When we were looking to jack up the quality of our RV experience, putting a pop top on your vehicle seemed to be a great idea. A pop top for camper is an attachable tent that we often mount on the roof of our RV car or rig for extra space and plenty of headroom. The tent also served as an extra elevated bed for us! Therefore, with a pop top, we are sure to enjoy a good night’s sleep in the cozy upper bedroom of our motorhome – and so can you. But, of course, choosing the right fit for your RV is not always easy.
What makes it a challenge is the legwork that goes into choosing a great product. Because for the best decision, there are a bunch of key factors to consider, including the tent size, type, quality, durability, and price. But the good news is that we’ve done all the necessary research work already. So, below, you’re going to find 13 of these best products with a detailed analysis of the features and functioning of each of them. Now, without further ado, let’s check out the ultimate roundup and pick the best option for you.
Table of contents
- Trustmade Hard Shell Rooftop
- Campoint Hard Shell
- AUTOFIELD Rooftop Tent
- Thule Tepui Explorer Ayer 2
- Smittybilt Overlander Tent
- Waterproof Aluminium Triangle
- Cotton Pop-Top Tent
- OVS TMBK 3 Roof Top Tent
- Guide Gear Truck Bed Tent
- Overland Vehicle Systems Nomadic
- Body Armor 20010 4×4
- Raptor Series 100000-126800
- Thule Basin Rooftop Tent
- Our Verdict!
- How to Choose the Best Pop Top for Camper Van
- Can you sleep in a pop-top camper?
- How long do pop tops last?
- Are pop tops waterproof?
Trustmade Hard Shell Rooftop
We experience a different kind of freedom as RV enthusiasts with the modern-style Trustmade Hard Shell Rooftop. This camper top is an incredibly convenient tent that we could effortlessly mount on the roof of our RV car within a couple of minutes. Further, we love the fact that the structure is made of top-quality honeycomb aluminum. It guaranteed extra durability and strength against winds and bumps as we drove down the country road. Also, the pop top is a uniquely compact design that fits three people.
However, it isn’t bulky on the outside and will fit any recreational vehicle with a proper roof rack. Another big feature to mention is that a built-in mattress inside the tent is equipped with anti-moisture, comfy pads so that you can relax and catch up on some sleep without trouble. The pop top is also outright resistant to weather.
Do check out the official website for more choices.
- It’s highly durable and long-lasting.
- The protective net cover will keep out creepy critters.
- You’ll have no breathability issues inside this tent.
- It may not fit people over 6 feet tall.
Campoint Hard Shell
Best Value for Money. The Campoint Hard Shell has proved a worthy buy for us when it comes to affordability plus performance. This easy-to-use pop top makes for a pretty reliable and sturdy living space on the roof of our car. The tent is made of top-quality Oxford fabric that is highly resistant to water and the scorching sun, keeping us safe in all kinds of weather. Talking of its construction, the framework is pure metal: stainless aluminum steel that will last years. Moreover, to our amazement, this pop top for camper vans fits two to three persons, while the maximum load it can accept is somewhere around 700 pounds. Not bad, right?
Apart from that, you’ll love that there’ll be no mosquitoes and flies sneaking in. How come? Well, the insect-proof net gave us 24-hour security against all such biting creatures. That’s not all; the pop top comes with a handy telescopic steel ladder for the utmost ease of use!
- It contains an ABS hard shell for the best protection.
- There’s a built-in shoe bag inside the tent.
- You get the necessary installation accessories.
- The instruction manual may lack crucial deets.
AUTOFIELD Rooftop Tent
The AUTOFIELD Rooftop Tent is an all-weather pop-top tent for camper cars! The tent is made of high-class, premium-quality aluminum that is designed to stand the test of time and serve your needs. Moreover, we found that this tent shell has enough space and is good to fit three people at the same time. Apart from that, the excellent, sturdy structure enables the tent to carry a huge load of over 600 pounds without a hitch. Plus, the frame is covered with a waterproof, sunproof, and wind-resistant fabric, helping us be extremely comfortable. A comfy foam mattress inside the tent allowed us to relax and unwind and have a home-like experience in this added rooftop bedroom. Not only that, but we also got a strong ladder along with it – to climb up and down the car – as well as two detachable pockets!
