Best 12 Person Tent – Expert Review

Updated: February 11, 2024
12 person tent

A 12-person tent is an expensive investment, so it's important to purchase a tent that best suits your needs. The Core 12 Person Instant Cabin Tent is my top pick 12-person tent. It's spacious and comfortable and is incredibly easy to set up, albeit a bit heavy.

The Tahoe Gear 3-Season Family Tent is a great option if you are on a budget. It's spacious with great weather resistance but it lacks storage space. For good value for money, go for the Tahoe Gear Olympia 10-12 Person Tent. It's large, practical and comfortable.

While it might be an expensive tent, the NTK Super Arizona GT Tent is solidly waterproof and high quality.

Best 12 Person Tent (Top Picks)

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Top 12 Person Tents (Detailed Reviews)

We reviewed over 17 12-person tents for this article. Below are the best 12-person tents that made our short list.

  1. Core 12 Person Instant Cabin Tent - Best Overall
  2. NTK Super Arizona GT Tent - Best Waterproof
  3. Ozark Trail 12-Person 3-Room Instant Cabin Tent
  4. Tahoe Gear Olympia 10-12 Person Tent - Best Value
  5. Eureka Copper Canyon 12 -Person Tent - Best Cabin-Style
  6. Browning Camping Big Horn Tent
  7. Tahoe Gear 3-Season Family Tent

Read our complete buyers guide for 12 person tents.

1. Best Overall 12 Person Tent

CORE 12 Person Instant Cabin Tent | 3 Room Huge Tent for Family with Storage Pockets for Camping Accessories | Portable Large Pop Up Tent for 2 Minute Camp Setup

4.6/5 Overall Rating

Manufacturer: Core

The Core 12 Person Instant Cabin Tent has been chosen as the best overall tent due to it being packed with useful features.

It is comfortable, water-resistant and incredibly spacious. The tent is made from 68D polyester, which has a 600mm hydrostatic rating. It also has a rainfly that can be removed if you wish to gaze at the stars on a clear night.

This tent has an advanced ventilation system with an adjustable air intake vent designed to draw in cool air from the ground, while the mesh ceiling allows hot air to escape. There are two doors, one D-style and one T-style, and it comes with two attachable room dividers if you want a little privacy.

There are internal storage slots and an overhead loft to store gear. The Core Instant Cabin Tent has an instant set up and it can be set up in an impressive 2 minutes. You will also enjoy the awning and E-port. The tent does have a few downsides, including its hefty weight at 52 lbs and it not being the most durable tent you can buy.

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Main Features
  • 68D polyester
  • 600mm hydrostatic rating
  • 2 doors
  • Removeable rainfly
  • 2 attachable room dividers
  • Awning
  • E-port
  • Internal storage slots
  • Overhead storage loft
  • Advanced venting system
  • Preattached steel poles
  • Instant setup
What we like
  • Huge floor space
  • Good water resistance 
  • Great storage
  • Good ventilation
  • Comfortable
  • Quick and easy setup
What we dislike
  • Heavy at 52lbs
  • Not the most durable

2. Best Waterproof 12 Person Tent

NTK Arizona GT 12 Person Tent for Family Camping | 20.6x10 ft Camping Tent with 2 Rooms, 2 Doors, 100% Waterproof Dome & Breathable Mesh | Outdoor Tent | 2500 mm Warm & Cold Weather Family Tent

4.5/5 Overall Rating

Having a waterproof tent is a necessity if you are thinking of camping in an area that is prone to rain, and the NTK Super Arizona GT Tent offers you the protection you’ll need.

The full coverage rainfly is made of PU coated polyester taffeta with a 2500mm hydrostatic rating. It also provides UV protection. Its bathtub style floor is made of waterproof polyethylene.

The tent also has great ventilation, with NO-SEE-UM style mesh, which is ultra-thin and breathable. There are roomy utility pockets and a loft to store your gear. It is also easily assembled thanks to the color coded poles. Although this tent is easy to setup, it can take some time and be a fairly tedious process. 

