We recently returned from 3 weeks in Tanzania where we took a 5-day driving safari. We went with Lion King Adventures on the mid-range private Safari, and thought it was a great value for the money and a wonderful experience. One of the coolest parts was sleeping in the Serengeti national park for 2 nights. It was an incredible experience to watch a lion walk through camp, and to hear hyenas, buffalo, and zebras just outside our tents during the night.

One of the most difficult parts of preparing for the trip was figuring out what to pack for our safari. Since I struggled, I wanted to share the final safari packing list for those of you who might make this trip in the future. This safari packing list has been field-tested! Once we were actually on Safari, there are things I initially thought would be essential which turned out not to be necessary. I also realized that there were a few essential items that should have made it into my suitcase.

So without further ado, here is my 5-day safari packing list:

Safari Clothing Packing List for a 5-day Safari

Neutral Color Shirts

  • 3-4 lightweight but long-sleeved tops in a neutral, earth-tone color. Olive, gray, and khaki are recommended since they won’t disturb the animals as you’re touring around. Just be sure to avoid dark blue or black since these attract the tsetse flies! White is fine and won’t distract the animals, but it will get dirty. Even in the hot season, you will want long sleeves to protect against the sun, just be sure to get light-weight fabric.

Comfortable Pants

  • 2-3 comfortable pants for Safari days. Color is less important since you’ll be in the jeep the whole time and your bottom half will be hidden. However, safaris involve hours upon hours of driving, so the important thing is that you are comfortable!
Safari Packing List

Driving for hours pays off!

Outerwear

  • Neutral color bandana or Buff to block the dust
  • A wind and rainproof jacket
  • If traveling in the colder season, add a fleece, a warm hat, and thick socks. The evenings can get chilly!

Sun Protection

  • A brimmed hat to protect your face and neck from the strong sun. Be sure it has a drawstring so that it doesn’t fly away when the jeep takes off!
  • Polarized sunglasses. The African sun is brutal and polarized lenses are a must!
  • Lip balm with SPF. Between the wind and sun, our lips got really chapped. We would have loved to have had soothing SPF lip balm with us!

Shoes

  • A pair of comfortable shoes that you don’t mind getting dirty. You won’t be doing much walking on a typical driving safari, but you might encounter muddy paths to/from your accommodation.
  • Rubber shower sandals

Comfortable Clothes for the Evenings

  • Your safari packing list should include a couple of sets of comfortable clothes for the evenings in your accommodation. Don’t worry about looks, even in the luxury encampments it’s comfort over fashion!
  • Don’t forget undies, socks, and pajamas
It's comfort over fashion even in the luxury tented camps

It’s comfort over fashion even in the luxury tented camps

Medication and Toiletries to bring on Safari

  • Hand sanitizer
  • Ibuprofen
  • Anti-diarrhea meds like Immodium
  • Rehydration powder
  • Sunscreen
  • Shampoo, conditioner, shower gel. Some accommodations provide this, but you may want your own set
  • Insect repellent with DEET. Don’t leave home without it!

Electronics and Accessories Safari Packing List

Binoculars

We didn’t have a fancy zoom-lens camera, but were able to take some pretty epic shots by aiming our smartphones through the binoculars! Our safari company provided us with binoculars upon request, but I would have liked to have our own high-quality set beforehand. It would have been such a different experience without the binoculars! Even when the animals are close up, we loved watching them through the lens. We could see the whites of their eyes and every facial expression. Mesmerizing. If you can, get a pair of binoculars that has a smartphone attachment, it would have saved us lots of hassle trying to align the smartphone camera perfectly with the binoculars.

Available on Amazon

 


Headlamp or flash light

We were happy to have a source of light aside from our phones in the camps at night. A headlamp is convenient and allows you to go hands-free in case you have to carry any of your belongings.

Available on Amazon

 

 

 


DSLR Camera

If you’re skilled in photography, don’t forget your point and shoot camera. It’s also worth taking an outdoor or wildlife photography refresher course to make sure you will get the best pictures on this once in a lifetime experience! If you’re bringing a nice camera, don’t forget to take an extra SD Card. You will be taking tons of photos and it’s a good idea to have a backup.

