Tents are classified into two main categories: backpacking and family. Backpacking tents are designed to be smaller, more lightweight and able to stand harsher weather conditions than family tents. Family tents tend to be larger and have various additional features to accommodate larger groups with young children, since weight is often not a primary concern.
There are more specific types of tents, too:
Geodesic tents – geodesic tents feature multiple tent poles which cross over each other for extra stability. These are perfect for backpacking because they’re able to stand up to stronger winds. It’s worth noting that how ‘geodesic’ a tent is depends on how many nodes it has (points at which tent poles cross), so some tents may be classified as ‘semi-geodesic’.
Dome tents – dome tents are spacious and easy-to-pitch. Their construction makes them a good choice for those wanting a bit more space, although they’re not as technical as geodesic or semi-geodesic designs.
Bell tents – bell tents are a great choice for groups or families. They have one large area which you can customise to the needs of your group, offering the most home-like camping experience.
Tunnel tents – tunnel tents rely on guylines and ropes to keep them stable, so take longer to put up and put away, but once pitched, they’re a great option for families. They often feature separate compartments for privacy – great for kids wanting their own space - and great standing room in the ‘living’ area.