Along with swing sets, slides are one of the most iconic pieces of children’s outdoor play equipment – and for good reason.
Slides can provide children with hours of entertainment, as they rarely get tired of the thrill of gliding from top to bottom. Adding a slide to your garden will give your kids another prop for their outdoor play, and can be great for solo or group fun.
Children’s outdoor slides are usually made from durable, weather-resistant plastic, and can be left outside year-round – so you don’t need to worry about finding a place for it in your home over winter. If you do want to bring the fun inside, many slides are also suitable for indoor use.
To help you choose the perfect option for your little one, we’ve selected 5 of the best children’s slides available, and detailed exactly why we think they’re so great below.
Last update on 2021-09-23 / All Pricing & Imagery from Amazon Product Advertising API
These slides are sturdy, safe, and ready to fill your child with joy!
Our favourite children’s slide is suitable for indoor and outdoor use – but you will need stairs
At number one on our list of the best children’s slides is this All-Weather Stair Slide by The Magic Toy Shop.
It features an extendable slide, made from durable plastic. As the slide is extendable, it’s suitable for a wide range of ages, and is recommended for kids of 3-10 years. The slide has an overall length of 177cm.
What really makes this slide unique it that it doesn’t come with steps – instead, you fit it to an existing staircase. This means you will need outdoor steps to use it outside, and that it can also be used indoors, if you have stairs in your home. It comes with a fully adjustable stabiliser bar, to fit almost any staircase.
This makes it perfect for year-round use, and means your kids can still play on their slide, even if it’s cold and raining outside. Parents will be glad to know that the slide is relatively easy to put together and take apart, thanks to the interlocking pieces. This also means it’s easy to store away when not in use.
Using the slide can help with your child’s motor skill development – not to mention, make going up and down steps infinitely more appealing (no more struggling to get them upstairs to brush their teeth!)
Ultimately, this is the perfect indoor/outdoor slide for those with limited outdoor space, but steps in or outside their home. Bring garden fun in!
- Extendable plastic slide.
- Suitable for a wide range of ages, from 3-10 years.
- Can be used on almost any stairs, inside or outside.
- Not too difficult to install and uninstall.
- Helps with motor skill development.
- Comparatively low-priced.
- Needs stairs to function – only suitable for garden use if you have outdoor steps.
- May require a hammer to get the interlocking sections together.
This colourful children’s slide is small, sturdy and super affordable, which is why it’s our value pick
If you’re looking for an outdoor slide that comes with steps and is suitable for younger children, this Little Tykes First Slide is the one we think offers you the best value for money.
It’s made from robust plastic, and is available in a choice of 2 colours – pink/purple, or blue/green – so you can choose the one you prefer. The bright colours are sure to appeal to younger children.
The small size of this slide makes it ideal for pre-school aged children of 18 months to 5 years – although bear in mind that they will outgrow it in a couple of years.
It’s also convenient for storing the slide when it’s not in use, and it can be quickly dismantled, to make this even easier. The steps unclip, and can be attached to the back of the slide, meaning it takes up even less space.
Installation is incredibly simple, as the slide comes almost fully assembled – just snap the steps and handrails into place. The whole thing feels sturdy and stable enough to withstand little ones climbing all over it.
Ultimately, this is the perfect first slide for toddlers, and will help with your child’s balance and coordination. They will outgrow it in a few years, but the super low price means you probably won’t mind passing it on to another family.
- Robust and sturdy plastic slide.
- Perfect for younger children of 18 months – 5 years.
- Easy to assemble, pieces snap into place.
- Suitable for indoor and outdoor use.
- Can be easily dismantled, for storage.
- Helps with your child’s balance and coordination.
- Small size means children will soon outgrow it.
- Care must be taken to attach the steps and handrails in the right way, so as not to snap the plastic.
This 2-in-1 garden slide can be adapted for all ages, increasing the longevity of your outdoor play equipment
The adaptable design of this Smoby 2-in-1 Garden Slide makes it suitable for a much wider range of ages, from 3 years, up to a maximum weight of 50kg.
An extension allows the slide to be adjusted from a small slide length of 1.5m, which is perfect for toddlers and inside use, to a long 3.75m, that is sure to delight older children when playing outside.
When at its maximum length, this modular slide also features a fun triple wave design, which makes it even more exciting than a standard straight slide. If you want to up the fun factor even further, you could also try using it with water.
The slide comes with several safety features, include a stable ladder, anti-skid steps, and ergonomically-designed handles, to make sure your children can enjoy the slide safely. A ground fixing kit gives you added peace of mind when using the slide outside.
Children should always be supervised when using the slide, but you shouldn’t need to worry too much. The structure is strong and stable, and it’s made from durable, UV-treated plastic, to reduce colour fade, and ensure it will last for years to come.
This is our priciest outdoor slide, but it’s also the one that offers the most longevity. This is a seriously exciting and versatile slide, that’s guaranteed to impress the kids.
