What kind of camper are you? 


As camping increases in popularity, so does the spectrum of camping “styles”. We take a fun look at different types of campers.

Camping comes in all shapes and sizes. It’s also an activity that is accessible to anyone who enjoys spending time with family and friends in Scotland’s great outdoors.

Camping, as an adventure, can be as lightweight and minimalist as you fancy or an everything-including-the-kitchen-sink type trip.

Campers can also choose to spend thousands of pounds on all mod-cons gear or budget more thriftily for a basic style of under-the-stars trip.

Here we ponder what your tent says about your camping passions…

Your tent and you

The bivvy bag: This immediately says wild and adventurous. It also says fast, simple but without creature comforts.

A bivvy bag is made for travelling lightly on multi-day walking or cycling trips and it offers a low-hassle, quick-to-set-up alternative to tent pitching.

Essentially, a bivvy bag is a sleeping bag cover that is also waterproof and windproof. It is easy to use, because there are no pegs or poles.

So, bivvy bag owners are more likely to be spontaneous or back-to-nature types who will most likely enjoy off-the-beaten-track adventures – and really don’t mind roughing it.

The two-man tent: This can say a few things. If it’s a super lightweight – “I am not telling you how much I spent” – two-man tent then you are likely to be the kind of camper who enjoys heading off for wild-side multi-day adventures on foot or by bike.

lightweight-two-man-tent-Hilleberg-Nallo-2-GT-2-Man-Tent-You like a tent to be light to carry, yet you are also after a little more comfort than a bivvy bag. Your tent might be shared with a friend but it will still have space for rucksacks and somewhere to brew a cup of tea.

These two-man tents are usually of the low-profile, outer-and-inner-pitched-together design with two or three colour-coded foldable poles and a bag of lightweight pegs.

Inside one of these, you will probably find a self-inflating Therm-a-Rest mattress and compact but warming three-season sleeping bag.

Everything about this camper says pared down to save weight and space, yet still highly functional.

On the other hand, your two-man tent might say intrepid mountaineer. A two-man tent that can withstand high winds, snow and torrential rain during Scottish winter expeditions will look compact but sturdy and robust.

Such tents are heavier to carry and made of stiffer and more durable products. They are designed to stay put and stay up in harsh weather conditions and will likely feature snow skirts, a tunnel or geodesic shape, strengthened poles and pegs and even inner gear loops.

And then again, your two-man tent might be more “weekend” or “pop up”. See more below….

Weekend tents: These tents are the ones that are unpacked from the boot of a car and pitched close by at a camp-site or wild camping location.

weekendWeekend tents can be spacious enough for two, three or four people and they tend to have a cheaper price tag because they do not require so much design input or the use of sophisticated materials.

The shape of a weekend tent will allow users to sit up inside. Oh, the luxuries! Think dome, wigwam or tall A-shapes.

Take a peek inside a weekend tent and you will find them packed with all kinds of car-to-camping luxury items, such as pillows, hot water bottles, two-burner cookers, cool boxes, double sleeping bags and larger blow-up mattresses.

The family tent: This definitely says car-to-camping – and even “glamping”. Family tents are all about space, luxury and enjoying an outdoors holiday with all your family, so they are less likely to be lightweight.

Family tents have lots of space for sleeping and living, with bedrooms and living area divided out.


This is the kind of tent that you can load into the car and not worry about the size of it, arrive at the campsite (one with showers and toilet blocks) and enjoy a camping holiday with lots of space for living and sleeping.

Many family tents are kitted out to a high “outdoors” standard, featuring kitchen galleys – complete with cookers/grills, mini fridges and larders – carpets, toilets, solar-powered electrical gadgets, campbeds and blow-up mattresses.

If you are a glamping family then sleeping bags are of the plumped-up, duvet variety. Large rectangular shapes or sleeping blankets work best for the ultimate comfort.

Volcano-Tent-Stove-1If you choose to own a Robens Outback Kiowa tent, for example, you could also fit a wood-burning stove, the Robens Volcano Tent Stove. Yes, really!

See Robens

Yurts/tepees/wigwams: This takes glamping to the next level. A yurt doesn’t even need to be owned, carried with you or erected. Glampers simply arrive at their yurt, at one of a growing number of glamping sites across Scotland, and “move into” their new home.

yurt2Most yurts come complete with campbeds or airbeds, an open fire or wood-burning stove and lots of space. Some have kitchen, dining and living areas for home-from-home living.

Pop-up tents: These say quick, easy, spend more time having fun. You’ll usually see an array of brightly coloured and quickly erected pop-up tents in camping fields next to festivals.

pop-up-tent-quechua-tentIf you are looking for a fun camping experience for kids in the back garden, a pop-up tent saves parents from becoming frustrated by complicated instructions.

A pop-up tent is released from the bag, almost assembles itself and simply needs a few pegs to prevent it from being blown away. The only bit that might cause you hassle is when you try to get the tent back into its bag. Be warned, it’s not always that easy!

Tent extensions: With campervans and motorhomes becoming increasingly popular, the range of tent extensions has grown, too. A tent attached to the side of a stationary van offers extra living and sleeping space if you have a large family or you have invited friends for a camping trip.

vango awningVango Airway awnings, for example, are designed to be easy to set up, with blow-up poles and a number of different ways of attaching tent to van.

But whatever your style of camping, with summer on the horizon it’s the ideal time to plan for your very own kind of outdoors adventure.

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