Best outdoor toys and games 2022 - garden fun for kids of all ages

The best outdoor toys to help you make the most of the sunshine and liven up garden play

Best outdoor toys and games for kids
(Image credit: Future)

We've rounded up the best outdoor toys for kids so they can get the most out of the warmer weather this year. 

When the school holidays roll around, it's a good idea to have plenty of things to do with kids (opens in new tab) lined up - whether that be easy crafts (opens in new tab) to keep them busy or days out with the National Trust (opens in new tab) - so you can avoid the 'mum, I'm bored' complaints.

With the weather warming up, it's the perfect time to get children outside playing with outdoor toys for kids. Garden games for kids are a great way to keep them entertained in the back garden for hours, and we all know that plenty of fresh air makes for a good night's sleep (opens in new tab) at the end of the day too.

From wooden toys and puzzles (opens in new tab) to the latest and greatest of sports-inspired garden games, here's our pick of the best outdoor toys for kids in 2022.

Best garden games and outdoor toys for kids 2022

1. Turbo Swingball

Swingball Classic set, one of our best outdoor toys

Credit: Amazon

What's more fun than an original Swingball set? Even small gardens can handle one of these. They also pack up and down fairly easily as well, so there's plenty of fun guaranteed even if you're just taking it out for a few hours.

'Swingball is a game the kids just never seem to tire of,' says our Consumer Editor, Heidi Scrimgeour. 'It's a permanent fixture in our garden all year round and even the teenagers can't resist joining in when a tournament begins.'

Suitable for ages: 6+

VIEW AT AMAZON | £28.70 (opens in new tab)

2. Learning Resources Geosafari Seascope

GeoSafari Seascope

(Image credit: GeoSafari)

Head straight for the beach with this clever telescope designed for underwater viewing! It's suitable for use on both land and underwater, without anyone needing to get wet. The extendable body and 5x magnification plus a built-in LED flashlight make it easy to view objects - even in poor light. Requires 3 AA batteries, not included. 

Suitable for: 8+

VIEW AT AMAZON | £33.44 (opens in new tab)

3. AquaPlay LockBox

AquaPlay LockBox one of the best outdoor toys

(Image credit: AquaPlay)

Hours of outdoor fun are guaranteed with the Aquaplay Lock Box from Smoby. It's designed to educate children about locks and canal systems in a fun way, so they can steer the transport boat through the canals and watch the water cause it to rise. There's even a crane to move the containers between the boat and the car.

'Kids love water play - especially when it's roasting hot outside - and this is an easy way to keep it contained if you're short on outdoor space,' adds our Consumer Editor. 'Plus it's quick and easy to pack away when playtime is over and it's time to tidy up.'

Suitable for: 3+

VIEW AT JOHN LEWIS | £29.99 (opens in new tab)

4. Chad Valley Inflatable Goal Set

Chad Valley Inflatable Goal Set

Credit: Argos

An inflatable goal set like this Chad Valley one from Argos costs only £11. It’s ideal for the changeable English weather as you can blow it up and then take it down whenever you want. Plus with the build in goals, it’s a level up from the classic football net.

Suitable for ages: 5+

VIEW AT AMAZON | £19.39 (opens in new tab)

5. Plum Play Wave Spring Trampoline and Enclosure with Mist

Plum Play Trampoline

Credit: Plum Play

(Image credit: Plum Play)

What do you get if you cross a trampoline with a blast of the garden sprinkler? This amazing outdoor toy! Simply hook up your hose pipe to create a bouncy world of water play - kids can bounce away beneath the cooling gentle mist on even the hottest of days. Youngsters are kept safe from the springs and frame parts thanks to a 2G Springsafe enclosure and the steel frame is galvanised and powder coated to keep it rust-free. 

