The Best Camping Mattresses For Comfy Adventures In 2022

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Have you ever spent a night in the woods tossing and turning because you just can’t get comfortable? Or even worse, trying to sleep with your back on a rock or with a stick jutting into your side because your camping mattress deflated in the middle of the night? How well you sleep directly impacts the next day, especially if you’re going to be active.

The quality of your camping mattress can make or break your camping experience. Choose wrong and you’ll end up uncomfortable and wishing you were at home. But choose a comfortable camping mattress and you’ll be bright-eyed and bushy-tailed, ready to head out to hike, fish, hunt, climb, or whatever the day brings.

Our list of the best camping mattresses takes into account comfort, packability, and durability. If you spend time sleeping in the great outdoors, you need to check out this list before your next camping trip.

The Best Camping Mattresses

Great value sleeping pad: Stoic Double Cloud Camp Bed

stoic double cloud camp bed

  • Cozy double sleeping pad
  • TPU-treated fabric for water-resistance
  • Foam padding
  • Separate inflate and deflate valves
  • Stuff sack included


  • Extremely comfortable
  • Great for two people
  • Great value for money


  • Is still large when packed away

The Stoic Double Cloud Camp Bed surprised our tester. She was expecting a cozy bed but this budget-friendly camping mattress feels like a cloud, or what we assume a cloud feels like. She tested this model both in a tent and in her camper van. After sleeping on it with her partner, he declared it should never leave the van and should be the bed for the van, always. Neither our tester nor her partner felt too many movements during the night and remained warm in temperatures ranging from 15 to 75 degrees.

The Stoic Cloud Camp Bed comes in a double size with ample room for two. The separate inflate and deflate valves and compression sack make it easy to inflate and store. It’s quite durable and has resisted humidity and spills during its several-month testing period. We love the soft exterior and TPU-treated fabric that offers great water resistance.

See the Stoic Double Cloud Camp Bed on Amazon

See the Stoic Double Cloud Camp Bed on Backcountry

See the Stoic Double Cloud Camp Bed on Steep And Cheap

Best memory foam camping mattress: Klymit Klymaloft Sleeping Pad

klymit klymaloft sleeping pad

  • Half memory foam, half air mattress
  • Stretchy softcover
  • USB-rechargeable air pump included
  • Available in several sizes


  • Very comfortable for side sleepers
  • No noise when turning in your sleep
  • Fantastic quality at a reasonable price


  • Not the lightest sleeping pad for backpacking

This has got to be the softest, most comfortable sleeping pad I have ever used. Similar to the Exped Megamat, it uses a combination of foam padding and air to create a pillowy camping mattress that feels just about as good as a standard memory foam mattress. The soft stretchy topper material on the foam-covered section feels so much better than most camping mattresses, which tend to have an abrasive plastic or velour material.

The memory foam pad and I-beam air chambers support your hips and shoulders, allowing for better side sleeping. However, the foam topper only goes until your hips end and then becomes an air bed. On the plus side, having less foam makes it easier to pack down. While this is not exactly a lightweight backpacking pad, it still packs down small enough to make it suitable as a backpacking sleeping pad — as long as you’re not going too far. But this camping pad excels for car camping adventures.

Inflate with your mouth, or use the included mini electric pump. This sleeping pad comes in regular, extra large, and double sizes.

See the Klymit Klymaloft Sleeping Pad on Amazon

See the Klymit Klymaloft Sleeping Pad on Klymit

See the Klymit Klymaloft Sleeping Pad on Walmart

Best backpacking sleeping pad: Big Agnes Insulated Air Core Ultra

big agnes insulated air core ultra

  • R-value 4.5
  • Thermolite insulation
  • Stable I-Beam construction
  • 3.5in thick when inflated
  • 4in x 8.5in packed size


  • Great warranty
  • Comfortable and stable
  • Ideal for three seasons, but can also be used in winter


  • Not the most durable mattress out there
  • Makes noise when you move

I’ve used this sleeping pad for backpacking and car camping for years. It’s an inflatable air mattress that includes Thermolite insulation to give it an R-value of 4.5. That makes it suitable for three seasons, although I’ve used it on snow, and been perfectly comfortable when coupled with warm sleeping bags. It packs down to about the size of a Nalgene water bottle, which is plenty small for my needs on backpacking trips. Plus, it’s not as expensive as other air mattresses on the market.

