The Best Camping Chairs of 2022, Tested by T+L

The sturdy Kijaro Dual Lock Camping Chair came out on top after our testing.

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Best Camping Chairs Tout
Courtesy of Amazon and REI

The right chairs can make or break a camping trip — no one wants to go into a s'mores-induced sugar coma while squirming in a flimsy foldable. And if you're lugging all your gear on a backpacking journey, a portable seat you can properly rest on is even more crucial. Knowing which brands and models to trust is the first step to creating your own outdoor oasis.

The industry is flooded with options for portable chairs, from compact seats that are light enough for extended treks to heavy-duty rocking chairs that let you recreate your living room on the campground. After testing all kinds for portability, comfort, durability, and more, we chose as our favorite the Kijaro Dual Lock Camping Chair, a versatile, supremely comfortable folding chair that's packed with features for a bargain price.

But there are plenty more winners for a variety of needs and tastes.

These are the best camping chairs for all of your outdoor adventures:

Best Overall: Kijaro Dual Lock Camping Chair

Camping Chair
Courtesy of Amazon

Also available at Target

Why We Love It: This sag-free canvas folding chair keeps you cool with a mesh back panel, has unbeatable stability, and comes in 11 eye-popping colors.

What to Consider: It's a bit heavier than similar camping chairs.

The Kijaro Dual Lock Camping Chair has everything you need for a convenient and comfortable stay in the wilderness. Equipped with a locking feature that ensures it stays taut, this chair immediately impressed testers with its standout comfort and sturdiness. The firm-yet-cozy seat is supportive enough to sit in for hours, and testers were particularly pleased by how supportive the armrests were compared to other chairs with a similar design. They also loved that the breathable mesh back promotes airflow for some cooling on hot days.

Thoughtful features like a zippered pocket for securing valuables, a mesh cell phone pouch, and two cup holders make the Kijaro exceptionally convenient for everything from tailgates to beach days. It's available in 11 colors, many of which are unique in the outdoor product space. The chair comes with a carrying bag but also has a shoulder strap attached directly to its frame in case you want to ditch the sack. All this at a good price, making it an incredible value for a comfy camp chair that's built to last through countless seasons.

Weight: 9.4 pounds | Height: 19 inches | Packed Dimensions: 6.9 x 4.7 x 45.7 inches | Weight Capacity: 300 pounds

camping chair

Travel + Leisure / Tamara Staples

Best Overall, Runner-up: Kelty Lowdown Camping Chair

Camping Chair
Courtesy of Amazon

Also available at REI and Kelty

Why We Love It: High-quality construction meets innovative design in this quilted chair with brilliant amenities.

What to Consider: Some campers may prefer chairs that are higher up from the ground.

According to our testers, Colorado-based outdoor brand Kelty has perfected the art of making camp chairs. Both the Lowdown Camping Chair and Kelty's two-person loveseat beat stiff competition with impeccable construction, unique features, and comfort levels that had our group of campers wanting to spend the entire day lounging. Your struggles to fit a camp chair back into its bag? They're over. In lieu of your typical carrying case, the Kelty Lowdown Camping Chair comes in a quilted wrap with a plush shoulder strap. The wrap's adjustable buckles make it perfect for storing extra equipment, and it's padded enough to double as a cozy dog bed or picnic blanket. Designers also didn't skimp on style: The chair and matching roll-up tote come in three rustic color schemes.

The Kelty's polyester seat cover manages to meld a cloud-like cushion with a supportive feel that's kind to your back after a long day of roughing it. Adjustable armrests are equipped with insulated cup holders that can be expanded to fit massive water bottles and oversized mugs. No one was surprised to see this chair pass our durability test with flying colors. While one tall tester was skeptical of its low height, they were blown away after settling into this slightly reclined chair and reported that its dimensions are perfect for stretching your legs out on the ground. If you're willing to try something a bit unique, a heavy-duty steel frame and sturdy fabric means your investment in this chair should pay off for a lifetime of outdoor relaxation. However, since many campers prefer chairs at a traditional height, the Kelty Lowdown narrowly missed winning our Best Overall pick.