Suitable for ages: 3+

VIEW AT PLUM PLAY | £229.99 (opens in new tab)

6. Bunch O Balloons 265+ Rapid-Filling Self-Sealing Water Balloons

Bunch O Balloons 265+ Rapid-Filling Self-Sealing Water Balloons

Credit: Argos
(Image credit: Bunch O Balloons)

It's hard to convey just how much fun can be had with these cleverly-designed water balloons. Forget the mess and chaos you associate with water balloons - these are genuinely quick and easy to fill. You just attach the stem to a hose and they're ready in seconds. Best of all, you don't have to tie them. The stems and caps are made from recycled plastic and the balloons themselves are made from plant-based natural rubber.

Suitable for ages: 3+

VIEW AT AMAZON | £17.94 (opens in new tab)

7. Early Learning Centre Soft Ball Pack

Early Learning Centre Soft Ball Pack

Credit: Early Learning Centre

These super squishy balls are copies of the classic basketball, football and American football. They're perfect toys for small ones who might not be ready to play with the harder sports balls. They're perfect for games, as well as helping them to develop good hand-eye coordination skills.

Suitable for ages: + 18 months

VIEW AT ELC | £12 (opens in new tab)

8. Dolu My First Moto Racer Motorbike

Dolu My First Moto Racer Motorbike

Credit: Early Learning Centre

Watch them speed around the garden, the local park or down the road on this roaring red motorbike from the Early Learning Centre. It's got chunky black wheels to keep small kids stable as they go tearing off, helping them to practice balancing as well.

Suitable for ages: 2+

VIEW AT ELC | £34.99 (opens in new tab)

9. Summer Waves Inflatable Multi-Coloured Pool

Summer Waves Inflatable Multi-Coloured Pool

Credit: John Lewis

This John Lewis paddling pools has been a favourite of ours for a few years now and it continues to be one of the best paddling pools (opens in new tab) out there. It's super easy to inflate and deflate with its 3 air chambers and fills up to 110 litres, making it perfect for a refreshing splash when the temperature goes up.

Suitable for ages: 2+

VIEW AT JOHN LEWIS | £11.99 (opens in new tab)

10. No Fear Spirit Skates

No Fear kids roller skates, one of the best outdoor toys for sale

Credit: Sports Direct

An enduring trend, these inline skates are a sure-fire way to liven up a weekend. They come up high on our list of the best outdoor toys for kids, and are available in sizes 1 to 3.5 or 4 to 6.5 so as your little ones grow, the skates will grow with them.

Suitable for ages: N/A - shoe size one and over

VIEW AT SPORTS DIRECT | £36 (opens in new tab)

11. Wishtime Kids Adjustable Portable Basketball Set

Wishtime Kids Adjustable Portable Basketball Set, one of the best outdoor toys

Credit: Getty

Basketball hoops are fun for the whole family! This one is adjustable so the taller the kids get, the higher the hoop goes. This set comes with a mini basketball, a base, pole, backboard, hoop and net. The base can be easily weighed down with sand or water too, so there's no chance of it falling over - no matter how many times it gets used.

Suitable for ages: 5+

VIEW AT AMAZON | £32.99 (opens in new tab)

12. Moon Shoes

Moon Shoes, high on our list of best outdoor toys

Credit: Argos

Defy gravity with these incredible mini-trampolines! These unique shoes are made of quality, high-density plastic with adjustable Velcro closure straps. Safe and durable, ready for plenty of bouncing around the garden.

Suitable for ages: 7+

VIEW AT VERY | £25.99 (opens in new tab)

13. Chad Valley Inflatable Bouncy Castle

Chad Valley Inflatable Bouncy Castle, one of our best outdoor toys

Credit: Argos

Suitable for everything from a low-key birthday to a Sunday afternoon in the sun, this Chad Valley Bouncy Castle has a 2-in-1 valve for easy inflation and deflation. It's made from durable and puncture-resistant material, so you don't have to worry about this being a one-year wonder toy either.

VIEW AT ARGOS | £85 (opens in new tab)

14. Pogo stick

Pogo stick, one of our best outdoor toys for kids this summer

Credit: Amazon

Take a trip round the garden on this pogo stick, available from Amazon in a wide variety of colours. It's suitable for kids and offers hours of fun, as the stick comes with an attached ball rather than the classic pole. This makes it easier for littler ones to get involved too.

