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Home Tent Ideas for Camping at Home during Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Best Backyard Camping Ideas for Kids and Parents in 2021

You do not need to be stuck between your 4 walls if you have a garden and a heart for camping! Camping At Home Sounds Amazing Right?

Backyard camping might seem like a pointless concept at a glance, but I can promise you camping at home absolutely isn’t. They say preparation is the key to success for good reason, and having your own private space at home is the perfect environment to get practicing and test that new camping gear.

Not only this, this is a perfect opportunity to introduce tents and camping to young children and cultivate their interest in the great outdoors. It can be a great place to develop their motor skills and general learning through creative and imaginative play.

Also building their independence and confidence to do tasks together or independently without a parent butting in, for example something simple like pitching a kids pop up tent can help them to build confidence and feel satisfaction from completing a task.

Sitting up late with a torch and a story, or a self made, garden campfire with marshmallows are sure to be some memories that last forever.

Let’s dig further into the topic and look at some ideas, tips and products that can get you on your way.

Will My Children Even Enjoy Camping at Home?

We all know how much kids love blanket and pillow forts, so why not make this a step up and use a real tent instead? Whether you’ve got your own one ready to go or need to get a camping tent online, you can set up a comfy kid’s den in the garden or inside the home.

Kids can use it as a play area, you could make a campfire in the yard with marshmallows, hang a hammock, make a home theatre, play music and relax, the possibilities are endless and will really keep them engaged.

camping at home for for kids

When the kids study at home, setting up cute little reading nooks with fairy lights and mattresses are a perfect way to motivate the kids to participate.

Making a private kids den gives children the option to read, study, and chill in a quiet spot that gives them a change from the everyday house environment. It’s like having your own getaway as a family, without having to leave your own home.

Having a ‘my first sleep outside’ or ‘my first night in a tent’ is definitely one of the memories that stick with us as a child and can be a great experience, with a lot to learn in the process. There are also an abundance of tasks and things to do to generate more interest and fun for them, which we will touch on below.

What Type of Tents are there for Camping at Home?

Not only can you use one as a hideout at home, but there are other benefits and uses that may have never crossed your mind, we will have a brief look over some of the different tent designs that are available for kids camping at home.

Study Nook for Reading Time

With school closures worldwide, doing schoolwork in peace has certainly become a challenge for a lot of students, as there are many distractions at home. It’s incredibly tempting to snuggle up on the couch to watch Netflix, play video games, or sit on your phone or laptop for hours.

camping at home in a bed tent

Quiet Enclosure to Relax and Home Study in

Some models provide a great space to study, such as these Bed Tents, giving you privacy and the ability to shut off the household world for a moment can greatly help with concentrating on schoolwork. There are also kids bed tents which are designed primarily for children to chill in by themselves, away from everyone for some quiet ‘me time’ while reading or writing.

Dividing a Busy Household with Teepees

Whether you don’t have many rooms in your house, or simply need the privacy, being able to divide a bustling house can help everyone relax and separate themselves for a few moments in the day. It’s also a smart way to stop the easy spread of germs.

camping at home in Teepee Tent

These Teepee Style Dens are Great for Dividing up the Space, in bedrooms especially

If things are getting tense, or you want to separate the children to stop the spread of anything, mini shelters are perfect. Separate the kids away from bunkbeds with these great Kids Teepee Tents, so they can spend time apart and get their studying or reading done.

Pet Tents for Adventurous Pets

Lumsing Pet Tent for Dogs

Backyard camping doesn’t have to be only for your children, it can be for your ‘fur babies’ too, with an abundance of pet tents for cats and dogs on the market, there are tons of choices out there.

Even having your kids camp with your pet, this is a fantastic way to teach them responsibility outdoors. If this intrigues you, you can check out our own Pet Tent list.

Backyard Camping with a Camping Gazebo

family relaxing in the gazebo outside

Still Possible to Create some Camping Hubs in the Garden using Pop Up Gazebos

For the larger families out there, you can utilise a pop up gazebo, a large shelter that is weather proof, UV proof and fitted with mosquito netting. Spend a few nights with a Pop Up Gazebo beside your tent, under the wide-open sky with your loved ones as a vacation style break from home.

Less Screen Time with a Kids Tent

Having trouble getting the kids away from their screens?

Pitching a Camping Shelter inside or outside brings a whole new element of fun. It can increase their socializing skills by playing with each other, boost their imagination, enhance development through problem-solving (like challenging them to assemble it themselves), and encourages pretend play.

kids playing in a tent in the garden

Still having fun with various camping gear and games

In fact, David Sobel, a Professor at the University of Washington’s Information School has supported the idea of pitching a tent or building a play fort as an excellent source for your child’s development.


