Best 12-Person Tent For A Family Camping Trip [Review & Buying Guide]

If being a camping aficionado runs in your family, you may need to get a bigger tent. An overcrowded tent can quickly become stuffy, cramped, and too warm, leading to a miserable night for all involved. For everyone to sleep in comfort, you should look for a tent that is roomy enough for each person’s sleeping space plus all their gear.

The best solution in this product round-up is the Ozark Trail Instant Cabin Tent, which we’ll review in detail below. However, there are plenty of other amazingly spacious tents that you can find as well. Read on for our full review of a variety of large tents, so that you can choose the best 12-person tent for you and your family or group of friends. 

Best OverallOzark Trail 16x16 Feet 12-Person 3 Room Instant Cabin Tent Ozark Trail 16×16 Feet 12-Person 3 Room Instant Cabin Tent
  • Tent Rating: 2 seasons
  • Materials: Steel stakes, polyester body, polyethylene bathtub floor; polyester with polyurethane coated rainfly
Premium PickBushnell Shield Series 12 Person Instant Cabin Tent Bushnell Shield Series 12 Person Instant Cabin Tent
  • Tent Rating: 2 seasons
  • Materials: Steel poles and frame; polyester fly and tent body; reflective coating on rainfly to block UV rays; polyethylene flooring
Best Budget PickThe Browning Camping Big Horn Tent The Browning Camping Big Horn Tent
  • Tent Rating: 3 seasons
  • Materials: Fiberglass poles; 75-denier polyester rainfly; steel stakes
NTK Super Arizona GT up to 12 Person 20.6 by 10.2 by 6.9 Height Foot Sport Family XL Camping Tent NTK Super Arizona GT up to 12 Person 20.6 by 10.2 by 6.9 Height Foot Sport Family XL Camping Tent
  • Tent Rating: 3 seasons
  • Materials: Rainfly is polyurethane-coated polyester (double layer); nano-flex shock-corded fiberglass frame rods; aluminum; polyester “no-see-um” mesh style mosquito mesh; anti-fungus polyethylene floor with inner silver layer
Core 12 Person Instant Cabin Tent Core 12 Person Instant Cabin Tent
  • Tent Rating: 3 seasons
  • Materials: Polyethylene floor; polyester rainfly; H2O block fabric (water-resistant polyurethane coating); taped seams; steel stakes; 68-denier polyester tent fabric
Tahoe Gear Prescott 12 Person 3-Season Family Cabin Tent Tahoe Gear Prescott 12 Person 3-Season Family Cabin Tent
  • Tent Rating: 3 seasons
  • Materials: 190T Polyester tent fabric body with water-resistant coating; UV resistant coating; fiberglass poles; mesh; polyethylene sheet floor
Tahoe Gear Bighorn XL 18’ x 18’ 12 Person Cone Shape Camping Tent Tahoe Gear Bighorn XL 18’ x 18’ 12 Person Cone Shape Camping Tent
  • Tent Rating: 2 seasons (not good in winter)
  • Materials: Steel poles; polyethylene floor; waterproof polyester fabrics in tent body
The Bushnell Sport Series 12-Person Tent The Bushnell Sport Series 12-Person Tent
  • Tent Rating: 2 seasons
  • Materials: Fiberglass and steel poles, steel stakes; mesh; flame-resistant polyester

Product Reviews 

Ozark Trail 16×16 Feet 12-Person 3 Room Instant Cabin Tent: Best Overall Option

Ozark Trail 16x16 Feet 12-Person 3 Room Instant Cabin Tent
409 Reviews
Ozark Trail 16x16 Feet 12-Person 3 Room Instant Cabin Tent
  • 16' x 16' instant cabin tent
  • Sleeps 12
  • Fits 3 queen airbeds
  • Sets up in under 2 minutes
  • 7 fully closeable windows

The Ozark Trail 16×16 Feet 12-Person 3 Room Instant Cabin Tent is our choice as the winner of this product round-up for its all-around quality, spaciousness, ventilation, and fast set-up time. When camping with a large group, you can have peace of mind that this tent will be a comfortable, roomy option.