Suitable for ages: 7+

VIEW AT AMAZON | £21.90 (opens in new tab)

15. Giant Chalks

Giant chalks

Credit: Amazon

Get creative with your kids and these amazing giant chalks from Amazon. Create a giant snakes and ladders board or a hopscotch grid on your garden pavement. And don't worry, the chalk can be easily washed away with some warm soapy water.

Suitable for ages: 3+

VIEW AT AMAZON | £8.81 (opens in new tab)

16. My Living World Safari-Nature Explorer Bug Catcher Set

My Living World Safari-Nature Explorer Bug Catcher Set

Credit: Amazon

Wannabe nature experts will love this easy-use bug safari kit. Included in the set is everything they need to catch, study and identify common garden creatures. They can take it out to the beach or the local park too, as there's a full colour booklet to help them use the equipment in different spaces as well as charts to help them figure out what they've caught.

Suitable for ages: 5+

VIEW AT AMAZON | £12.99 (opens in new tab)

17. Little Tikes Cozy Coupe

Little Tikes Cozy Coupe

Credit: Argos

Calling all racers! We couldn't miss out this classic outdoor toy off the best outdoor toys list, as it's been serving up hours of fun for little ones for decades now. It comes with a working horn and a contained storage area (perfect for taking toys on the road) as well, so there will be smiles all round.

Suitable for ages: 18+ months

VIEW AT AMAZON | £52.99 (opens in new tab)

18. Sunnylife Mega 4 in a row

Sunnylife Mega 4 in a row

Credit: Sunnylife

(Image credit: Sunnylife)

Fun for all the family and great for entertaining large groups of children, this Connect 4-style four-in-a-row game was dreamt up on the beaches of Sydney. It's hand-painted in natural wood, stands 48cm tall, and includes 42 blue and green chips. That should keep all ages occupied outdoors for a while!

Suitable for ages: 3+

VIEW AT KIDLY | £63 (opens in new tab)

19. Wicked Mega Jump Double Children's Skipping Rope

Wicked Unisex-youth Mega Jump Double Children's Skipping Rope

Kids can learn to jump faster and master more tricks with Wicked’s Mega Jump. The specially designed rope release mechanism makes it easy to adjust the length of the rope, meaning it's a great outdoor toy for kids of all ages and suitable for both beginners and advanced jump ropers.  There’s also a longer length version for multiple skippers and Double Dutch play so the whole family can get involved.

VIEW AT AMAZON | £9.61 (opens in new tab)

20. Waboba Moon Ball

Waboba Moon Ball

Credit: John Lewis

Whether you're a fan of basketball or just throwing and catching, the Waboba Moon is perfect. It has a gravity-defying bounce created by a lightweight design, made up of flat-edged sides. These add spin to the ball and make it possible to bounce the ball perfectly on walls, pavements and any other surface you want!

Suitable for ages: 6+

VIEW AT JOHN LEWIS | £6 (opens in new tab)

21. Insect Lore Butterfly Garden

Insect Lore Butterfly Garden

Credit: Getty

This insect lore butterfly garden from Amazon (with free delivery for Prime members) is a great way to teach the kids about life cycles. This set provides your children with 5 baby caterpillars and allows them to track the insects' progress as they grow into butterflies.

Suitable for ages: 4+

VIEW AT AMAZON | £18.99 (opens in new tab)

22. ToyerZ Darts Outdoor Game

ToyerZ Darts Outdoor Game

Credit: Amazon

Nothing quite beats a classic darts set - except a lawn darts set. Suitable for kids and adults of all ages, this set is ideal if you’ve got some outdoor garden space and can really have a go at throwing those darts as far as possible.

