It’s important to have enough illumination in your campsite in order to give the impression that you’re really there and not merely camping. When it’s time to go to sleep, all you have to do is step through the front door and turn on the lights.
To create an appealing atmosphere or to fight against the looming darkness, string lights are the ideal solution. As an alternative to using a flashlight to find items or having a buddy shine their headlamp in your face, consider purchasing a pair of string lights.
Our List of The Best Camping String Lights of 2022
Coleman OneSource Rechargeable String Lights are the best all-around camping string lights
1. Coleman OneSource String Lights RechargeableGet it now on Amazon.com
This Coleman string light set (which retails for $85) is the best option for long-lasting and compact string lights. Bright, handy, and long-lasting: these were some of our favorite light sources in the lab.
These lights lasted nine hours on their maximum setting, while throwing off an amazing 250 lumens. They may last for days even on the lowest level of 25 lumens. In addition, they may be easily dimmed or brightened by holding the power button for an extended period of time.
We particularly liked the 20-foot cable, which has three little plastic hooks along the line and one at the end of the line for simple hanging. The hooks are excellent for looping around and looping back on themselves, such as around trees or poles.
There’s also a charging plug on the base for your other gadgets. Additionally, they are easy to store because of the way they wrap around your body. They’re roughly the size of a Coke can when they’re unpacked.
Battery indication has three lights, they become tangled if you take them off in a hurry and they’re more expensive than other models. OneSource Rechargeable String Lights are our favorite string lights.
Lights for Camping on a Budget: Luci String Lights by MPOWERD
2. MPOWERD Luci String LightsGet it now on Amazon.com
These lights ($50) are a great value considering their high output and small size. The design is similar to Coleman lights, however the performance is lower. There are ten 100-lumen light nodes strung together over an 18-foot length of rope. They’re an excellent choice if you don’t want the strongest light or are seeking to illuminate a smaller region.
There is an inbuilt battery, but it only lasts for around four hours at maximum brightness; we would want it to last longer. It does feature a charging connector, however it can only charge a phone to roughly 50% of its capacity at full power. Because of this, our bodies are equipped with a solar panel, but it takes a whole day to properly recharge. We observed that we were more inclined to use an external battery pack to charge the string lights.
You may easily adjust the lights’ brightness with the power button as well as use the built-in flashlight. The flashlight, on the other hand, looks like a much superior idea. If you want to decorate, you should use string lights.
These lights have the greatest carrying case out of all the ones we looked at. Open the lights, loop the string around its center, then screw the top back down to lock the lights inside of the body, When transporting or unwinding, it was practically difficult to get the lights intertwined.
In general, the Luci String Lights provide excellent results for the price they fetch.
Best Camping String Lights for the Money: BioLite SiteLight String Runner Up
3. BioLite SiteLight StringGet it now on Amazon.com
It’s a no-brainer to invest in these lights if you’re currently a BioLite user ($19). They’re difficult to endorse if you’re not.
These are available in 10-foot strings of four lights, each having a light output of 150 lumens. However, the last 4 feet of the string remain dark as it travels to the power source, making the total length of the lights closer to 6 feet. However, additional BioLite lights may be daisy chained.
They’re significantly better at illuminating a limited area when used in a single set rather than lighting up a whole campground. An external battery and a USB dongle are required for the light plug, which resembles an aux cable and must be plugged into a USB brick or battery pack. Keep an eye out for that dongle; if you lose it, you’ll be without light.
When paired with a BioLite BaseLantern, these lights truly glow. You may dim the lights and utilize them without the USB dongle using the BaseLantern. The Alpenglow Lantern and other BioLite lights can only be turned on or off, unlike other power sources like power banks.
Although the method of wrapping the cable around a slot in each light may be tiresome, the SiteLight itself is pleasant and the lights can be stored easily, however the process of wrapping can be time-consuming.
Except when connected to a BioLite environment, SiteLight’s performance is mediocre at best. String lights are fantastic for camping in tiny places, but not if you have a large group.
GoalZero Light-A-Life Mini Portable Camping String Lights
4. GoalZero Light-A-Life miniGet it now on Amazon.com
The Light-A-Life tiny ($80) is an excellent option if you want to light up a single campground or a few different tents. A string of lights, this is more like a collection of four interchangable lights than a single piece of lighting.