- Made from UV-treated plastic.
- Innovative modular style with triple wave.
- 2-in-1 design can be set up as a 1.5m or a 3.75m slide.
- Perfect for a wide range of ages.
- Stable ladder and anti-skid steps, for safety.
- Suitable for indoor or outdoor use.
- 1-year guarantee.
- Our priciest outdoor slide.
A long and wavy outdoor slide, that’s ideal for attaching to a playhouse, as it doesn’t come with steps
Our next garden slide is this Universal Plastic Slide from Rebo. As with our top pick, this slide doesn’t come with steps; instead, it is intended for use with another structure, such as a playhouse or climbing frame.
The slide is made from high-quality plastic, which is cascade injection moulded, for a superior gliding experience. It features a wave design, as opposed to a straight slide, and measures a substantial 7ft long – although other sizes are also available. It’s recommended for ages 3-12 years, which gives the slide a long lifespan.
Providing you have a suitable structure, it is very easy to install the slide, and could also be ideal for replacing an existing, worn-out slide. If you want to up the ante, you can use a hose pipe to turn it into a water slide (required attachment sold separately), for even more summertime fun.
The disadvantage of this slide over others is that it isn’t freestanding, and you will need a stable structure on which to attach it. However, if you have an existing playhouse, treehouse or climbing frame, and want to make it even more exciting for kids by adding a slide, this is a great option.
- Made from high-quality plastic.
- Cascade injection moulded, for an improved glide.
- Fun wave design.
- Suitable for ages 3-12 years.
- Quick and easy to install.
- Ideal for replacing an existing slide on a climbing frame.
- Can also be used as a water slide (additional hose attachment required).
- Not freestanding – can’t be used on its own.
- Requires 2 x 5 or 6mm countersunk screws for fixing in place, which are not included.
This brightly-coloured kids garden slide is perfect for little ones aged 2 years and over
The last outdoor slide to make it into our top 5 is this Smoby Medium Weatherproof Garden Slide. This is another small model, measuring 159 x 100 x 68 cm, and is suitable for ages 2 years+ (you can expect children to outgrow it after a few years).
The slide is made from durable, blow-moulded plastic, with no sharp corners or edges for children to catch themselves on. It comes in a vibrant red and yellow finish, which young kids will love, and the plastic is UV-treated, so the colours won’t fade in the sun.
It has a slight wave to it, and flattens out at the bottom, ensuring children will have a safe and comfortable landing. There is an included hose attachment with this one, to allow you to connect a hose pipe, and use it as a water slide on hot days. The end of the slide could also be placed in a paddling pool, for even more water-based fun.
This small slide is easy to put together and disassemble. Although it doesn’t fold, it is compact and lightweight, so it can be moved and stored easily. Overall, this is another excellent first slide option for toddlers, and offers hours of fun for little ones.
- Made from durable, blow-moulded plastic.
- UV-treated, to prevent colours from fading in the sun.
- Includes hose attachment, so you can turn it into a water slide on hot days.
- Slide flattens out at the bottom, for a soft landing.
- Ideal for toddlers, aged 2 years+.
- Easy to assemble and disassemble.
- Suitable for indoor or outdoor use.
- Fitting for the hose is non-standard.
- Young children will outgrow this in a few years.
How To Keep Your Kids Safe During Play
Safety is an important part of any play activity, but it’s of particular concern when using ‘thrill-seeking’ outdoor play equipment such as slides, which have an increased risk of falls and injuries.
To keep your kids safe, it’s important to regularly check outdoor play equipment for any signs of wear. On slides, check the steps are strong and stable, and that there are no cracks in the plastic that children could catch themselves on.
Swing sets should also be inspected for cracks, and the ropes checked for signs of fraying. Check the springs on trampolines, and look for signs of rust. If you see anything that could be dangerous to kids, get it fixed before allowing them to play on it again.
Consider the weather when allowing children to play on outdoor play equipment. If it is raining, or has rained recently, this can make otherwise safe equipment slippery and hazardous. The same goes for frosty mornings, when it may be icy.
Always ensure that children are a suitable age for the equipment they are using, and that they are dressed appropriately. Depending on the equipment, this may mean avoiding dress up capes, or other loose items, that could get caught in springs or mechanisms.
Make children aware of how to use play equipment safely. This might mean taking it in turns, not pushing each other, or ensuring that other children are well clear from the equipment before they use it (for example, waiting for the bottom of the slide to be empty before they take their turn). Most importantly, always supervise young children as they play. That way, you will be on-hand to stop any misuse of equipment or dangerous behaviour as soon as it starts, as well as to deal with any accidents promptly.
April is a freelance writer who specialises in writing about home and garden design and the environment. She is an avid wildlife-enthusiast and adventure-seeker, and feels happiest when in the Great Outdoors.