What is a Cabin Tent? 10 Benefits of Cabin Tents

Last Updated on 29/06/2023

What is a Cabin Tent?

What is a Cabin Tent? This article explains exactly what a cabin tent is and why you would want to use one. You will learn the ten benefits of cabin tents and the three downsides of cabin tents so that you gain a real understanding of what they are.

What Is a Cabin Tent?

A cabin tent, aka a wall tent, is a type of camping tent that’s designed to mimic the shape of a small cabin and offer many of the same benefits. Check out these luxury cabin tents. Near vertical walls and a high ceiling provides maximum internal space for the size of the footprint, with very little wasted space on the floor. These features give you more room to move around, unlike the slanted walls and lower ceilings of dome tents and tunnel tents.

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One of the appealing features of cabin tents is the room dividers. These dividers let you separate the interior into multiple rooms, offering privacy and allowing you to organize your space better.

Cabin tents often come with large doors and windows, which provide easy access and good ventilation. Some models even offer the option of adding a camping stove, a convenience not typically found in other types of tents.

However, it’s important to note that cabin tents are usually heavier and bulkier compared to other tent styles. This makes them less suitable for backpacking or hiking trips where you need to carry your gear over long distances. Also, due to their more boxy and less aerodynamic shape, they can be less stable in high winds or heavy snowfall.

10 Benefits of Cabin Tents

Cabin tents are an excellent choice for groups and families because of how much space you get inside, but what are the other benefits?

1. Abundance of Space

Cabin tents offer the most living space per square foot of floor space of any type of tent. You don’t have to crawl around and do everything from the crouched position. Also, you can sit straight up with your back touching the wall instead of slouching or leaning towards the middle. The extra space you get in a cabin tent is not to be underestimated.

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2. Lots of Head Room

A great feature of cabin tents is their high ceilings which are often tall enough to walk around inside. This helps when trying to get dressed in the morning and makes it less of a mission to climb over people to get out. Check out this guide on tall tents for more information.

3. Walk Through Doors

Most cabin tents incorporate full-sized, walk-through doors, which negates the need to get on your hands and knees or shimmy in on your butt as you do on some lightweight tents. This feature is particularly beneficial when you are constantly going in and out of your tent. Large doors also help in summer when you need as much ventilation as you can get.

4. Room Dividers

Cabin tents often include room dividers, providing a level of privacy not typically found in other types of camping tents. These dividers allow you to create separate sleeping or living spaces using detachable fabric panels and mesh lining. On family and group camping trips, it can be nice to have your own little space, even if the walls are quite literally paper thin.

5. Windows and Vents

Because cabin tents are so tall and have such large wall panels, it makes sense to have multiple windows and vents all over. Many cabin-style tents will have a window on every spare wall that is lined with bug mesh and can unzip to ensure a well-ventilated living space. As well as making amazing vents, the windows also allow you to see outside and enjoy panoramic views.

cabin tent with a view

6. Often Compatible with Stoves

Some cabin tents come with a stove jack in the roof that allows the safe installation of a camping stove and chimney for winter camping. The reason cabin tents are so good for wood-burning stoves is that they have so much space inside to tend a fire safely. This is a big advantage in freezing weather and is one reason why people living far North use this type of tent so often.

7. Can Use a Camping Cot

Unlike smaller, dome-shaped tents, the large floor space, vertical walls, and high ceilings of cabin tents can comfortably accommodate camping cots. If you have ever slept on a camping cot vs a sleeping pad, then you will know they are far comfier and more desirable on a long-term camping holiday. You can even fit a double camping cot inside most cabin tents which makes them a good choice for couples.

8. Vertical Walls

The near-vertical walls of cabin tents optimize the interior space. Unlike sloping tent walls, cabin tents’ upright walls allow you to put furniture like a camping bench or table right up against the wall for cooking or eating. If you are seeing next to a wall, then you won’t suffer from the material flapping against your face in high winds or from condensation dripping on you. They also let you sit with your back against them when there are a lot of people sitting around inside.

9. Group and Family Friendly

The size, space division, and convenient features of cabin tents make them ideal for group outings or family camping trips. The communal and home-like feeling that a cabin tent provides can make your outdoor adventures more enjoyable. If you remove any partitions and room dividers, then having a cabin tent is one of the best ways to place yourself at the center of your social circle.

10. Put Up A Clothes Drying Line Inside

The high ceilings and spacious interiors of cabin tents offer the option to put up a clothes-drying line inside, which is such a big benefit when camping in the rain. This feature is particularly useful for long camping trips and when the rain just won’t let up. You can also hang other lightweight items at the top of the tent, like a tent fan, toiletry bag, or ridgeline organizer.

military canvas wall tent with log burner smoke

3 Problems With Cabin Tents

Cabin tents do have their issues that make them unsuitable for many people, but if you are camping close to your vehicle in the nicer months of the year with family or friends, then there won’t be a problem for you.

1. Heavy and Bulky

First of all, big tall tents need a big strong frame and lots of fabric to put over the frame, which makes them big and heavy to carry. They are not very portable at all and so won’t work for backpackers or hikers.

2. Vulnerable to Wind and Snow

Because cabin tents have large boxy walls, they are vulnerable to being hit by strong winds, which can cause damage and cause your tent to become very noisy. They also have fairly flat roofs, which leaves them open to being squashed under heavy snowfall in the night. Cabin tents are pretty good at dealing with heavy rain and extreme heat though.

3. It Can Be Tricky to Set up Alone

Cabin tents often have more complex frame structures than a dome tents and so it can be hard or sometimes almost impossible to put one up on your own. If it is windy and raining when you are trying to set up, it only makes it harder. Two people are often required for large cabin tents, which can be an issue if it’s just you.

What is a Cabin Tent? Hopefully, you can now answer that question if somebody asks you after reading this article. Thanks for stopping by.

Gear Assistant
Gear Assistant

This article has been written and/or edited by Andrew N. 20+ years of hiking, mountaineering, and camping experience, with access to all the latest outdoor gear.

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  1. This is a very good article for someone buying a tent for the first time.

  2. […] choosing the right tent can make all the difference. Two popular types of tents are dome tents and cabin tents. Each has its own unique features that make it suitable for different camping needs. In this […]

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