The Ozark Trail Instant Cabin Tent gets its namesake from its set-up time of less than two minutes, which means a lot when you are exhausted from a long day. Assembly is simple with pre-attached poles. All you have to do is unfold and elongate the poles, attach the clips, and stake the tent down.

Measuring 16 x 16 feet inside, the Ozark Trail Instant Cabin Tent has plenty of space for up to twelve campers, so it’s a great option for a large group. As its center height is 6 feet 10 inches tall, there is enough room for your larger campers to stand up and move with ease.

Also, the Ozark Trail is equipped with two separate room dividers so that you can create private sleeping areas within the tent itself. When the dividers are up, each room will have its own door to the outside, making it easier for each group to access and exit the tent as needed.

A front awning serves as an extra space for having a picnic or lounging about in the shade. Ground vents, an entirely mesh ceiling, and seven large windows provide ventilation while offering a great view of the beautiful surroundings. The ground vents can also fit an air conditioning unit.

The Ozark Trail withstands rain with its welded tub floor, fully taped seams, entirely zippered windows, and hefty rainfly. However, it is not as strong against high winds because of its large size and pole design.

Also included are gear pockets for you and your fellow campers to keep your equipment organized and within easy reach. There is also a wheeled carrying bag for your convenience, as well as electrical cord access if needed.


  • Very fast to set up
  • Spacious interior
  • Has two included room dividers for privacy, and each room has its own door to the outside
  • Front awning for shade
  • Ground vents, mesh ceiling, and multiple windows for ventilation
  • Gear pockets and carrying bag (with wheels)
  • Rainfly, fully zippered doors, and windows, taped seams protect from rain


  • Hefty (61 pounds)
  • Not as durable against high winds
  • Not made for colder weather with its all-mesh ceiling

Bushnell Shield Series 12 Person Instant Cabin Tent: Most Premium Pick

Bushnell Shield Series 12 Person Instant Cabin Tent
313 Reviews
Bushnell Shield Series 12 Person Instant Cabin Tent
  • INSTANT 60 SECOND SETUP TECHNOLOGY: Poles come pre-attached to the tent for quick assembly - unfold and extend leg poles until they click into position.
  • A/C GROUND VENT: This 11ft x 9ft floor plan and 72in center height tent includes A/C vent (A/C not included) - but keep the fly on to contain the cool air!
  • HEAT SHIELD TECHNOLOGY: Features a special reflective coating on the underside of the rainfly which blocks the sun's UV rays keeping the tent darker and noticeably cooler.
  • WEATHER SHIELD: Water repellent fabric, tub flooring, and fully taped waterproof seams seal-off your tent from the rain while strong frame construction and heavy duty tie-downs stand tough against the wind.
  • DURABLE: Durable 150 denier fabric is tougher than the average tent, built to handle wear and tear

The Bushnell Shield Series 12 Person Instant Cabin Tent, also available in 6- and 9-person versions, is our choice for the most premium option in this product round-up. Built with Weather Shield and Heat Shield technologies, the Bushnell truly is a marvelously designed tent that can withstand the elements for years of camping adventures.

With an “instant” set-up similar to the Ozark Trail we discussed previously, the Bushnell can be arranged and set up in just a few minutes due to its pre-attached frame.

The Bushnell Shield boasts a roomy interior with two zippered room curtains as well, so you can arrange the space to meet your needs. The tent has a 78 inch center height for your taller campers to stand up comfortably.

The Bushnell Shield is protected from rain and stormy weather with its Weather Shield system. This means it is constructed with a durable rainfly, water repellent fabrics, taped waterproof seams, durable stakes, and strong frame materials.  The rainfly also provides extra coverage to create an awning, so you can lounge in the shade.

To keep you extra cool in the summer, the Bushnell features a reflective coating called Heat Shield technology along the bottom of the rainfly. This helps block out the sun’s ultraviolet rays so that the tent stays cool and shaded inside.

The Bushnell also features plenty of ventilation, with its eight huge mesh windows that also allow for a great view. If you get too cold, you can simply zip the windows closed.

There are also gear organizers on the outside and inside of the tent. For safety, there is reflection on the guylines, doors, and zippers for extra visibility.