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Main Features
  • PU coated polyester taffeta rainfly
  • Waterproof polyethylene bathtub style floor
  • 2 D-style doors
  • 3 large windows
  • NO-SEE-UM mesh
  • 100% virgin NANO-FLEX fiberglass rods
  • Gear Loft
  • Color coded poles
  • Utility pockets 
What we like
  • Water-resistant 
  • Great ventilation
  • Spacious
  • Easily assembled
What we dislike
  • Quite heavy at 42lbs
  • Long to set up
  • More reinforcement around zippers and seams is needed

3. Best Family Tent

Ozark Trail 16x16-Feet 12-Person 3 Room Instant Cabin Tent with Pre-Attached Poles

4/5 Overall Rating

This 3-bedroom tent is a great option for families who love to camp. Its instant setup with pre-attached poles allows you to set it up in under 2 minutes. This means that you can start relaxing immediately instead of having to fiddle with poles and a tricky setup.

The Ozark Trail 12-Person 3-Room Instant Cabin Tent is made from durable 68D coated polyester fabric with a factory welded bathtub floor. There are 10 fully closable windows and ground vents, which can fit an A/C unit.

The fully taped factory seams provide dry zone camping and leak protection. Its rain fly also includes an awning and holds up incredibly well in heavy rain. While it is very heavy at 61lbs, keep in mind the presence of the screen room.

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Main Features
  • Screen room + 2 extra rooms
  • 68D coated polyester fabric
  • Instant setup
  • Factory welded bathtub floor
  • 10 fully closable windows
  • Rain fly which includes an awning
  • E-port
  • Ground vents which can fit an A/C unit
  • 3 doors
What we like
  • Very comfortable and functional
  • Great price
  • Spacious
  • Great setup time
  • Weather-resistant 
  • Good quality
  • Incredible ventilation
What we dislike
  • Tends to get warm when rain fly is attached
  • Heavy

4. Best Value 12 Person Tent

Tahoe Gear Olympia 10 Person 3 Season Outdoor Hiking Family Backpack Camping Tent, Orange and Green

4.4/5 Overall Rating

The Tahoe Gear Olympia 10-12 Person Tent will offer you incredible value for your money. It is large, comfortable and practical.

Its body is made from durable 1200mm polyester and has a coordinating rainfly made of the same material. The polyethylene binding floor provides even more water resistance. This tent will help keep you cool in summer and warm during the colder months, although it is more suitable for warm weather camping.

It is an L-shaped tunnel tent, that features ground and ceiling vents to enhance the ventilation. It has 2 doors, and 2 rooms as well as 2 E-ports and a solar shield.

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Main Features
  • Durable 1200mm polyester tent body and rainfly
  • 120-gram polyethylene floor
  • 2 rooms
  • 2 doors
  • 2 E-ports
  • Roof and ground vents
  • Shock cord fiberglass poles
  • Solar shield
What we like
  • Large
  • Practical
  • Comfortable
  • Great ventilation
  • Attractive price
  • Water-resistant 
What we dislike
  • Not entirely leak proof
  • Doesn’t hold up well in wind

5. Best Cabin-Style 12 Person Tent

Eureka! Copper Canyon 12 -Person Tent, Orange

4.5/5 Overall Rating

The Eureka Copper Canyon 12 -Person Tent is a reliable and spacious cabin-style tent. Its near vertical walls further create a more spacious interior.

The tent features generously sized zippered windows, which provide a 360-degree view and cross-tent airflow. Its 6 storage pockets and 2 gear lofts provide ample storage space.

This tent is relatively easy to set up and set up will take about 12-15 minutes with two people. It is water-resistant and comes with a rainfly. The removable divider lets you create rooms for more privacy.

This is the perfect summer camping tent. There is plenty of mesh to ensure great ventilation. An obvious downside of this tent is the price, at $500 it is quite a bit more expensive than the other tents on this list. 

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Main Features
  • Polyester with 1200mm PU hydrostatic rating
  • 2 D-style doors
  • Zippered E-ports
  • 2 rooms
  • 6 windows
  • 12-minute setup
  • 6 storage pockets
  • 2 gear lofts
What we like
  • Very reliable
  • Great size
  • Water-resistant
  • Good ventilation
  • Removeable divider
  • Plenty of storage space
What we dislike
  • Expensive
  • Floor requires a ground mat underneath

6. Best Two-Room 12 Person Tent

Browning Camping Big Horn Two-Room Tent - Khaki/Coal

4.5/5 Overall Rating

The Browning Camping Big Horn Tent has received rave reviews on how well it withstands severe weather conditions. This is due to the steel poles that won’t bend in very windy conditions.

