Best sleeping bags UK 2023: multi-season, lightweight sleeping bags for camping trips

Best sleeping bags for camping:  multi-season and lightweightBest sleeping bags for camping:  multi-season and lightweight
Best sleeping bags for camping: multi-season and lightweight | Best sleeping bags for camping: multi-season and lightweight

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We trialled a wide range of sleeping bags to find the best: our top-rated sleeping bags are lightweight, portable and perfect for camping adventures

Are you planning on camping this year? The sleeping bag you pick is key for getting a warm and comfortable night’s sleep in the great outdoors.

Sleeping bags come in all shapes and sizes (and at all price points!) but we’ve rounded up eight of the best designs to suit all sorts of campers.

What weight should my sleeping bag be?

Where are you planning to kip in your new sleeping bag? If you’re only ever going to transport your sleeping bag in a car boot, you won’t mind it’s warm but on the bulkier, heavier side.

If you’ve got to backpack around the mountains with a sleeping bag, a tiny, lightweight option makes far more sense. Check both the weight and the pack size of the sleeping bag you have in mind – some of our featured bags weigh under 600g and will fit into the smallest of backpacks.

Best sleeping bags at a glance

What temperature rating should I choose for my sleeping bag?

A sleeping bag’s main job, of course, is to keep you warm. Temperature ratings for sleeping bags are usually split into up to three categories – you’ll see ‘comfort’, ‘limit’ and ‘extreme’ temperature ratings on most designs.

‘Comfort’ is the optimum temperature at which you’ll feel warm – meaning that if the bag is used in temperatures below that rating, you’ll probably get cold. In general, it’s easiest to look for a bag with a comfort rating lower than you expect to encounter on your coldest camps.

What ‘limit’ number do I need for my holidays?

As a general rule, it’s worth looking for a -10C to -20C limit for expedition bags, around a -5 to -10C limit for UK and European mountain adventures and 0C – 5C for general spring and summer camping with the family.

Animal down or synthentic down? Which is better for a sleeping bag?

Animal down is the best sleeping bag filling for warmth-to-weight ratio, and sleeping bags made from down also tend to pack up small.

While synthetically-insulated sleeping bags are usually heavier and bulkier, they are generally better at keeping you warmer when it’s wet or humid, as well as drying out quicker.

They’re also easier to clean, and generally cheaper.

Increasingly, brands are fitting bags to different bodies. You’ll find ‘tall’ and ‘short’ sizes on sale, and many companies now offer female-specific versions of their sleeping bags, as petite women may find a shorter and more curved sleeping bag fits them better.

Get kitted out for your hiking and backpacking adventures.

We have detailed guides to the best backpacking tents for your adventures here, or the best family tents, or four-man tents for festivals with your friends.

Want to steady your stride? These are the best walking poles for hiking.

We have detailed guides to the best camping stoves for great meals.

Keep it comfy with the best camping folding chairs, and sleep on the best air beds around, as listed here. And keep things illuminated with a great camping head torch.

Rab Alpine 600 Women’s Sleeping Bag

Key specs – Comfort temperature: -5°C; Weight: 1,000g; Colour: blue

Rab’s down sleeping bags are ever-popular with climbers and mountain hikers, and the Alpine 600 is a good midweight women’s-specific bag to choose from their line-up, as it’s wide at the hip to accommodate female campers.

Many down-filled sleeping bags lose insulation over time, or are rendered useless if they get wet or even damp – not so the Alpine, which uses hydrophobic down treated with Nikwax, and works well even on damp mornings or inside a wet bivvy bag.

While the bag itself is soft and comfy to sleep in, its outer nylon material is tough enough to take scrapes and scratches.

All in all, this is a great three-season bag designed to last for many adventures to come, and light enough for camping off the beaten track – perfect as your first female-specific investment.

Haglofs Moonlite Sleeping Bag

Key specs – Comfort temperature: 11°C; Weight: 970g; Colour: orange

Winter camping calls for a tough (and often expensive) sleeping bag design that can handle the cold.

Come the balmy nights of summer, you can choose something simple, comfortable and affordable – like Haglof’s Moonlite.

With a comfort temperature of 11°C, this design is only really suitable for warm-weather spring-to-autumn adventures, but it offers lovely comfort thanks to its quilted design.

A comfortable, adjustable hood is ideal for storing a camping pillow, and at under a kilo, the Moonlite won’t weigh you down if you’re backpacking.

The synthetic Air-Fill® insulation works even when wet, so you won’t catch a chill in damp conditions, either. Ideal for summer family holidays, festivals and warm-weather weekenders, and good value at £80.

Sea to Summit Ascent Down Sleeping Bag

Key specs – Comfort temperature: 2°C; Weight: 860g; Colour: Lime

This bright lime-green wonder is a great all-rounder of a sleeping bag that will work for camping holidays and wilder adventures alike.

At 860g, the Ascent is light and packable enough to take on rucksack trips, but still offers a decent spring-to-autumn comfort temperature of 2°C thanks to its heat-trapping down filling.

A clever multiple-zip design makes it easy to add ventilation on hot nights, and you can also fold down the top of the bag like a quilt for added comfort, or even zip this bag up with another Sea to Summit design to create a two-person bag.

Available in unisex or women’s-specific lengths, this is a good quiver-of-one sleeping bag if you just want one versatile design for warmer weather.

Decathlon OEX Leviathan EV 900 Sleeping Bag

Key specs – Comfort temperature: -9°C; Weight: 1,370g; Colour: Yellow

A reliable four-season, down-filled sleeping bag for an affordable price? You can with the OEX Leviathan.

We tested the OEX Leviathan from Decathlon for three months in the cold hills of the Himalayas, and felt grateful for it each and every night.

This unisex sleeping bag is extremely comfortable, as it’s stuffed with plentiful animal down, and is a delight to slide into on a cold night, trapping in warmth in seconds.

Despite not being as lightweight as some dedicated ultralight sleeping bags, it ticks a lot of other boxes, with a comfort limit of a respectable -9C, which is warm and cosy even in the snow.

Great bang for your buck.

Sierra Designs Night Cap 20

Key specs – Comfort temperature: -1.6°C; Weight: 1,370g; Colour: blue

Protect the planet with your sleeping bag purchase – Sierra Designs’ Night Cap 20 is made from recycled synthetic insulation sourced from plastic water bottles and uses a recycled fabric outer material, so it’s a more eco-conscious choice than many designs.

A female-specific design and a longer 198cm version of the Night Cap are both available, so campers of all shapes and sizes can still get a comfortable fit.

We like the internal sleeping mat sleeve, so you can pop your camping mat inside to keep it in place if you’re a restless sleeper, and the foot vent, which makes it easy to cool off on hot nights.

If you find narrow ‘mummy’ bags restrictive, you’ll love this wider design, which also has an innovative duvet-style cover that makes it easy to get that tucked-in feeling of your bed at home.

Night Owl Double Sleeping Bag

Key specs – Comfort temperature: N/A; Weight: 2,500g; Colour: blue

If you’re a couple sharing a double air bed on a camping holiday, a two-person sleeping bag might suit you better than two singles - and you’ll get the best of both worlds with this convertible design.

We rate the super-cosy Night Owl bag from Fine Bedding for comfort – unlike most outdoors-only sleeping bags, this design was inspired by the brand’s popular duvets, and feels as soft to sleep in as if you brought your favourite sheets from home.

You can also unzip the Night Owl to create two adult-sized single bags, which makes it great value for money. This summer-weight bag looks so smart it could even grace your spare bed at home, and if it does get dirty outdoors it can be popped in the washing machine.

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