Best Beach Cabanas (Review & Buying Guide) in 2021
Make your beach day even better with a beach cabana.
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BY Noelle Talmon / LAST UPDATED ON July 2, 2021
If you enjoy hanging out at the beach, you know the trip will be more comfortable if you have the proper gear. In addition to a swimsuit, sunscreen, towel, and snacks, it's helpful to have some shade to avoid damaging UV rays. One of the best ways to protect your skin is by using a beach cabana. Available in a wide range of colors and designs, they are great for cooling off and relaxing if you need to get out of the sun for a while. High-quality beach tents and shelters also provide privacy and let you store beach essentials, including blankets, chairs, coolers, and toys. If you're not sure which beach cabana is the best, check out our buying guide below.
This extra-large beach tent accommodates up to four people and folds down super compactly for easy storage and transportation.
- UPF 50+ sun protection
- Lightweight and portable
- Specially designed hub for quick and easy pop-up assembly
- Can be tough to pack up in the carrying bag
- Carrying strap may break
This tent comes in mint green or blue and is 99 inches long by 55 inches wide and 59 inches tall. It fits two adults and two kids.
- Quick and easy to set up
- Sunproof with UV protection
- Three windows for airflow
- Can be hard to roll up in the carrying bag
- Materials are a little flimsy
This light blue beach tent is 99 by 53 by 57 inches and can fit four adults, children, and pets.
- Sets up in one minute or less
- Three windows for ventilation
- UV and waterproof protection
- One-year warranty
- Packing into the carrying bag is challenging
- Roll-up windows tend to fall down
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Benefits of a Beach Cabana
- They provide shade. Even the most ardent beach lovers need some time out of the sun every once in a while. A beach cabana gives you some much-needed shade when the sun is especially hot and bright.
- They keep damaging UV rays out. It's a good idea to avoid direct sun exposure, particularly between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m., because that's when the sun's rays are the strongest and the most dangerous.
- They provide privacy. Some beach tents are designed to give users a little privacy should they want to change into their swimsuits or relax without prying eyes.
Types of Beach Cabanas
A traditional-looking beach cabana or canopy tent features a square design with four legs and a roof. Many brands include at least one detachable wall, which provides added sun protection. This type of shelter typically includes stakes and sandbags to secure it to the ground and prevent it from blowing away in the wind.
Pop-up beach tents can accommodate anywhere from two to five people or more. Some are very easy to use and can take under a minute to set up. They resemble camping tents, except they are often open in the front, allowing users to see what's going on around them. Some also include a "porch" area that extends out from the tent that can zipper up to provide privacy.
This type of beach shelter features a telescoping pole that you stake in to keep it from moving. It's shaped similarly to an umbrella, but many also include side flaps for added protection against the sun. Many have wind vents and windows that provide airflow, which is helpful on sweltering days.
Based in California, OutdoorMaster was created by a group of outdoor enthusiasts who connected while skiing in the French Alps. The company produces gear for snow sports and water sports, as well as accessories such as the OutdoorMaster Pop Up 3-4 Person Beach Tent.
This San Diego-based company was founded in 2009 by people who are passionate about adventure. The company aims to create products that are durable, functional, and easy to use outdoors, including the Lightspeed Outdoors Quick Canopy Instant Pop Up Shade Tent.
Beach Cabana Pricing
- $60-$100: Beach cabanas range in price based on how large they are and the number of people they can accommodate. Some provide more shelter with privacy doors, while others come with added accessories such as storage pockets, stakes, and tie-downs. Items on the higher end of this price range tend to be more durable.
It's important to determine how many people will be using the beach cabana before you make a purchase. If you have a large family, you'll need a larger tent. Smaller options, however, are just fine for one or two people. Also, think about the items you want to store in the shelter and whether it will have space to accommodate them.
Most beach cabanas are made of either polyester or nylon, which provide UV protection. This is important as one of the main reasons for using a beach cabana is to avoid damaging rays from the sun. Also, you want the material to be strong enough to be resistant to rips and tears.
Nothing's worse than a beach shelter blowing around because it can't stay in place when the wind hits. Instead of wasting your time chasing a rogue beach tent, find one that comes with stakes and sand pockets. This will keep it grounded even when an offshore breeze threatens to scoop it up into the air.
- Ease of Use. Some beach cabanas are easier to set up than others: at best, it should take around five minutes to install one on the beach. Plus, it should be easy to take down, fold up, and carry. And you don't want it to take up a lot of space when it's in storage. The easier it is to set it up and transport it, the more likely you will use it.
- Privacy. Many people use beach tents to change clothing or to relax without interruptions. If you're the type of person who enjoys a little seclusion, look for brands that provide a little bit of privacy. Some beaches are very busy, so a tent that conceals some of your activities can be very beneficial.
Best Beach Cabanas Reviews & Recommendations 2021
- To prevent a beach cabana from blowing away, make sure to set it up as recommended by the manufacturer. You can also secure a strong tarp over it or remove the sidewalls to minimize wind pressure.
- Most beach tents and shelters are water-resistant, not waterproof, and they're not designed to be used in harsh conditions. You can, however, put a rain tarp over the tent to stay dry in inclement weather.
- Beach tents tend to get warm. Consider using a battery-powered fan to hook on the canopy to make it more comfortable inside.
Q: What is the best shade for the beach?
If you want some shade while spending time at the beach, look for beach canopies, tents, or cabanas that are large enough to cover your whole body and are made with material that provides UV protection.
Q: What are the best beach cabanas?
There are various excellent beach cabanas and tents, and we include several examples in this buying guide. The best cabanas will provide you shade and privacy and will be easy to set up and take down.
Q: How do I choose a beach cabana?
First, pick one that will accommodate the number of users. Ensure it protects against UV rays, is easy to set up and transport, and stays securely grounded when the wind blows.
Our pick for the best beach cabana is the Pacific Breeze Easy Setup Beach Tent. It provides UV protection and is compact and lightweight. For a more budget-friendly option, consider the WhiteFang Deluxe XL Pop Up Beach Tent Sun Shade Shelter.