- We found the installation simple and easy.
- The pop-top tent has a UV resistance of over 90%.
- The product provides great value for the buck!
- This is not the best option for large RVs.
Thule Tepui Explorer Ayer 2
The Thule Tepui Explorer Ayer 2 turned out a perfect fit for us since we wanted a compact, two-person, modernist pop top. The rooftop tent offers several superlative features, making it one of the best we’ve ever used. Take the super sturdy and durable construction, for example. Made of heavy-duty aluminum metal, the tent could resist the harshness of weather and roadway elements that most low-quality counterparts couldn’t withstand. So, we were able to safely camp anywhere without worrying about the weather.
Furthermore, this camper van pop top is good for all four seasons and can withstand the sun’s heat as confidently as against heavy country winds. Not only that but there’s a strong fabric cover all over the tent that made it safe from any pests that could be planning on intruding into our private space. In a nutshell, this pop top was a great match for our motorhome.
On a side note, to further enhance your RV experience, check out the best roof coatings for campers.
- The fabric is a top-quality polyester and cotton blend.
- There are mesh panels for full ventilation.
- The assembly has four large internal pockets.
- Some users found the mattress not so comfortable.
Smittybilt Overlander Tent
Best Quality. Since we’re after nothing but quality – after all, quality is all that matters to us – we tried the Smittybilt Overlander Tent. The amazing camper tent top comes with so many interesting qualities that it enhances our RV experience. To begin with, this rooftop tent comes from the far and wide trusted brand Smittybilt. They have been around for over 50 years now, so we were very assured of the level of sophistication, class, and utility they weave into their products.
Talking of quality, the pop top features a heavy-duty top made of waterproof, anti-UV, and wind-resistant fabric. The overall construction is anodized aluminum which provides the tent with extra robustness in times of menacing winds. Moreover, the tent was easy to set up, and it took us only a couple of minutes before it was in place and ready to use. You will also love the color theme, which is a stylish shade of tan!
- The tent has side windows for air passage.
- There’s a protective netting to shield against mosquitos.
- It comes with a telescopic ladder for easy access.
- You might find it a bit overpriced.
Waterproof Aluminium Triangle
For most camper lifers wanting durability and convenience simultaneously, the most obvious choice will be the Waterproof Aluminium Triangle – it was for us, at least. The pop-top tent comes in aluminum alloy construction that is strong and lasting. The overall covering over the framework is waterproof, high UV-resistant fabric for maximum safety from the weather. Apart from that, we really like that the tent contains a non-deforming and high-quality memory foam mattress. It ensured us a very comfortable and peaceful sleep. Also, you’ll find the tent pretty lightweight and easy to install – it’ll literally took us seconds to mount the thing. There’s more – the assembly comes with an easy-to-use sturdy ladder so that you can go up and down the pop-top room without trouble. Awesome, isn’t it?
- The tent has the extra ability to withstand winds.
- The fabric is comfortable and breathable.
- You can expect the tent to bear as much as 300 kg.
- It’s best for one-person use only.
Cotton Pop-Top Tent
If you own a Vanagon campervan like us, there’s no rooftop tent better for you than the Cotton Pop-Top Tent. It made for a highly sustainable and safe pop-top solution for our Vanagon van too. The tent is made of top-quality cotton fabric with a strong water-resistant and UV-protection coating. Since it’s 100% cotton, we were assured that the tent would not adversely affect your health. Plus, the interior is rendered fresh and breathable. Apart from that, this tent has a wide open front screen that you can remove when unnecessary.
Moving on, the tent features three windows on each side that offered us amazing outside views while we were spending quality time on the roof of our camper. These windows have privacy panels or flaps in case you want to maintain privacy or when you need a “do-not-disturb” sleep option. So, it’s a nice, sturdy, and cozy pop top with some of the finest features to enhance your RV life.
- You will find the product quite affordable.
- There are quality zippers and velcro for fastening.
- The tent has a mesh screen for ventilation.
- It’s only suited to the early 80s Vanagon campers.