The tent is made from 75D 185T polyester with a 150D polyester oxford floor with 2000mm coating. There are 6 large windows, 2 doors and a mesh roof to ensure easy entry and the ultimate ventilation.

This tent is fully equipped with mesh storage pockets, polyester rain fly, guy ropes and steel stakes. It is straightforward and easy to put together and although it is manageable for one person to set up, it's better with 2 people. The tent includes 2 spacious rooms.

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Main Features
  • 2 spacious rooms
  • 6 large windows
  • 2 doors
  • Mesh storage pockets
  • Polyester rain fly
  • Guy ropes
  • Steel stakes
  • 75D 185T polyester
  • 150D polyester oxford floor with 2000mm coating
What we like
  • Spacious
  • Great price
  • Very tall and liveable
  • Great packed size
  • Water-resistant
What we dislike
  • No vestibules, so gear would need to be stored inside the tent

7. Best Budget 12 Person Tent

Tahoe Gear Ozark TGT-OZARK-16-D Large 16 Person 3 Season Family Camping Cabin Tent, Brown

4.4/5 Overall Rating

The Tahoe Gear 3-Season Family Tent is large (for 12-16 people), practical and comfortable. Its tunnel-style tent body and rainfly are made with 190T polyester with a 2000mm coating and UV light resistance.

The tent is fairly easy to assemble, but you will need two people to set it up. It also features a small awning and a zip-down room divider to create rooms.

At 31lbs, this tent is also lighter than other tents on the market. The full mesh roof enhances the ventilation, which is also aided by 12 windows and 2 doors. This tent offers you exceptional value for money.

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Main Features
  • 190T polyester with 2000mm coating
  • Full mesh roof
  • 2 doors
  • E-port
  • Zip-down room divider to create 2 separate rooms
  • Small awning 
  • 12 windows
What we like
  • Great weather resistance
  • Spacious
  • Comfortable
  • Affordable
  • Relatively easy setup
What we dislike
  • Lack of actual storage pockets, so it may be hard to keep the tent tidy
  • No hooks to hang a lantern

Best 12 Person Tent - Buyer's Guide

How big is a 12 person tent?

Obviously a 12-person tent needs to be incredibly roomy. The last thing you want is to feel cramped on your camping trip. You will want lots of floor space to set up your mattresses.

12 Person tents should be approximately 150 to 200 square feet (14 - 18.6 square meters) in order to accommodate 12 people and all of your bags and camping equipment.

If some of the campers are on the taller side, it is important to check the peak height.

All of the tents on this list have a peak height exceeding 6 ft 5, so it is unlikely anyone will have to hunch over as they move around the tent.

Are 12 person tents easy to set up?

12 Person tents can be quite intimidating due to their large size, but most tents nowadays are fairly easy to set up. Instant tents come with all of their poles preattached so that all you need to do is unfold the tent and extend or snap the poles into place. 

Even if you opt for a tent that you have to manually set up, they usually come with very clear instructions or color-coded poles so that you don't have to spend too much time figuring out which pole goes where. However, 12 person tents are generally much easier to set up with two pairs of hands so hopefully one of your fellow campers can help you. 


A 12-person tent will typically weigh between 30-50 pounds. You want your tent to be light enough to be carried and setup by 2 people.


Rain is always a possibility, no matter what the season. You want your tent to be completely waterproof to avoid you and your belonging getting wet. A good way to judge the waterproofness of your tent is via the hydrostatic rating. The accepted minimum is 1500mm.

The floor of your tent will typically have a higher rating than the walls. This is because the floor is more likely to make contact with a wet surface. Obviously, a rain fly is a necessity to help keep you dry and protected. 


It is important that you have ample storage in your tent, whether it be a vestibule or a gear loft. Storage space helps you organize your belongings and keep your tent tidy. Without storage space you will most likely have to store your belongings in the actual tent which could get a bit untidy.


Obviously with a 12-person tent, you’ll want a tent that can comfortably fit 12 people. This may not always be the case. Some tents may only house 8 or 9 comfortably but market the tent as a 12-person tent because 12 people can technically fit in it. It's always a good rule of thumb to get a tent with a larger capacity than you think you need. 

About the author 

Adie Marais

Adie is a nature and wildlife lover living in Cape Town, South Africa. Growing up, she had many opportunities to explore the outdoors by hiking, going on safaris and venturing into the karoo with her family. This led to her love of animals, the environment and discovering new places to explore.

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