What Kind of Tent Should I Use for Backyard Camping?

Here are our top picks that we think would be great for the kids and yourselves, inside the home or in the garden.

1. Love Tree Kids Play Tent

Love Tree Kids Play Tent

An adorable reading nook, this is also great for study and homework time for younger kids. Place some cushions, a comfy mat, and their favorite toys for an extra cozy experience. Setting up these Kids Play Tents in just two steps, you can assemble and take it down indoors and outdoors in a cinch.

2. Sunnyglade Princess Tent

Sunnyglade Princess Tent

With a traditional pink princess castle shape, this model comes with free fairy lights to create a magical play space. It can act like their little den where they feel secure to imagine and play in their own little safe haven. Also suitable for indoors and outdoors, it has netting that protects from bugs.

3. Clam Outdoor Gazebos

Clam Traveler screen tent inside

This one is perfect for chilling outside in the garden with full mesh protection. It will protect you and your family from bugs and the elements, with enough space for a table and chairs. To get out of the dining room every once in a while, this pops up and pitches in just 60 seconds.

4. Tiny Land Kids Teepee Tent

Tiny Land Teepee Tent for Kids

Pretty much every kid’s dream is to have their own teepee, and this has the perfect classic style that your kids will love. The simple design will look gorgeous in any room. It’s the perfect size for reading and it’ll keep up with the kids since it’s made from durable 100% cotton canvas.

5. Ozark Trail Dome Tent

Ozark Trail isolation tent


A popular small camping tent that could be great for a couple of kids and their toys and sleeping bags, this costs just over 40 bucks, a tent with room for 4 to sleep inside. Featuring a simple set up, it comes with a front storage locker and electrical cord access so you can pretty much use it anywhere around the house or yard.

6. The Original AirFort


The Original AirFort

Super easy to set up, 30 seconds in fact, this play fort will keep the kids busy for hours on end, as reiterated by the professor above. With the puffy walls, there is plenty of space for them to play around. Use it inside or put it in the yard for the afternoon to let them go wild, then let the air out and store it away for the next day. There are also tons of fun colors and patterns to choose from.

7. Coleman Dome Tent with Screen Room

Coleman Evanston Dome Tent for camping at home

One for the whole family, this is a budget-friendly large tent with a practical front screen room to keep the bugs away. It’s built for fantastic weather resistance with a spacious floor area able to fit two huge queen airbeds. Who said camping had to be uncomfortable?

Camping Activities for Kids at Home

Here are a few of the ideas we have thought of and will use with our children this year, if you have any other ideas please comment below to share what works best with us parents.

  1. Make a real campfire if you have the means, or you could make a DIY campfire that is safer for younger kids. Set it up using paper towel cardboard rolls as the “wood”, and red, yellow and orange paper for the “fire”.
  2. If you have a real campfire, cook some delicious and fun recipes to teach kids how to be resourceful with their food.
  3. Teach the kids how to pitch a tent, using a hammer to secure the stakes and guylines. This activity can help to develop kinaesthetic learning, also known as tactile learning, which leads to improved muscle memory and better information retention.
  4. Learn how to tie different knots or make a lasso and try to catch items, like branches or bottles.
  5. Set up a hammock or tarp between some trees.
  6. Go on a bug hunting adventure in the backyard – if you have a humane bug catcher, even better. Put the insects in glass jars and get the kids to guess what they’ve caught.
  7. Build a den or fort together in the yard using household objects, or tree branches from the garden.
  8. Sing classic songs around the campfire or make up your own.
  9. Play a nature scavenger-hunt game. Cut out pictures of different flora and fauna or get creative and draw some together. Scatter them around the house or yard without the kids looking, then let them go hunting with a reference sheet.
  10. To enhance sensory processing development, make a sensory bin out of household items, like rice and small toys, and place it in the tent.
  11. Play flashlight tag in the yard – you’ll be laughing for hours!


Final Thoughts on Backyard Camping

With many families, being able to keep our kids busy and think of as many forms of entertainment as possible is often an exhausting task. Backyard camping can not only develop their learning, but also generate their own curiosity and independence, allowing them to be a bit more self sufficient with their time, and less reliant on mum and dad for entertainment.

As we know oh too well here at the tent hub, using tents is one of the easiest and most enjoyable things to do. There are so many awesome uses for camping tents at home.



Tyler is our editor-in-chief at the Tent Hub. He is a dedicated backcountry explorer and a trained Wilderness First Responder. Tyler has hiked every mountain range in the US and summited Highpoints in several US states as well as Germany. His favorite outdoor destinations are the Canadian Rockies, the Black Hills of South Dakota, Mt. Tongariro in New Zealand, and the San Juan Region of Colorado.

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