  • Easy to set up
  • Heat Shield technology for shade and cooler temperatures
  • Weather Shield technology against rain
  • Ventilation is good (large windows)
  • Reflective elements on doors, windows, and guylines for visibility at night
  • Carrying bag included
  • Awning for shade


  • Ceiling is made entirely of mesh, so this is a 2-season tent
  • Weighs 59.9 lb (not good for hiking)

Browning Camping Big Horn Tent: Best Budget Pick

The Browning Camping Big Horn Tent
736 Reviews
The Browning Camping Big Horn Tent
  • Our Browning Big Horn Series is a free-standing tent with fiberglass poles and steel uprights, giving ultimate extra strength and stability
  • Two-room wall divider, extra tall center and straight side walls gives more room for cots, sleeping bags and extra gear
  • Six large windows, two doorways and mesh roof offer easy entry and ultimate ventilation
  • Fully equipped with mesh storage pockets, polyester fly, guy ropes and steel stakes
  • Base Size: 10' x 15', Packed Size: 12" x 30", Center Height: 87", Total Weight: 34 lbs. 11 oz.

The Browning Camping Big Horn Tent is the best option if you’re following a strict budget. With a price tag of only $329.99, the Browning Camping is a durable tent that won’t break the bank.

Its floor area of 150 square feet, with center height of 87 inches, is plenty of room for everyone to walk around and sleep comfortably without feeling cramped. There is also an included wall divider for versatility. The straight sidewalls make the tent feel and look even more spacious.

Fiberglass poles and a steel frame provide durability against windy conditions, while a strong polyester rainfly protects you from the rain. The factory-sealed seams and coated floor protect against water leakage.

Featuring six extra large windows and a mesh ceiling, the Browning Camping Big Horn Tent was built with ventilation in mind. There are also two large doors for air circulation as well as easier tent entrance and exit.

There are also mesh storage pockets included in the tent.


  • Three season tent
  • Six large windows and mesh ceiling for ventilation
  • Fiberglass poles for durability
  • Sealed seams, polyester rainfly, oxford floor to keep the rain out
  • Storage pockets included


  • Still pretty heavy (34.6 pounds)

NTK Super Arizona GT up to 12 Person 20.6 by 10.2 by 6.9 Height Foot Sport Family XL Camping Tent

NTK Super Arizona GT up to 12 Person 20.6 by 10.2 by 6.9 Height Foot Sport Family XL Camping Tent
95 Reviews
NTK Super Arizona GT up to 12 Person 20.6 by 10.2 by 6.9 Height Foot Sport Family XL Camping Tent
  • THE ULTIMATE FAMILY CAMPING EXPERIENCE! SUPER SPACIOUS 11 to 12 Person (adult/kids) tent, Detachable Room Divider, 2 Doors, 3 Windows Tent Designed for Easy Assembly with color coded poles. Super 6.9 FT height for maximum comfort.
  • FULL COVERAGE RAINFLY: Double layer 190T polyester laminated with polyurethane 2500 mm water column, partially aluminum, heat-welded PU seam sealed and UV protection, Large covered mesh vents provide even more ventilation. Inner tent: Large D-style doors with mesh for great views and ventilation. Roomy utility pockets and gear loft for gear storage. Poles included for extended canopy.
  • FRAME: 100% virgin NANO-FLEX shock corded fiber glass rods with improved diameter and double gold plated ferrules. Aluminum Pin-and-ring system for easy and quick setup.
  • MESH: Inner tent fully breathable with generous Ultra-thin polyester NO-SEE-UM style mesh keeps you safe while offering some privacy from side view (when not using the rainfly).
  • FLOOR MATERIAL AND DESIGN: Heavy duty seamless polyethylene with inner silver coated layer keeps you dry and protected enhanced by the unique element barrier bathtub-style construction. Security: Meets CPAI-84 flammability requirements. Heavy duty carry bag with compression straps and ID label to personalize your tent.

The NTK Super Arizona GT up to 12 Person 20.6 by 10.2 by 6.9 Height Foot Sport Family XL Camping Tent is the tent with the most extra features, such as an anti-fungal floor design, personalizable ID label on the carry bag, “no-see-um” insect mesh, utility pockets and a gear loft, nano-flex fiberglass rods, and color-coded poles.

