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These Chairs Rock (Literally): 6 of the Best Rocking Camping Chairs

I’m a sucker for a good rocking chair, especially since I’ve been rocking my babies/toddlers in my camping rocking chair for over six years. But you don’t need to be a parent to appreciate the gentle, relaxing motion of a rocking camp chair while enjoying nature.

If you like to chill with a beverage around the campsite or rock yourself sleepy next to a campfire while gazing up at the stars, a camping rocking chair is the next piece of camping gear you need to invest in. My favorite is the GCI Outdoor Freestyle Rocker, and I’m far from alone in this opinion.

In this guide, we’ll cover our top picks for the best rocking camping chairs, discuss what to consider when buying a rocking camp chair, and answer some frequently asked questions. Whether you’re looking for a lightweight option, a budget option, or an option for cold weather, we’ve rounded up the top choices in six categories.

If you’re in the market for chairs, also check out our guides for the best camping chairs and best reclining camping chairs.

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Best Rocking Camping Chairs for 2024

Best Overall – GCI Outdoor Freestyle Rocker

best-rocking-camping-chairs
Image by GCI Outdoor

Specs:

  • Packed size: 31 x 26 x 5 inches
  • Weight: 11 lbs 12.8 oz
  • Seat height: 19.7 inches
  • Weight limit: 250 lbs

The GCI Freestyle Rocker has my vote for one of the best camping chairs in any category. I find it to be super comfortable, and with more than 82,000 reviews on Amazon and an overall 4.7 rating, it’s clear that many, many people agree.

GCI’s patented Spring-Action Rocking Technology puts the rock in Freestyle Rocker. The powder-coated steel frame is strong and durable, and there are some bonus features, too, like padded armrests and a side pocket, which you can use to hold your beverage or your phone.

The GCI Freestyle Rocker folds easily and, for a portable rocking chair, it’s on the lighter side (just not compared to other chairs designed for camping). It does not come with a carry bag, but it does have a carry handle.

This smooth-rocking Freestyle Rocker chair is also one of the most popular in the camping rocking chair category because it’s affordable. Camping chairs add up fast, but this one is only around $70, making it one of the more affordable options in the field.

As a runner up for best overall, the ALPS Mountaineering Rocking Chair is another option to consider. This rocking chair is fully padded and has a tall seat back and a nice locking mechanism. It features traditional rockers (versus the spring-action rocking of the Freestyle Rocker).

The ALPS Mountaineering rocker is more expensive than GCI’s rocker, but it’s another well-loved and well-reviewed choice.

Best Lightweight – Helinox Chair One With Rocking Feet

best-rocking-camping-chairs
Image by Helinox

Specs:

  • Packed Size: 13.8 x 3.9 x 4.7 inches
  • Weight: 2 lbs 2 oz
  • Seat height: 13.8 inches
  • Weight limit: 320 lbs

The Helinox Chair One weighs 1 pound 15 ounces when assembled and just over 2 pounds when packed in its carry bag. You can turn this lightweight chair into a camping rocking chair simply by adding Helinox’s rocking feet as an accessory (purchased separately).

The Chair One offers an ergonomic design and reinforced corners for durability and support. Standout features include its anodized DAC aluminum alloy frame and proprietary nylon resin hubs. Fabrics include recycled 600D polyester and mesh paneling for breathability.

The rocking feet easily attach to the legs of the Helinox Chair One, turning it into a comfy rocker. The feet come in their own cinch bag for easy transport.

Buy the Helinox Chair One

Buy the Rocking Feet

Best Budget Option: Ozark Trail Tension 2 in 1 Mesh Rocking Camp Chair

best-rocking-camping-chairs
Image by Ozark

Specs:

  • Packed Size: Not available
  • Weight: 17.5 lbs
  • Seat height: N/A
  • Weight limit: 400 lbs

Ozark Trail makes a budget camping rocking chair that doubles as a traditional camp chair—simply remove the rockers if you just want to sit still. Though a bit heavy, this chair is versatile, and the price is right at about $50.

