Gear Guide – Caravan Awnings & Windbreaks
Awnings come in all shapes and sizes these days with much more choice for caravan owners than ever before. Plus, don't forget the obligatory windbreak that can be used for privacy or restraining wayward children or pets. Here's a rundown of some of the latest products.
Vango Varkala Connect 360
Best for Versatility
Flexible and customisable, the Varkala Connect caravan awning is the perfect inflatable awning for those who enjoy weekends away or travelling for a few weeks at a time. Available in 4 sizes and with a large range of optional additions including porches, extensions, an annex and a sun canopy – make the Varkala Connect work for you.
Total weight: 25.3kg
Vango Montelena 400
Best for Regular Tourers
The traditional shape of the Montelena is perfect for the touring caravanner and with an AirBeam® structure, is pitched in a matter of minutes. The Sentinel Luxe fabric is designed to perform in the weather. Inside is light and airy which is further enhanced by skylight windows. Available in 2 sizes.
Total weight: 37.1kg
Vango Florence 420 awning
Best for Sited Caravans
Perfect for sited caravans and long-term pitching, the Florence inflatable awning is a sophisticated addition to your caravan with a bay style window at the front, giving you additional space and ensuring the awning is light and bright. Made with Sentinel TenCate fabric, it is strong, durable and suitable for residential use. The Vango Draught Seal System will keep the wind out on a cold day and ensures that there are no poles to damage your caravan.
Total weight: 39.5kg
Outwell Bay 320A awning
Best for Small Caravans
Outwell is a brand well known for its awnings and the range is extensive. The Bay is available in two variants, the 320A (featured here) and the 380A. The number refers to the width of the living space, and so the 320A is better-suited to smaller caravans, especially those with lower roof heights. With a pack size of 80cm x 45cm x 45cm, it’s quite compact, too. Being inflatable, there's no faffing around with poles, either. Accessories available include a mesh panel set (£56.99), travel carpet (£100) and footprint (£31).
Total weight: 20.4kg
Sunncamp Toldo 260 awning
Best for Budget
A traditional pole and sleeve porch awning, this Toldo from Suncamp is perfect for those who don’t need a full-size awning. It suits rails from 2.35m to 2.50m high and weighs just 11kg thanks to the steel and glass-fibre frame construction. There are three roof poles included, and there are pockets in the roof for extra poles, while the windows all have curtains. There are two removable side doors, an external peggable mud wall and a breathable groundsheet. There is even an optional annex that fits both sides.
Total Weight: 11kg
Outwell Tide 500SA awning
Best for Families
The Outwell Tide is available in four sizes – the 320SA, the 380SA, the 440SA and the 500SA (featured here). As the number refers to the width of the living space, the 500SA being the largest of the bunch, is ideal for larger caravans, families and those wanting plenty of space to relax when on holiday. Features include panoramic curtained windows, a ‘rainsafe’ door to keep the wet out and ultra-fast air pitching that easily seals to your caravan. Optional extras available include a hard-wearing and easy to maintain 300cm x 500cm carpet (£179.99), a footprint for keeping the groundsheet and tent clean (£50.99) and – new for 2020 – a windscreen that breaks away from traditional poles by being inflatable (£436).
Total Weight: 38kg
Isabella Air Cirrus North 400 awning
Best for Long Life
It’s all about the air at the moment and this awning from Isabella combines the company’s classic designs with its new IsaAir technology. Solid dyed front and gable ends ensure the awning will look as good as new years down the line. This Isacryl fabric is lightweight, robust and breathable, too. There’s just one inflation point for the IsaAir system, plus it's modular, allowing you to isolate the separate beams and replace them without having to take the awning down. It comes as standard with curtains, draught skirt, wheelarch cover, bag for the awning and also a peg bag, plus you can specify an air annex for the left or right side as an option.
Total Weight: 35.5kg
Isabella Ambassador Dawn awning
Best for Seasonal Pitches
This Isabella is a traditional steel-poled awning (lightweight carbon-fibre poles are optionally available), so it’s good for use on seasonal pitches in year-round weather. While it’s available in a standard depth of 2.5m, it comes in various heights and widths. The brand also offers an alteration service, so you won’t necessarily have to buy a new awning when you buy a new caravan.
The Ambassador Dawn awning has large, panelled panorama windows in the front, a mosquito net panel in both sides and is made of Isacryl for a pleasant indoor climate. The roof is coated on the outside and has a patterned inside, which minimises the formation of condensation. There's also a draught skirt, wheel arch cover, awning bag, pole and peg bag including peg remover.
Total Weight: 42.9kg – 65.5kg
Isabella Mega Granite Windscreen
Best for Long Trips
For longer-term pitches you need a windbreak that’s going to be reliable enough to stand up to anything the weather can throw at it. The Isabella Windscreen Mega Granite is designed to do just that – with a robust acrylic material and tubular steel poles to provide stability and durability in the worst conditions. For added stability, the windbreak comes with the Stabilo System Mega as standard. The double base allows you to join two MegaFrame windscreens by simply hammering an extra spike into the ground. The Mega Granite comes in four-sided and six-sided models, both of which will create a huge sheltered space around your awning where you can relax outdoors.
Price: £270 (4-sided)/£360 (6-sided)
Total Weight: 9.5kg (4-sided)/13.6lg (6-sided)
Size: 460cm x 120cm (4-sided) and 690cm x 120cm (6-sided)
Outdoor Revolution E-Sport Air 325
Best for Weekends
Launched last year, this porch offers the perfect balance between the latest air technology and value for money. It has a single inflation point and fits caravans between 2.35m and 2.50m tall. Made from double rip stop fabric, the awning is both strong and light, while also incredibly waterproof. A lighter coloured roof reflects heat and there is a 12-month warranty on the workmanship and canvas. The dual-action hand pump is included, along with steel pegs, reflective guylines, a repair kit and Velcro attachment for the optional Lumi-Link Tube Light Kit or the Up/Downlighter systems. Other optional extras include an Air Pod inner tent and storm kit (with straps and tougher pegs).
Total Weight: 16.1kg
Outdoor Revolution Pronto Windbreak
Best for Relaxing
If you are wondering what the key attribute of this four-panelled windbreak from Outdoor Revolution might be, the clue is in the name. The Pronto can be put up in seconds using the pop-up glass-fibre frame and, just as importantly, it can be folded down and packed into its carry bag equally quickly. It’s perfect for impromptu trips – the quicker you can get set up on-site the quicker you can relax with a nice cold drink! The five upright poles are pegged down using elasticated bungees and it can also be attached directly to your caravan using the kadar strip. The two window panels also let you enjoy the views while retaining all of the wind- protection characteristics.
Total Weight: 9.15kg
Size: 560cm x 140cm