A roof top tent (RTT) offers a convenient, comfortable, and cozy place to sleep anywhere that your vehicle can go. RTTs still give you the feel of camping, but without many of the pitfalls of ground tents – you are off the hard/wet/rocky ground, out of reach of snakes and other unpleasant visitors, and you can set up camp within mere minutes.
But roof top tents aren’t cheap, so it’s definitely a more significant investment than purchasing a ground tent. RTTs are available in many different sizes and styles with a variety of features available, and of course, you need to choose a tent that will work with your vehicle. The options can be overwhelming, but we put together this list to help you get started.
Here’s our top 10 list of best 2 person roof top tents:
1. Thule Tepui Foothill
First on our list is this innovative folding tent from Tepui, which is owned by Thule. It weighs just 108 pounds which means that it can be used with most small vehicles, and the folding design preserves roof space for bikes, kayaks, or other cargo. The Foothill RTT has a super low-profile design and it’s symmetrical so you can mount it on either side of your vehicle.
Related article: Tepui Roof Top Tents: Review and Owner QnA
The tent features telescoping internal frame poles which make it super easy for one person to set it up and break it down, although there is plenty of internal space to sleep two adults. Two skylights let you stargaze and large windows offer panoramic views of your surroundings. This is a four-season tent, so you can confidently head out any time of year.
More info: tepui.com
2. Cascadia Vehicle Tents Mt. Baker
This hard shell RTT is constructed with a sturdy hinged clamshell design that requires only two struts instead of four. This means easy set-up for you and more structural integrity for the tent! The triangular shape of this hard shell tent sheds rain and deflects wind more easily than soft shell tents, so if you like to camp in less than ideal conditions, this may be the perfect tent for you.
The ceiling has a quilted liner to keep you warm and cozy, and an anti-condensation mat under the mattress prevents moisture and mold.
This type of tent is the simplest to deploy as well – you just undo a couple of straps and pop the lid open. A large awning can be set up over the door opening to provide shade or keep the rain off as you enter and exit. The maximum interior height at the peak is 39 inches and the sleeping area measures 81 x 52 inches.
More info: cascadiatents.com
3. Roofnest Falcon
The Falcon from Roofnest is another hinged clamshell design, although this tent offers more interior space than the Mt. Baker. It’s got a whopping 60 inches of interior height at the peak and the sleeping area measures 88×48, so if you or your camping partner is very tall this may be a more comfortable option.
The Falcon is also very low profile when it’s closed, at just 6.5 inches thick as opposed to the Mt. Baker’s 11 inches.
This RTT also has built-in LED lights inside and accessory channels on all four sides of the exterior so you can attach awnings. You can also opt to add crossbars to the top of the tent which can hold bikes, skis, kayaks or any other large gear. An insulated ceiling and anti-condensation mat beneath the mattress will keep you comfortable in all weather conditions.
More info: roofnest.com
4. 23 Zero Breezeway 56
23 Zero’s Breezeway 56 roof top tent has a soft shell design and a sleeping area that measures 56×96 inches. Their Light Suppression Technology (LST) allows you to sleep in if you wish by blocking nearly 100% of sunlight.
Their LST tent fabric also keeps you 15% cooler in direct sunlight, so you won’t wake up sweating. When you’re ready to face the day, you can open up the abundant windows to let in natural light and enjoy a panoramic view and maximum airflow.
This tent is built for four-season use and has a specially designed mattress with a comfortable cotton top and a waterproof base layer, which means no separate anti-condensation mat is necessary.
More info: 23zero.com
5. iKamper Skycamp Mini
iKamper has made a 2-person version of their award-winning Skycamp tent, which also boasts their 60-second-setup design. This hard shell tent has a clamshell structure, but it hinges along the long side and has a fold-out panel and internal poles which provide more interior space than the basic clamshell design of the Falcon and Mt. Baker.
The Skycamp Mini comes with a waterproof rainfly that is detachable so you can enjoy better views and airflow in pleasant weather. The straps that hold the tent closed have locks so you can rest assured that no one will be crawling around in your RTT when you leave your vehicle unattended.
More info: ikamper.com
6. Yakima SkyRise HD Small
This foldable soft shell tent offers a small footprint, quick setup, and extra-large windows and doors. It also comes with a detachable rainfly that makes it suitable for year-round use. The tent even has guy lines and D rings on the bottom of the floor so you can hang gear up underneath or tie the tent down with stakes in high-wind situations.