Weight: 7.3 pounds | Height: 12 inches | Packed Dimensions: 32.5 x 8 x 8 inches | Weight Capacity: 350 pounds

camping chair

Travel + Leisure / Tamara Staples

Best Lightweight: REI Co-op Flexlite Air Chair

Camping Chair
Courtesy of REI

Why We Love It: Like an ant that can carry many times its body weight, this incredibly light chair provides stability and support but takes up negligible packing space.

What to Consider: The pole legs can sink into sand or other soft ground, so it's best used on hard surfaces.

REI's Co-op Flexlite Air Chair is perfect for the minimalist traveler. The 1-pound seat comes with a miniscule stuff sack that can easily be slipped into a backpack or suitcase. We also loved that setting up and breaking down the aluminum frame and seat cover is conveniently intuitive. You may doubt a chair this light and compact could also be sturdy, but our testers found it held up beautifully to all the plopping, dropping, and throwing they could put it through. The nylon seat material also repels water.

In terms of comfort, the Co-op Flexlite Air Chair has the perfect amount of give. It provides support without feeling rigid — one tester even reported that they'd found their new favorite meeting chair.

Weight: 1 pound | Height: 11 inches | Packed Dimensions: 5 x 16 inches | Weight Capacity: 250 pounds

camping chair

Travel + Leisure / Tamara Staples

Best Budget Lightweight: Trekology Yizi-go

Camping Chair
Courtesy of Trekology

Why We Love It: It's a rare lightweight chair with cup holders and a high back.

What to Consider: It may be a bit too narrow for users with broad shoulders, and there are lighter options on the market.

Trekology's Yizi-go is an incredible value in the ultralight chair space. Delivering on its get-up-and-go promise, the Yizi-go is exceptionally easy to carry, set up, and pack away. In addition to being very compact, its stuff sack has a strap for easy transport and safekeeping under the chair when you're using it. The convenience continues with two side pockets that function as cup holders or storage for other provisions. The chair is comfy enough for all-day sitting, and our testers appreciated that the back was higher on this chair than the other lightweight options we evaluated. Mesh side panels provide breathability that's perfect for warm weather, but if you'd like to use this chair at the beach or on other soft grounds, we recommend getting a Trekology sand cover to avoid sinkage. The chair comes in black, red, blue, and green, and you can save a few dollars per chair by purchasing a pack of two on the Trekology website.

Weight: 2.1 pounds | Height: 15.4 inches | Packed Dimensions: 14 x 4.3 x 6 inches | Weight Capacity: 300 pounds

assembling a camping chair

Travel + Leisure / Tamara Staples

Best for Hiking: Helinox Chair Zero

Camping Chair
Courtesy of Amazon

Also available at Helinox and REI

Why We Love It: It's compact enough to carry in some purses.

What to Consider: It may be uncomfortable for people with wide body frames.

For an ultra lightweight chair that's ready to make your hiking breaks a breeze, opt for the Helinox Chair Zero. It has two open panels in the seat back for breathability, and when packed up in its ripstop polyester stuff sack, it's totally tiny. We love that setup is quick and easy, because no one needs to struggle with poles after sweating it out on the trails. Its light weight also impressed — when we threw it around to assess its durability, the chair basically sailed like a feather.

We have no doubt the aluminum frame and UV-resistant polyester seat are designed to last through years upon years of outdoor seasons. The chair and sack are also machine washable, so you can always head out on a hike feeling fresh. Like many ultralight chairs structured with a pole base, it will sink into soft ground like snow or sand, but Helinox makes a ground sheet you can buy to make the chair more versatile.

Weight: 1.1 pounds | Height: 8.5 inches | Packed Dimensions: 13.8 x 3.9 x 3.9 inches | Weight Capacity: 265 pounds

camping chair in bag

Travel + Leisure / Tamara Staples

Best Two-person: Kelty Low Loveseat

Camping Chair
Courtesy of Amazon

Also available at Kelty and REI

Why We Love It: This loveseat's proportions and padding are perfect for getting cozy by the fire.

What to Consider: It has a 400-pound weight capacity.

