A simple setup for a family of four that feels a bit like your own portable picnic table, with an easy-wipe surface. The benches are handy to have in the garden back at home, too.
Good, wide surface
Easy to clean
Benches need to be set on flat ground
Heavy and bulky to store
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Vango Orchard Bench Set: first impressions
The Vango Orchard Bench Set takes a different approach to camp seating. When you’re heading off with a family tent and your tribe of four, you want a sensible and easy-to-use table for two adults and two children – and that’s exactly what you get with the rather smart Vango Orchard.
It’s a camping table that also comes in very handy in the back garden when you aren’t camping – the extra surface space and seating is ideal for having big crowds over for barbecues.
The table doesn’t fold in half, so it’s less suitable for storing in small spaces, and it’s heavier than most designs in our best camping tables buying guide at almost 10kg, too. Pick this design if you’ve got a spacious garage and car boot.
• RRP: $150 (US) / £120 (UK)
• Weight: 9kg / 19.8lb
• Height: 70cm / 28in
• Length & width: 102cm x 61cm / 40in x 24in
• Pack size: 104cm x 8cm x 62cm / 40in x 3in x 24in
• Main materials: Steel
• Seating capacity: 4
• Carry bag: Yes
• Compatibility: Ideal for family camping trips
Vango Orchard Bench Set: on the trails
The 100cm-long tabletop has plenty of room for sharing the best camping meals, is easy to wipe clean and is fully waterproof. On test I found that rain beaded off it and the table was a cinch to keep clean.
The two included benches seat two people each, and are comfortable and reasonably solid as long as you set them up on flat ground. The legs of the table and bench are both on the slim side, so I’d suggest avoiding using them on sand or soft ground, where they can sink in.
The benches also fold neatly inside the main table for easier storage when you break camp, and the whole shebang can be picked up by its carry handle.
An award-winning travel and outdoors journalist, presenter and blogger, Sian regularly writes for The Independent, Evening Standard, BBC Countryfile, Coast, Outdoor Enthusiast and Sunday Times Travel. Life as a hiking, camping, wild-swimming adventure-writer has taken her around the world, exploring Bolivian jungles, kayaking in Greenland, diving with turtles in Australia, climbing mountains in Africa and, in Thailand, learning the hard way that peeing on a jellyfish sting doesn’t help. Her blog, thegirloutdoors.co.uk, champions accessible adventures.