To link the lights together, a USB cable with a length of around 4 feet connects each one. A 110-lumen function and a 30-lumen “low” brightness option are provided for each segment’s individual brightness controls. This may be both helpful and frustrating. When the lights are strung together, you have to switch on or adjust each light one at a time, rather than being able to modify them all at once.
With no battery, these lights are quite pricey. However, there are a number of features that we found to be rather useful. It’s easy to divide the lights into two different tents with battery packs thanks to the modular structure. They also include shades that can be adjusted to produce either direct or diffuse light. Spice things up even more with colored hues.
Nonetheless, we thought the lights to be a little crowded. It’s a mess of wires, connectors, and switches. It’s everything from straightforward, even for something as basic as light. Despite the fact that GoalZero states that only four lights may be chained together, we were able to connect our BioLite SiteLights to the fourth GoalZero fixture to provide even more illumination. Just keep it a secret.
Boondocking Lights: TIKI BiteFighter LED String Light
5. The BiteFighter LED String LightGet it now on Amazon.com
First and foremost, you’ll need a standard wall plug to utilize this set of string lights. This implies that unless you have an RV, a camper, an inverter, or a solid battery system, it won’t be able to operate for you. While this may work well for some people, it isn’t for everyone.
The 36-foot string features 12 LED lights (plus two replacements) with a yellowish hue that is ideal for a summer evening. Hanging these lights might be a pain, but they’re simple to use. They’re hefty, so they’ll require sturdy hooks to secure them.
This kind of light is best suited for long-term camping or boondocking trips. You may keep them outside for lengthy periods of time since they are waterproof.
The string’s three insect repellent diffusers are in addition to the light. According to TIKI, the three diffusers can cover an area of 330 square feet. The pods can be refilled, but they only last around 200 hours before they need to be replaced.
Despite the fact that they aren’t the most portable or lightest, the extra advantage makes them ideal for creating a cozy, well-lit area around your RV, camper, or even back porch.
Reasons to rely on us
We’re seasoned hikers, campers, cyclists, and general outdoorsy types that love to have a good time. The majority of the time, our activities go far into the night. We’ve seen hundreds of lights and know what we prefer, whether it’s a drink after a long trek or adjusting the derailleur for tomorrow’s ride. We put these string lights to the test in a variety of settings, including tents, truck beds, campgrounds, and more. This list is based on our own experiences re-creating and living in environments illuminated by string lights.
Camping String Lights Buyer’s Guides
For your convenience, we set out to locate the finest camping string lights on the market. This is what you’ll want to watch out for:
Source of energy
It takes a lot of energy to get a flashlight. There are many ways to power string lights, and which one is ideal for you will be determined by how you want to use your lights.
Built-in Power Source
String lights with built-in batteries are ideal for mobility since they eliminate the need for external power sources. For the convenience of not requiring anything else to function, these lights are an additional item to remember to charge before leaving off for the weekend.
Small solar panels may charge the internal battery of certain lights with built-in batteries, making them solar-powered.
Energy from an external source
Whether you’re camping in a tent or in an RV, your campground is an ecosystem. String lights with a USB on one end that connects into a power source are a simple and fast addition if you already have external batteries or a lantern or power bank with outgoing power sources.
It is possible to connect certain string lights to an outlet, cigarette lighter port, or automobile battery when you want a great deal more illumination. To utilize these lights, you’ll need a camper with a power outlet or an overland vehicle with a powerful battery backup. These kinds of options may be quite brilliant, but they’ll also use a lot of electricity.
In addition, there are other things to consider
Size of the String Lights
String lights come in a variety of shapes and sizes, some of which are ideal for illuminating a tiny space, such as the back of a pickup truck. Pay attention to both the length of the string light and the number of lights it has.
Additionally, take into account how bright the lighting are. You’ll be able to see better with brighter lighting. Looking for the capacity to decipher tiny text is a must. Keep an eye on your lighting and what you want to do with it.
Adjusting the brightness of the light
If you purchase bright lights, you don’t necessarily need the brightest light. You may wish to turn down the lights when it draws near to nighttime. Being able to control the brightness of your lights not only makes it easier to create the perfect mood, but it also saves on battery life.
Consider how you will keep your string lights while they aren’t in use. There is nothing more frustrating than having to spend 15 minutes untangling a bunch of string lights every time you arrive at camp. String lights with built-in storage techniques are very appealing to us.
Features that aren’t included by default
There are lights that can be used to charge other devices, alter their length, change their color, or even repel pests. A basic system of lights may provide you with a variety of benefits.