Our testers were downright giddy over this spacious, cleverly designed outdoor loveseat. The two-seater slips in and out of a slot in the wrap-up, tote-style carrier, which can be expanded to fit other gear for storage and double as a dog mat when the chair is in use. When it comes to comfort, the Kelty Low Loveseat was one of the most outstanding during our test. It has more than enough room for two people — and perhaps a pet — to lounge. (If you want even more room, Kelty also makes a party-sized couch with plenty of space for three people.) Sturdy, padded fabric forms a supportive high back and adjustable armrests. The low height instantly turns the ground into a footrest, and the seat is wide enough to provide leg support that makes you feel like you're reclining.

Ready for the rough-and-tumble outdoor life, the loveseat posed virtually no knock-over risk. It comes in four unique color-block patterns that give it a chicer look than your typical camp chair. Kelty also went the extra mile when it came to cup holders: each armrest has space for two beverages and is insulated to maintain temperature.

Weight: 15.3 pounds| Height: 13.5 inches | Packed Dimensions: 34.5 x 11 x 11 inches | Weight Capacity: 400 pounds

camping loveseat

Travel + Leisure / Tamara Staples

Best Budget Two-person: Trademark Innovations Loveseat

Camping Chair
Courtesy of Amazon

Also available at Walmart

Why We Love It: It provides decent upper back support.

What to Consider: The seats aren't very wide.

Significantly less expensive than our overall favorite two-seater, this loveseat comes at a fantastic price for a large piece of camping furniture. It's definitely comfortable, and although it couldn't topple Kelty for the top spot, we'd recommend it to someone looking for a two-person chair at an accessible price. Trademark's loveseat is also lighter and more compact than our overall favorite two-person chair, and testers were surprised by how supportive and sturdy it was given its small size. A carrying bag makes it perfect for grabbing and going to picnics or spectator events, where you can make use of its two cup holders.

Weight: 9.1 pounds | Height: 17 inches | Packed Dimensions: ‎32.9 x 8.5 x 4.9 inches | Weight Capacity: 440 pounds

Best Rocking Chair: GCI Outdoor Freestyle Rocker

Camping Chair
Courtesy of Amazon

Also available at REI

Why We Love It: It's solidly built and sits higher up from the ground than must camping chairs.

What to Consider: It's heavy and not very compact when folded.

A rocking chair can take your campsite serenity to a new level. GCI's Freestyle Rocker is sturdy and supportive but provides a soothing swaying motion. Sitting up higher than most camping furniture, the chair delivers a classic, cozy living-room feel and features outdoor-ready shocks that endured our durability drop test beautifully. The sturdy steel frame supports padded armrests, a back with a breathable mesh panel, and a cup holder for added comfort. It comes with a handle for transport and folds flat.

Weight: 12 pounds | Height: 19.7 inches | Packed Dimensions: 4.9 x 24 x 34.8 | Weight Capacity: 250 pounds

rocking camping chair

Travel + Leisure / Tamara Staples

Best Recliner: GCI Freeform Zero Gravity Chair

Camping Chair
Courtesy of Amazon

Also available at REI

Why We Love It: Easy-to-use locks make it simple to secure the recliner and footrest in place.

What to Consider: It's heavier than most camping chairs.

If your camping priorities include stargazing or napping in the fresh air, GCI's Freeform Zero Gravity Chair is a must-have. You can choose between two positions: sitting upright with the footrest in use or fully reclined with the back shifted. Adjusting between positions requires almost no effort, and yellow locks on either side keep your chosen recline level firmly in place so you can fully relax. The cup holder is positioned perfectly for grabbing your drink whether you are lying back or sitting upright, and it's designed to stay put no matter how much you're adjusting the recline. The mesh material kept air flowing and had just enough cushy bounce to get testers dozing off, while an included pillow ensured their necks were in a comfortable position.

Weight: 20 pounds | Height: 20.7 inches | Packed Dimensions: 36.4 x 30.3 x 6.1 | Weight Capacity: 300 pounds

camping recliner chair

Travel + Leisure / Tamara Staples

Best for Hot Weather: REI Co-op Camp X Chair

Camping Chair
Courtesy of REI

Why We Love It: The drop-down pocket with a drawstring closure keeps small valuables safe.

What to Consider: The huge cup holder is great for fitting large drinks, but smaller beverages may tip over inside of it.

