If you have ever tried camping solo in a single-person tent, you know how important it is to have ample space to sleep comfortably and stow the necessary gear, like electronics, inside with you.
With so many options available on the market to choose from, it can be difficult to choose the best 3 person backpacking tent for your needs. We’ve got you covered! Below we have compiled a comprehensive list of the best 3 person backpacking tents for 2023.
Keep reading to see which tents we have included.
Our Top Picks
Big Agnes Copper Spur
REI Co-op Half Dome
Best Lightweight Tent:
Nemo Dagger Ultralight
The Big Agnes Copper Spur 3-person tent has convenient vestibules that expand to cover the entire living space, which is ideal for drizzle and rain protection and sun protection.
This tent has a large bin in the foot that provides expansive storage space. It also has a ceiling pocket at the top and other pockets for electronics or other small devices you’d like to store.
It has two doors and two vestibules with double zippers that give you multiple options for access and can minimize tracking in dirt or letting in rain or snow.
The dual vent vestibule door also allows optimal airflow throughout the tent, reducing the amount of condensation buildup.
Features pre-bent poles with high-volume angle hubs, which increase the strength and stability of the tent.
All the big Agnes Copper Spur three-season tent seams are waterproof, and the zippers are protected with storm flaps.
This 3-person tent includes eight stakes and four awning guylines, and it has multiple interior loops to make it easy to erect.
- Lightweight, weighing only three pounds
- Two awning-style vestibules to protect you from the elements
- Plenty of storage space
- Sand or dirt may get caught in the rainfly attachment clips, rendering them useless
The REI Co-op Half Dome 3-person tent is lightweight and engineered to stand up to three-season weather.
Mesh panels on the tent help improve the ventilation to limit the amount of condensation that collects on the tent walls. The panels also reduce drafts, provide privacy, and prevent dirt and dust from blowing in on you.
This tent has two large D-shaped doors for a spacious entrance and exit, and the doors can be rolled up and secured out of your way easily. The sides of the rainfly can also be rolled up to increase airflow and quickly rolled back down in case of a sudden rainstorm.
There are interior pockets and hang loops that make organizing your gear easy.
This tent includes footprints, guylines, stakes, a stake bag, and a pole-repair tube. Each part of this tent assembly is color-coded to make pitching your tent easier than ever!
- Includes footprint and pole repair supplies
- Plenty of interior space
- Reflective stake loops and guylines
- Takes a bit of time to pitch
- Heavier than some of the other options on this list
Best Lightweight Tent
The Nemo Dagger Ultralight 3-person tent is equipped with high-performance proprietary poly-nylon fabric for extra water-repellent properties and less stretch when wet.
This tent features large vestibules and two large doors for your convenience. You can store nearly all your gear in the giant trapezoid-shaped vestibules.
The color-coded pole set with color-matched webbing makes erecting your tent easier than ever. The tent is lightweight and easy to carry while still boasting plenty of livable space.
It is equipped to withstand heavy rains, wind, and some snow. This three-season tent is just what you need for all your backpacking needs!
- Dual-sided entries
- Vestibules for convenient storage
- More expensive than some other options on our list
- The zipper for the rainfly is a bit fragile
The Marmot Limelight 3-person tent boasts two vestibules for plenty of storage space for your backpack, shoes, and other gear you want to store inside the tent.
It has two extra-wide doors, which make setting up inside quick and convenient for you. It also has interior pockets for small gear, like electronics, wallets, etc.
It even has a lampshade pocket to hold your headlamp in place for an overhead light when the sun sets.
The pre-bent poles help create vertical walls, giving you more headroom and more livable space inside your tent.
This nifty tent even includes a laundry line at the top so you can hang your wet clothes up to dry or use it to hang your gear out of the way to create even more living space.
With color-coded clips, poles, and rainfly, camping in a 3-person tent has never been more convenient!
- Sturdy and withstands a bit of jostling around on the trip
- Very roomy
- Heavier than some of the other options on this list
- Can trap heat, which is bad for summer camping, and allows condensation buildup
The MSR (Mountain Safety Research) Elixir 3-person backpacking tent is a free-standing setup with color-coded poles, clips, webbing, and even color-coded vestibules to erect your tent quickly and easily.
The tent body includes the rainfly, footprint, poles, stakes, guylines, a stuff sack, and the instructions for pitching the tent.
This setup includes more accessories than some of the other options on this list, but if you are trying to travel as lightly as possible, it can be set up with just the rainfly and included footprint.
