15 best garden playground equipment rated for every age

by Joost Nusselder | Updated on:  May 18, 2021

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Climbing and scrambling is nice, they lose their energy and it is also SUPER healthy!

But…

How do you choose one that:

  1. suitable for the age of your child
  2. safe and stable
  3. and also fits in your garden (or maybe even a larger children's room inside)?

That's why I have the 15 best playground equipment for your home that will DEFINITELY get your child excited!

Child is a bit too enthusiastic about a playground

Okay, this might be a bit too enthusiastic ...

Then let's dive in quickly.

These are the best playground equipment that should be able to offer a perfect playing experience for every situation:

PlaysetImages
Overall best playground equipment for the garden: Wickey Smart Action Climbing TowerBest playground equipment for the garden: Wickey Smart Action Climbing Tower

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Best climbing frame with slide: SwingKing play tower IrmaBest play equipment with slide: SwingKing play tower Irma

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Best wooden climbing frame: AXI Beach Tower Play TowerBest wooden climbing frame: AXI Beach Tower Play Tower

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Best playground equipment for a small garden: Wickey Tiny SpotBest playground equipment for a small garden: Wickey TinySpot

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Best playground equipment for your toddler: Little Tikes Expedition ClimberLittle Tikes Expedition Climber

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Best indoor playground equipment: Step2 Toddler Corner HouseBest indoor playground equipment: Step2 Toddler Corner House

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Best plastic climbing frame: Alice's Garden Children's swingBest play equipment made of plastic: Alice's Garden Children's swing

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Best Play Tunnel: Little Tikes Climb & HideBest play tunnel: Little Tikes Climb & Hide

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Best play equipment swing: Wickey Smart RushBest play equipment swing: Wickey Smart Rush

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Best toy device for your baby: AXI Baby swingBest Outdoor Baby Swing: AXI

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Best Playhouse: vidaXL Playhouse with 3 windowsBest playhouse: vidaXL Playhouse with 3 windows

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Best compact climbing frame: Step2 WonderballBest compact playground equipment: Step2 Wonderball

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Best playground equipment with sandbox: Jungle Gym FarmBest playground equipment with sandbox: Jungle Gym Farm

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Best playset ship: kidkraft Sandpit BootKidkraft Wooden Pirate Ship Sandbox Boat

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Best Playground Train: Jungle Gym Train ModuleBest playground train: Jungle Gym Train Module

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How do you choose the right playground equipment?

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Toy reviews & comparisons video

Ok, now that you've seen all the options, it's time to figure out how to choose one.

One thing is of course to see what kind of something your child likes in the playground:

You will see that soon enough.

Then you have to see how much space you have, because a good playground equipment can quickly take up quite a bit of space in your garden, and you also want to be able to have a drink in your chair (** and I also want to be able to eat a bite at the garden table actually **)

Playground for children of different ages

Children in that age category need more challenge, they work on their agility and are very energetic; their movements are already fluid and confident.

They also like to have a clubhouse or a cabin where they can chill out with friends.

You can of course consider purchasing a somewhat larger playground equipment with space for activities for small and large kids.

You then place a 'baby' swing for your child and, for example, a tire swing for the older children.

You can place a slide and sandpit on one side for your little one and on the other side you can place the monkey bars and climbing walls for your older child.

You can also start with just a simple basics and add or exchange play accessories over the years.

You let the device grow with your family and expand it a bit more!

Best playground equipment rated

Overall best playground equipment for the garden: Wickey Smart Action Climbing Tower

Best playground equipment for the garden: Wickey Smart Action Climbing Tower

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Dimensions: 220 x 250 x 105 cm

Oh wow! A basketball board and a climbing frame? Which kid wouldn't want this?!?

That is why it is at the top of my list, but also because of the VERY solid construction of the Wickey playground equipment.

This WICKEY Climbing Tower is a beautiful solid wooden device from the Wickey Smart Series. The wood is impregnated and different arrangements are possible!

I would recommend making 3 by 3 meters of leeway for this climbing frame in each case, as you also want some "leeway" to jump off or run up.

Because that's what children do with playground equipment ...

Here's how to set up such a colossus:

The device has, among other things, a rope ladder, climbing stones, a climbing ladder and wall and a horizontal bar.

There is also a window with a nice awning above, so that your little 'shop' can play with his or her friends.

The playground equipment must be anchored in concrete so know what you are buying, but there is an extensive installation manual in the package plus all necessary screws.

Can you already see him in your garden?

View it here at bol.com

Best climbing frame with slide: SwingKing play tower Irma

Best play equipment with slide: SwingKing play tower Irma

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Dimensions: 160 x 70 x 175 cm

A lot smaller but a bit higher is the SwingKing Irma.

You also get a climbing wall here, but with fewer other accessories in a more compact format.

