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Giant outdoor games are a great way to encourage kids to spend time out of doors.
Essentially, they are just scaled-up versions of classic games we know and love - Jenga, dominos or chess, for example - but the extra-large factor adds an element of fun and promotes more active engagement. Rather than hunching over a board indoors, children must stand and walk around, they handle larger playing pieces and they do all of this whilst out in the fresh air and sunshine.
The best garden games are well-designed, simple to construct and attention-grabbing; the sort of games that will interest kids of all ages and that won't get boring too quickly. It also goes without saying that when buying garden toys they're likely to spend a lot of time outdoors, so durability is a must. And, naturally, it's an added bonus if they look good, too (we particularly like the wooden games for this reason).
There are tons of options available on the high street, at Argos, Wayfair, Amazon and many more retailers. We've collected together the best giant games and lawn games that will engage the whole family and promote outdoor play so you can find the perfect game for your garden. Take a look below!
Our Top Choice
Traditional Garden Games Garden Pick Up Sticks
We're a sucker for a classic and these giant Pick Up Sticks certainly tick that box. An enlarged version of the timeless original, players with the steadiest hand will triumph here, as they pick up each stick without disturbing the others - a concept simple enough for children of all ages to get the hang of. At about 3 feet long, they're much easier than the original for little hands to manoeuvre (though be careful of the pointy ends if you choose to play with younger kids!). This set is great quality and at less than £20, it won't break the bank. Plus, they bundle up into a slim package that won't take up too much room when they're not being used.
- Price: £19.99
- Age: 8+
- Size: 91 x 13.6 x 3.2 cm
Best Garden Games For Under 10s
Professor Puzzle Giant 4-In-A-Row Game
Wooden garden toys are making something of a comeback among more eco-conscious consumers. They make a great alternative to plastic and they look much nicer, too. This lovely 4-in-a-row set is the giant version of an old favourite that will test kids' problem-solving skills and ability to think ahead whilst encouraging friendly competition. It's not so big that smaller children need be excluded from play, though we think kids between five and ten will get the most out of the game.
- Price: £30
- Age: 4+
- Size: H43.5 x W58 x D5 cm
Best Outdoor Games For Big Gardens
Wooden Number Kubb Garden Game
Okay, so it's not giant necessarily, but this large-ish garden game is sure to become a firm family favourite. Adapted from the Finnish game 'Molkky' it plays a bit like Skittles, with 12 wooden pins to be set up and knocked over by the person tossing the 'throwing stick' in order to score points. One of the most engaging outdoor games for kids and family members of all ages, the neutral wooden set look great, too, and all the parts are carried and stored in a neat canvas bag. It goes without saying that when you're throwing things around you need a little more space, so this is a good option for families lucky enough to have a big lawn.
- Price: £23.50
- Age: 6+
- Size: H31 x W24 x D16 cm
Best For Early Years
Chad Valley Numbers And Letters Foam Mats
These soft interlocking mats make perfect outdoor toys for kids in their first years of development. Though they're not part of a game per se, the numbers and letters printed on them allow for endless teaching and learning opportunities, and can be used as part of whatever imaginary games your little one (and perhaps their older siblings) choose to dream up. The bright, eye-catching colours and simple design are immediately engaging, and the soft foam pieces make up a mat that's perfect for your toddler to lie or crawl on outdoors; a multifunctional purchase!
- Price: £20
- Age: 1+
- Size: (each square) 25 x 25 x 1 cm
Best For Fun On-The-Go
Jaques Of London XL Tumble Tower
This Jenga-style set is a great game to take with you on family trips or to big events, as it comes with a handy zip-up canvas bag that's really easy to transport. Carefully remove blocks from the assembled tower and place on top, creating an increasingly unsound structure that will delight and terrify young kids in equal measure. The set is big enough (it can stack to an impressive 5 feet at the height of gameplay) to be enjoyed by family members of all heights and ages and is made from a good-quality sanded wood that feels smooth and durable.
- Price: £55.99
- Age: 3+
- Size: 44.2 x 36.2 x 18.2 cm
Best Giant Outdoor Games For Strategy
Freeport Park Giant Dominoes
Originating in China and popular across the modern world, the game of Dominoes is a great means of teaching your kids logical thinking. Though younger children will enjoy matching up the colours and numbers of the tiles (or creating elaborate chains of falling dominoes), older kids can boost critical thinking skills and learn to appreciate the strategic play necessary to win the game. This lovely wooden set is beautifully-painted and packaged in a pinewood box - a worthy addition to any household's collection of outdoor toys that can be enjoyed by all ages.
- Price: £35.99
- Age: 3+
- Size: 2cm x 13cm x 7cm
Best For Under 5s
Professor Puzzle Giant Snakes And Ladders Game
Snakes and Ladders is a tried-and-tested game that's been popular with kids for years, and this giant version is a great way to get them having fun out of doors. There's no real strategy to the game so it's great for younger kids, and the chunky counters and wooden dice are easy for little hands to grasp. The mat is nice and big but not so huge it won't fit on an outdoor table. The best garden game for keeping little ones entertained.
- Price: £20
- Age: 3+
- Size: H35.2 x W45.3 x D7.3 cm
Best For Family Fun
Giant Pass The Pigs Dice Game
One of the best garden games for silly fun, this variation of the dice game Pig has now been enlarged for outdoor play. Throw the inflatable pigs simultaneously into the air and gain a different number of points depending on the position they land in. The game itself is immense fun for the whole family, whilst the funny pig-related phrases involved ('swineherd', 'leaning jowler' and 'double snouter' being a few choice examples) will give everyone a giggle. Just be gentle with the inflatable pigs; they're great for the garden but not as hardwearing as the indoor equivalent and can tear if handled roughly.
- Price: £14.90
- Age: 6+
- Size: 20.00 x 6.50 x 26.50 cm
Guilty Gadgets Giant Garden Noughts And Crosses
Everyone loves a good classic; it's nice for parents and grandparents to be able to enjoy games with children that they themselves remember playing when they were young. This giant Noughts and Crosses garden game is a good one to play at family parties or events - the game is easy for young kids to understand, simple to put together, and can be broken down and packed away so it's transportable (and also easy to store). At £9.99, it's a great price too.
- Price: £9.99
- Age: 3+
- Size: 33 x 33 x 10.5 cm
Best For Families On A Budget
M.Y Jumbo Playing Cards
A lot of the best outdoor activities for kids don't cost a thing, and that's (almost) true of these jumbo playing cards, the cheapest and best value option on our list. Though card games aren't strictly garden games, this extra-large deck is sure to encourage outdoor play, not to mention make your children' next game of Snap a little more exciting. The cards are huge (A4 size), waterproof and really easy to wipe clean. They're super versatile too; with so many card games to learn and play there's hours of fun to be had.
Kidadl Best Buys selects the top parent-recommended products across the web for families and children of all ages. If you liked our guide to the best garden games for kids, take a look at our pick of the best trampolines to suit every space and make your garden the ultimate fun zone! Or why not explore something different and take a look at our guide to the best kids' lunch boxes?
- Price: £7.27
- Age: (we recommend) 5+
- Size: 28 x 20 cm
Originally from Manchester, Olivia has spent the last couple of years living between Toronto and Vancouver. She now works as a freelance writer in London and loves literature, travel and eating anything sweet. Her love of spending time with children began when she worked as an au pair in Paris.