Tent camping is one of the basic and easiest ways to get started camping.
A tent according to Webster a tent is a collapsible shelter of fabric (as nylon or canvas) stretched and sustained by poles and used for camping outdoors or as a temporary building.
There are many styles of tents on the market. Picking the right one for you can be a challenge but all you really need to do is think about a couple of things to pick the right one.
Lets go over the type of tents first. Here are the basic types. Most tents can fit into one of these categories.
The Pup tent is the simplest of tents and can be as simple as a piece of fabric or plastic strung between two poles. These are good for quick shelters, and as a tent for backpacking. Their main drawback is that they are not very strong, and do not hold up to high winds, and they are small, normally just big enough for one person and their gear.
The Dome tents come in a large number of sizes and ratings. There are also hybrid dome/cabin tents that are big enough for 10 people. Dome tents can be lite weight and just right for backpacking. They can be simple to put up or be a lot of work if they are made for extreme winds and temperature settings. Most people will probably use a dome tent for most of the camping they will every do. Most dome tents can be setup by two people in only a couple of minutes. The main draw back to dome tents is that there are so many on the market that you have to be careful or you will get one that will be more trouble then it is worth.
The Cabin Tent is a straight wall tent normally with metal poles that have two or more rooms. The Cabin tent can be setup so you have sleeping quarters on one side and an eating area on the other. These are great for larger families and for extended camping in one place. The draw back is that they can be heavy and hard to setup without two or more people.
Remember when looking at tents that you do get what you pay for. You can find good deals but you do have to look around.
A couple of things to also consider when picking a tent is that if you are camping with outs that you will want a little extra room per person, and if you are going to use cots that most tent are narrower at the top than the bottom, so give yourself a little extra room for that also.