Sun shelters do what sun umbrellas can’t: They provide portable shade no matter where the sun is in the sky. Without needing to be adjusted every hour, they protect you from wind and blowing sand, and they give you some privacy.
But one edge that an umbrella has over a sun shelter is its ease. All you have to do is pop it open—no confusing poles or tent setup. Luckily, the outdoors specialists at L.L. Bean have come up with a solution. The UPF 50+ sun protective Sunbuster Folding Shelter ($129) folds just like an umbrella does, making it easy to set up and take down.
With three dedicated walls (that you can also unzip to reveal cross-breeze-friendly screens), the Sunbuster offers protection from the elements, regardless of the direction they are coming from. This construction also offers extra privacy—should you need a changing station, a nursing area, or just a little more refuge from other people’s eyes. And thanks to the tall, 4-foot 6-inch ceiling (tall for a tent, that is), you can comfortably sit camp chairs, beach chairs, or loungers underneath.
Other thoughtful details include three nylon pockets located along the base of the structure that can be filled with sand or rocks to hold the shelter in place on blustery days. (If you prefer to use stakes, the shelter comes with a set as well.) There are also gear pockets for storing small items such as sunscreen, a phone, a wallet, a book, or the like.
The entire shelter is made of super durable ripstop polyester fabric that has a UPF 50+ sun protection rating.
When not in use, the Sunbuster Shelter packs up into a handy stuff sack complete with shoulder straps for easy carrying. And clocking in at just over seven pounds, it won’t weigh you down.
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