We’ve had a Coleman tent since 2014 and used it for all of our camping adventures since – to which it has proved brilliant. Before that we had a cheapy thing that we bought with no camping experience whatsoever and it was rather untrustworthy and leaky if it rained. I mean no one WANTS to go camping in the rain but being a resident and camper of Great Britain it is somewhat rather an inevitability so a tent that stays dry is the least of my requirements! Our Coleman Galileo 5 (which I reviewed here) was perfect and did us very well through some rather unfortunate weather experiences and also, through some non traditional sunny trips too!
Sadly all good things come to an end and this year’s Camp Bestival trip with gale force winds proved a sticky end for our Galileo. Through no fault of the tent’s whatsoever our tent poles (along with quite a lot of other people’s tent poles) snapped and broke. Unlike other unfortunates at the festival, our tent withstood enough to stay standing and didn’t blow away entirely (seriously that DID happen to some people) but… wasn’t really mendable afterwards as we had been on an incline to boot and managed to rip some of the material as well – it was sad and we could have bought new tent poles and done a bit of sewing but… We decided all in all to upgrade and go for something similar but with some updated features.
It had to be again, of course, Coleman and this time we went for the Cabral 5 Family Tent which is pretty similar to our old one but… Has some genius features such as black out bedrooms and a hinged door. You might not think a hinged door would make too much difference to a camping experience but let me tell you something for nothing, you would be wrong! Take a look at this vid of our tent which we watched before it arrived and made us very excited about our new tent before we’d even pitched it!
Urr… So you can see why we were excited can’t you and it didn’t disappoint us in any way. It isn’t terribly big in its bag, or heavy, my husband was able to pitch it on his own (I was claiming pregnancy off duty but I HAVE pitched our old tent on my own many times) and when it was time to put it away again it went back in the bag quite seamlessly. This is often the hard part of camping I find and I have, in the past, become very frustrated with the fact they never seem to go back in as easily as they came out!
There are lots of things I like about the Cabral 5 (because it sleeps 5) and having a hinged door (a simple pole system creates this) is just one of them. It may sound simple but it’s actually a huge help, especially in the night when needing a wee (as pregnant people tent to do) because it makes access in and out much simpler. Yes you still zip but there’s no flapping about with material in the dark and actually being able to just prop the door open is a real plus! The patented Hinge Door from Coleman® makes it quick and easy to come and go from your tent. The rigid door and door frame increases the tents structural integrity making it feel more like a home away from home. I’m also rather fond of the built in tent organiser because although we had an organiser in our old tent it would always fall down and being built in makes this an impossibility.
This tent also has great big windows either side which can be covered or open depending on how much light you want to let in and it made the tent feel less claustrophobic than others I have been in. The living area isn’t huge but it’s big enough to sit in and with the windows it makes this a much more enjoyable experience. I also like the fact that there is a small porched bit to the tent which definitely helps with rain. I want to buy a porch extension as having a proper one would be the only thing I’d say this tent could benefit from but having the small one it comes with is definitely better than nothing!
The best trick to this tent by far thought has to be the fact that the bedrooms (there can be two with the divider but we made it into one big one for all of us) are black out. Like serious black out! The Coleman BlackOut Bedroom® is a revolutionary new sleep system for campers that they say is ideal for parents or anyone who is sensitive to daylight. BlackOut Bedroom® blocks up to 99% of daylight from entering the sleeping area, helping you get a longer and more restful sleep – whatever time of day. Now in the past I have not been a mega fan of the idea of black out blinds and the like. I kind of thought it would be making a rod for my own back if we got them in their bedrooms because once they were used to that then how would they sleep without it?! But… The tent has totally changed my opinion and I’m now going to buy blackout blinds for their rooms too! Especially Jimmy’s!
Jimmy doesn’t sleep well. This is an understatement. He is up with the lark and would stay up, fighting tiredness, for as long as he could. Yet somehow, while camping, he slept from 9pm to 9am. TWELVE hours! Do you know how amazing this is?! I probably can’t convey in words what it was like to wake up a good two hours before him and WAIT for his to rise. It has never happened before, happened every night we went camping in this tent and hasn’t happened since. Coleman – what can I say?! Thank you! By showing me the darkness you have truly shown me the light and we have blinds coming for our house because otherwise we’d have had to pitch this tent in the garden and make it his permanent bedroom. Lovely as it is we do love our little Jimmy and thought this might be a little cruel during the winter months!
We had a thoroughly enjoyable first camping trip in our new tent from Coleman and can’t wait to do more. I am currently 8 month’s pregnant so I’m not entirely sure if we will fit another trip in this summer but if we can (weather dependent – I’m a fair weather camper at the best of times and after Camp Bestival…) then we will and I know that Jimmy will sleep well and that makes any camping trip that touch more inviting!
I need to up my game with the camping equipment in general. We have a few things but my aim is for next summer to have accumulated a few more key pieces. I know that Coleman is totally trustworthy and my first point of call will definitely be with them – they are the WINNER of the Camping Magazine’s 2016 Editor’s choice Awards in the Best Camping Innovation category for this tent and we totally can see why!
We worked in collaboration with Coleman who sent us our new tent in return for an honest review.