The best bell tent

Tents

The British Cavalry used bell tents during the Crimean War.

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Which bell tent is best?

Bell tents are loved for their spaciousness and durability. They are a preferred type of canvas tent due to their versatility and quick setup. The average bell tent takes 20 minutes to set up and features a large pole in the center to hold it up. You can use a bell tent in any climate due to its humidity control, waterproof features and mesh properties. Most feature a stove pipe insert for cooking inside.

What they lack in portability due to weight, they make up for in a unique camping experience. If you are looking for a waterproof bell tent that is easy to assemble and includes all the best accessories for any camping expedition, the Danchel Outdoor Cotton Canvas Yurt Tent is the top choice.

What to know before you buy a bell tent

Season

Before purchasing a bell tent, think about the season you plan to camp. Bell tents come in many different sizes and you can use them during multiple seasons. In the warmer months, users can ventilate their tent by unzipping mesh windows and rolling up the walls. In cooler months, users can bring a wood-burning stove into the tent, provided the tent has stove-pipe inserts.

Assembly

Bell tents typically are heavy and bulky but despite the weight of the material, they are very easy to assemble. A bell tent features one tall pole that brings the tent up to a peak. It takes around 20 minutes on average to assemble and is easy and quick to take apart to clean.

Size

When purchasing a bell tent, consider how many people plan to sleep in it so that you can find the right size. Bell tents are very spacious, but it is important to size up by one sleeper no matter what tent you are purchasing. For example, if you need a bell tent that sleeps five people, opt for a tent that sleeps six or more.

What to look for in a quality bell tent

Ventilation

A good bell tent has at least three vents around the peak of the tent. Since most bell tents feature openings for stoves, it is important they also have mesh windows to balance the humidity, heat and moisture present in the tent. The mesh windows used for ventilation can double as mosquito nets. The more breathable the tent, the less likely moisture will build up and cause mold.

Waterproof

A quality bell tent features a waterproof coating and is tightly and durably stitched. When purchasing the product online, check the description and reviews to make sure the stitching is secure to prevent leaking. To find out how much water a tent can repel, look for an “mm” measurement in the product description. The amount of water a tent can repel is measured in “mm” and can be different for both the walls and the floor of a tent. To ensure no added moisture gets into the tent, check to see if the tent has good ventilation. This prevents mold and bacteria growth over time.

Material 

Bell tents are made from 100% cotton canvas material. A good bell tent is waterproof as well as fire retardant. Those looking for added protection against the elements can rely on bell tents due to their thick fabric.

How much you can expect to spend on a bell tent

Bell tents range from $200-$3,000 depending on material, size and accessories. A quality bell tent that uses the best material and features full ventilation and stove inserts is priced higher, while less-durable, smaller bell tents are cheaper.

Bell tent FAQ

How do you clean a bell tent?

A.  To clean your bell tent, moisten the cotton. After this first step, dissolve a bleaching liquid into water and apply this solution onto the wet canvas. Let the canvas absorb this for 30 minutes and rinse the canvas with plenty of water. This will ensure there is no mold or mildew on the tent when you pack it up.

Is a bell tent portable?

A. There are such things as portable lightweight bell tents that are easily packed and carried on long hikes and expeditions, but for the most part, these tents are durable and heavy duty. The average bell tent weighs up to 60 pounds.

What’s the best bell tent to buy?

Top bell tent

Danchel Outdoor Cotton Canvas Yurt Tent

Danchel Outdoor Cotton Canvas Yurt Tent

What you need to know: This bell tent is heavy duty, weighing in at 60 pounds and measuring just above 5 feet tall. Users can fit two full beds or five sleeping bags. It contains two stove jacks with outer flaps for leak protection when not in use.

What you’ll love: This product is made with breathable cotton canvas and features a waterproof coating. You can roll up the sides for ventilation and burn wood inside in the winter, making it perfect for all seasons. It is easy to assemble.

What you should consider: The hole for the stove pipe is not big enough to fit a 5-inch pipe as it claims.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon.

Top bell tent for the money

Dream House Outdoor Waterproof Cotton Canvas Camping Family Bell Tent

Dream House Outdoor Waterproof Cotton Canvas Camping Family Bell Tent 

What you need to know: This bell tent is made with 100% cotton and a waterproof PU coating. The seams are sealed for leak protection and the groundsheet is heavy duty and removable for all seasons and terrains.

What you’ll love: You can roll up the walls. The tent features ventilation holes at the top with mesh screens for best temperature and humidity regulation.

What you should consider: The zipper is not watertight. Users need to use cloth to cover the zipper to avoid leakage.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon.

Worth checking out

WHITEDUCK Regatta Canvas Bell Tent

WHITEDUCK Regatta Canvas Bell Tent 

What you need to know: This bell tent features breathable fabric that makes the tent waterproof and UV resistant. It also features a fire-retardant finish and you can use it throughout every season. Users can safely cook inside the tent.

What you’ll love: This tent uses heavy-duty zippers and stitching for maximum leak protection and adjustable ventilation. The tent bag that the tent comes in is waterproof. The tent has two layered windows you can roll up as well as a high-quality sewn-in groundsheet for additional protection.

What you should consider: The hole for the stove is lower than what is shown in the product image online.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon.

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Logan DeLoye writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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