Featuring mesh vents, three huge windows, and two doors, the NTK Super Arizona is well-ventilated. With extra interior space and 6.9 feet center neight, you won’t feel too stuffy during those warmer summer nights.

This NTK Super Arizona is made with a unique bathtub-style floor design to keep water out, with its seamless polyethylene construction and durability. The floor is coated with silver on the inside, which provides an anti-fungal base to prevent mold and mildew from growing.

The polyurethane-laminated full cover rainfly and heat-welded seams protect against harsh storms, so you can feel secure in a sudden downpour. The tent features a nano-flex shock corded fiberglass rod frame design for durability in the wind, complete with an aluminum “pin-and-ring system” and color-coding on the poles that makes set-up a breeze. Overall, this is a 3-season tent built to last.

You’ll be protected from pests with the “no-see-um” mesh that provides ventilation while keeping the mosquitos out of your tent. There are also storage pockets as well as a gear loft.

Lastly, the NTK is complete with a durable carrying bag, equipped with compression straps so you won’t feel all the weight on your back. There is also a personalizable ID label so your tent will be easily identified if lost.


  • Color-coded poles, a pin-and-ring system for easier set-up
  • Insect mesh for ventilation and a bug-free camping experience
  • 3 season tent
  • Bathtub floor and rainfly keep water away
  • Floor is anti-fungal
  • Gear loft and storage pockets
  • Carrying bag with compression straps and ID label


  • Expensive 
  • Heavy at 42 pounds

Core 12 Person Instant Cabin Tent

Core 12 Person Instant Cabin Tent
1,457 Reviews
Core 12 Person Instant Cabin Tent
  • Instant 2 minute Setup; Sleeps 12 people; Fits 3 queen air mattresses; Center Height: 80"
  • CORE H20 Block Technology and adjustable ground vent
  • Features two room dividers to create a three room tent; wall storage pockets and gear loft keep items neat and off the tent floor
  • Electrical cord access port (port is fully closable when not in use)
  • Includes tent, rainfly, gear loft, two room dividers, tent stakes, and carry bag

The Core 12 Person Instant Cabin Tent is the most durable of the “instant” tents in this product round-up, as it is built to withstand three seasons.

Marketed with a two-minute set-up time, the Core Instant Cabin Tent is designed similarly to the Ozark Trail and Bushnell Shield reviewed above, with pre-attached poles. However, the Core tent is rated for three seasons rather than two, thanks to its more durable construction. It is built with 20 steel stakes, a 68-denier polyester rainfly, and a durable polyethylene floor.

The tent is constructed with “H2O Block Fabric”, which is a polyurethane coating with “active bead” technology that causes water to run off the tent quickly. It also features taped seams, so the Core 12 tent is protected against water leakage. 

The air intake vents allow for adjustable ventilation on each side, making it versatile for cooler or warmer weather. Warm air can exit through the all-mesh ceiling, which is a great option for summer.

Measuring 18 x 10 feet on the interior and with an 80-inch center height, the Core Instant Cabin Tent is very spacious. It also has two room dividers, so you can create up to three separate rooms if you so desire.

The tent also features four gear storage pockets, a gear loft, and a water-resistant electrical port.

Here is a video where you can watch a demonstration of setting up the Core 12 tent:


  • 3 season instant tent
  • Takes two minutes to set up
  • Spacious interior
  • Gear pockets and gear loft
  • Adjustable ventilation
  • Room dividers


  • Expensive option
  • Heavy (47.8 pounds)

The Tahoe Gear Prescott 12 Person 3-Season Family Cabin Tent

Tahoe Gear Prescott 12 Person 3-Season Family Cabin Tent
50 Reviews
Tahoe Gear Prescott 12 Person 3-Season Family Cabin Tent
  • Large yet practical and comfortable, the Prescott is great for your family or larger group, daytime or for a comfortable night outdoors.
  • With a generous 6'6" center height, campers of all sizes can move around and stand comfortably throughout the tent.
  • Easy to assemble shock corded fiberglass poles allow for easy set up.
  • Tent body and rain fly made with durable 190T polyester with 1200mm coating
  • Taped fly seams protects users from the elements

The Tahoe Gear Prescott 12 Person 3-Season Family Cabin Tent is another great budget option, coming in at only $179.81. This is an excellent three-season tent with plenty of ventilation and a rainfly.