Available on Amazon

 

 


Other Small Electronics

  • Charging cables. The jeeps have charging stations in them so that you can charge while you drive.
  • Extra power bank for your phone. Just in case.
  • A travel adapter for your electronics. Kenya, Botswana, Zambia, and Tanzania have the same plugs as the UK. If you’re going on Safari in South Africa, they have their own plug styles which are hard to find before you go. But you’ll be able to find cheap adapters once you arrive.
5 day safari packing list binoculars

Binoculars are a game changer

Luggage for your Safari

Most Safari companies request that you bring a soft duffle bag. A large backpacking backpack will work. They just want to make sure they can easily stash everyone’s luggage in the jeeps. It’s best to leave breakable items behind, but if you must take anything fragile with you, be sure to wrap it in its own protective case.


As you can see, even though it’s the adventure of a lifetime, it’s a pretty basic safari packing list! Don’t worry about going on a shopping spree for a head-to-toe khaki ensemble. The basic idea is to stick to solid colors that appear in nature. Enjoy your safari!

Gear Review – The Best Budget Backpacking Tents

This guide will tell you everything you need to know about choosing a backpacking tent on a budget.  We’ll also share several of the best backpacking tents on the market, some that are even less than $100.  Let’s get started…

Backpacking is one of the most exciting ways to explore the world and meet new people. When you are backpacking, you enjoy an incredible amount of freedom because all of your belongings are literally strapped to your back.  You can change your travel plans at the drop of a hat and explore interesting locations that you saw while on your way to your next destination.

If you take a lightweight backpacking tent with you on your journey, the freedom you can enjoy is even greater.  Having a tent available means you can camp in the most spectacular locations that each area has to offer.  It also means that you will save a ton of money on accommodation costs — allowing you to make your trip even longer!

This guide will take a closer look at the best budget backpacking tents.  We’ll give you an idea of the kinds of features that are useful in backpacking tents and explain how to choose the best tent possible.

The 5 best budget backpacking tents

Let’s cut to the chase. We’ve done the research (which you can read about below). You’re here for our findings.

There’s a lot that goes into choosing the right backpacking tent. To save you the hassle of comparing dozens of tents, here are 5 of the best budget backpacking tents that have the perfect combination of features, ease-of-use, and durability. 

Featherstone Outdoor UL Granite Backpacking 2-Person Tent Hyke & Byke Yosemite 1 and 2 Person Backpacking Tents ALPS Mountaineering Lynx 1-Person Tent Clostnature Lightweight 2-Person Backpacking Tent WolfWise 2 Person 3-4 Season Lightweight Backpacking Tent
Rating: 4.5/5 Rating: 4.4/5 Rating: 4.6/5 Rating: 4.6/5 Rating: 4.8/5
Floor Size: 84” x 51” x 43” (W x L x H) Floor Size: 88” x 110” x 45” (W x L x H) Floor Size: 32” x 90” x 36” (W x L x H) Floor Size: 87” x 59” x 46” (W x L x H) Floor Size: 82.7” x 55.1” x 43.3” (W x L x H)
Weight: 4lb Weight: 2.5 lb for 1-person, 3.2lb for 2-person Weight: 4lb 4 oz Weight: 5lb 8oz Weight: 4lb
Materials: 75-denier Ripstop Polyester Rainfly and 210-denier Ripstop Polyester Floor (3000mm PU) Materials: 63-denier Ripstop Polyester Rainfly (2000mm PU) and Floor (5000mm PU) Materials: Water resistant Polyester (2000mm PU) Materials: Ripstop Polyester Rainfly (5000mm PU) and Bathtub Floor (5000mm PU) Materials: 190 Thread Ripstop Polyester Rainfly (2000mm PU) and 150 Denier Floor (3000mm PU)
Design: Freestanding Design: Freestanding Design: Freestanding Design: Freestanding Design: Freestanding
Cost: $$ Cost: $$ Cost: $$ Cost: $ Cost: $