This inflatable mattress includes two separate valves for inflating and deflating. You can use your mouth, but it also comes with an inflation sack that attaches to the valve. I will admit that this sleeping pad is not the most durable. I’ve had multiple leaks in mine over the years, but the reason I recommend it is for the impeccable warranty. Big Agnes stands behind their products and has fixed or replaced my pad whenever something has gone wrong (I believe two times in five years). It’s a great deal for the price. If it gets an obvious tear, you can patch it with the included repair kit.

See the Big Agnes Insulated Air Core Ultra on Amazon

See the Big Agnes Insulated Air Core Ultra on REI

See the Big Agnes Insulated Air Core Ultra on Backcountry

Best queen-sized camping mattress: SoundAsleep Camping Series Air Mattress

soundasleep camping series air mattress

  • ComfortCoil technology
  • 9in thick when inflated
  • Inflates to full size in three minutes
  • Multilayer puncture-resistant material


  • External pump
  • Carry bag included
  • Extra thick and durable weatherproof flocked top


  • Takes a long time to deflate

The SoundAsleep Camping Series Air Mattress is our favorite car camping mattress. It uses ComfortCoil technology to maintain firmness throughout the night. The multi-layer material is durable, waterproof, and puncture-resistant to ensure years of use. We also like the fact that it comes in both a twin and queen size.

Inflate the pad by using the included external pump which can be charged either at home or in the car. It takes about three minutes to fully inflate this air bed and it can be topped off easily when need be. It’s designed to hold up to 500lbs, so it can easily support two average-sized adults. Many reviewers say that this mattress has lasted for years — no more deflating mattress issues!

See the SoundAsleep Camping Series Air Mattress on Amazon

See the SoundAsleep Camping Series Air Mattress on Walmart

Best twin-sized camping mattress: Etekcity Twin Size Camping Mattress

etekcity twin size camping mattress

  • Built-in supportive layers of material and comfy flocked top
  • Anti-skid base keeps the mattress in place
  • 9in high
  • Portable pump


  • Adjust it to be firmer or softer as needed
  • Air pump with various nozzles included
  • Use it camping, or at home for guests


  • Difficult to clean
  • Prone to losing a bit of air during the night

This twin-sized camping bed is an excellent option that costs a little less than other options on this list while still providing some great features. The Etekcity Twin Queen Size Camping Mattress offers built-in support layers that work alongside the comfy flocked top for a great night’s sleep.

The anti-skid base prevents your bed from shifting during the night. Plus, the seamless welding keeps any air from filtering through the cracks so you can sleep all night without it deflating. It’s super easy to set up with a cordless electric pump that you can charge either at home or in the car while you drive to the campsite. And the air pump comes with multiple nozzles that can be used with other camping mattresses. For an even better experience, combine this camping mat with one of the best camping pillows from our list.

See the Etekcity Twin Size Camping Mattress on Amazon

See the Etekcity Twin Size Camping Mattress on Wayfair

Premium camping mattress: Exped Megamat 10 Insulated Self-Inflating Sleeping Pad

exped megamat 10 insulated self-inflating sleeping pad

  • R-value of 8.1
  • Self-inflating with easy Mini Pump firmness adjustment
  • Designed for four-season comfort
  • 3.9in of loft
  • Carry sack included


  • Nearly 4in of insulated loft
  • Exceptionally comfortable for all sleep styles
  • Versatile, suitable for four-season use


  • Slightly long initial inflation time on first use
  • Expensive

If you’re looking for the best of the best camping mattresses, look no further than our premium pick, the incredibly comfortable Exped Megamat 10 Insulated Self-Inflating Sleeping Pad. This self-inflating mattress combines memory foam padding with air to create one of the most comfortable car camping mattresses out there. Unlike air beds, you’ll never feel like you might just pop it at any moment, and a deflating mattress will never be an issue. Unlike a full foam mattress, you can sleep on your side without feeling your hips or shoulders touch the ground.