Suitable for ages: 5+

VIEW AT AMAZON | £7.99 (opens in new tab)

23. Smoby Nature Playhouse with Kitchen

Smoby Nature Playhouse with Kitchen

Credit: Argos

This playhouse is one of the best toys in our selection because it comes with everything little ones will need for a whole day out in the garden. Along with the house and adjoining plastic sink, it comes with two glasses, two plates and cutlery. You'll have trouble getting them back inside with this one!

Suitable for ages: 2+

VIEW AT AMAZON | £142.96 (opens in new tab)

24. Twister

Twister set

Credit: Amazon

This classic game of Twister from Amazon is perfect to play in the sunshine. With challenging balance positions and unpredictable changes in the game, Twister is a brilliant game to take to the beach or the park or even just into the garden.

Suitable for ages: 6+

VIEW AT AMAZON | £15.99 (opens in new tab)

25. John Lewis Bubble Mower

Chad Valley Bubble Lawn Mower, one of the best outdoor toys for sale now

Credit: Argos

Kids won't be able to resist this bubble blower. Your little one will be able to 'mow the lawn' and create a whole load of bubbles in the process. Our favourite thing about this toy is that as you push it around the garden, more and more bubbles are created - so the faster they go, the better!

Suitable for ages: 3+

VIEW AT JOHN LEWIS | £18 (opens in new tab)

26. deAO Wooden Animal Multi-coloured Skittles

deAO Wooden Animal Multi-coloured Skittles

Credit: Amazon
(Image credit: deAO)

A traditional bowling pin set is a real garden essential for the summer. Colourful and bright, you won't these in the grass!

Suitable for ages: 4+

27. Kinetic Sand

Kinetic sand in a box, one of the best outdoor toys for kids in 2021

Credit: Amazon

If your little one normally loves playing at the beach, this one on our best outdoor toys list is a twist on classic sand. This kinetic sand pack lets kids create their very own garden using the four different shaped moulds. There’s no chance you’ll find this sand stepped into the carpet indoors either as it sticks to itself for easy clean up.

Suitable for ages: 3+

VIEW AT AMAZON | £14.99 (opens in new tab)

28. Infantino Jumbo Sensory Mat

Infantino Jumbo Sensory Discovery Mat

(Image credit: Infantino)

A lovely outdoor play option for babies, this Jumbo Sensory Mat from Infantino provides a wonderful place for rolling, crawling, sitting and tummy time outside. The textured shapes, crinkly fabrics, colourful ribbons, and giant selfie mirror offer lots for little ones to explore while the interactive activities and cheeky animal  characters (including a monkey, racoon, elephant and a sloth) will keep busy minds and hands engaged. It's ideal for on-the-go play dates at the park or in the garden as it's super-easy and quick to fold up. 

Suitable for:

VIEW AT VERTBAUDET | £45 (opens in new tab)

29. Discovery Soft Archery Target Boss

Discovery Soft Archery Target Boss

(Image credit: Decathlon)

'A fabulous outdoor toy that has stayed in rotation in our summer games arsenal for years,' says our Consumer Editor. The plastic target with suction cup arrows is safe for even the youngest family members to have a go at developing their archery skills. (For use only under adult supervision.)

VIEW AT DECATHLON | £29.99 (opens in new tab)

30. Throw Throw Burrito Extreme Outdoor Edition

Throw Throw Burrito Extreme Outdoor Edition by Exploding Kittens

(Image credit: Exploding Kittens)

This hilarious game is great for the outdoors and guaranteed to get the whole family giggling. 'If you're browsing for the best outdoor toys this summer but still can't decide what to pop in your basket, I've got the answer,' says our Consumer Editor. 'You need Throw Throw Burrito Extreme Outdoor Edition in your life. All you really need to know is that this wacky outdoor game involves giant inflatable burritos which you get to throw at your competitors. Told you it was brilliant.'

It's dodgeball meets a game of cards. The object of the game is to collect matching sets of cards faster than your opponents - whilst throwing giant inflatable burritos at each other and trying not to get hit!

Suitable for: 7+

VIEW AT AMAZON | £29.99 (opens in new tab)