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We've all been there before: you're getting ready for your upcoming camping trip and packing the car with all your camping gear — but once you get to your campsite, you realize there's no tables around (or the tables are soggy and rotted). Gone are your grand cooking plans and your game night. A good quality camping table is one of those small details that can often go overlooked but makes a huge difference once you have it. Whether you use it as a cooking table, a dining table, or just as a side table to set your items on, we think you'll be pretty happy you got yourself this essential piece of camping gear. Best of all, most of the time they're incredibly affordable, easy to store, lightweight, and will last you for years.
A folding camp table can make the whole campsite feel more comfortable and easy to manage. You won't have to set your plates and cups on nearby rocks or logs, and you'll actually have a sturdy place to set your cookware and other items. These camping tables are all super-useful pieces of equipment you'll always take with you when you go out into the wilderness — whether you're a small group, a large family, or a solo backpacker. Check out our favorites below:
1. The Most Versatile Camping Table
Coleman is the reigning king of camping supplies, probably because they make gear that is as heavy-duty as it is portable and affordable. I personally have this table and I swear by it. It's made of ultralight aluminum with a steel frame and fits easily into the included carrying bag — as a foldable and durable option that sits around four people, this is a simple and versatile pick that can be used for everything from your picnic grill to a card game or a dinner for four.
2. Best Lightweight Option for Backpacking
If you're looking for a good table for backpacking, this ultralight Helinox portable table is a great option. It weighs just ovef two pounds and has a weight capacity of 110 pounds. This is durable table meant to be packable and the top is resistant to UV rays, water, and bad weather. It's easy to set up and put away, too. Try out this option if you're low on space or traveling by yourself.
3. Best Large Camping Table for Groups
4. An Option With Built-In Cup Holders
This is the perfect tailgating or camping table that's made for game nights or a few drinks with friends. It has four cup holders on the bottom, and the flat surface on top can hold everything from a hearty meal to a board game. One five-star reviewer writes: "Love the cup holders underneath that keep beverages out of the sun and leaves the top free for snacks, etc. Sturdy and durable. You basically just open it up and tighten the straps. Nothing to even assemble!!"
5. The Best Table for Inside A Tent
This folding table is a round option with a bamboo top that can be set up around your tent pole, making it a good option for indoor use if you have a particularly large tent. It has sturdy aluminum legs, and you can adjust the knobs on the feet to ensure a sturdy, level surface wherever you put it. It comes with a carrying case, the bamboo makes it a lighter choice — but it's still a stain-resistant, durable table.
6. The All-In-One Option
If you want a dining table where everyone can gather for a meal, this Coleman Pack-Away foldable table the perfect choice. This picnic-style table comes with the benches, so if you don't have camping chairs already, this is a great choice for your campground. The table only weighs two pounds, and folds up with an easy to carry handle.
7. A Prep Table for Camp Chefs
Calling all camp cooks, this camping table functions as a chef's station, and is a dream come true for anyone who doesn't want to sacrifice good cooking when they're out camping. It's durable, supports 300 pounds, and has a rack at the bottom, four fold-out shelves, and a sturdy main surface. This sturdy option will give you peace of mind — it's no match for grills, cast iron pans, skillets, and other heavy kitchen items.
This article was first published in May 2021, and has been updated by Alida Nugent.