Why a Bunkhouse?
You’re finding that having a camper would come in handy so you can get away from the city or the suburbs whenever the need arises. The problem is, you don’t know where to start, right?
Maybe you’ve never been camping a day in your life, or you’ve only gone to a campground, pitched a tent, and went fishing for a couple of days?
Perhaps you tent camped when you were a single person and now you are married, have children, and would like a way to take the entire family with ease?
Campers offer you so many of the conveniences of home while you enjoy traveling and staying in remote areas.
Benefits of a smaller camper
What are the advantages of buying a ‘smaller’ camper? Smaller campers give you access to areas that are more remote, they are easier to back into tight spots, and are easy to park in parking lots when you are stopping while on the road. You’ll also be able to use a smaller tow vehicle and possibly get better fuel mileage.
A 30’ camper beats most restrictions at state parks across the United States that don’t have sites large enough for the bigger fifth wheels and bigger bumper pull travel trailers. Keep in mind, with this list, almost half are under 25′.
Smaller campers are easier to heat and keep cool as well. If you’ve got an onboard generator, for example, you can run it to power your roof-mounted air conditioning.
Combine that with parking in a shady spot and you’ll beat the summer heat. It may not seem much like camping, but if you visit Florida in August, you’re going to be really happy you’ve got that air conditioner and a place to stay away from the mosquitoes.
If you plan on doing fall and winter camping, you can choose an arctic package that is built with more insulation and capable of keeping your toasty warm inside, even on very cold nights. When you’ve got a smaller space to heat, your propane tanks will last you far longer.
Now that we have that out of the way, let’s look at a few options.
Best Bunkhouse RV Campers Under 30′ Feet
Coachmen Catalina 261BHS (30’3″)
- Dry Weight: 6,198 lbs.
- Tongue Weight: 738 lbs.
- Overall Length: 30’3”
The Coachmen Catalina 261BHS is a gorgeous camper that comes with a space adding slide. You can opt for the one without a slide but this one makes a world of difference without adding much weight. It’s a great camper for those who are just getting into camping for the first time.
It’s easy to pull and it has all the essentials that you need to help feel right at home, even on the road. You’ve got heat, air, a queen-sized bed, bunk beds and even an outdoor kitchen on top of the indoor kitchen.
Keystone Bullet 243BHS (28’10”)
- Dry Weight: 5,088 lbs.
- Tongue Weight: 580 lbs.
- Overall Length: 28’10”
The Keystone Bullet 243BHS has a bright and airy look inside that reminds you of a beach house. It’s a little under 19’ and makes amazing use of every extra inch.
Two bunks are double bed sized, allowing enough room for four people to co-sleep. The main bed is queen sized and tucked neatly behind an entertainment center that can be enjoyed from the u-shaped dinette or the kitchen area as you cook.
The pantry is large to store plenty of food for the extra people you can sleep. The bathroom is very large by most travel trailer standards and will allow for even the largest person to move freely.
There is storage space built in everywhere, above and below, and the outdoor kitchen makes use of the great outdoors to help you enjoy your time in the wilds of America.
Forest River Heritage Glen 24BHHL (27′)
- Dry Weight: 5,118 lbs.
- Tongue Weight: 510 lbs.
- Overall Length: 27’
The Forest River Heritage Glen 24BHHL is just a little longer than 25’ but worth talking about. It is still small enough to park pretty easy where you like. It’s really big on convenience and comfort.
The dinette is designed in a slide-out that gives you an enormous kitchen area, which has an “L” shaped counter, double sink, oven/range, microwave, and large refrigerator. If you’re traveling with a large family, this will be very comfortable for you.
The nifty Murphy bed is designed to pull down over the existing sofa at night and the bunks beds are double beds, making it capable of sleeping more than small units. It doesn’t give up any basement storage either. It’s got a great pass thru compartment for all the necessary items.
Keystone Passport 240BH (27’4″)
- Dry Weight: 4,911 lbs.
- Tongue Weight: 535 lbs.
- Overall Length: 27’4”
Keystone Passport 240BH SL is unique for a lot of camper trailers this size as it has an exterior kitchen on top of the inside kitchen. It even has a small sink and basin that allows you to keep kids corralled outside instead of running in and out to wash up, etc. Now, you can enjoy the outdoors more by cooking outside and keeping an eye on the family.
It’s designed with a large tub/shower combo in the full bath, Double bed bunks in the rear and a queen size bed in a separate sleeping area for the parents. The dinette is a u-shaped wraparound so that you can fit more people and there is even an entertainment center with a flat-screen HDTV.
Lance 2185 (25’8″)
- Dry Weight: 4,565 lbs.
- Tongue Weight: 755 lbs.
- Overall Length: 25’8”
The Lance 2185 travel trailer is another relatively small camper but is absolutely luxurious to the eye. The layout is kept simple with a large u-shaped dinette that slides out for space. The sleeping areas are separated by the kitchen/dining space.
The bathroom wastes no space at all with a shower and toilet that serve their purpose. The bunk beds at the rear are small twin beds. Each bunk has their own storage space for personal items and clothing.
It’s got a great floor plan that allows for an entry in the rear, straight to the bunk beds and bathroom/wash area, aside from the front entry.
