11 Best Wooden Playsets: Your Buyer’s Guide

best wooden swing sets

Looking to add one of the best wooden swing sets to your backyard this summer? We’ve got you covered with this ultimate guide.

One of the byproducts of our ever-advancing modern age is that kids are having more and more reasons to stay inside. Whether it’s video games, TV shows, Netflix marathons, or cool indoor toys, going outside to play is simply not as attractive anymore.

With that said, if you give your kids a reason to be outside, chances are they will gradually change their minds. One of the best ways to do so is to build a swing set in your backyard, and where quality is concerned, you want to go with wooden playsets (they last longer than their metal or plastic counterparts).

There are many ways to do this. Some opt for DIY builds, but that takes a lot of time and effort. Most parents chose to go for a pre-made swing set, which is probably why you’re reading this right now.

And with the warmer weather approaching, we’ve selected the top 11 best wooden swing sets and playsets that will bring countless hours of entertainment to your kids.

congo monkey playset Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Dimensions: 24 x 14 x 12.9 ft
  • Recommended Ages: 3+
  • Low Maintenance
Price: $6,199.00 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
best wooden playsets Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Dimensions: 16′ x 14′ x 10’6″
  • Recommended Ages: 3+
  • Not cheesy-looking
Price: $3,149.00 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
big backyard kidkraft wood swing set Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Great Price
  • All Cedar
  • Sandbox
Price: $449.89 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
Backyard Discovery Scenic Heights All Cedar Playhouse Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Dimensions: 77 x 77 x 91 inches
  • Ages: 2 to 10 years
  • More affordable
Price: $840.00 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
little tikes Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Up to 10 Kids
  • Well-Known Brand
  • Unique Nesting Saucer
Price: $1,632.78 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
skyfort ii Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Dimensions: 21' 11 1/8" x 16' 9 1/8" x 12' 1/3"
  • Recommended Ages: 3 to 10 years
  • App-guided 3D assembly
Price: $1,999.00 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
Beach Front All Cedar Wooden Swing Set Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Loads to do
  • Spacious design
  • Cedarwood is the best for a reason
Price: $882.00 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
KidKraft Lewiston Retreat Cedar Wood Swing Set Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Loads of activities
  • Recommend Ages: 3+
  • Space for several kids
Price: $1,685.90 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
nantucket playsets Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Dimenions: 19 x 18 x 11 ft
  • Recommended Ages: 5+
  • Rock Wall w/ Climbing Rope
Price: $1,570.41 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
backyard discovery woodridge Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Dimensions: 19' x 15' 2/3" x 11' 3/4"
  • Ages: 3 to 10 years
  • Tunnel!
Price: $2,499.99 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
best wooden playsets gorilla playsets
  • Dimensions: 27’6″L x 19’W x 13’H
  • Recommended Ages: 3+
  • The ULTIMATE Swing Set
Price: $3,799.99 Shop now at Amazon Shop now Read our review
Our Unbiased Reviews
  1. 1. Congo Monkey Playsystem #4 with Swing Beam

    Pros:
    • Dimensions: 24 x 14 x 12.9 ft
    • Recommended Ages: 3+
    • Low Maintenance
    Cons:
    • Delivery appointment required
    • Only green available
    • Assembly Time

    One playset model you should definitely check out if you have a smaller family is from Congo, and it’s called the Congo Monkey Playsystem. Compared to the previous two sets above, this one features three towers instead of two. All of the towers are of different height, giving this set a castle-like appearance.

    As a part of the kit, you get two slides — one spiral enclosed slide and one wavy open slide — a swing set that is mounted to the side and a climbing wall. The Swingset has two swings and a bar swing. Pound for pound, this thing is loaded. The towers are connected to each other directly, so there are no sun bridges or anything similar. Instead of a sandpit, the ground level of one of the towers features a bench with a table — which is great for pretend play as well as snack time.

    In terms of quality, you are looking at polymer-coated cedar lumber. What this means is that Congo offers a maintenance-free set that you don’t have to worry about. If you live in an area with a lot of rainfall every year, this set is a perfect choice, as it even has rain tarps covering each of the towers, also providing a significant amount of shade on the sunnier days. It’s great for families with one to three kids.

