, simpler, and, once you factor in the price of all that sunblock, a cheaper solution.

How Difficult Is The Setup?

The best beach tents are actually incredibly easy to set up. Many of them are pop-top tents that literally just pop right up. Poles are usually folded into the interior of the tent so that when they’re released, they spring into an upright position.

There are models that don’t pop right into action. The longest setup time seems to be around 5 minutes at the max, once you get the hang of it.

Is it lightweight?

Beach tents are also typically made of lightweight materials and are easy to carry around. Often, they’ll come with carrying handles stitched into the side and roll up into the size of a beach towel or camping chair.

Are beach tents easy to clean?

Beach tents are also pretty easy to maintain. You can wipe them down with soap and then just spray it off with water. Afterward, just let it hang out to dry and voila! Your beach tent is clean.

How much do they cost?

Cost is always going to be an important consideration for any and every purchase that you make. It’s no different when finding a beach tent for yourself.

As they say…

“You get what you pay for.”

Is it waterproof?

Dreams of sandy beaches rarely include rainfall. That being said, there is always a chance of rain, so finding a beach tent that will protect you from the occasional drizzle is an area of concern.

The 7 Best Beach Tents for Summer Fun

Here are our picks for the top beach tents that give you a little bit of shade on those hot summer days.

OILEUS 4-person Beach Tent

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The OILEUS X-Large 4 Person Beach Tent is a great beach tent for you and your family. The strong, lightweight design means this tent will last a long time while the expandable awning gives you even more shade.

It has an automatic patented mechanism that pops the tent up with ease. This beach tent will set up and breakdown in roughly 30 seconds.

It breaks down into a small area and packs up to about the size of a camping chair. There is an inside pocket for electronics, sunglasses, or anything else your heart desires.

Pros

  • Extra awning
  • 2 windows for ventilation
  • 1 year warranty

Cons

  • Windows hard to secure
  • Only fits 4 people
  • Low ceiling

Pacific Breeze Beach Tent

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The Pacific Breeze is a portable tent that provides a UPF of 50+ sun protection. It can seat up to 2 adults and provides 2 windows for extra ventilation.

Once you have a few practice runs setting it up in the backyard, you can get it up and down in a minute or less. The instructions are sewn into the carrying bag of the tent, so losing them is not an option.

The sandbags that are in place work well in limited wind, that being said, in heavy winds every beach tent turns into a kite.

Pros

  • 2 windows
  • Quick and easy setup
  • Water resistant material

Cons

  • Not very wide
  • Need to use sand pouches
  • Sandbags rarely tear

Tagvo Popup Beach Tent

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The Tagvo Popup Beach Tent is great for the whole family! The tent has enough room to fit 2 adults and 2 kids and features 3 windows for extra ventilation.

It only takes a couple minutes to complete the setup process. You simply unfold the legs, spread them, and pull the strings attached to the top of the tent until they lock together.

The windows are great for airflow and the mesh helps stop it from flying away when the wind hits.

Pros

  • 3 windows
  • 50 UPF protection
  • Lightweight and breathable

Cons

  • Not weatherproof
  • Low ceiling
  • Pinch points

Coleman Daytripper

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The Coleman Daytripper Beach Shade is a great tent for the solo beach traveler! It features an extendable front floor for extra room and makes for a great tent to lounge around in.

The setup on this beach tent does take 5 or 6 minutes once you get the hang of it. When packed up, however, it takes up very little space and can be easily included inside your bags.

The material is built to withstand light rain, so when everyone else is running for cover you can sit back and enjoy the rain. The tent itself is large enough to fit a couple of beach chairs or a pair of large towels for a short nap in the shade.

Pros

  • Full length window
  • Extendable front floor
  • Includes a dry-line

Cons

  • Limited size
  • Long setup
  • Small when zipped up

BATTOP Beach Tent

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BATTOP’s Popup Beach Tent is a great tent for a beach trip with the family. The tent can seat 2 adults and 3 kids and only takes 30 seconds to set-up.

It comes with stakes that are easy to install, just don’t forget a hammer or a means to pound them down… A large rock will also always work.

It folds up into a small circle and it’s super easy to carry and pack to any sandy beach or grassy field. It comes with a nice vent around the base of the beach tent for increased airflow.

Pros

  • Spacious
  • Super fast setup
  • 50+ UPF protection

Cons

  • No windows
  • Repacking issues
  • Now waterproof

Easthills Outdoors Beach Tent

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The Easthills Outdoors Easy Up 4 Person Beach Tent is a great tent for the whole family and then some! It can fit 4 adults and children and features a front zipper for extra privacy.

It sets up similar to an umbrella and comes with plenty of space inside. The instructions for this are sewn into the side for easy access. You can also close up the tent if you’re in the need for some midday privacy.

Packing it up takes a little bit of practice. To get it back into the carrying case you need to roll it up really tight and a hard surface seems to work best.

Pros

  • Plenty of space
  • Extendable floor
  • 1 person setup

Cons

  • Tough to pack
  • Stakes don’t work well
  • Setup isn’t intuitive

Alvantor Beach Tent

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The Alvantor Beach Tent boasts itself as the lightest beach tent on the market! It can comfortably fit 2-3 people and is windproof up to 25 mph. The mesh makes for awesome ventilation on hot summer days.

It sets up in just a few minutes and comes down even faster. Putting it back in the bag is a little bit of a challenge, however, after a few tries, it gets easier.

It includes inside pockets for storage and sand pockets on the corners for added stability.

Pros

  • Windproof up to 25 mph
  • Lightweight
  • Quick setup

Cons

  • Takes 2 people to close
  • Feels flimsy
  • Not great in high winds

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