You need a little less space for this one, but still a good 2 by 1 meter to climb on and slide down again.

The SwingKing play tower is a play castle in your own garden for your child!

The play tower is made of impregnated FSC wood and can be expanded with other accessories such as a telephone or binoculars!

The chance of surface cracks is minimal by using square wood. A beautiful castle for your little knight!

SwingKing is known for its… yes, swings - swings - but have now become a playground brand that keeps everything close to nature with beautiful and sturdy wood.

Do you want one of the safest and robust wooden sets in your garden with a slide? Then there is nothing better than the SwingKing!

Check prices and availability here

Read also: rated the best slides for your home

Best wooden climbing frame: AXI Beach Tower Play Tower

Best wooden climbing frame: AXI Beach Tower Play Tower

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Dimensions: 349 cm x 111 cm x 117 cm

AXI makes its playground equipment from great quality FSC certified wood and that is reflected in the sturdy construction… and price tag.

It is another wooden playground equipment with a slide, but it is really great for your garden with more options, but it also takes up more of your space.

If you are going purely for a slide, then I would go for Irma, but with this sturdy wooden frame (most swings use a metal frame that bends a bit more), this is the best complete device you can get.

This great AXI Beach Tower Play Tower with climbing frame Gray / white is just like a real beach house! You can climb and slide to your heart's content in the play tower.

And that is precisely the things that kids like to do! They will enjoy themselves in the garden for hours. They can climb into the tower via the stairs and then simply slide down again.

The sandbox is located under the play tower, your child can romp around with a bucket and spade! Or would your child prefer to swing like a monkey on the swing?

The combination of the white with gray wood gives this play tower a 'beachy' appearance, it will definitely decorate any garden!

The Beach Tower Play Tower has a large slide and the swings are firmly attached to the tower.

You could also consider expanding the tower with, for example, a rock climbing wall and climbing frame.

The sturdy FSC Hemlock wood comes from sustainably managed forests. The wood does not splinter and is perfectly resistant to all weather conditions.

The 'Prefab' panels make installation very easy! These panels have already been treated with an environmentally friendly water-based stain.

View it here at bol.com

Best playground equipment for a small garden: Wickey TinySpot

Best playground equipment for a small garden: Wickey TinySpot

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Dimensions: 235 x 65 x 220 cm

Very beautiful and compact, the TinySpot garden climbing frame with blue slide! Perfect if your garden is not that big, but you still want to place a nice playground for your child.

It includes a large blue wave slide and to get there your little one climbs up the sloping ladder. There is a small but fine sandpit under the slide.

The roof of the house, made of tarpaulin, is bright blue, just like the slide! The sail must be cut to size, so use your own imagination; For example, you might want scalloped edges on the roof!

Various patterns can be found in the extensive assembly instructions of the playground equipment.

Check the most current prices and availability here

Best climbing frame for your toddler: Little Tikes Expedition Climber

Photo of children in the garden on the Little Tikes Expedition Climber playset

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Dimensions: 343 x 180 x 125 cm

The Little Tikes Expedition Climber - Climbing Frame has a real drawbridge, slide and a super tunnel to crawl through. Your child will love the Expedition Climber and have a great time!

Here Wendy shows you what you can do with it:

The playground equipment is suitable for both indoor and outdoor use; That means fun for your toddler or toddler all year round! The playground is suitable for children from two years old.

View it here at bol.com

Best indoor playground equipment: Step2 Toddler Corner House

Photo collage of children playing with the Step2 indoor playground equipment

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Dimensions: 83 x 80 x 106 cm

A nice playground equipment for indoors? That is also possible! The Step2 Toddler Corner House is an open playhouse that fits perfectly in the playroom.

Little ones can enter the playhouse through the garden gate. The cottage offers lots of fun activities; Among other things, a 'wall maze' where your child can throw large play balls, which then end up in the sink.

Here you can see a little bit how big it is:

There are three spinning gears on the gate to improve fine motor skills. This playhouse certainly brings a lot of fun for all toddlers!

Check the latest prices here

Best play equipment made of plastic: Alice's Garden Children's swing

Best play equipment made of plastic: Alice's Garden Children's swing

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Dimensions: 362 x 166 x 223 cm

This only, brightly colored children's swing, playground equipment is suitable for indoor and outdoor use. The swing has high side walls for extra safety and is suitable for children from 3 years old.

Made of good quality plastic in fun, bright colors! A must for the little ones among us!

It is available here at bol.com

Best Play Tunnel: Little Tikes Climb & Hide

Best play tunnel: Little Tikes Climb & Hide

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Dimensions: 152 x 152 x 90 cm

The multicolored Little Tikes Climb & Hide is shaped like an igloo! Your child can climb on the playground equipment and hide in it.

It is a wonderful place to be alone and read a book. It has an exciting tunnel that your little one can crawl through.

