Last updated: February 2, 2023
Reviews of seven of the best beach tents and shelters in Australia, offering plenty of shade in addition to convenience and comfort.
If there is one thing you need to have in your beach kit, it would be a beach tent or sun shelter. This is especially true in Australia, where the sun can be powerful and unforgiving.
Bringing a tent to the beach might sound like a hassle, but there are so many light and affordable options available to make your day at the beach that much more enjoyable.
In this guide, we have reviewed and shortlisted seven of the best beach tents and shelters, plus some practical tips on how to get yourself a suitable model that offers the best value.
Oztent Malamoo Beach Tent
Zomake Pop Up Beach Tent
|3.3 kg||2.2 kg|
|200 x 175 cm||240 x 180 cm|
|Check Price||Check Price|
Top 7 Beach Tents and Shelters:
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Top 7 Beach Tents and Shelters
Here is our top 7 beach tents and shelters, ranging in price from around 60 to 400 Australian dollars.
1. Oztent Malamoo 4-Hub Beach Shelter Tent
The Malamoo 4-Hub beach shelter by Oztent is an exceptionally spacious and sturdy beach tent solution with a super easy setup mechanism. It’s a reliable, good-quality beach shelter tent that can easily accommodate a small family.
This tent can basically set itself up when pulling out the four hubs, or sides, of the tent. Packing up is as simple as collapsing and inverting the hubs. It does come with metal pegs, which is useful for setting up this beach tent on harder surfaces or when there is a bit of wind. It also comes with guy ropes and sandbags for that extra stability when needed.
Like most other beach tents on the market, the Oztent Malamoo also offers the necessary UPF50+ sun protection. Also worth mentioning are the three small mesh panels in the walls that take care of the ventilation.
Note that this beach tent is also available as a slightly more compact and more affordable 2-hub version.
|Oztent Malamoo 4-Hub Beach Shelter Tent|
|External dimensions:||200 x 175 cm|
|Head height:||155 cm|
2. Zomake Pop Up Beach Tent
This pop-up tent by Zokame is designed with convenience in mind. There is no need to deal with poles, covers or other accessories to get this beach tent up. All you need to do is throw it out, and the tent will pop up on its own.
The tent can accommodate up to 3 or 4 people and has openings on both ends. The bottom section is made with durable tarp materials and is super easy to keep clean and tidy. A handy carrying bag is also included. In short, this is a great sun shelter for the beach.
Note that this pop-up beach tent is available in three different colours, and the manufacturer offers a 100% satisfaction guarantee.
|Zomake Pop Up Beach Tent|
|External dimensions:||240 x 180 cm|
|Head height:||100 cm|
3. Coleman Event 14 Deluxe Sun Shelter
If you’re looking for an extra large versatile beach shelter, the Coleman Event 14 Deluxe Sun Shelter deserves your attention. When fully set up, this well-designed shelter offers almost 4.3 metres of space on each side and a head height in the middle of 2.3 metres.
The internal framework of the Coleman Event 14 is made of very durable powder-coated steel, holding this large tent up strongly, even in windy conditions. Surprisingly, even though it’s a shelter, this product comes with air vents and a mesh pocket. Also, one side of the shelter is a solid wall, providing additional protection against wind and sun.
The tent material has a rating of UV SPF 50+. What’s also great about this beach shelter is that you can also easily set it up in the park or in the backyard for picnics or parties.
|Coleman Event 14 Deluxe Sun Shelter|
|External dimensions:||426 x 426 cm|
|Head height:||233 cm|
4. OZtrail Resort Beach Dome
The OZtrail Resort Beach Dome is an affordable and roomy beach shelter that can fit up to three people. Similar to the OZtrail further below, this one is also a dome-shaped tent with a spacious opening at the front.
The dome design makes this tent easy to set up, with three fibreglass poles and extra sand pegs to add more stability. It also has sand compartments along the sides of the tent to help anchor the tent in windy conditions.