OVS TMBK 3 Roof Top Tent
We wanted a pop-top tent that would last us a lifetime, so we checked out the OVS TMBK 3 Roof Top Tent. This pop top is made of a bunch of high-quality materials that warrant longevity and unmatched strength. For example, the body cover is made of waterproof, rip-proof polyester, whereas the rain fly that shielded our unit from heavy rains is pure Oxford fabric. The entire one-piece frame is strong and sturdy stainless steel that can withstand winds and other climatic elements. At the same time, the heavy-duty metal doesn’t add to the weight, so it was easy for us to carry too.
In fact, we realized that this futuristic tent is quite lightweight, and carrying it on long drives wasn’t a problem whatsoever. Further, the tent comes with a handy, adjustable telescopic ladder and a foam mattress that allows you to relax or sleep inside comfortably.
- The tent will accommodate three people easily.
- It will stand all four seasons without trouble.
- The installation is easy-peasy.
- See the original listing from Overland Vehicle Systems for more info!
- Some customers find it a bit pricey.
Guide Gear Truck Bed Tent
Most lightweight. As RVers hauling a heavy-duty off-roading truck, we couldn’t find a better pop-top tent choice than the Guide Gear Truck Bed Tent. We recommend this tent unit primarily because we found it long-lasting and with natural built-in strength to resist the elements of all seasons. Basically, the structure is made of top-rated aluminum metal, whereas the polyester and Oxford blend cover further adds to the sturdiness.
Having said that, the tent is amazingly lightweight and easy to carry. Apart from that, it’s designed to provide convenience and ease of use, is pretty easy to install, and fits most truck beds within a couple of minutes. Also, the assembly comes with special protection with the all-weather rain fly that protects the tent from the sun as well as heavy rains. With enough space, comfort, and style, this pop top was the perfect addition to our camper van with a bed and will also be perfect for a 4×4 truck.
- It features a wide front door for easy access.
- You can strap down the tent using tie-down fasteners.
- There are side windows for cross-ventilation.
- The fitting might be a little wonky.
Overland Vehicle Systems Nomadic
The Overland Vehicle Systems Nomadic is a decent, comfortable pop top for campervans. It suits us as we prefer a cotton and polyester canvas tent for extra breathability and a sustainable interior atmosphere. Besides, the rainfly is a robust mix of 420D polyester and Oxford, which keeps our rooftop room safe from the rain at all times. Another amazing feature is the super comfy, high-density foam mattress that comes with the tent. This mattress makes a cozy bed, and being a spacious tent, up to three people can use the mattress to catch up on some sleep. Furthermore, the sturdy poles supporting this pop top are stainless marine-grade steel that promises to stand tall in the toughest weather conditions. What’s more, we even got a tubular, telescoping ladder with the package that allows easy movement up and down the camper van.
Feel free to catch up on the detailed review by Gear Patrol.
- We love the mesh windows letting in plenty of fresh air.
- There’s a wide skylight for blissful sky views.
- It’s great value for the buck!
- The tent may not be the right fit for your RV.
Body Armor 20010 4×4
We believe that the Body Armor 20010 4×4 is the perfect pop-top campervan tent for two people and will go on for many years. So, getting straight down to the features, this tent is made of heavy-duty polyester and cotton canvas specially engineered for waterproofing against long rainstorms. The cover also contains a sturdy UV-resistant coating for protection from direct sunlight. Plus, there’s a pretty solid assembly cover made of PVC-coated tarpaulin that acted as a shield when we were on the move and guarded our rooftop home against the elements.
Wait, there’s more – the tent features three large windows for ventilation and, of course, for all those breathtaking countryside views. Also, we appreciate the thoughtful design that contains mesh netting to keep out mosquitoes and other infectious pests.
Check out the expert overview of the Body Armor 20010 4×4 by KnightWheels on YouTube.
- It’s a great rooftop tent for the price.
- The pop top is good for every weather situation.
- The tent is easy to install and simple to use.
- It may be a bit small compared to other options.