With side pockets in the armrests, including one for your cup and one for other items, plus a sturdy steel frame and mesh backing for temperature control, the Ozark Trail Tension 2 in 1 Mesh Rocking Camp Chair is an inexpensive way to make sitting around the campsite feel more like home.

It also has a max weight of 400 pounds, though it is not our top pick for big and tall campers, since it is not as durable and long-lasting as other options on our list.

Best for Big and Tall: Cabela’s Big Outdoorsman Rocker Camp Chair

best-rocking-camping-chairs
Image by Cabela’s

Specs:

  • Packed Size: 48 x 6.9 x 28.3 inches
  • Weight: 19 lbs
  • Seat height: 20 in
  • Weight limit: 350 lbs

Though heavy at 19 pounds, the Cabela’s Big Outdoorsman Rocker Camp Chair compensates with lots of room for relaxing, even if you’re big and/or tall.

This folding rocker has a sturdy powder-coated steel frame with support for up to 350 pounds, in addition to heavy-duty 600-denier polyester fabric. The seat and back have thick foam padding so you can sit and rock with maximum comfort.

Cabela’s Big Outdoorsman Rocker Camp Chair folds flat for easy transport and storage, but it is missing some of the features of other chairs on this list, such as cup holders and padded or adjustable armrests.

If you’re looking for a heavy-duty option, this chair earns high marks from users and would make an excellent addition to your gear for your next camping trip.

Best Swinging Hammock Chair: PORTAL Swinging Hammock Camping Chair With Stand

best-rocking-camping-chairs
Image by PORTAL

Specs:

  • Packed Size: 39 x 6 x 8 inches
  • Weight: 15.3 lbs
  • Seat height: N/A
  • Weight limit: 350 lbs

Featuring a hammock-like, sling-style seat, the PORTAL Swinging Hammock Camping Chair With Stand is a different take on camping rocking chairs. Instead of having a moving base like other rocking chairs, the PORTAL Swinging Hammock chair has a swinging seat made from 600D double-layer fabric.

The stand has four wide feet, which you can rotate and tilt to get it set up just right on various substrates. To set up, unfold the stand and hang the chair and detachable cup holder on whichever side you’d like. Break down by doing this in reverse and packing the hammock chair into its carry bag.

In terms of storage, there are mesh side pockets on both the inside and outside of this chair for stowing belongings like your phone, snacks, or books. There are no armrests on this chair, but if you, like me, think hammocks are super comfortable and perfect for the campsite, you’ll enjoy swaying in your own personal hammock-inspired rocking chair.

Best for Cold Weather: SUNNYFEEL Oversized Heated Camping Chair

best-rocking-camping-chairs
Image by SUNNYFEEL

Specs:

  • Packed Size: 43 x 9 x 7 inches
  • Weight: 12.1 lbs
  • Seat height: 17.7 inches
  • Weight limit: 300 lbs

Imagine sitting around the campsite in a heated rocking chair on a chilly night . . . that’s what you get with the SUNNYFEEL Oversized Heated Camping Chair—our top pick for a cold-weather camping trip.

The chair features USB-powered heating technology. At the touch of a button, you can warm your fully padded seat up to 110 degrees Fahrenheit. There is no battery included, so you’ll need to have your own power bank with a USB port.

With a cushioned armrest, high back, and smooth-rocking design, this chair doesn’t skimp on features. There are built-in pockets on each armrest and even a pillow for your head.

The SUNNYFEEL Oversized Heated Camping Chair has double-seam 600x300D oxford cloth and 3D mesh with 140-gram foam padding. It doesn’t fold up particularly small, but it does come with a carry bag for storage.

Most importantly, did we mention that it’s heated?

How to Select the Best Rocking Camping Chair

Nothing makes an outdoor experience better than a comfortable camping chair—a nice place to dock yourself for a while and rest.

When shopping for a rocking camping chair, consider factors like comfort, packed size and weight, stability and durability, ease of setup, max weight, and your budget.

