How to Find the Best Camping Light to Illuminate Your Trip

Date Posted:23 September 2019 

The great outdoors provides amazing opportunities for adventure. Find out how to keep the good times rolling even after the sun goes down.

Australia has lots of beautiful landscapes to explore. It provides a great opportunity to create long-lasting memories in Mother Nature’s majesty.

When the sun goes down, though, what will you use to light the way?

Don’t stop your adventuring just because you ran out of daylight. Pick up the best camp light for your outdoor needs.

Navigate a dark trail, light up a campsite, or read a book in your tent. The right light can definately extend your outdoor holiday.

With so many options on the market, how do you know which is the right one for you?

Take a look at this tip sheet to pick out the right one for your next outdoor excursion.



As you may have guessed, the first consideration when looking for the right outdoor light is how you’re going to use it. 

What do you plan on using your light for?

When do you plan on using it?

Here are a few of the most common types of lights:    


Torches (Handheld)

Are torches really one of the best camping lights to have on-hand?

The answer to that is a resounding “yes!” There’s a reason why torches are camping essential.

They’re portable, lightweight, and easy to operate. Odds are that you already have a few at home already, so there’s no need to buy more.



Head Torches

Head torches are a great option for any activity where you need your hands free.

Do you need to pitch a tent in the dark? You’ll be thankful to have a head torch with you.

What about cooking dinner in limited lighting? A head torch can make the task simpler and help you avoid dangerous accidents.

Look for ones that have adjustable beams of light. Also, you may want to check out brands that are good for extended use.



Ah! The quintessential camp light source!

Lanterns are one of the best tent light sources available. The 360-degree flood of light can illuminate a tent easily.

They usually come with built-in hooks so that it’s simple to hang one from the roof of your tent. If you want to get fancy, you can now purchase rechargeable camping lanterns and some models even come with a remote control. 



When you need a concentrated beam of light, you’ll want a spotlight in your luggage. 

Spotlights are usually brighter than your average torch. They also penetrate the darkness at a farther distance than your average light option.


Tent Lights

Tent lights are also another light option for your next trip. They’re specialised for use inside a tent or enclosure.

The exact features of tent lights vary greatly though, depending on the manufacturer.


Power Source 

Your light’s power source is also another factor to consider. You have different options.

Each power source has its own set of pros and cons. So, consider them and your trip parameters carefully before choosing one.



Battery-operated light sources are a popular option. They’re both economical and easy to find. Some of the best LED camping lights are battery-operated.

The most obvious downside about using battery-charged lights is the need for batteries. Bring an extra set or two on your trip. It can help keep the lights on when the one installed goes out unexpectedly.

Batteries are also relatively easy to pack unless you’re backpacking. If you are hiking in the wilderness, you may prefer an option that doesn’t have as much weight. 

Alternatively, look for battery-operated lanterns with long battery life so that you don’t have to tote around extra batteries.



Rechargeable lights generally come in two types: battery and solar.

The rechargeable battery variety requires a power source so it’s ideal for campers with dedicated electrical sockets. This could mean your car’s battery or ones offered at a campground.

On the other hand, solar rechargeable lights require a few hours in the sun. While they are all equipped with a rechargeable battery, the actual charge retention may vary.

There are also hand crank rechargeable light sources. They’re often found in emergency kits, but they’re not the best camp light option.



Lights that use propane or lamp oil may trigger childhood memories. This used to be the go-to light source for the great outdoors.

Keep in mind, though, that these types of lanterns emit heat and require ventilation. Because of that, they’re not the best camping lights for tents

They do light up the whole campsite, though. So, if you want a bright light source with a hint of nostalgia, this is a good choice.

However, these lanterns do require fuel that may increase carry weight in your packs. Also, you do have to use caution if you use these lanterns around small children and pets.



Bulb Options 

The bulbs make a difference in your search for the best camping lighting. Some bulbs are energy-efficient while others last forever. 

Check out the difference between the most common bulb types below.



This bulb type is one of the oldest, but it’s still a favourite. It produces a warm-coloured light that goes to full brightness almost immediately.

In addition, these bulbs provide a steady beam with nary a flicker in sight. 



As an alternative, the durable fluorescent bulb is one of the best electric camping light options if you like lights for multiple uses. They provide enough light for your campsite, but they’re a little larger than other options.

If you don’t want to buy a special light, you may have torches with these bulbs in your garage.



LED lights are relatively new to the market. They’re very durable, though, and require very little power to operate. Some of the best LED camping light options may ward off bugs, too!

These bulbs generate very little heat, so they also make an excellent choice if you’re bringing small children or pets. 

These bulbs also generate relatively little heat, making it one of the best tent light options available.



There are also other considerations when picking out the best camping lights. The “right” lamp depends on your individual preferences for these factors.



The brightness or lumens rating depends on the light type and bulb. Generally, the best outdoor camping light falls around 100 to 200 lumens per lantern.

If you have a large group or area, you may want to maximise your lumen output or use more lanterns. Look for ones between 200 and 400 lumens for larger groups.


Ease of Use

Reading an instruction booklet when operating your camping light is not an ideal option. Especially if you’re stuck in the middle of a dark trail. Find ones with simple touch buttons and intuitive features.

It’s also a good idea to test your lights before setting out. Make sure that you can operate your light with ease and that everything works as it should.



A weatherproof or shockproof plastic casing is also a must when looking for the best camping lamp. You never know when your lights may meet an accident or sudden rainstorm.

Are you camping with children? 

If so, durability is important to protect your light source from youthful exuberance.

Keep in mind, though, that most electric light sources are durable. On the other hand, fuel-powered lanterns are usually a little more fragile than their electric counterparts.



Weight may not be a big deal if you’re driving up to your campsite. It’s an important consideration, though, if you’re hiking into the wilderness.

Lightweight and portable torches are a good choice when backpacking. They don’t take up much room or weight in your pack.

However, if you’re car camping, you have more freedom to bring bigger or bulkier lighting sources.


Runtime/Battery Life

How long will a single charge or fuel tank keep the lights on?

You can usually find this information under battery life or runtime under the manufacturer’s description. This time gives you a rough estimate of how long you can use the lantern without replacing the power source.

Knowing this also gives you an idea about how many batteries or how much fuel you need to estimate bringing for your trip.

Take the manufacturer claims with a grain of salt, though. 

They often exaggerate these times. For more accurate runtimes, take a look at user reviews, too.


Light Up the Night with the Best Camping Light

Are you in the market for the best camping lights? Australia has many opportunities to enjoy the great outdoors. To fully enjoy the experience, though, you need the right light source.

Don’t let the sun go down on your outdoor adventure!

The next time you head out into the wilderness, make sure you have the right light source for your needs. Hand and head torches are great options for lightweight and portable lighting. Lanterns are also a must if you plan any overnight trips.

Also, make sure that you pick a light with a power source that suits your needs. Rechargeable lights are a great option if you know you’ll have access to an electric outlet. Otherwise, plan on carrying extra batteries or fuel to keep the lights on throughout the duration of your trip. 

There are many options available on the market. So, the right one depends on your own individual needs. Just make sure to read user reviews when possible to get an accurate understanding of the product before you buy.

If you’re ready to see your light options, take a look at our lighting page online. Choose the features you need the most and pick out a few options for your own outdoor lighting kit.

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