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A Tent On Your Roof? What?


“Is that a tent on the roof of your car?”

“Wow! That’s cool!”

“What is it?”

“Is it easy to get up there?”

That’s how the conversations start off with the numerous people who spot us while we are traveling with the Maggiolina roof top tent. It never fails that at least one or two people stop us to ask about the tent and get the details. Living in Moab we see SUV’s, Jeeps and trucks with roof top tents on them all the time but it’s still uncommon elsewhere.

We purchased the Maggiolina AirLand Roof Top Tent last summer so we could hop up the Oregon coast and camp at a different spot each night. We thought the set up and take down of the roof top tent would be much easier than a regular tent, especially, in wet soggy weather that the Pacific Northwest is known for.

We were right.

The roof top tent is so simple to set up. You unclamp the latches, insert the handle and crank away. The top slowly rises and ta dah!, you have a tent on top of the roof of your car.

Bedge can set it up and take it down on his own. I’m too short so I’m unable to do either. As it is rising or lowering you have to hold the top so that it stays centered. I can’t reach the top when it is fully up. Disadvantage of being a shorty. Bedge can set it up in less than 5 minutes and take it down in less than 10 minutes. Super simple. While he is taking care of the tent I am unloading or loading the car. Makes things speedy for sure.

The bedding, pillows and ladder stay stored in it when you are traveling so that helps with space, packing and the ease of setting up camp.

One thing you do have to remember though when traveling with it up top is that you can not park in public garages, go through most drive thru’s and you really have to watch the height of structures you may have to drive under. Thank goodness Bedge is much more aware than I am. I’m such a space cadet that I would be guaranteed to strip it off the top from a drive thru or other low lying structure.  Yeah, I can’t be trusted.

Here’s a full review on the Maggiolina AirLand Roof Top Tent if you’re interested.

The only big downside to it is the price but we justified it by using it a lot and knowing that it will last for a very long time.

J-man loves climbing up the ladder at night to sleep inside and he requests that we take it on our camping trips. It definitely doesn’t travel with us for every trip. With Bedge being a nature photographer and having to get up at the wee hours of the morning to shoot sunrise this style of camping doesn’t always work for us. If we know that we will be camping at sunrise locations then it is perfect. Otherwise, we travel with our trailer or regular tent.

So where have we taken the roof top tent since we’ve had it?

A lot of places…

Our first trip with it was a week up the Oregon Coast but first stopping at Redwood National Park

Oregon Coast


Maroon Bells – Aspen, CO

Great Sand Dunes National Park

American Basin in the San Juan Mountains of Colorado.

La Sal Mountains – Moab, UT

J-Man being his crazy self inside the tent.


Check out other styles of camping by way of tent, trailers, cabins, etc. by visiting the following links:

Learning To Love Camping: It’s All About Style

From Tent to Trailer, What Did We Do?

No Fees, No Toilets, No People

Camping Styles

Camping in Style with an RV Trailer

Secrets Revealed – Outdoor Moms Share Their Camping Styles



What do you think? Would you want to sleep in a roof top tent?





  1. The link above doesn’t take you to my site. It takes you back to yours. Here’s the link again to my story: http://www.rockiesfamilyadventures.com/2012/08/learning-to-love-camping-its-all-about.html


    And I’m so jealous of your roof-top tent. I think it’ so cool!! The only thing I wonder about for myself is how I would get out at night to pee if I wasn’t the one right beside the ladder. I drink a lot of wine before bed. 😉

    • Thanks for catching the link, Tanya. It’s been fixed.

      You would just need to have the ladder on your side or be super stealth when climbing over to get outside. 😉 We haven’t had any problems getting out in the middle of the night.

  2. That is very cool. It also gets you above the bugs, snakes, racoon’s and other night time creepy crawlers. 🙂

  3. I’ve seen so many versions of the root top tent lately! When I first say them I laughed, now I kinda want one… You guys make it look GOOOOOOD!

    • I was the same way until hubby convinced me to get one. I’m so glad we did. It’s fun and makes certain trips so much easier.

  4. This is just too AWESOME. I love it! It totally reminds me of those old Landrover-tent-tops on safari in Africa. It just looks like an adventure waiting to happen!

    • Yes, definitely something from the African safari trips. That’s where I first saw them. Now they are becoming much more popular here in the states.

  5. Wow! These are awesome! Roof top tents are absolutely incredible for outdoor escapdes! Thanks for sharing!

  6. Well, I did not know it was available in the states since it is an italian product. We live in Greece and we have the same in blue. We travelled in Spain and Portugal this way 3 years ago with my husband and we use it for shorter trips now we have an extra member in the family. I think it is an awsome way to be on the road.

  7. Laura W-A says

    I am so glad you said that about being too short to set it up! That is the exact one iI was going to get. I am single, and short. I may go with the triangle-shaped one now…


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