To inflate, open the intake valve and insert a little bar to keep the valve open. It takes about seven to ten minutes to fully inflate, and then you can adjust the firmness with the included air pump. The stretch top fabric is soft and comfortable, with no crinkly sounds if you move around while you sleep. The manufacturer claims that this camping pad is suitable for winter camping down to -54°F, but take that with a grain of salt. Testers have found that below about -25˚F, the plastic inflation valve becomes extremely rigid and almost impossible to remove/re-engage. It’s not just Exped: All these large-valve mats have that issue at extreme temperatures.

There is a Roll-top SideWinder stuff sack for portability. It works perfectly in tents, in the back of your car, or on your living room floor, providing comfortable sleeping arrangements wherever you are.

See the Exped Megamat 10 Insulated Self-Inflating Sleeping Pad on Amazon

See the Exped Megamat 10 Insulated Self-Inflating Sleeping Pad on REI

Best budget camping mattress: Intex Classic Downy Airbed

intex classic downy airbed

  • Full-size mattress with 20.8 gauge waterproof flocked top
  • A comfortable and stable surface prevents slipping
  • Two-in-one valve with extra-wide openings
  • Unique wave beam construction


  • Comfy
  • Affordable
  • Flocked mattress top


  • Pump not included

The Intex Classic Downy Airbed is an excellent budget solution for casual campers. It’s much cheaper than other options on this list, which may come with long-term durability issues, but it’s a great option just to get the job done quickly. The Airbed is full-size and offers a 20.8 gauge waterproof flocked top that is comfortable and keeps bedding from slipping around during the night.

It’s a full-size mattress that works just as well in a tent as in your guest bedroom. However, ensure you have the lung capacity to blow it up, as the pump doesn’t come as part of the package. Despite this, the two-in-one valve inflation and deflation system makes it easy enough to find a pump to do the hard work for you. And it is a perfect fit for your large camping tent.

See the Intex Classic Downy Airbed on Amazon

See the Intex Classic Downy Airbed on Walmart

Best self-inflating mattress: Therm-a-Rest LuxuryMap Self-Inflating Foam Sleeping Pad

therm-a-rest luxurymap self-inflating foam sleeping pad

  • R-value of six
  • Foam and air sleeping pad
  • Supportive pressure mapping
  • TwinLock valve for fast inflation
  • 3in high
  • Stuff sack included


  • Very cushiony and comfortable
  • Easy to inflate
  • Warm


  • Not great for backpacking
  • Narrow

This easy-to-inflate mattress is ready for cold nights in the truck bed or camping cot. With an R-value of six (the higher the number, the warmer the sleeping pad), this pad is one of the warmest on our list. It’s another foam and air bed that uses pressure mapping technology to provide more support where you need it. Three inches of height give you plenty of comfort when combined with the high-density foam.

Therm-a-Rest uses TwinLock valves to inflate or deflate these self-inflating pads. Just open the inflate valve and the pad will inflate itself. Then adjust the comfort and blow air into the pad or let some out with the deflate valve to adjust. This camping mattress includes a stuff sack for easy packability and comes in three sizes: regular, large, and extra large. Some reviewers say that the regular size feels narrow and it’s better to size up to large or extra large if you sleep on your side or stomach.

See the Therm-a-Rest LuxuryMap Self-Inflating Foam Sleeping Pad on Amazon

See the Therm-a-Rest LuxuryMap Self-Inflating Foam Sleeping Pad on Backcountry

Best sleeping pad for couples: Exped MegaMat Duo 10 Sleeping Pad

exped megamat duo 10 sleeping pad

  • R-value of 8.1
  • Fits in a double tent or back of many vehicles
  • Mini pump, carry bag, and repair kit included
  • 3.9in thick
  • Self-inflating


  • Exceptionally comfortable
  • Plenty of space for two
  • Warm for year-round camping


  • Expensive

If you love the Exped MegaMat but want something that both you and your partner can sleep on during car camping trips, the Exped MegaMat Duo is your best choice. It’s got all the technical features of the Exped MegaMat, but it’s bigger. It’s designed to pretty much completely fill a two-person tent, meaning there’s no way you can roll off the sleeping pad in the middle of the night. This camping mattress is almost four inches thick, so even if they sleep on their stomach and you sleep on your side, everyone is comfortable. The R-value is 8.1 making it great for year-round camping, even on snow!