Coachman Freedom Express 23.9SE (25’10”)
- Dry Weight: 4,572 lbs.
- Tongue Weight: 566 lbs.
- Overall Length: 25’10”
The Coachmen Freedom Express 23.9SE is right at 25’ and packs an incredible amount of comforts and necessities into a small space. You can choose from a standard bed or a queen size murphy bed that pulls down over a small sofa. The 88” u-shaped dinette will seat even the largest of gatherings and the full kitchen has everything you could possibly need.
You’ve got two double bed size bunks and an outdoor kitchen that is complete with a sink and refrigerator, which allows you to cook outside and feed everyone without tracking in and out of the camper. At the end of the day, enjoy a large tub/shower combo that lets everyone get cleaned for bed.
Best Bunkhouse RV Campers Under 25′ Feet
Riverside Retro 190 BH (20’6″)
- Dry Weight: 3,415 lbs.
- Tongue Weight: 420 lbs.
- Overall Length: 20’6″
The Riverside Retro 190BH great little camper is designed in old-school style and shape. It is meant to remind you of a 1950s style camper that some of you may have heard of referred to as a ‘canned ham’ camper.
It comes with an electric jack and exterior speakers so that you can enjoy some of your favorite music as you gather around the campfire and teach your children the joys of s’mores and hotdogs.
When you walk inside this model, you’re greeted by wood paneling that has a beautiful maple color. The dinette has stitching that will remind you of that old 1950s diner or the seat of an old Chevy. It even has a black and white tiled floor that tops off the look.
It’s got a stove, refrigerator, a bathroom that has a tub/shower combo, and two bunks in the rear of the camper that allow up to four to sleep.
KZ Escape E191 BH (21’11”)
- Dry Weight: 3,320 lbs.
- Tongue Weight: 490 lbs.
- Overall Length: 21’11”
The KZ Escape E191BH is a great little camper that has pass-thru storage underneath that will allow you to stow things like golf clubs, small kayaks, fishing poles, and outdoor gear to make the most of your vacation.
It comes with a countertop stove, a refrigerator, a full shower in the bathroom, a queen-sized bed for the folks and bunk beds for the kiddos.
It’s towable with a small vehicle and it will give you all the necessities when you’re away from home.
Jayco Featherlight X213 (24′)
- Dry Weight: 4,545 lbs.
- Tongue Weight: 450 lbs.
- Overall Length: 24’0″
With a king-sized bed for the parents and full twin beds for the bunks, the Jay Feather X213 is a comfy camper for everyone. The bathroom has a large tub that doubles as the shower.
It’s also got a great pantry space for packing plenty of food and exterior storage that has room for all of the things you could possibly need to bring with you.
There is plenty of seating in this model with a dinette and a full-length sofa where you can gather as a family and play games, watch television, and enjoy a meal made in your full kitchen.
Coachman Apex Nano 193BHS (22’1″)
- Dry Weight: 3,515 lbs.
- Tongue Weight: 370 lbs.
- Overall Length: 22’1”
The Coachman Apex Nano 193BHS is very light and not very long, but it is definitely big on the details. She’s got a microwave built-in underneath the stove-top, a full bathroom with a shower/tub combo, and a dinette to enjoy meals.
The full kitchen is equipped with a refrigerator and you’ve got bunk beds for the kiddos and a 60” x 80” bed for the adults.
It’s called the “Nano” but it has a ton of room. With a pass-thru compartment in the basement of the trailer that is three feet wide, you can store kayaks, water skis, scuba gear, or anything your heart desires.
Make your vacation enjoyable and don’t forget to pack the grill and the hotdog forks!
Keystone Springdale Mini 1800BH (21’5″)
- Dry Weight: 3,394 lbs.
- Tongue Weight: 485 lbs.
- Overall Length: 21’5”
There is no doubt, the Keystone Springdale Mini 1800BH is a little camper, thus the ‘mini’ connotation. It’s a great little camper with all the necessities, however. The open layout allows for a dinette, a queen bed, two twin bunks, a shower/tub combo and a kitchen with a two-burner stovetop and under the counter refrigerator.
You can pull this little guy with a V-6 for short trips anywhere.
No matter who you are or what your taste is, you’ll find a camper that makes everyone happy. Mom can find the kitchen she loves and you’ll have the space you need with the comforts of home. Go see them in person. Take some time to sit down and get a feel for the space.
Before you purchase a camper, especially if you’re totally new to it, make sure that your salesperson completely demonstrates how all the systems function, such as igniting the hot water heater and switching your refrigerator from electric to propane.
There’s nothing worse than getting out on the road and having something not work right and you’ve got no idea how to troubleshoot it on your own.
The good news is that most other campers have also been through it and they’ll be happy to help you quite often. Campers are a tribe out on the road. There’s something about a campfire and marshmallows that brings people together.
Having a small camper that you can take with you will allow you to take your family pet, see places and experience them on a level that you couldn’t do in hotels, and to give your kids a chance to experience things that will give them a lifetime of memories.
It’s worth every penny you spend on your camper so be sure you get the one that suits you best, even if it’s a bit larger than what you thought you’d get to start off with.
Try them all on for size and find the one that feels like home. It will be home away from home and the more you enjoy it, the more you’ll use it.