While sturdy canvas chairs are great for keeping your back supported, no one wants to be engulfed in a thick fabric when the temperature rises. REI's Co-op Camp X Chair brings the best of both worlds with a webbed nylon mesh that keeps you cozy and cool. The material is designed to evenly distribute your weight and maximize comfort, and our testers confirmed the material was tense enough to feel supportive while letting them take advantage of the breeze. Since the breathable mesh is also quick-drying, you can feel free to plop down in a wet bathing suit and leave the chair out during afternoon rain showers.The right armrest has a mug-compatible cup holder, while the left armrest's unique drop-down pocket can be secured with a drawstring to make sure your valuables stay put. The pocket is especially handy for keeping track of your phone or other small items you want to access easily. The included stuff sack has both a handle and a shoulder strap for hands-free carrying.

Weight: 7.1 pounds | Height: 10.5 inches | Packed Dimensions: 7 x 33 inches | Weight Capacity: 300 pounds

camping chair

Travel + Leisure / Tamara Staples

Best for Hammock-lovers: Eagles Nest Outfitters Lounger DL

Camping Chair
Courtesy of Amazon

Also available at REI

Why We Love It: The adjustable legs let you choose how high up you are from the ground.

What to Consider: Putting the chair back into its carrying bag was slightly difficult for our testers.

It can be a little bit heartbreaking to find a gorgeous relaxation spot — with nowhere to hang up your favorite hammock. Thanks to Eagles Nest Outfitters, you can have the comfort of hammock lounging without needing trees, trying to transport a clunky free-standing hammock, or being beholden to the location of trees on your campsite. A favorite among our testers for its incredible comfort, the DL Lounger features a high back topped with a cushioned headrest, a slight recline, and breathable fabric that practically begs you to take a nap in it. You can set the legs at either a 3- or 20-inch height, and there are two storage pockets and a cup holder for your lounging convenience. Since the chair weighs just under 5 pounds, transport is almost as stress-free as snoozing in this crowd-pleaser.

Weight: 4.6 pounds | Height: can be adjusted to 3 or 10 inches | Packed Dimensions: 23 x 7 inches | Weight Capacity: 250 pounds

camping chair

Travel + Leisure / Tamara Staples

Most Supportive: Yeti Trailhead Camp Chair

Camping Chair
Courtesy of Amazon

Also available at Yeti

Why We Love It: It has a significantly higher weight capacity than any other chair we tested.

What to Consider: It's very expensive for a camping chair.

The Yeti Trailhead Camp Chair is a rock-solid piece of outdoor furniture that'll stay sturdy and supportive even under the toughest conditions. It's firm, roomy, and ready for heavy use. Yeti's Flexgrid fabric is taut and durable with just the right amount of stretch to conform to your body and provide pressure relief where it's most needed. Testers found it to be extremely supportive on the back and legs and marveled at how difficult it was to knock over during the durability test. The material is also resistant to damage from UV rays and breathable enough to prevent spills or rain from pooling in the seatbed.

Yeti's luxury support does come with a price tag to match. The Trailhead is also on the heavier side for a camp chair, and it's far from compact. However, if you're setting up camp for an extended stay, having home-furniture level comfort — and a whooping 500-pound weight capacity — could be worth the extra effort in transport. Plus, though the chair is large even when folded up, its spacious backpack carrying case with cushioned, adjustable shoulder straps makes dealing with the size and weight much easier.

Weight: 13.3 pounds | Height: 16.7 inches | Packed Dimensions: 10 x 8 x 43 inches | Weight Capacity: 500 pounds

yeti chair

Travel + Leisure / Tamara Staples

Best for Meals: Coleman Portable Deck Chair

Camping Chair
Courtesy of Amazon

Why We Love It: Its rigid backrest is perfect for sitting upright at mealtime.

What to Consider: The cup holder isn't big enough for some large containers.

Coleman's heavy-duty outdoor chair with a side table can transform your camping mealtimes. An aluminum side table flips up when you're ready to feast and includes a cup holder. The chair's backrest is slightly angled, and testers who prefer firm support enjoyed the strong, taut fabric. Thanks to the extra space for cup handles, mugs easily fit in the beverage slot. Although it doesn't come with a carrying bag, the chair has two built-in handles. The Coleman chair does have a unique folding design that our testers did not find very intuitive, but it worked smoothly once they got the hang of lifting up the sides of the seatbed to collapse the chair. For car campers looking to simplify their dining routine, it's a nice addition to your gear collection.