The Tahoe Gear Tent measures 10 x 20 feet of floor space and has a room divider like many larger tents, offering more versatility in the room layout. The center of the tent stands 6.5 feet tall, so it feels quite roomy.

Built to withstand three seasons of weather, the Tahoe Gear Tent is constructed with fiberglass poles and a strong polyester tent fabric. It features strong guy lines and taped seams for extra durability. The waterproof polyethylene sheet flooring is leak proof as well.

Zippered windows allow for airflow, and a UV-resistant, waterproof rainfly protects you from the elements. Floor air vents, two doors, and a mesh roof help with air circulation as well.


  • Inexpensive option
  • 3 season tent
  • Carrying bag included
  • Rainfly is durable
  • Room divider included
  • Carrying bag included
  • Mesh roof and floor air vents for air circulation


  • Weighs 31.6 pounds

Tahoe Gear Bighorn XL 18’ x 18’ 12 Person Cone Shape Camping Tent

Tahoe Gear Bighorn XL 18’ x 18’ 12 Person Cone Shape Camping Tent
81 Reviews
Tahoe Gear Bighorn XL 18’ x 18’ 12 Person Cone Shape Camping Tent
  • Waterproof, durable floor
  • Provides the perfect combination of weight, carry size, and protection from the elements
  • Can handle just about any rain storm
  • Can handle winds up to 35 mph
  • Includes convenient carry bag, steel pole, and stakes

The Tahoe Gear Bighorn XL 18’ x 18’ 12 Person Cone Shape Camping Tent has the most interesting design, with its unique cone shape. 

The cone shape is due to the design of the center poles. This conical shape is interesting and also functional, as it prevents water and debris from sitting on top of the tent and leaking through or causing tension to the fabric.

The tent was created using waterproof fabrics and boasts a polyethylene floor to prevent rain from entering the tent from the ground beneath you. The windows are weatherproof, and the tent is rated to withstand wind up to 35 miles per hour.

The Tahoe Gear Bighorn features a carrying bag as well.

Note that this tent doesn’t feature as much ventilation as other tents with larger windows, and its cone-shaped design may feel less roomy.


  • Uniquely designed shape keeps water and debris off the tent roof
  • Waterproof and windproof
  • Carrying bag included


  • Kind of heavy at 27 pounds
  • Its conical shape doesn’t feel as roomy as tents with straight walls
  • Not as much ventilation in the design

Bushnell Sport Series 12-Person Tent

The Bushnell Sport Series 12-Person Tent
91 Reviews
The Bushnell Sport Series 12-Person Tent
  • Free standing with compact fiberglass poles; easy assembly with pole hooks.
  • Fully taped factory-sealed seams and weather resistant fabric keeps you protected during inclement weather.
  • Base size: 20' x 10', center height: 84"; fits two queen size air mattresses or 12 people in sleeping bags
  • Includes two attachable room dividers which gives you freedom to create multiple separate living and sleeping spaces.
  • Accessories: utility port; internal storage pockets; hanging wall organizer; steel stakes; expandable carry bag

The Bushnell Sport Series 12-Person Tent is another well-rounded option for camping adventures with large families.

This tent has a center height of 84 inches and total floor area of 200 square feet, which is plenty of space for several campers to feel comfortable. Like many of the other tents we’ve reviewed in this product round-up, the Bushnell comes with two-room dividers. Each room has their own door.

The Bushnell Sport is built to withstand rain and wind, with sealed seams, fiberglass poles, a durable, removable rainfly, and guy lines to keep the tent secured to the ground. Note that the guy lines are also reflective to prevent tripping at night.

There are wide windows, an adjustable ground vent, and a mesh ceiling to increase ventilation and make sure you and your fellow campers stay cool.

The Bushnell Sport is equipped with storage pockets along the interior of the tent so you can keep your gear organized and easy to find. It also features electrical port access for your convenience.