  2. 2. Congo Monkey Playsystem #1

    Pros:
    • Dimensions: 16′ x 14′ x 10’6″
    • Recommended Ages: 3+
    • Not cheesy-looking
    Cons:
    • Might be too simple
    • Delivery appointment required
    • Nothing going on in the fort

    Gorilla Playsets are not the only popular brand that offers single tower kits out there. Congo’s Monkey Playsystem #1 is a great set with a lot of interesting solutions. For one, the tower is not completely covered. There is a portion that is exposed and works as a balcony of sorts. The roof on this set is not made of lumber but is actually a piece of green tarp.

    This makes it easy to construct and reduces the number of exposed elements to worry about. Included in the set are a rock climbing wall, a slide and a swing set with hangers. One of the more unique features is the fireman’s pole located in the center of the tower.

    This pole allows your kids quick access to the sandpit bellow, while they can also use it instead of ladders to get down. Quality-wise, this is a low maintenance set and is pretty easy to set up, and that’s why it’s on our list of the best wooden swing sets for this summer.

    Dimensions: 16′ x 14′ x 10’6″
    Recommended Ages: 3 Years and Up

  3. 3. Big Backyard KidKraft Andoora Cedar Wood Swing Set

    Pros:
    • Great Price
    • All Cedar
    • Sandbox
    Cons:
    • No Sand Included
    • Basic
    • Only for 1 or 2 kids, really.

    With virtually every big brand playset sold out right now, your best available cheaper option is this Big Backyard KidKraft Andorra Cedar Wood Swing Playset – which comes in at well under the price you were probably expecting to pay right now.

    It’s a great little playset for your backyard if you only have one or two children, as it only has two swings, a small rock climbing ladder, and a slide. In the little clubhouse that the slide and climbing ladder lead up to, you’ll also find a great vinyl chalkboard that’s ready for your kids to draw on.

    And below the slide, clubhouse, and ladder, you’ll find a sandbox for your kids to play in as well (although it doesn’t come with the sand to fill it).

    If you’re looking to not spend an arm and a leg to keep the kids occupied for the rest of the summer, this high-quality cedar wood set is under $600 right now.

  4. 4. Backyard Discovery Scenic Heights All Cedar Playhouse

    Pros:
    • Dimensions: 77 x 77 x 91 inches
    • Ages: 2 to 10 years
    • More affordable
    • Perfect for smaller yards
    Cons:
    • Isn't as large as the pricier options
    • Needs painting
    • Isn't any activities to play with/on

    This Backyard Discovery Scenic Heights All Cedar Playhouse is perfect for smaller backyards and small playgrounds (although it officially says it’s intended for residential use only).

    It has a spacious upper fort with a shaded area, which is cool. Not only that, on the bottom there’s space for a sandpit, and on the inside of the main playhouse are storage drawers and a bench area to sit. You could totally eat your lunch in comfort in there. 

    Once assembled, it measures 77 x 77 x 91 inches, and it ships in two boxes. The wood all comes pre-cut, pre-drilled, and pre-stained, so it’s ready to use once assembled. It’s also a lot easier to put together than you’d think. Definitely don’t be put off by how complex it looks. 

  5. 5. Little Tikes Real Wood Adventures Grizzly Grotto

    Pros:
    • Up to 10 Kids
    • Well-Known Brand
    • Unique Nesting Saucer
    Cons:
    • Comes in 5 different boxes
    • Assembly time
    • Only Two Swings

    Typically speaking, when you think about the Little Tikes brand, your mind goes straight to big plastic toys, but recently, the well-known toymaker has entered the outdoor playset space with this super impressive Real Wood Adventures Grizzly Grotto Outdoor Playset.

    And, honestly, it’s one of the most unique wooden playsets we’ve seen yet. Not only does it have a small wooden bridge (which isn’t common in backyard sets), it also has a great nest saucer under the playhouse that’s perfect for grabbing a quick breather in between active play.

    This playset also comes with the standard swings and an 8-foot slide, as well as two ladders to encourage climbing. It will take around 6 or 7 hours for you and a friend to assemble, but the end product is well worth the hassle.