Featherstone Outdoor UL Granite Backpacking 2 Person Budget Backpacking Tent
Featherstone Outdoor UL Granite Backpacking 2-Person Tent
Rating: 4.5/5
Floor Size: 84” x 51” x 43” (W x L x H)
Weight: 4lb
Materials: 75-denier Ripstop Polyester Rainfly and 210-denier Ripstop Polyester Floor (3000mm PU)
Design: Freestanding
Cost: $$
Hyke & Byke Yosemite 1 and 2 Person Backpacking Tents
Rating: 4.4/5
Floor Size: 88” x 110” x 45” (W x L x H)
Weight: 2.5 lb for 1-person, 3.2lb for 2-person
Materials: 63-denier Ripstop Polyester Rainfly (2000mm PU) and Floor (5000mm PU)
Design: Freestanding
Cost: $$
ALPS Mountaineering Lynx 1-Person Tent
Rating: 4.6/5
Floor Size: 32” x 90” x 36” (W x L x H)
Weight: 4lb 4 oz
Materials: Water resistant Polyester (2000mm PU)
Design: Freestanding
Cost: $$
Clostnature Lightweight 2-Person Budget Backpacking Tent
Clostnature Lightweight 2-Person Backpacking Tent
Rating: 4.6/5
Floor Size: 87” x 59” x 46” (W x L x H)
Weight: 5lb 8oz
Materials: Ripstop Polyester Rainfly (5000mm PU) and Bathtub Floor (5000mm PU)
Design: Freestanding
Cost: $
WolfWise 2 Person 3-4 Season Lightweight Backpacking Tent
Rating: 4.8/5
Floor Size: 82.7” x 55.1” x 43.3” (W x L x H)
Weight: 4lb
Materials: 190 Thread Ripstop Polyester Rainfly (2000mm PU) and 150 Denier Floor (3000mm PU)
Design: Freestanding
Cost: $

Featherstone Outdoor UL Granite Backpacking 2-Person Tent

This affordable backpacking tent from Featherstone strikes the perfect balance between weight and comfort.  It is a highly durable, breathable, and lightweight tent ideal for backpacking.

The Featherstone Outdoor UL is a spacious lightweight two-person tent measuring with floor space of  84 x 51 inches.  It includes two doors and two vestibules for storing backpacks.  This product is a 3-season tent made from 75-denier Ripstop Polyester with a 3000mm polyurethane hydrostatic rated coating.  The floor is made from thick 210-denier Nylon with the same hydrostatic coating.

One of the best features of this tent is how weatherproof it is.  The seam-taped construction forms an impenetrable barrier against moisture — critical when backpacking in the rainy season. The bathtub floor design also prevents water from the ground from leaking into the tent through the walls.

The Featherstone Outdoor UL is fairly easy to set up, with a single aluminium pole design.  It is a freestanding tent, so you can quickly pick it up and move it to another location when necessary.  The generous lifetime warranty, price, and features make this tent an excellent choice.

Pros:

  • Excellent weatherproofing
  • Spacious for two people
  • Lightweight tent
  • Packs into a small space

Cons:

  • Could have stronger zippers


Hyke & Byke Yosemite 1 and 2 Person Budget Backpacking Tent

Hyke & Byke Yosemite 1 and 2 Person Backpacking Tents 

Hyke & Byke have built a reputation for making excellent backpacking tents that are both affordable and highly durable.  Their Yosemite tents are no exception.  This tent is available as both a one-person and two-person tent, with the lightweight one-person tent measuring 88” x 75”, and the two-person tent measuring 88” by 110”.  There is plenty of headroom in these tents with the one-person and two-person having 42” and 45” respectively.

The Yosemite is very easy to set up.  It uses 2 poles with a clip-pole attachment that can be assembled in a couple of minutes.  The poles and stakes are both very lightweight, which is handy for backpackers who are already carrying a fully loaded pack.  The entire tent weighs just 3.2 lbs for the two-person model and 2.5 lbs for the ultralight one-person tent model.  This tent also collapses down to a small size (17.75” by 6.3”).

The materials used to make the Yosemite are all very high quality.  The rainfly is 63 denier polyester with a 190 thread count and 2000mm polyurethane coating.  The inner tent body is made from the same material but also has a B3 Net yarn.  The floor is identical but with a 5000mm polyurethane coating for additional waterproofing.

Pros:

  • One-person tent is ultralight at 2.5 pounds
  • Two-person tent model is particularly spacious
  • Rip-resistant material

Cons:

  • Lower denier compared to some other budget backpacking tents


ALPS Mountaineering Lynx 1-Person Budget Backpacking Tent

ALPS Mountaineering Lynx One-Person Tent

This freestanding one-person tent from ALPS Mountaineering is highly durable, lightweight, and simple to set up.  It has been designed to be an ultraportable tent that packs into a small form factor.  It is perhaps the easiest tent to assemble from the 5 being reviewed in this guide, which makes it useful for when you quickly need some shelter.  Simply thread the two aluminium poles through the tent and stake it in 4 places.

