9 best swing sets that will bring all the fun of the park to your garden
Swing the summer away with one of these fun, sturdy sets
Swings are often the first thing children head for at the play park. No wonder so many families invest in one for their own gardens.
Make sure the swing set you buy is aimed at the right age range and where possible, choose one that will see them through many years – although it means forking out more now, it will save you money in the long term.
Also consider the number of children who’ll be playing on it – you may rue the day you buy a single swing in a family of more than one child – unless it’s one of the newer saucer shapes that fits more than one child on at a time.
For traditional outdoor swing sets, make sure it’s sturdy, with ground anchors, hard-wearing materials and easy-to-follow instructions.
And consider other options too – our round-up includes a tree-hanging swing and even one that can go indoors.
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Plum Create Your Own swing: From £139, Plum
We love this versatile swing set. Choose from single-, double- or triple-length frame, with or without a slide, then pick between lime or teal metal on the frame (most of it’s wood) and – here’s the best bit – you select your own interchangeable swings, which are way more exciting than most. We tried the nest swing, like the ones you get in parks for more one than one child, trapeze swing, which is brilliant for slightly older kids, and a climbing ladder, which gives loads of play value for all ages. And there’s more too, including for tiny tots. We can’t fault it and the wood is great quality too.
TP Forest Acorn growable wooden swing set: £159.99, TP
This swing set – which has been one of TP’s bestsellers for years – grows with your child, meaning it lasts from six months to 10 years, with no need to fork out extra money when you need to extend the size or attach a more grown-up seat. And because it’s made from timber that’s cut, air dried, planed and kiln dried, then treated with an environmentally friendly preservative, it looks great and lasts for years. If you want even more stimulation for your kids, there’s a fun play centre available with added slide and toybox seat too.
Sitting Spiritually the Trilogy: £1,609, Sitting Spiritually
This company does a handsome single swing set for £959 but this one won us over with its four options of a four-seater long seat, two individual swing seats or extra-wide rope swings, or one of each of the latter two. Bottom line with all of them is that the grandparents can get a slice of the action too, whether swinging with – or next to – the littluns in the family. It’s also built to last a lifetime (hence the steep price tag) and comes in beautiful solid oak (golden) or red cedar (more red), with carvings and inscriptions also available at an extra cost.
Jumpking UFO swing: £189, Jumpking
This black and yellow saucer swing moves in all directions, not just backwards and forwards, which explains the unusual and comprehensive looking frame. It also stands out for having a trampoline-like base (Jumpking also makes trampolines), making it extra-comfy to sit or even lie in, and it also feels more secure than other saucer swings we tried. As with the Chad Valley saucer swing also reviewed here, it has a weight limit of 45kg, but this has greater play value and feels more robust, hence the steeper price tag.
Chad Valley Swing & Glide multiplay: £80, Argos
Chad Valley has an impressively wide range of swing sets to suit every family’s needs, all with affordable price tags, but this one is our favourite as it’s so comprehensive. Featuring two single swings, a glider and even a target shot panel to kick a ball through, the only downside is that your garden will be the one all the neighbourhood kids want to come to. The weather-resistant galvanised steel frame and ground anchors keep it both durable and safe and the instructions are excellent.
ELC folding nursery swing: £32.92, Amazon
The USP of this compact and colourful swing is that it’s foldable – great for smaller gardens, as well as making it possible to use inside the home. Yes, you did read that right – kids can swing to their heart’s content in your very own living room, with the rubber feet saving your floors, while for outside use, there are detachable anchors. Aimed at kids of one year and over, we found it easy to set up and put down, while the five-point safety harness stops children from falling out.
The Oak & Rope Company personalised swing: From £215, John Lewis & Partners
If you’ve got a garden tree with a sturdy protruding branch that’s crying out for a swing to be attached, then look no further. Made from solid oak in a Kent workshop, this one is personalised with carved wording of your choice (up to 12 letters) on the longer sides – your child’s name being the obvious choice. The manila rope is 1.8cm thick and reassuringly robust, while the 6m rope makes it suitable for even the tallest of trees. This one is 45cm x 17cm, but fear not if that’s too small as there are medium and large sizes available too.
Plum Quoll wooden swing wet: £199.99, Plum
Another one that grows with your child – in this case from 12 months to 12 years – this swing has been produced in conjunction with the wildlife charity Born Free, with an animal adoption pack included in the price, making it a fabulous option for animal lovers. We also like the lime finish on the swing brackets. It doesn’t come cheap, but the premium round pole timber gives the feel of a tree trunk, looking much more natural in the garden than other brands. It weathers well too.
Chad Valley saucer swing: £80, Argos
No need for siblings to fight over the garden swing as this can fit more than one child at a time. Parents will love the purse-friendly price tag and the fact that it’s so easy to assemble. The steel frame is coated with weather-resistant paint, so it should last you a long time too. “It’s just like the ones at the play park!” shouted our delighted little testers in unison, although the difference is you can’t put more than two children on it, with a maximum weight limit of 45kg.
The verdict: Swing sets
Plum’s Create Your Own swing set is the most versatile, well made and durable swing set we’ve come across. The TP Forest Acorn growable wooden swing set also gets brownie points for versatility, while our testers absolutely loved the exceptionally sturdy Jumpking swing that swings in all directions.
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