Here you can see how your child can play with it:

Suitable for indoor and outdoor use and designed for kids from two to six years old.

Check the current prices here

Best play equipment swing: Wickey Smart Rush

Best play equipment swing: Wickey Smart Rush

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Dimensions: 240 x 260 x 215 cm

Several kids can have fun at the same time on this cool nest swing, the WICKEY Swing, Climbing Frame Smart Rush!

The swing can carry up to 100 kilos and is suitable for children from three years old. This blue nest swing hangs in a solid wooden frame. A top swing for your garden!

View it here at bol.com

Best toy for your baby: AXI Baby Swing

Best Outdoor Baby Swing: AXI

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Dimensions: 120 x 134 x 103 cm

A lovely and solid swing, the AXI Baby Swing Brown with seat for your baby, toddler or toddler! A perfect way to introduce your little one to outdoor swinging.

Learning to swing is a great experience for your child. He or she thus develops balance, coordination and muscle strength.

The AXI Baby Swing has a luxury baby swing seat with a high back for safety and a T-bar with a safety strap. Your child can enter it from nine months to about three years.

The low frame is built in strong and durable FSC 100% Hemlock wood. The kit comes with four ground anchors for extra stability and safety. A must for your baby or toddler.

Check prices and availability here

It is also the nicest outdoor baby swing in our full article on baby swings

Best playhouse: vidaXL Playhouse with 3 windows

Best playhouse: vidaXL Playhouse with 3 windows

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Dimensions: 204 x 204 x 184 cm

Turn your backyard into a real playground! This basic vidaXL Playhouse with 3 windows is made of solid, impregnated pinewood, which is extremely durable. This appliance also complies with the latest safety standards.

Your little one has more than enough space in this beautiful playhouse to have fun with all the friends!

What is so nice about this basic house is that you can dress in your own style; You can stain or paint it in a beautiful color, decorate it with streamers, curtains, and flowers in pots on the veranda!

You could also make it a themed cottage for your child.

The house comes as a kit and some holes are pre-drilled, others have to be drilled during assembly.

Buy it here at bol.com

View even more playhouses in our review here

Best compact playground equipment: Step2 Wonderball

Best compact playground equipment: Step2 Wonderball

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Dimensions: 84 x 91 x 107

This bright pink and lilac house from Step2 Four Seasons Playhouse is great fun for the little princesses! It is small in size, but has plenty of nice details.

You can ring the bell, the bell really works, and inside there are two seats and a table. Your little one can enjoy a glass of lemonade there with a friend!

There are also a number of niches in the house, where you can put small toys and outside there is a real letterbox.

Here's Reyna B and her daughter in the Four Seasons:

The house is made of plastic and easy to clean. It can be outside and inside.

Check prices here

Best playground equipment with sandbox: Jungle Gym Farm

Best playground equipment with sandbox: Jungle Gym Farm

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Dimensions: 330 x 150 x 310 cm

Great this Jungle Farm Blue! The Jungle Farm is a beautifully designed wooden playground equipment of high quality and suitable for children between three and ten years old.

This stylish, sleek model has a climbing wall with climbing stones, an angled ladder and a sandpit. A cool blue slide is also included.

A maximum of twelve children can use the playground equipment at the same time; It has two playing platforms. A challenge for all adventurous kids and a guarantee for endless fun!

Here you can see what's included:

This climbing frame is made of solid Northern European pine that comes from sustainably managed forests.

The device has been extensively tested to meet all Dutch safety standards. A winner for every garden!

Check the latest prices here

Best playset ship: Kidkraft Sandbox Boat

Kidkraft Wooden Pirate Ship Sandbox Boat

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Dimensions: 200 x 113 x 151 cm

Ship Ahoy! Sandpit Ship Boat | Playground in sight! Does your child love pirates or maybe just boats? Then this sandbox in the shape of a ship is the ultimate gift for him or her!

The boat has spacious seating areas and a real, bright red steering wheel. The flag and the lifebuoy are also included.

Under the bench is a small storage space, where your child can store sand molds and toys.

The boat sandpit is easy to assemble and comes with a groundsheet. Just add a little more sand and let the fun begin.

Truly a beautiful design, it will surely become the eye-catcher in your garden!

Check the latest prices here

Best playground train: Jungle Gym Train Module

Best playground train: Jungle Gym Train Module

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Dimensions: 195 x 85 x 265 cm

Unique this Jungle Gym Train Module! Build this cool train module on your wooden Jungle Gym playhouse!

Your child can climb up the climbing wall, crawl through the tunnel of the locomotive or relax at the bottom of the Jungle Train.

It's like your little one is on a nice train journey! He or she can also play the role of train driver or conductor. With this extension, the most exciting train journey fantasies become reality!

The train stands on six red wheels, has a steering wheel and a chalkboard on board and turns your little one's wooden playhouse into an even greater adventure!

