A Buying Guide To Canvas Tents In NZ

toddler walking on green grass with set-up tent during golden hour

Heading out on an outdoor adventure like hiking and camping is an age-old tradition for many people. And the best way to pass on this tradition from generation to generation is by passing down your camping equipment, especially your camping tents. 

However, choosing the right tent can be a daunting task since there are several camping stores in NZ offering a huge range of tents varying in styles, shapes, and sizes. Still, one tent option that is mostly chosen by campers to perpetuate outdoor activities from generation to generation is a canvas tent.

Unlike nylon or polyester tents that are made from plastics, canvas tents are made from cotton and are more breathable, sturdy, durable, insulating, spacious, water resilient, and eco-friendly. As a result, canvas tents in NZ have always remained a top choice for regular campers and seasoned outdoor travelers for centuries. 

Read on to find out what a canvas is, what are the benefits of using canvas tents, and what to look for while buying one.

What is a canvas?

Canvas is a sturdy and durable material made from cotton or hemp. It is a woven material that is widely used for manufacturing canvas tents, shoes, backpacks, etc. Basically, a plain weaving pattern is used to connect cotton threads tightly, and this makes up a canvas.

What are the benefits of using canvas tents?

Sturdy & Durable

Canvas tents are extremely sturdy, breathable, and durable compared to nylon or polyester camping tents that are made from synthetic materials. And that’s why most camping stores in NZ stock up on canvas tents all around the year. 

Another best thing about canvas tents is that they are easy to repair with remedial sewing skills. So, if you are looking to buy a camping tent that can be passed on to the next generation, canvas tents can be your ideal choice!


Canvas tents have a natural ability to withstand all sorts of weather conditions. They are highly breathable in hot climates as well as capable of trapping heat in cooler climates. 

Not only that but a few canvas tent models are fitted with stove jacks. These canvas variants actually allow wood-burning stoves to be safely used inside tents, especially during winter camping trips and in extreme weather conditions.

Environment Friendly

The best advantage of using canvas tents is that they don’t leave a hazardous impact on landfills. Since canvas tents are made from cotton and hemp materials, they decompose exponentially faster than nylon and polyester tents made from synthetic materials.

As a result, these eco-friendly tent models are great options for preserving landfills and campsites. Additionally,  they are easy to repair. This makes them long-lasting, making their lifespan longer than nylon or polyester tents.

Now that you have learned the benefits of using canvas tents in NZ, let’s delve into the things you should look for while buying one.

Tips on Buying Canvas Tents

  • Canvas Weight: Canvas tents come in a multitude range of weights and thicknesses. However, always ensure to pick a heavier model because the more the weight of the canvas, the sturdier and better insulating it will be. Also, a heavy canvas tent comes with more resistance to tearing. If you are looking to buy a canvas tent that can last longer, consider choosing one that is heavier than 10.1oz.
  • Hardware Quality: Besides weight and tearing resistance, you should also look for the hardware quality incorporated in the canvas tent you would like to buy. It’s essential to look at the poles, structure, and shelter form your canvas tent is supplied with. For instance, if you are looking to buy a canvas tent for winter camping, ensure to pick one with the thickest possible center pole. This will keep your tent up in the snow for a much longer period of time.
  • Stability: Canvas tents are incredibly sturdy shelters, provided the guy lines are properly staked into the ground, and the tent is built with quality hardware. So, always ensure to secure the canvas around the tent’s poles and guy lines. You may easily expose your canvas tent to heavy snowfall if you are sure that your tent has strong poles to support the snow load.
  • Floor Option: Always ensure to buy a canvas tent incorporating a solid floor. That’s mainly because solid floors act as a protector, keeping away critters, moisture, and cold from entering the tent. Also, ensure that your tent floor is rip-resistant and waterproof so that you are guarded against rushing or standing water that the tent may be exposed to. 

Final Words

Hopefully, this blog helped you learn what a canvas exactly is, the benefits of using canvas one, and the things to look for while buying canvas tents in NZ. Just ensure to pick one that is built with quality hardware, strong poles, a solid floor, and a thick center pole.