The entrance to the tent can be closed should you need some privacy, and the mesh windows on the sides of the tent create that much-needed ventilation.
|OZtrail Resort Beach Dome|
|External dimensions:||245 x 230 cm|
|Head height:||100 cm|
5. Caribee Collaroy Beach Shelter Tent
The Caribee Collaroy Beach Shelter Tent is a compact yet spacious beach home that can fit a small family. It features a large 2.1 metres wide opening which allows for easy access and more space to sit at the front overlooking the beach.
The design of this shelter allows for a quick and easy set-up, while the sandbags and sand pegs offer that extra stability. The fabric has a UPF50+ UV rating to keep you safe and well-protected against the sun while relaxing on the beach.
The side and rear mesh ventilation ports help to keep the inside of the tent nice and cool. Considering the ease of setup, the internal size, and the affordable price, the Caribee Collaroy Beach Shelter Tent is a good option for your next beach trip.
|Caribee Collaroy Beach Shelter Tent|
|External dimensions:||210 x 148 cm|
|Head height:||120 cm|
6. Night Cat Waterproof Beach Tent
This versatile Night Cap tent is an automatic set-up and take-down camping-style tent that can be used on various occasions, including for a day well spent at the beach.
Designed to accommodate up to three people, the tent has two doors on each side for easy access and extra air ventilation. It also comes with an additional rain fly that can be separated and used as a beach shelter by itself.
|Night Cat Waterproof Beach Tent|
|External dimensions:||200 x 180 cm|
|Head height:||120 cm|
7. Sun Ninja Pop Up Beach Shelter
The last model in this list of best beach tents and shelters is a bit different because it is a pure shelter designed to provide shade at the beach.
It is not a tent you can go in; instead, it’s a canopy that you can sit under to find relief from the intense sun. Like other tents and shelters on this list, the Sun Ninja is super easy and quick to set up so that you can spend more time enjoying your day at the beach.
The stability poles and anchors help to stabilise the shelter, and it even comes with a little sand shovel to help with digging.
|Sun Ninja Pop Up Beach Shelter|
|External dimensions:||228 x 213 cm|
|Head height:||176 cm|
Beach Tent Buying Guide
There are several important things to look for in a beach tent or shelter:
- Sun protection
- Ease of setup
- Size and capacity
- Storage and accessories
Let’s discuss these factors in a bit more detail.
1. Sun Protection
The number one thing that you need a beach tent to do is to protect you from the sun. What makes a beach tent a step up from an umbrella is that it should protect from multiple angles at any time of day. Beach umbrellas can be great, but you have to adjust the umbrella throughout the day to follow the sun.
A beach tent has at least three sides and a roof to protect you. Some tents even have extendable awnings to provide you with extra shade. The tent material must also be certified to at least UPF50+ sun protection to block those UV rays.
Read more about the importance of UPF in fabrics here.
Airflow is also essential for a beach tent. Under the glaring sun, a tent can get pretty hot, so you need one with windows or flaps that you can roll back to provide good ventilation.
3. Ease of Setup
You don’t want to waste time setting up a tent on the hot sand, so get a beach tent that is quick and easy to set up. You can get tents with flexible poles that pop up into place. These are usually lightweight and easy to carry.
You also need a way to stop your beach tent from being blown away in the wind. Most tents either come with ropes and stakes to plug into the ground or have pockets you can fill with sand to weigh the tent down.
4. Size and Capacity
Make sure you get a tent that is the right size for your needs. You need to ensure that your tent can accommodate everyone sitting or lying down comfortably for a few hours.
Also pay attention to the size of the doors. Some tents have small doors, while others, like the Caribee Collaroy Beach Shelter Tent, have a much larger front entrance.
If you plan to use a tent to change into beach clothing, you will want one that can be closed for privacy.
This is also a nice feature if you want to have a quick nap.
6. Storage and Accessories
A few other good features to look for in a beach tent include a built-in plastic floor to protect you from the sand.
Storage pockets are also a nice feature in a beach tent, especially for items like water bottles that get used regularly.
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