Unfortunately, this module cannot be used alone and must be added to a basic tower of Jungle Gym.

View this module here

Why buy a toy device?

Do you still have doubts about the purchase of a playground equipment or a swing set?

We would like to give you a number of reasons why a playground, preferably made of solid and durable European wood, should not be missing in the garden.

Better school performance

We all know that playing, especially playing outside, is good for your child's health.

It has even been shown that children who play outside a lot have better school performance; We are talking about writing, calculating, thinking critically and listening; Their ability to concentrate is also much better.

Physical Benefits

Playing a lot makes your little one super smart and super healthy and we haven't even talked about the physical benefits:

It improves the agility, balance and muscle development of your child.

As a result of all these efforts, your little one will naturally get tired physically and mentally, it won't be difficult to get to bed on time and go to sleep right away!

The fact that kids nowadays sit still for long periods of time, such as in class at school or at home at the computer or on their PlayStation, makes playing and exercising outside even more important.

A play set stimulates the imagination

Children learn to use their imagination and creativity on a playground. They suddenly find themselves in a fairytale castle, a pirate boat or, why not, a restaurant!

They can replay all imaginable roles and fully immerse themselves in the role in question. This is very good for them, they can process important emotions in this way.

Every day they are exposed to new experiences and these must be given a place.

Children also learn to make better assessments through climbing. Their confidence will increase and they will be flexible and fit; They will of course feel good about themselves!

With a play set at your home or in the garden you can also keep a nice eye on your child! The children from the class or the neighborhood children will probably enjoy playing!

This is how the kids learn to work together, they will also compete with each other, they learn how to fall and get up again!

Health and playing outside

Did you know that children who get enough exercise are much less likely to develop cardiovascular disease, diabetes and osteoporosis later on?

A recent study has shown that one in three children in the Netherlands is deficient in vitamin D, the result of this is a weak immune system and less strong bones.

It is therefore good and very important to let your child play outside in the sun a lot. That is why an outdoor playground is of course ideal!

What if it rains?

When children are playing outside, they are often not bothered by the rain. It mainly depends on how we, parents, deal with it.

Are we grumbling and complaining about the wet clothes and dirty shoes? Yes, then you probably reduce your child's fun. B.

And don't always mention that rain, your child will also realize that it is wet outside.

Prefer to give your child a nice warm sweater, a rain suit and wellies; This way he or she can easily play outside for an hour, in the rain! Did you know that your child can slide down the slide even faster with rain pants? Every disadvantage has it's advantage!

Away from the PC

The new technology has undoubtedly brought a lot of advantages. However, spending too much time on the computer or mobile phone is not recommended by doctors.

They advise to keep a maximum of two hours for watching a screen outside school hours.

The best material to place around a playground equipment

It is advisable to use rubber mats, wood chips or sand around the playground equipment and under the swing or slide, so that a fall does not cause too much damage.

Normally, the layer of wood chips or sand should be topped up at least once a year.

If the playground equipment is used a lot, it may be necessary to replenish wood fibers every six months.

A playground equipment can also be placed on grass, only then the wood that comes into contact with the, often wet, grass must be properly treated with stain before it is placed.

Playground equipment then and now

Playground equipment used to be made only by playground equipment manufacturers. The devices were only available in wood or metal, there was no more choice.

The safety of these devices was also not immediately to write home about. If you wanted something original, you had to design and build it yourself.

In the last twenty years, however, the playground equipment and the market have undergone enormous changes.

Many devices are still supplied by manufacturers, but many are also made by gardeners and green companies.

They are placed by them or delivered as a do-it-yourself kit. The range of playground equipment has grown strongly and there are now equipment in wood, metal, aluminum and plastic.

The number of experts involved in the design and production of the playground equipment has increased significantly.

In the past, the experts could be counted on one hand, but now there is a large group of professionals who work daily with the design, materials and safety of the devices.

Conclusion

You have seen that there is a lot of choice in playground equipment. Some brands even offer you the choice to assemble your device from scratch.

The possibilities are endless; There are small and large playground equipment, with or without swings or slide, with a shop, house or a climbing wall.

You can also sometimes opt for an extension module. You can then gradually expand the device and thus spread the expenses.

Your children will love a playground and will spend many hours in it. That means that you have your hands more free, which is also very nice!

A solid device will last a very long time and most devices are suitable for children in different age categories.

Last but not least; Playground equipment always maintains a good resale value!

Good luck making your choice!

Read also: this is the best outdoor toy for the garden

Joost Nusselder, the founder of Speelkeuze.nl is a content marketer, father and loves trying out new toys. As a child, he came into contact with everything around games when his mother started the Tin Soldier in Ede. Since 2016, he and his team have been creating helpful blog articles to help loyal readers with fun play ideas.