Comfort

Finding a comfortable rocker is crucial. Padded seats, padded armrests, a head rest, and lumbar support are all added features that might make a camping chair more comfortable to sit in, especially for extended periods of time.

Besides the seat fabric and features designed for overall comfort and support, you might also consider what type of rocking motion you prefer. Some chairs have spring-loaded shocks that create the rocking motion, while other chairs have rockers like traditional rocking chairs.

Read user reviews online before buying, and, if possible, try to find a retailer where you can test out the chair(s) you’re considering before your next camping trip.

Packed Size and Weight

Most portable rocking chairs are best suited for car camping, in which you camp within walking distance from your vehicle because they’re a bit heavy and therefore not ideal for carrying over long distances. The Helinox Chair One With Rocking Runners is an exception that may be lightweight enough for backpacking trips.

Even if you are car camping, pay attention to the chair’s packed size and weight to ensure you can fit it in your vehicle and easily carry it to and fro as needed.

Stability and Durability

Compared to regular camp chairs, portable rocking chairs are more apt to tip, since they’re in motion while you’re sitting in them. Choose one designed for stability even on uneven surfaces that has a sturdy frame and a seat made from durable materials that are weather resistant.

Ease of Set up

Since you’ll be bringing your rocking chair with you on the go, ensure you’re choosing one that’s not too difficult to set up and take down.

Portable rocking chairs typically don’t fold up as small as regular camp chairs do. Some come with a carrying bag for easy storage and some do not.

Max Weight

Before selecting a camping chair, rocking or otherwise, check how much weight the chair can handle to make sure it is an appropriate fit for your body size. The chairs on this list accommodate weights up to 400 pounds.

Budget

Each person’s budget varies, but if you’re in the market for a portable rocking chair to bring camping, there are options available at a variety of price points.

Our budget pick is the Ozark Trail Tension 2 in 1 Mesh Rocking Camp Chair, which costs around $50.

If you choose to go with a more expensive chair, consider its versatility. Will you be able to use it for other outdoor activities, such as outdoor concerts? If so, it may make the investment make even more sense.

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some answers to frequently asked questions about camping rocking chairs.

What are the benefits of using a rocking camping chair over traditional chairs for camping?

The benefit of using a rocking camping chair over traditional camping chairs is the rocking motion, which many people find to be relaxing. If you’re looking to make your camping trip more comfortable, a packable chair with a smooth rocking motion and a supportive seat is a great investment.

Are portable rocking chairs suitable for outdoor environments?

Portable rocking chairs designed for camping are meant for outdoor use and often have steel frames and seats made from durable, weather-resistant materials.

Do rocking camping chairs require assembly?

Most camping rocking chairs do not require assembly and are designed to fold up for transport and storage. Check the manufacturer’s instructions before buying so you know what you’re getting into.

Are rocking camping chairs suitable for tall or heavy campers?

Each rocker has a recommended weight capacity that you should check before buying. Also check a chair’s dimensions to make sure you’ll fit in it comfortably.

The camping rocking chair we recommend for big and tall campers is the Cabela’s Big Outdoorsman Rocker Camp Chair.

Can rocking camping chairs be reclined?

Usually not. Check out our guide to the best reclining camping chairs.

How do I clean a rocking camping chair?

Once you’ve found a great chair, you’re going to want to keep it nice—or, at least, as nice as possible, considering it’ll be going camping with you. Clean your rocker by wiping it down with a damp cloth and mild detergent.

If your chair comes with a carry bag, store the chair in the bag between uses to keep it nice for years to come.

Enhance Your Campsite With a Portable Rocker

Camping rocking chairs are a great idea if you’re interested in making your next camping trip more comfortable. Our top pick for the best overall camp rocker is the GCI Outdoor Freestyle Rocker.

Whether you prefer a lightweight option or an option for big and tall, there’s a chair designed with you in mind, proving you don’t need to sacrifice comfort while camping.

I believe a portable rocker is essential if you’re camping with a baby, but even campers without babies will find that the ability to rock while enjoying nature is a camping luxury they didn’t know they needed.

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