The 5 Best Camper Vans for Families Living the Van Life
Just because you have kids does not mean you have to miss out on the benefits of traveling in a compact and capable adventure van.
Many people think that Sprinter van conversions are only for single travelers and couples taking Instagram-worthy road trips.
But across the country, families are ditching clunky, oversized motorhomes and opting for their more nimble camper van counterparts.
Camper van conversion companies have responded to the demand for vans that fit the needs of families, offering models that can seat and sleep several people.
It’s possible to fit the whole family in a Sprinter conversion van, and still have room for plenty of storage space, sleeping areas for everyone, and all the other amenities that make camper vans so awesome.
We’ve put together a list of the top 5 best vans available for families and people traveling with kids. Keep reading to learn what the best camper vans for families are, and why.
Sportsmobile was converting vans into campers long before the vanlife trend took off. They convert all major full-size cargo vans, including the Mercedes Sprinter van, Ford Transit, and Ram Promaster.
Sportsmobile offers tons of desirable options for people traveling with kids. They have several options for seat and bed configurations, including vans that have up to four bunk beds.
One unique option that Sportsmobile offers is a pop-top roof which, when opened, reveals a second full-size bed that sits above the living area. When closed for travel, the pop-top only adds a few inches of roof height.
The “Penthouse” bed area, as they call it, can sleep two people or three little ones. Sportsmobile’s floor plans usually include a dinette, lots of storage space, and other basic amenities.
Sportsmobile’s builds are relatively no-frills and they do not have the same beautiful interiors as many custom builds and other camper van sellers.
Still, Sportsmobile has made a name for itself by reliably producing class B camper van builds that are rugged, durable, and highly functional.
If you are looking for a no-frills van for you and your family with plenty of different options for sleeping and seating, Sportsmobile is a good choice.
A first look at the Winnebago Ekko and you will understand that this Class C RV toes the line between a camper van and a motorhome.
While the body of the Ekko is far bulkier than a traditional camper van and it loses some of its maneuverability and sleek appeal, the Ekko makes our list because it includes some features that are great for traveling families.
Families will want to choose an Ekko with the optional pop-top sleeping area, a space that fits a double bed and can comfortably sleep two adults. For families of three or four, the Ekko also includes two twin-size beds in the rear.
The Ekko is built on a Ford Transit chassis which comes with optional AWD, making it more capable than most RVs of its size.
Although the Ekko lacks some of the appeal of smaller vans, families wanting more living space, plenty of optional add-ons, and extra storage space might consider this option.
Storyteller Overland Mode 4×4
Storyteller Overland provides van conversions using either the Mercedes-Benz Sprinter 144” wheelbase, or the Ford Transit 148” wheelbase.
Storyteller Overland’s Mode 4×4 model seats 4 and sleeps 4. The van’s rear bench seat folds down into a 72” x 34” bed that can easily sleep two little ones.
As their company name suggests, Storyteller Overland produces vans that are capable off-road machines.
For people looking to get out and explore remote campsites and long dirt roads, their builds will be appealing because they include many standard options that make off-roading easier, such as a roof rack with a side-mount ladder, all-terrain tires, and a solar panel-powered off-grid power system.
Storyteller Overland’s models are not very customizable, so what you see is what you get. Additionally, although the vans can seat and sleep 4, the fact that they utilize the smaller 144” wheelbase Sprinter chassis means that living space is at a premium.
Still, these vans are a solid option for families who want to get out and explore with a capable four-wheel drive van.
ModVans offers a unique solution for large families and people who want a camper van that can also double as a work vehicle or passenger van.
The modular CV1 model is built on the chassis of a Ford Transit passenger van. The van can seat up to 7 people in “passenger mode”, or some seats can be removed to add in the modular kitchen, tables, and other camper components.
The CV1 includes two large beds that can each sleep two adults or three kids. While these swiss-army campervans aren’t a great option for people who want a full-time camper van setup, their unique flexibility makes them a great option for people who need a multi-purpose van for themselves and their families.
Muse & Co. Outdoors Endeavor & Explorer
Muse & Co. Outdoors has quickly made a name for itself as one of the best camper van conversion companies in California.
With three semi-customizable models to choose from, Muse & Co. Outdoors specializes in luxury, craftsman camper van builds that do not compromise on rugged capability or functionality.
The Endeavor model can seat three, four, or five depending on the size of your family. The Endeavor utilizes the Sprinter 170” wheelbase van, which is spacious but still nimble.
With a full kitchen, toilet and shower options, and sleeping space for four including a queen-size bed for the adults, the Endeavor includes everything a family could want on the road.
The interior’s elegance and durability speak volumes of the Muse Outdoors team’s decades of combined woodworking and craftsman experience.
For families who want an even nimbler van that is highly capable off-road and easy to drive in the city, the Explorer is a great option.
Built on the Sprinter 144” wheelbase, the Explorer can seat and sleep up to four. The van includes a full kitchen and an open floorplan with beautiful custom wood cabinetry throughout.
All Muse & Co. camper van models come with impressive standard options including an induction cooktop, a fridge/freezer combo, slide-out BedSlide storage in the garage, and a robust off-grid power system.
Options are available for everything from suspension upgrades to a roof rack that can hold your awning, surfboards, or kayaks.
Muse & Co. Outdoors offers semi-customizable, durable and functional camper vans for families that don’t compromise on the bespoke, craftsman vibe that vanlife is known for.
You can learn more about Muse & Co. Outdoors vans and options by using the Build My Van tool.