    It has room for up to 10 kids to play at once, thanks to its roomy design, and the playhouse at the top looks akin to a fire lookout tower that you’d find in the forest.

  6. 6. Backyard Discovery Skyfort II

    Pros:
    • Dimensions: 21' 11 1/8" x 16' 9 1/8" x 12' 1/3"
    • Recommended Ages: 3 to 10 years
    • App-guided assembly
    Cons:
    • Uses wood screws (deck screws would be better)
    • Directions should tell you to put the bay windows and roof on last
    • Swings are a bit close together

    Backyard Discovery is one of the leading brands in backyard playsets, and I absolutely LOVE that they named this the Skyfort II. The name is fitting, for sure, thanks to the little skybox that protrudes out of fort that sits above the swings.

    This playset has a LOT of activities available, including monkey bars, swings, a big slide, rock wall, a snack stand and picnic table. It’s made with high-quality cedar that looks gorgeous in your backyard.

    But what parents will really appreciate is that it has easy assembly, thanks to the BILT app that provides 3D guided assembly instructions (to my knowledge, no other playset brand has implemented app-guided assembly yet).

    Dimensions: 21′ 11 1/8″ x 16′ 9 1/8″ x 12′ 1/3″
    Recommended Ages: 
    3 to 10 years

  7. 7. Beach Front All Cedar Wooden Swing Set

    Pros:
    • Loads to do
    • Spacious design
    • Cedarwood is the best for a reason
    • Brings beach style to the yard
    • Comes with an app to help build it
    Cons:
    • Pricey
    • Not everyone likes the beach color scheme
    • Ideally needs multiple people to put up

    The Beach Front All Cedar Wooden Swing Set is one of the best playsets around. It’s colorful, which is a nice change, and it’s got a ton of activities to play with. 

    With dimensions of 169 x 173 x 118 inches, this thing has space for everyone to play without tripping over each other. In terms of what’s what, you’ve got a long slide, swings, ladder with climbing pegs, a spacious clubhouse area, climbing bars, and space on the underneath to hang out. That’s a lot, so you know the kids aren’t going to be bored any time soon. 

    This is also an all-cedar set, meaning you’ve got outdoor protection against rot, decay, and cracks. If you’re after a wooden playset, you absolutely want to be picking cedar as your wood of choice. It’s the best for a reason. 

  8. 8. KidKraft Lewiston Retreat Cedar Wood Swing Set

    Pros:
    • Loads of activities
    • Recommend Ages: 3+
    • Space for several kids
    • Superb quality
    Cons:
    • Will take a while to put together
    • May need to rope in a second person for help
    • Cheesy/useless clock in an odd spot

    KidKraft playhouses are built to last, so if you’re after something that’s going to work year-on-year, the KidKraft Lewiston Retreat Cedar Wood Swing Set is a smart investment. 

    I’d definitely recommend it for smaller yards/those looking for a more compact wooden playset. It uses high-quality cedar, so you know you’re getting a good-looking (and long-lasting!) swing set that’ll make your backyard look great.

    As for what’s here, you’ve got two slides – one of which is a more traditional slide, the other an enclosed version – monkey bars, two swings, and the clubhouse area with a working door and mailbox. That’s a lot, isn’t it? 

    It’s also super sturdy, as it can hold several children as long as they don’t weigh more than 110 pounds.

  9. 9. Gorilla Playsets Nantucket Swing Set

    Pros:
    • Rock Wall w/ Climbing Rope
    • Dimenions: 19 x 18 x 11 ft
    • Recommended Ages: 5+
    • Sandbox area under tower
    • Wave slide
    • Cedar lumber
    Cons:
    • Some complaints of slow customer service
    • Skews to younger kids, really
    • Plastic windows should be wooden

    Single tower designs are every bit as fun as ones with two towers. Designed for those who have to work with limited room, they offer practical solutions which are more flexible. Gorilla Playsets offers its Nantucket Swing Set with this kind of customer in mind.

    The set includes a single tower that features a swing set attached to its right side, a quality polymer slide, and a small rock climbing wall. As usual, you also get a set of ladders for easy access to the upper levels. At the bottom of this tower, Gorilla Playsets included a pretty roomy sandpit that is bordered off using lumber bars.