Raptor Series 100000-126800
Best Durability. For a smug and home-like pop-top tent for two, do not pass over the Raptor Series 100000-126800! The tent is built to last a lifetime and comes with inherent resilience for all kinds of tough weather conditions. It’s made of a strong poly-cotton mix that bestows the unit with ultimate breathability as well as sustainability. Aside from that, we loved the mattress that comes along with the tent. It is made for a perfectly snug bed for two people and can bear a maximum load of 750 pounds. Great, isn’t it?
We had a remarkable experience using the Raptor Series pop top model. It ticks all the right boxes for a camper pop top – a simple DIY setup, durability, excellent weight capacity!WOW Travel
Further, we found the installation to be a piece of cake since it took no expert drilling and hammering – just simple DIY skills! And, what’s more, the tent has a special, user-friendly mosquito netting to keep the biting thing away while allowing fresh air to enter the rooftop room. So, in a nutshell, yes, it’s a fitting option.
- The pop-top tent is rainproof plus windproof.
- It comes with an eight feet telescoping aluminum ladder.
- You get two shoe hanging and storage pockets.
- It’s simply a great tent for the price
- The design might not be a match for your vehicle.
Thule Basin Rooftop Tent
Best Overall. We love the undeniably stylish and revolutionary look of the Thule Basin Rooftop Tent! The pop top is made of heavy-duty aluminum framing that ensures long-term durability and resilience. Plus, the canvas is polyester and cotton blend for top-level livability. There’s an ABS shell that provides shelter from the cascading elements as well as insulated the tent from the weather. (Regarding insulation, we use the best rubber roofs for campers for the best results.)
So, moving on, the tent features a fine, comfortable foam mattress that is engineered to ensure a refreshing, deep slumber for the sleeper. Not only that, the assembly is no sweat to set up. We just needed basic DIY skills to put this thing up on the camper van roof, and it only took a few minutes. And a pretty modernistic feature that we can’t let go of is the versatile design of this unit allows it to be used as a tent as well as a cargo carrier. That’s what makes it our top choice for a campervan pop top! What do you think?
- You will get a collapsable ladder setup for easy access.
- It’s spacious and airy inside the tent.
- The tent has large windows presenting wide views.
- The tent may be small for a standard-size truck.
Of course, owing to the outstanding qualities of the Thule Basin Rooftop Tent, we’ve chosen it as our Best Overall pop-top option! However, you simply might not agree with us – and for any number of reasons. That’s totally understandable, considering that every RVer has different preferences. So, to provide you with some more best choices, we’ve created a couple of other “best” categories below based on specific features. Take a look!
- Best value for money: Campoint Hard Shell
- Best quality: Smittybilt Overlander Tent
- Best durability: Raptor Series 100000-126800
- Most lightweight: Guide Gear Truck Bed Tent
How to Choose the Best Pop Top for Camper Van
Choosing the best pop-top tent for your campervan is not an easy job, as said earlier. You will need to bear several factors in mind depending on your preferences when making the decision. However, there are three universal factors that must be considered at all times, no matter what type of pop top you’re after. So, what are they?
Before we finalized a campervan pop-top tent, we needed to be sure that the size we ordered fit our vehicle roof right. For that, we measured our camper roof’s dimensions and got an expert to confirm the perfect size for us. That was a lot of help.
Of course, we wanted the rooftop tent to last many years. After all, it’s an expensive investment. But the thing is that not all options on the market survive the test of time. So, to get the best thing, we went over expert guides and roundups to choose the option that will resist the elements, be strong, withstand sunlight, and ultimately last a good many years.
Finally, we looked for comfort. We didn’t want to spend money on some low-quality, comfort-less rooftop tent. Therefore, we reviewed customer reviews and saw what the users said about the tent’s comfort. Does it fit the said number of people? Is the mattress good quality? And so on.
Can you sleep in a pop-top camper?
Yes, you can. A standard pop-top tent will usually accommodate two persons and a child for sleep. But you need to look at the specs in advance to be sure.
How long do pop tops last?
In normal circumstances, you can expect the pop top to continue serving for at least five years. After that period, repair needs may come up.
Are pop tops waterproof?
Yes, most pop tops for camper vans are made to resist not just rainwater but all the elements that pose a threat to your comfort level, like wind, dust, sunlight, etc.