  • Very tall in the center
  • Gear pockets for organization
  • Ventilation (windows, ground vent, mesh ceiling)
  • Carrying bag included
  • Removable rainfly and guy lines for weather resistance
  • Room dividers provided


  • Heavy at 48 pounds
  • Too much ventilation for colder weather

Buying Guide: What to Look for in a Large Tent

Type of Tent

There are several types of tents available on the market today. Here, we’ll review some of the more commonly seen options and discuss which ones are best for a large family.

Ridge, or A-frame, tents are quite simple in design. They consist of a single room covered by fabric draped over poles. Usually, a ridge tent will only offer enough space for 1-3 people, so if you are looking for a 12-person tent, a ridge tent will probably not be a good option.

A dome tent consists of flexible poles that bend at the top, creating a dome shape. These tents often can accommodate up to four people, so this tent is better suited for smaller groups.

For larger groups, consider a cabin style or tunnel style tent.

A tunnel tent consists of bendable poles that form a loop shape extending from one side of the tent to the other side, creating a tunneled design. While tunnel tents are heavy, they are durable against the wind. Inside a tunnel tent, there is often plenty of space for larger groups of campers.

Cabin tents are often the most spacious and usually have room dividers. They are constructed with strong poles, such as aluminum or fiberglass, and their frame forms a shape that resembles a small home or cabin. They are also quite heavy but can be simple to set up if they are an “instant” tent, as we discussed earlier.


If you want your tent to last for several years, make note of the types of materials used in the fabric. Tent fabrics are often polyester or nylon, which are both great options for durability. Nylon and polyester are also quite lightweight. 

Waterproof materials are important if you want your tent to withstand any kind of inclement weather. Waterproofing is often provided by a polyurethane coating. Look for a polyurethane-coated rainfly as well as a polyethylene bathtub-style flooring that is raised off of the ground. If a tent has factory sealed seams, it will likely be even more durable against rain.

The tent should also be constructed with a strong frame, with poles made of fiberglass or aluminum and stakes made of steel. Aluminum is quite lightweight yet durable, while fiberglass is less expensive and resists corrosion. Carbon fiber poles are another durable option, although they are not flexible. Steel is heavy, but it is a durable option.

Temperature Rating

It’s important to understand that 1- and 2-season tents are much less versatile, as they are built only for warmer weather usage. These tents are not meant to stand up to any harsh weather, and most of them will not be equipped with a rainfly. 

It is best to use 1- or 2-season tents in situations where you can be certain that storms and wind are not in the forecast, or if you plan to camp in your own backyard and could take cover in your home if the weather becomes inclement.

If you want a truly versatile tent, a 3-season tent is a better option. Three-season tents are made for spring, summer, and fall (and sometimes milder winters). These tents are durable and built to stand up against wind and storms, with a rainfly and stronger fabrics. They do all this while offering plenty of ventilation.

Number of Rooms

When camping with a large group, you may want to camp all together but sleep in separate areas. This is where tents with room dividers shine. Many of the larger tents we discussed include one or two-room dividers, so you can create separate, private sleeping spaces while only having to assemble a single tent.

Ventilation and Screen Porch

Ventilation is important when camping with a group, because it can quickly become stuffy inside the tent. A tent designed with ventilation in mind will have several large windows, zippered mesh doors, ground vents or air panels, and even a mesh ceiling. These features allow for maximum airflow.

Some tents are even equipped with a screen porch attached to the outside, which offers extra space where you can relax in the breeze.

More: Discover The Best Tent for Camping with Dog On The Market [Review and Buying Guide]


The winner of this product round-up, the Ozark Trail Instant Cabin Tent, features a super quick set-up time, a spacious design with room dividers for privacy, an awning for shade, and lots of ventilation. This tent offers the most well-rounded experience for a large group.

If you’re looking for a more robust tent for three seasons, the Browning Camping Big Horn is another great, yet budget-friendly, option. Another runner-up, the Bushnell Shield Series Instant Cabin Tent, has a more durable “instant” tent design.

In the end, any of the tents we reviewed can provide a comfortable camping space for you and your family.

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