The perfect tenting sleeping pad


Which camping mats are the best?

Camping sleeping pads are great for both the occasional camping trip and backcountry hikes because they are lightweight, portable, and comfortable. In combination with a good sleeping bag, sleeping pads offer you maximum comfort for your stay in the great outdoors.

Our top pick, the Therm-a-Rest sleeping pad has a lightweight design and many features that make it a great option for backpackers heading into the wilderness.

What you should know before buying a camping mat

Types of Camping Sleeping Pads

There are three main types of camping pads, each with their own advantages and disadvantages. In essence, all sleeping pads are a type of pillow intended to be used with or without a sleeping bag on the floor. If you’re interested in comparing multiple models, check out our full BestReviews sleeping pad buyer’s guide.

Air cushions are the most common type of sleeping pad because they are light enough to take with you on hikes. You have to inflate an air cushion manually or with a pump. Air pads usually need to be inflated with either your breath or a pump. An air cushion may be too delicate to hold air in some weather conditions.

Self-inflating mattresses and partially self-inflating mattresses also rely on air to create a firm sleeping surface, but they are often more comfortable and durable than air mattresses thanks to their added insulation. Self-inflating pads are also slightly heavier than air pads.

Open-cell foam pads are the most durable camping pads, although they may not be the most comfortable. Great for their versatility, these pads roll up like a yoga mat for added portability.

Year-round use

Most camping sleeping pads are excellent for all four season use, but some sleeping pads are better suited for warmer temperatures. The purpose of a sleeping pad is not only to give you a comfortable place to sleep, but also to keep you warm in colder temperatures. Look for sleeping pads with good insulation and a high R-value if you intend to go camping in the winter.


All camping pads are designed for portability, so they are all on the small side. Some sleeping mats come in different sizes. Other sleeping pads, like the Nemo Roamer sleeping pad, are marketed as XL or wide. If size is a concern, go for a larger sleeping pad.

What you should look for in a high-quality camping mat


A quality sleeping pad is insulated well enough to keep you warm while you sleep under the stars. Normally, the insulation of a sleeping pad can be judged by its R-value. The higher the R value, the more the pad retains your body heat.

Storage and Portability

The key to a good sleeping pad is being able to take it with you on hikes and being easy to store. You can roll up most pads and strap them to your backpack. Be careful you are given a sleeping pad that comes with straps or some sort of mechanism to keep it safe.


Most sleeping pads are about 2 inches thick. This is sufficient for a good night’s sleep, but you may want a thinner or thicker pad depending on your needs.

How much you can spend on a camping sleeping pad

Camping pads range from $10 to $400.

Camping sleeping pad FAQ

Is a low R-value sleeping pad okay for summer weather?

A Generally yes. If you’re camping somewhere warm, you don’t need a pad designed for warmth. R values ​​of 1-4 are great for the summer months.

Which camping mattress is suitable for hiking?

A Consider pads that are durable, lightweight, and hassle-free for hiking. Open cell foam pads are a good choice.

What is the best camping sleeping pad to buy?

Top camping mattress

Therm-a-Rest sleeping pad

What you need to know: A great option for hikers looking for a good night’s sleep. Optimized for comfort, this pad boasts a versatile R-value of 4.2.

What you will love: The Therm-a-Rest is easy to inflate and comes with a carry bag for added portability. It comes in three sizes.

What you should consider: This pad is great for all types of weather, but the low R-value means it’s not suitable for use in extreme cold.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Top camping mattress for the money

SEMOO self-inflating sleeping mat

What you need to know: This budget-friendly sleeping pad is a reliable choice for campers who don’t want to sacrifice comfort or break the bank.

What you will love: This self-inflating pad is very convenient and works great. Its waterproof shell sets it apart from the competition.

What you should consider: This pad has some issues holding air. You must be extra careful not to puncture it while it is inflated.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

It’s worth trying

Teton Sports Foam sleeping mat with canvas shell

Teton Sports Foam sleeping mat with canvas shell

What you need to know: This Teton Sports open cell foam pad is comfortable and available in three sizes.

What you will love: The canvas shell is easy to clean. The pad has built-in features to ensure portability, such as: B. Carrying straps and accessory bag.

What you should consider: Open-cell foam pads have a reputation for being a bit stiff and difficult to transport, but this pad makes up for that to the best of its ability.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

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Addison Hoggard writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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