Camping? What do I need?

Decided to camp? Ok, what do you need to camp on the Isle of Wight and what do I recommend? Although the Island has been reported to be officially one of the sunniest places in the UK, we do get rain so prepare for the chance it may rain.

Map

We maybe small but you will need a map, just remember signal isn’t always great to rely on your phone.

Tents

Let’s start with the basics. Tents. There are so many to choose from; types, sizes, pop-up, weekend….let me help and find the best for you to simplify life.

On the Island we have several Mountain Warehouse shops where you can grab those last minute supplies or deliver the items ready for your trip. I love the selection at Go Outdoors, which we do not have so online orders only for me.

TypeSummaryRecommended by meWhere to buy Picture
1-2 man tent2 man tents are really 1 man tents, unless you want to be woken up with your face squished against a damp tent side, don't do it. If your solo then this is for you. Lightweight and small, great for backpacking, festivals and the DofE award scheme.I really like this black out tent, not only is it pop up but it keeps more light out than the others, no more 4am wake up's, despite this I still travel with my trusty eye mask (tried and tested and recommended). It does say 3 man tent but I say 1 man plus room for your belongings. The silver outside helps it stay cool in the summer months and warm in those chilly winters.

Vango Banshee- Staying out of the wind is one thing but this tent is designed so the wind goes over the tent with as little disturbance as possible, great for backpacking or beach trips. Again 1 man for sure but it does have two inner pockets for some of your stuff.

Vango F10 - Determined to get 2 people in that tent, try this one out. It is still light weight but does offer a little extra room to make it doable but still don't bring to much with you. This one prides itself of it's pack away size.
Black out tent

Vango Banshee

Vango F10
Black out tent


Vango Banshee


Vango F10
3-4 man tentIdeal for a pair of campers, either on a romantic get away, camping out last minute or heading to a festival, these tents give you the room and a little more for belongings with the lightweight design and most have places for your muddy boots.First up is the simple and basic Vango Sigma 300, sleeping three at a push (I'd say two really) but it does have the outdoor area that closes off to keep your shoes or wellies. It is so light and easy to pitch and with reflective webbing the pegging points are easily spotted in low light conditions.

The Vango Beta 450 4 person is the next step from the Sigma. With more space for your belongings and a larger porch it gives you a little more wiggle room. This one even has The Scout Association recommendation for tough and torrential conditions.

Easy Camp Palmdale 300 3 Man Tent is a taller tent with large windows that give an airy feel inside and a deep front canopy offers extra storage space with a D-shaped door for easy access. It's a great small family tent.
Vango Sigma 300

Vango Beta 450

Easy Camp
Vango Sigma 300


Vango Beta 450


Easy Camp
5-6 man tent5 and 6 man tents are by far the popular family option. These sizes of tents will often offer partitioned bedrooms and living spaces while some even offer standing height areas, making them ideal for longer camping holidays. Concerned about your belongings? The Isle of Wight is a very safe place but no where is without crime, check out this travel safe to keep your valuables in whilst you sleep. If you want something quirky how about this one?
Click here to buy.
The Holiday 6 reminds me of camping with the family, where four of us (2a and 2c) stayed inside a similar tent...good memories. As an all in one pitch the tent can be pitched all in one as a flysheet and inner tent. Simple!

The HI-GEAR Hampton 6 Nightfall Family Tent gives more height to the camping experience so less aching backs and cable access. With six large windows with roll-up curtains the sleep rooms will have plenty of light during the day. Two rooms are available with this design if you wish.

The Coleman Meadowood sleeps 6 people in a stand up heighted tent. With lots of shared space for storing items, relaxing or BBQing in there isn't anything missing from this one. Two rooms featuring the blackout technology to give your a good nights sleep. I do like the look of this one as long as it isn't windy.

Holiday 6

Hi-Gear Hampton


Coleman Meadowood
Holiday 6


Hi-Gear Hampton


Coleman Meadowood
7-8 man tentThe spacious 7 man and 8 man tents make for an ideal home away from home. With separate bedrooms available and a larger communal space there will be more space to relax and have fun. Not ones to go on you back.Zempire Aerodome gives you space and class. This tent is the top of the range for camping. I've shared this one because it is the first on this site that is inflatable, yes you read right! Instead of poles it inflates and I haven't heard of any flying away (more than usual) yet! Oh and a storage hammock. This is my type of camping!

It was quite hard to find another one to compare so but how about a Coleman Cortes Octagon tent, in a Octagon shape it can sleep 8 people in the one space and is part of the developing Yurt lifestyle and it comes in a bag on wheels.
Zempire Aerodome

Coleman Cortes Octagon
Zempire Aerodome


Cortes Octagon
Backpacker tentsI’ve put these on here because the Island is full of beautiful walks and campsites, it’s great to see and stay at different campsites, I also love the style of these tents. Usually made for 1 person.Coleman Cobra 2 Man Tent is my favorite, not just because of the price but the style. By pitching the flysheet first will allow you to set up your tent while keeping your gear dry, perfect and the tent poles are lightweight, great for backpacking trips.

I spotted the Habitude online which caught my eye, 6 people in a backpacking tent? Really? Yes, in this tent it is possible as it is made for base camps where storage is needed and it is standing height. It is lightweight and a very impressive bit of kit.
Coleman Cobra 2 man

Habitude
Coleman Cobra


Habitude
Festival tentsThe Isle of Wight hosts the Isle of Wight Festival among other events where a festival tent is needed. Many tents get left at festivals but why? It makes more sense to invest in one you can use at all of the festivals and not fork out for a new one each time.Pop up - say no more, oh wait remember to You Tube how to put it away...talking from experience!

The Devon 300 gives you a little more space than the pop up and is still simple to put up and take down. It is still lightweight and a part mesh inner door to keep the bugs out.

Few of you going to the festival why not bunk up with the Hi-Gear Zenobia that sleeps up to 6 people but this gives you a communal area to stretch out in and leave the wellies.
Quick Pitch

Devon 300

Hi-Gear Zenobia
Quick pitch


Devon 300


Hi-gear Zenobia

So that’s the basic’s sorted, what now? Spares – the essentials. So in my experience I recommend bringing spares and extras of the following:

Luggage

Luggage has it’s own page as it’s so essential to all travel. Click here to visit the camping section.

Sleeping bags

So you are in the tent, now to keep warm overnight.