Weight: 8.8 pounds | Height: 17 inches | Packed Dimensions: 31.1 x 21 x 7.5 inches | Weight Capacity: 225 pounds

camping chair

Travel + Leisure / Tamara Staples

Best Value: Coleman Cooler Quad Chair

Camping Chair
Courtesy of Amazon

Also available at Target

Why We Love It: This roomy seat has a four-can cooler attached.

What to Consider: It doesn't offer very much back support.

This affordable, durable, comfortable chair is tailored to those who like their refreshments. The cooler pocket fits four standard cans and zips up to insulate your beverages of choice. In addition to the cooler, the chair has a mesh cup holder, two mesh pockets, and a roomy seat that's 24 inches wide. It easily folds up and slips into its shoulder-strap carrying bag and is lightweight enough to carry to a picnic. While the padded seat and armrests are great for campers who like a cushioned feel, some may find the chair lacking in back support.

Weight: 7.3 pounds | Height: 18.1 inches | Packed Dimensions: 38.25 x 7.5 x 7 inches | Weight Capacity: 325 pounds

camping chair

Travel + Leisure / Tamara Staples

Most Versatile: Nemo Moonlite Reclining Chair

Camping Chair
Courtesy of Amazon

Also available at REI

Why We Love It: It has a sleek look and adjustable recline.

What to Consider: It's expensive.

Whether you want to sit upright for a snack break or lean back to lounge with a good book, Nemo's Moonlight Reclining Chair is great to have on hand. Sturdy, adjustable buckles allow you to choose just the right level of recline for whatever you're using the chair for at any given time. The seat is made of a webbed mesh that comfortably conforms to your body and promotes airflow. Testers noted that the chair seemed surprisingly wear-resistant given how light it is and complimented the ball-and-socket joint system that helps the chair accommodate different body types. The Moonlite weighs under two pounds, folds into a compact position, and comes with a zip-up carrying bag.

Weight: 1.8 pounds | Height: 10.5 inches| Packed Dimensions: 26 x 20 x 20 inches | Weight Capacity: 300 pounds

camping chair being stuffed into bag

Travel + Leisure / Tamara Staples

Our Testing Process

After our product team extensively researched the market, a group of editors with a wide range of camping experiences gathered in our New York City lab to test 29 of the best portable outdoor chairs. We evaluated the ease of use, comfort, portability, and durability of each. Testers refrained from checking the prices of the chairs until they'd judged all their other attributes.

assembling a camping chair

Travel + Leisure / Tamara Staples

We tested one chair at a time, starting by setting them up for use and paying close attention to whether there was any guesswork or fumbling involved in assembly. To see how comfortable it was to use the chairs for extended periods of time, we sat in each for 15-20 minutes, making sure to evaluate any extra features like tables, coolers, and cup holders. We also tested any adjustable features like recliners and armrests to see if those functions worked smoothly.

Keeping in mind that good portability is key for outdoor chairs, we broke down and packed each for transport, testing their carrying cases and any and all straps and handles to judge the placement, size, and design. Testers considered whether the chairs would be too heavy, bulky, or awkward to carry for either a long distance or simply from a house to a car trunk.

throwing a chair

Travel + Leisure / Tamara Staples

Three factors made up our durability rating: quality, damage resistance, and longevity. We plopped down hard into the chairs and bounced around on them up and down and side to side, noting whether the frames and fabric seemed sturdy, stable, wobbly, cheap, resistant to rips, or well built. To gauge how well the chairs could withstand exposure to the elements and rough handling, we dropped them from shoulder height in both their folded and unfolded positions. We made note of any scuff marks and damage to the functionality of the chairs and recorded whether we thought the chair could last through many years and uses.

Finally, the chair's current retail price was revealed to the testers, and they considered whether it was fairly priced, if they would purchase the chair themselves, and how confident they would be in recommending the chair to a friend.

Other Chairs We Liked

Three of the 29 chairs we tested had unique features that set them apart from the crowd but fell short in categories that kept their score too low to make our list of recommendations. Still, you may find these options to be well-suited for your specific camping needs.