The proportions of this tent are perfectly suited to the solo backpacker or camper, coming in at 32” x 90” x 36”.  The weight is also quite reasonable at 4 lbs 4 oz or 3 lbs 8 oz if you only take the essentials.  This tent is made from high-quality materials including water and UV resistant polyester, and aluminium poles.  A great choice for solo backpackers.

Pros:

  • High-quality zippers
  • Lightweight tent
  • Perfect for the solo backpacker
  • Fantastic value for money
  • Very long, so great for taller backpackers

Cons:

  • The stakes could be higher quality
  • May not stand up to extremely wet conditions


Clostnature Lightweight 2-Person Budget Backpacking Tent

Clostnature Lightweight 2-Person Backpacking Tent

This 2 person backpacking tent from TNH has been designed with convenience and comfort in mind.  The tent measures 7’3” x 4’11” x 3’10” with a maximum height of approximately 45”.  When it is packed up, it measures 16.5” x 5.9” x 5.9”, which is quite compact compared to many other budget backpacking tents. It is by far the best budget backpacking tent under $100, in fact, it’s the most affordable one on our list.

This is another freestanding tent design that uses two aluminium poles and a small number of pegs.  The curved design of this tent makes it a great choice if you expect to be camping in windy conditions.  It also has interior mesh walls, which provide plenty of ventilation if the weather becomes hot.  The two D-shaped doors open up the spacious interior which features 2 vestibules offering plenty of room for storing your backpacks.

This is one of the most waterproof backpacking tents reviewed, thanks to its 201 thread polyester rainfly (5000mm PU), groundsheet, and bathtub design.  The water-resistant coating is quite thick and performs well in harsh weather.

Pros:

  • At under $100, the tent is remarkably affordable for these specifications
  • Very spacious
  • A high level of water resistance
  • Interior accommodates very tall people

Cons:

  • Slightly heavier than some of the other tents at 5lb 8oz


WolfWise 2 Person 3-4 Season Lightweight Budget Backpacking Tent 

WolfWise 2 Person 3-4 Season Lightweight Backpacking Tent 

This WolfWise two-person 3-4 Season tent is made from high-quality anti-tear polyester with 190 thread count, double-stitched seams, PU coating, and stitch taping.  The floor is made from 150 denier anti-tear Oxford cloth and has a waterproof index of 3000mm.

The tent expands to a size of 82.7” x 55.1” x 43.3” from its folded size of 20.9” x 6.7” x 6.7”.  It comes with some fantastic features including a USB LED roof light, wind rope, and shock-corded pole.  The oversized doors make entry and exit simple.

This tent combines high-quality materials with ease-of-use and some excellent features.  The LED roof lights are very useful and the professional construction tent makes it capable of operating in all weather conditions.  The affordability of this tent is a major selling point, especially given the quality of its construction.

Pros:

  • Handy LED roof lights
  • Easy setup
  • Large size

Cons:

  • At over 5 pounds it is heavier than some other tents

How to look after your backpacking tent

Here are a few quick tips for caring for your new backpacking tent!

Storing your backpacking tent dry

If you can, avoid rolling the tent up while it is wet.  This will cause mildew to form on the tent, which will ruin its appearance and may cause a health hazard.  Leaving moisture on a rolled-up tent can also damage the polyurethane coating that is on the rain fly.  A budget backpacking tent with a polyurethane coating will dry very quickly, so simply hang your tent out of the rain for a few minutes or wave it around to remove moisture.

Wash your tent when it needs it

Backpacking can be a dirty business!  You may often be camping in locations that are muddy or dusty.  It is important to remove any debris from your tent as soon as possible because mud, salt, and dust can damage the water-resistant coating on a tent.

Fortunately, cleaning your tent is simple.  Just spray a water hose on the tent until the debris is off.  Never use chemical cleaners on your tent and don’t place it in a washing machine as they may also damage the coating on the tent.

Re-sealing your tent

The water-resistant coating that is applied to your tent’s surfaces is not permanent.  It will gradually wear out over time as it is exposed to harsh weather, dirt, and other contaminants.  Fortunately, you can purchase spray-on water-resistant coatings for tents.  Once you have owned your budget backpacking tent for a year or two (depending on how often you use it), test how water resistant it is by running a hose over it.  If water seems to penetrate into the tent, apply a layer of water-resistant coating.


Thanks for reading Our Gear Review of The Best Budget Backpacking Tent.  For more outdoor gear reviews check out our other blog posts.