This is a self-inflating mattress with two valves, one for inflating and one for deflating. It also includes a mini pump for that extra bit of top-off air. The deflation valve lets air out quickly, making pack-up that much faster. It also includes a Smart Pack Sack that doubles as a carry bag on the go or for storage. Plus, this camping mattress fits perfectly in the back of many vehicles for car campers.

See the Exped MegaMat Duo 10 Sleeping Pad on REI

See the Exped MegaMat Duo 10 Sleeping Pad on Backcountry

Why trust us

As someone who has spent years of her life camping upwards of half of the year, I know a few things about comfortable camping mattresses. I’ve slept on backpacking mattresses, air mattresses, memory foam mattresses, and more. Plus, I don’t sleep well when I’m uncomfortable — I’m not one of those people who can fall asleep standing up. I really need my camping pads to be perfect, a firm sleeping surface that has enough soft support that I can sleep on my side, back, or stomach (yes, I tend to move around). It needs to be the right material so I can use my sleeping bag as the only blanket if it’s warm out.

I’m well-versed in the best camping mattress and pad options on the market and spend much of my time writing and researching outdoor gear.

Who this is for

If you are looking for gear for your next camping trip, you’ve come to the right place. We’ve compiled this list of the best camping mattresses so that you can get as good of a night’s sleep in the woods as you do at home. It’s the worst to wake up from tossing and turning all night and have to spend all day outside and be uncomfortable.

How we picked

I’ve spent a lot of time in the outdoor industry, as a guide, outdoor educator, and now writer. So I’m pretty up to date on the best sleeping mats for camping on the market. We picked this list of camping mattresses by researching and compiling all of the highly rated camping mats and then using personal experience and testing.

How we tested

We tested these sleeping pads and mattresses everywhere from the back of a van to the backcountry. While guiding in Alaska, , we’ve spent months sleeping on some of these sleeping pads. Others we’ve tested in the mountains of Washington, California, Colorado, and the Utah desert. We’ve tested pads on snow and on rock. We’ve put them through the wringer and all sorts of weather and temperature conditions.

Features to look for in camping mattresses


Do you want a mattress just for you, or will you be sharing it with a partner? Camping mattresses come in all sorts of sizes and shapes so make sure to pick one that will fit your needs. You’ll also want to consider how small you can pack the mattress down so it fits comfortably in your bag, especially if you’re looking for a backpacking pad. Before taking it on your trip, it’s a good idea to inflate it and test it out to make sure it’s the right size.

Inflation and deflation

How does your camping mattress inflate and deflate? Does it have one valve or two valves? One valve sometimes makes it hard to inflate because it might be letting air out at the same time, while two valves mean that the inflate valve can’t let out air, making it easier to inflate.

Self-inflating camping mats also take away some of these issues, as they do just that — inflate themselves. You might have to adjust the firmness once it’s done inflating and they do take a few minutes to fully inflate, but a self-inflating camping mattress can be better than traditional air mattresses for ease of setup.

It’s also a good idea to see if your camping mattresses come with a pump or not. If it’s easy to blow up with your mouth, that can work, but for a firm mattress, you may want to invest in a handheld pump.


Those who travel with their mattress in their backpack won’t want to buy a mattress that is too heavy. As any backpacker knows, those ounces really matter. Lightweight sleeping pads cost more and are sometimes less comfortable than heavier sleeping pads, however, if you backpack often, that could be worth it. It’s always a bit of a trade-off.

If you’re traveling by car, the weight won’t be an issue, so feel free to buy the heaviest, most comfortable car camping mattress you can find.


Comfort is another important thing to consider. Without a decent night’s sleep, you’ll struggle to wake up in the morning, feel drained, and may even suffer from soreness, aches, or pains. Many camping trips can involve intense, long days of hiking or other strenuous activities, so you’ll want to be as fresh as you can be to enjoy them. So it’s crucial to find a mattress that offers excellent comfort.


Ask yourself what you’ll be using the mattress for. Are you car camping? Tent camping? Backpacking? What time of the year are you planning on camping? And also, where are you camping? Camping on snow in December will require a different mattress than camping in the woods in July. Knowing the purpose of your mattress will help make your purchase decision much easier.