    Every piece of wood is coated with a polymer layer that makes the entire set completely maintenance-free. You don’t have to worry about water, rot or even insects damaging the lumber. If you’re after a single tower design, this kit is among the best out there. And for single families with one to three kids, it’s the best wooden swing set.

    Dimenions: 19 x 18 x 11 ft
    Recommended Ages: 5 Years and Up

  10. 10. Backyard Discovery Woodridge Elite Swing Set

    Pros:
    • Dimensions: 19' x 15' 2/3" x 11' 3/4"
    • Ages: 3 to 10 years
    • Tunnel!
    Cons:
    • Assembly Time is rough
    • Hard to read part labels
    • Parts are scattered between four boxes and not separated appropriately for each step

    Now, if you’re looking for a backyard playset with a tunnel attached to it, your best bet is the Backyard Discovery Woodridge Elite. This brilliantly designed playset is one of my favorites, as it’s quite spacious and not overloaded. In fact, its design is pretty simple: it has a tall rock wall ladder leading up to a tunnel, which leads to an upper playhouse. On the side of that playhouse, you’ll find a slide going down and another ladder going up. Underneath the playhouse, you’ll find another play area.

    Kids LOVE tunnels, and that’s why this Backyard Discovery playset is worth it.

  11. 11. Gorilla Playsets Treasure Trove Wood Swing Set (Editor’s Choice)

    Price: $3,799.99
    Pros:
    • The ULTIMATE Swing Set
    • Recommended Ages: 3+
    • Dimensions: 27’6″L x 19’W x 13’H
    • Bridge
    • Rock wall
    Cons:
    • Might be too big for some yards
    • Pricey but worth it
    • Assembly directions a bit muddy

    The next swing set is a bit more compact but it has a lot more going on. What you see here with the Gorilla Playsets Treasure Trove Wood Swing Set is a twin fort design where one of the towers has two different levels and is larger than the other. Both have sandpits on the ground level. The size of the sandpits differs from tower to tower, and the larger one is definitely suitable for a few kids to play together at the same time. In terms of features, it has both a spiral slide and a regular slide, both made of durable polymers. There’s also a small rock climbing wall that offers access to one of the forts, while the whole set is completed by a sturdy swing set.

    The quality of the materials and elements they ship with this set is pretty impressive. Everything feels sturdy and inspires confidence. You don’t have to worry about your little ones’ safety. The set arrives with clear assembly manuals, so putting this thing together won’t be too difficult.

    It’s best suited for multiple children, so whether you’re looking to supplement your daycare’s outdoor toys with something more formidable or you’ve got a big family, the Treasure Trove is truly that — a treasure!

    Dimensions: 27’6″L x 19’W x 13’H
    Recommended Ages: 3 Years and Up

     

Playset Buying Tips

  • Measure your yard before you begin shopping to know exactly how much space you have available for a playset.
  • Have at least a vague idea about the type of swing set you want to buy before you begin shopping.
  • When budgeting, remember that wooden playsets are built specifically to last you for years to come. So, it's worth spending a bit more now than buying a cheaper metal one and having to replace it in a few years.
  • Avoid metal slides at all costs. Metal slides get much hotter than plastic slides in the summer, and can even burn your child.

When is the Best Time to Buy a Playset if You're Looking to Save Money?

Like many other products, it's cheapest to buy swingsets in their offseason. When it comes to playsets, it's best to buy them in February or March just before the warm weather is about to come creeping back or around Black Friday-December.

Making Fun For Your Kids In Unexpected Ways

When you think about swing sets, you typically think about the proper way to use them, which includes swinging, rock walls, slides, and the like that is shown in the advertising. But, I highly encourage you to play with your kids to show them other ways in which their new playset might actually be fun. For example, many of the playsets shown above have a sort of lower deck/small playhouse underneath an upper playhouse, and some of them have a window which is perfect for a puppet theatre. In fact, my daughter's favorite thing to do with her playset is use the "kitchen" as a puppet theater, making my wife and I watch her perform a show with her brother. It was BRILLIANT fun!

See Also:

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