Coastrail Camping Chair with Lumbar Support: Coastrail's folding chair has adjustable lumbar support, a headrest with a zip-up pocket, a cooler in one armrest, and additional storage pockets to boot. However, our testers thought it was too heavy for a single-person chair and questioned the quality of the zippers.

Big Agnes Big Six Camp Chair: The Big Six Camp Chair is comfortable, particularly for people who want a bigger chair with a very high back. But given its rather high price tag, we aren't confident enough about the quality and durability of the material to justify a recommendation.

Marchway Ultralight Folding Chair: Marchway's lightweight chair is comfortable, easy to transport, and very budget-friendly. It did sustain some scratches during our durability test and is slightly more expensive than our Best Budget Lightweight winner, the Trekology Yizi-Go, but we like that the seat back is mostly mesh for breathability.

assembling a camping chair

Travel + Leisure / Tamara Staples

Tips for Buying a Camping Chair

Make sure you have enough chairs for everyone

Nothing is worse than finding yourself forced to play musical chairs around the campfire. If you're camping with a group, make sure enough chairs have been purchased and packed for everyone. Since different chairs will be best for each individual based on body type, age, and personal preference, it's a good idea to have a collection of chairs that suit a variety of needs. Some campers may need a high back with extra support, while others may prioritize a style that's low to the ground.

Consider how much comfort you're willing to sacrifice for portability

Generally speaking, the lightest chairs out there won't deliver as plush of a sitting experience as bulkier products that weren't meant to accompany you on backpacking adventures. If you're looking for a chair to take on the move, opt for something weighing under 2 pounds that can be stored as compactly as possible. These no-frills seats are more tolerable for resting your terrain-tested feet than for enjoying multiple meals, drinks, and the company of other campers around a fire.

carrying a portable chair

Travel + Leisure / Tamara Staples

Invest in a chair you can use for multiple outdoor activities

While paying premium prices for a camping chair when you only make it to the wilderness a couple times of year may not seem practical, good portable seating can be an invaluable addition to your home life too. Foldable midweight chairs are great for sports spectating, beach days, and backyard parties, while lightweight models designed for backpacking are perfect for bringing along to music festivals, picnics, or even sightseeing days when seating may not be available for rest stops. If your chair has pole legs, just make sure that you bring along a ground sheet if you may be encountering soft surfaces like sand.

Buy a chair suited to your bodily needs

Outdoor furniture is not one size fits all, so think carefully about your unique needs before committing to a style. Shorties (like yours truly) may be uncomfortable in seats that are too high to rest their feet on the ground while their backs are flush against the chair. A few of the lightweights we tested were cozy enough to sleep in for some campers, while others found them to be too narrow to comfortably fit their shoulders. If lumbar support is a must, it could be worth transporting a bit of extra weight to have a super sturdy chair on your site.

falling in a chair

Travel + Leisure / Tamara Staples

Frequently Asked Questions
  • How do I store my camping chairs?

    Store your camp chair in a dry place to avoid molding and rusting. If your chair didn't come with a storage bag, consider keeping it under the protection of a tarp or storage bin.

  • How do I clean my camping chairs?

    Some manufacturers provide cleaning instructions for their camp chairs, so always check to see if any were included with yours. To clean a camping chair made of polyester or another canvas material, start by brushing off any dirt with a soft bristle brush. Then, mix 1/3 warm water and 2/3 vinegar in a spray bottle, and scrub the fabric after wetting. Use a mild soap to wash the chair legs. Set the chair out in direct sunlight to dry.

  • Can you use camping chairs at the beach?

    Many camping chairs are perfect for the beach. You're best off with chairs made of lightweight, breathable, and quick-drying materials like mesh and that have wide bases that won't sink into the sand. Chairs with cup holders, coolers, or side tables can be beach day MVPs. If you want to use a chair with pole legs, get a ground sheet that can accommodate soft surfaces to prevent it from sinking into the sand. Also be aware that some ultralight chairs can go wayward when left unattended on windy days, so always weigh them down before heading into the surf.

Why Trust Travel + Leisure

T+L writers are shopping and product experts who score the market for the best of the best travel gear. For this article, lifelong camper Lydia Price joined a group of other editors to put 29 outdoor chairs to the test in our New York City lab. They carefully evaluated the comfort, durability, portability, and value of each chair to put together this list of the best options for camping.

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