Your portable air mattress for camping should provide sufficient insulation to ensure you don’t freeze during the night. Even in summer, it’s important to have some insulation to separate you from the chill of the ground once the sun goes down.

Most mattresses will have at least a thin layer of insulation to keep you safe from the cold, but you must pay a premium price for the most effective insulation. Some mattresses use a down-like layer ideal for the coldest climates (similar to jackets). To get a good idea of how warm your mattress is, check the R-value. The higher the R-value, the warmer the mattress. Typically anything with an R-value of five or higher is suitable for four-season camping. Anything between three and five is suitable for three-season camping, and anything below three is best suited to summer camping.


Mattresses come in a variety of shapes and sizes to suit the space in your tent, car, cave, or backpack. These shapes can be straight, or tapered, and have their individual benefits to make your camping experience the best it can be.

Rectangular mattresses offer a greater sleeping area. Depending on the size, they’re also good for couples camping. Tapered mattresses help to reduce the space the mattress takes up in a tent or sleeping area, while the reduced surface area can make them lighter. They’re good for those with limited space and those wanting to cut down on weight.


If you tend to toss and turn, you’ll want a mattress that has some sort of material so you stay on the mattress during the night. Your mattress should also be waterproof, weatherproof, and constructed with puncture-resistant material (check the fabric gauge to discover that). Not only will this make it more durable, but it’ll also be easier to clean in the event of a spill or clumsy, mud-covered boots.

camping mattress outside of the tent

Types of camping mattresses

There are a few different types of camping mattresses you can choose from, all for different uses and budgets.

Closed-cell foam mattresses

Anyone who’s ever camped on a budget might recognize a closed-cell foam mattress. Closed-cell foam pads are made from highly dense foam which is accompanied by tiny, too-small-for-the-eye air cells. These pads pretty much just look like a sheet of foam, and you have to roll them up to store, although some fold closed. Modern closed-cell foam mattresses may have ridges and patterns to provide more comfort and some versions will come with a layer of reflective insulation for colder climates.

They’re cheap and warm, but not that comfortable. If you can picture sleeping on a thin sheet of foam, that’s what a closed-cell foam pad feels like. They are great for winter camping to add an extra layer of warmth to your inflatable sleeping pad.

Air camping mattresses

There are two types of camping air mattresses. One is the type you would have at home for guests: large, heavy, and not very packable. However, they can be incredibly comfortable to sleep on. Just make sure your camping air mattress comes with an external pump since the ones that have an internal pump need to be plugged into a wall to inflate and deflate.

The other type of air mattress for camping is a backpacking air mattress, which can be a lot more lightweight and packable, and some can even be incredibly comfortable. But the comfortable lightweight ones tend to be expensive. Most of the time you will have to blow these up with your mouth, although some come with pumps.


Self-inflating mattresses are best for camping tents and car camping, as they can often be a bit too bulky and heavy for backpacking. But just open the valve to inflate, wait a few minutes, and your setup job is complete.

They’re made with a mixture of air and open-foam cells which can provide the most comfortable surface most similar to your bed at home. They are often covered in a soft, stretchy material that is hard to roll off of, and feels like heaven after a long day outside. Self-inflating mattresses are a bit spendy, so they are definitely for the invested camper.

kids on a camping mattress

Camping mattress FAQ

Q: How thick should your camping mattress be?

This depends on a few things. If you’re looking for something lightweight and packable, you may need to sacrifice thickness. But if you’re only looking for comfort and don’t mind the added weight, go as thick as you want! The standard-sized backpacking air mattress is around three inches thick, whereas some car camping air mattresses can be eight or nine inches thick.

Q: Can you use a regular mattress in your tent?

You could, but it would be a pain in the butt to get it there. Regular mattresses are heavy and bulky and don’t pack down for transport. A full-sized regular mattress would take up the entire back of your car while you drive to the campsite! Save yourself the effort and buy a camping mattress.

Q: Are inflatable sleeping pads or camping cots better for inside a tent?

This depends on where you are camping. Camping cots are great for long-term tent camping, where you want to have more storage and get your mattress off the ground while you sleep. Inflatable sleeping pads are better for backpacking where you need to hike all your gear out to the campsite and wouldn’t have space for a whole camping cot.


  1. How to Choose Sleeping Pads – REI Co-Op