The tent body is made of mesh, with solid fabric panels that provide an ideal combination of ventilation and warmth. The panels also provide privacy.
This tent has two large vestibules for storing all your gear and supplies and an easy-entry door. It has plenty of storage space and living space in a lightweight package, making it ideal for backpacking.
- Durable build from quality materials
- Roomy with storage space
- Withstands wind well
- Condensation builds up from trapped heat
- Weighs more than some of the other options on this list, at 7 pounds
- Only has one door
With so many products on the market, it can be challenging to choose between them all. Let’s talk about some of the most important factors you should be looking for in a 3-person backpacking tent.
The main choices you will find for tents are three-season and four-season, with most people going for a three-season tent. A three-season tent is generally adequate when you go backpacking unless you expect severe weather.
Three-season tents can withstand heavy rain and some snow, but they are not equipped to handle any violent winds or heavy snow. If you are expecting extremely cold temperatures or high winds, you may need the added protection of a four-season tent.
A four-season tent can withstand heavy snowfall and high winds, so if you tend to camp in extreme conditions, you should probably go with the four-season tent.
The durability of your 3-person backpacking tent largely depends on the fabric’s thickness. The thicker the fabric, the sturdier your tent will be once it is erected.
The rest of the material’s quality contributes to your tent’s durability. The quality of the poles and zippers contributes to the overall stability of the tent.
An ultralight option will require extra care to keep it from sustaining rips or tears in the fabric. The most vulnerable element is the floor, so make sure you check your campsite floor for sticks and rocks.
A good backpacking tent will be durable enough that a little jostling around during your hike won’t affect it at all.
Weight is one of the most important factors to consider when choosing the right 3-person backpacking tent for your trip.
When backpacking, the ideal tent is lightweight and won’t weigh you down. The more fancy accessories or features your tent includes, the heavier it will be to lug around.
Most budget tents are going to weigh more than premium options because the manufacturers use cheaper, heavier materials.
When shopping for a tent, you will see manufacturers list the packaged and trail weights. The packaged weight includes everything that comes with the tent, while the trail weight only includes the poles, tent body, and rainfly. Be sure to consider each of these when choosing your 3-person backpacking tent.
A 3-person backpacking tent has plenty of room for you and a companion, even a furry one! It also has room to store all, or most all, of your gear inside the tent to protect it from the elements.
Peak height is measured from the tallest point of the tent, so it is not a reliable number to assess whether you need more headspace.
The floor’s dimensions, provided in the manufacturer and retailer information, usually give you an idea of how big your floor will be when the tent is completely set up. Many of the premium options have pre-bent poles, which help stretch the walls out and give you more width and height space.
The price of 3-person backpacking tents can vary. If you are on a budget or only go backpacking a few times a year or less, plenty of budget options may best suit your needs without breaking the bank.
Remember that better quality materials will drop the tent’s weight, which is vital when backpacking. A lightweight or ultralight backpacking tent might cost a pretty penny, but it is worth it if you spend much of your free time backpacking.
Generally, there are so many options on the market to choose from, it shouldn’t be too difficult to find the right tent for your needs without spending an arm and a leg.
Even if you are traveling as lightly as possible, you’ll still have some gear that needs to be stored at night while you sleep.
The best 3-person backpacking tent will have ample storage space inside and out, allowing you to stash all your gear and supplies in specific spots. Having a vestibule outside can save you more living space inside the tent.
Look for a tent with enough storage space on the inside to store your electronics or any other important supplies, like your wallet or personal identification and money.
Nobody wants to spend hours trying to set up a tent. Many tents are now made with color-coded prebent poles, precut guylines, and clips.
Luckily, these days tents are much quicker to erect, with modern tents using simple clips that only take a second to attach, and the tent poles come together with ease.
Most tents come with an included rainfly, but if yours doesn’t, you will want to purchase one separately. A rainfly is an important piece of gear you should always take when you’re backpacking.
Some tents can withstand high winds, while others cannot. Ensure you check with the manufacturer for information on the severity of the weather it can withstand.
If you decide to camp in a region that gets a lot of rainfall, you will need a waterproof tent with a rainfly attached to ensure you stay dry during any downpours.
A tent awning is great for creating a shady area to prevent the sun from beating down on you.
Wrapping Up The Best 3-Person Backpacking Tent
A 3-person backpacking tent gives you plenty of space for yourself and all your gear, you and a companion, or you and your pet!
Whether you are an avid backpacker or only take the occasional camping trip, a 3-person backpacking tent provides plenty of versatility.
If you would like to learn more about camping in a tent, check out the tent camping section of our website!