Lanterns can be wonderful to take along on family camping trips or even backcountry excursions. The light is created by either electricity or a flame and can be extremely pleasant to have along in the woods.
Fuel can be batteries, candles, white gas or fuel canisters.
Size of models varies widely. Car camping Coleman lanterns are huge, fragile and awesome. Small backpacking models can easily fit in the top of your pack and use the same fuel as your canister stove.