The vehicle mounts that come with this tent are lockable and don’t require any tools, so they are quick to put on or take off but securely locked so your tent won’t get stolen. This type of accordion frame tent offers a ton of interior space, so you can sit up anywhere inside the tent as opposed to only at one end of clamshell tents.
More info: yakima.com
7. Maggiolina AirLand Plus Small XL
This super-low-profile hard shell tent has a pop top design that provides 36 inches of headroom throughout. It’s also got a crank-open design that allows you to tension the sides enough to withstand 50-mph winds without flapping noisily.
The XL has an interior length of 80 inches, which is perfect for taller individuals or if you have a dog or gear that you want to keep in the tent with you while still stretching out comfortably.
The AirLand Plus has insulation on both the top and bottom to keep the interior space quiet and insulated from hot or cold outdoor temperatures. The streamlined design won’t have as big of an impact on your fuel efficiency when compared to some of the soft shell tents that can be nearly a foot thick even when packed away.
More info: autohomeus.com
8. Freespirit Recreation High Country Series 55” Premium
This tent features a similar design to the Yakima SkyRise, also offering oversize windows and doors. The awning over the entryway provides shade and protection from the elements as you enter and exit the tent. FSR uses tri-layer fabric technology that insulates against heat in the summer and cold in the winter to keep you comfortable in any weather.
The tent also comes with an integrated LED nightlight so you can find things in the dark or make your way safely in and out of the tent at night.
Two outdoor shoe/gear pockets allow you to easily stash wet or muddy stuff outside the tent, keeping the interior clean and dry. The inside space measures 55×98 inches, so it comfortably sleeps two people and you can still have room for a dog, small child, or bags at your feet. This lightweight tent is compatible with even small SUVs, crossovers, and sedans.
More info: gofsr.com
9. Tuff Stuff Delta Overland
The Delta Overland tent from Tuff Stuff is similar to their popular Ranger Overland tent, but it does not have the extra overhang over the ladder area and it doesn’t include an annex, although you can purchase one separately.
This makes the Delta ideal for couples who travel light, or if you want to mount the tent on a vehicle where the floor sits below head height – with the Ranger you would have to duck underneath the tent every time to enter and exit whereas the Delta has a front entry that’s optimal for any mounting height.
The Delta tent has large doors and windows with awnings for each, and a roomy 96×56-inch sleeping space with 52 inches of headspace at the peak. An included rainfly sheds water and reduces overhead light by 50%, keeping you cool and allowing you to sleep in even after the sun comes up.
More info: tuffstuff4x4.com
10. James Baroud Vision 150
The Vision 150 from James Baroud is igloo-shaped for superior wind resistance from a soft shell RTT. The sleeping space is 59×86.6 inches and the interior height is 47 inches at the peak. This is among the first folding roof top tents in the world to have gas struts that provide assistance opening the tent, making it super easy to set up. Anti-condensation vents keep the interior dry and fresh.
The tent itself is fully waterproof, eliminating the need for a rainfly, which can be difficult to put on especially in windy or wet weather and create noise in the wind. Interior aluminum bars hold the tent open rigidly, and it’s even backed by a five-year warranty.
More info: jamesbaroud.com
How to Choose a 2 Person Roof Top Tent
As you can see, there are myriad options when it comes to roof top tents, particularly if you are looking for one for just two people as that’s the most common size of RTT. Keep these important factors in mind as you shop:
Soft Shell vs. Hard Shell
We have both soft and hard shell tents on this list, and there are certainly benefits and drawbacks for each type. Soft shell tents are generally more affordable and can provide 360-degree views, but they are larger when folded down which can impact your fuel mileage, and they are more susceptible to wind noise and disturbance.
Hard shell tents are often more expensive, but they can offer greater protection in inclement weather and they are more streamlined when they are closed, plus you can mount other gear on top.
Basically all roof top tents weigh at least 100 pounds, with some pushing 200 pounds. You will at some point need to lift the beast onto the roof of your car, or you can pay a professional to install it for you – many RTT companies offer this service if you pick up a tent at their warehouse. Additionally, you don’t want to damage your vehicle by adding more weight than it can handle, which leads us to…
Not all vehicles are rated to have a heavy tent added to their roof. Check your vehicle’s manufacturer specs to determine if your car can handle the weight of the tent, both while stationary and while in motion.
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Cat is originally from Seattle, WA but has traveled around the US and Canada full-time in a self-converted school bus with her boyfriend Aaron since April of 2018. She enjoys rock climbing, paddleboarding, hiking, and generally being outdoors!