With international travel still looking uncertain, and UK holiday resorts filling up fast, you may feel that you’re going to miss out on the fun of splashing in a pool or the sea this summer.
But we’ve got you covered with a guide to the best-selling garden swimming pools this year. So even if you’ve decided on a staycation this summer, you can still dip your toes – or laze on a lilo with a cocktail – in cool, clear water and enjoy the UK heatwave.
Easiest swimming pool to set up
The Intex Easy Set Pool is an above ground pool that is fast and simple to assemble – which is handy when the kids are too excited to wait before they jump right in. This round pool has a 183cm diameter and a height of 52cm making it ideal for younger children.
The pool is durable with three layers of material for extra strength and doesn’t need inflating. In fact, it builds itself as it fills – and has a water capacity of 886 litres – plus a drainage plug for emptying. Our top tip is to lay it on a flat surface so the water fills evenly.
Due to the shallow sides, there is no ladder required to enter the pool – simply step over, sink into the water and relax.
The pool is available on Amazon with free delivery for just £33.95.
Best paddling pools for toddlers
This three-ringed inflatable pool is perfect for supervised pre-schoolers. It’s made using BPA-free PVC which is durable and less resistant to punctures from small stones. We love how this pool has a textured bottom to help prevent your little ones from slipping as they jump in the water.
The pool has a diameter of 120cm and a depth of 43cm, which makes it fast to inflate with a pump. Little ones will enjoy the sea creature decorations around the pool as they make a splash during the summer holidays.
Alternatively, treat the youngest members of the family to the Intex Dinosaur Play Centre, suitable for ages 2+. The brightly coloured pool includes a mini waterfall, slide and water sprayer, which attaches to a garden hose. There are six colourful balls included, so little ones can slide into the pool and feed the hungry dinosaur with them.
Cheapest paddling pool for summer fun
Put the focus back on having fun this summer with this cheap and colourful 3-ring inflatable pool for just £9.99.
At a width of 102cm and a depth of 25cm, it’s also ideal for smaller gardens, and the inflatable padded floor is a nice touch to make the pool more comfortable to play in.
Once the summer is over, you can repurpose the pool by bringing it inside and filling it with soft balls to make an instant ball pool for the winter months.
Pools for couples and adults
If you’re looking for an adults-only above ground pool with rigid sides that comes with a ladder, repair kit and a filter pump to keep the water clean and debris-free, then the Bestway Steel Pro Max ticks all the boxes.
The pool has a sturdy corrosion-resistant frame and the kit includes everything you need to construct it. It measures 3.66m in diameter, with a depth of 1m and holds an impressive 9,150 litres of water making it plenty big enough for couples to relax in and enjoy a cool drink.
When it’s time to empty the pool, there is a built-in flow control valve that makes draining the water fast and easy. You can even attach a garden hose to the valve and recycle the pool water to revive your lawn or water your flowers.
The pool costs £349.99 and includes a two-year warranty and free delivery to UK mainland addresses.
Pools for larger gardens
If you are lucky enough to have a large garden and want a family-sized pool big enough to play games in, that we recommend the Santorini Pool from Dancover.
It’s the deepest pool in our review at 120cm and the widest too with a diameter of 3.60m and comes with a ground cover to protect that bottom of the pool from punctures.
There are also two covers – one designed for summer and one for winter that keep the leaves out of the pool and prevent the water temperature from dropping when not in use.
The pool holds 10,800 litres in a galvanised steel frame and UV-resistant blue liner for that classic pool look. Access in and out of the pool is via a sturdy ladder and the water is kept clean and debris free thanks to a filter and a surface skimmer pump.
Heated garden swimming pools
We’re enjoying a heatwave at the moment, but we appreciate only too well how quickly the British weather can change.
If you’ve invested in a garden pool this summer and want the water a little warmer – then a solar-heated mat is a great buy. The mat attracts and stores heat from the sun and circulates the heat back into the pool. This Intex Pool Heater can increase the water temperature by 3-5 degrees
Garden swimming pool safety
For younger children or non-swimmers, a floatation device or buoyancy aid can build their confidence in the water and help to keep them safe. Toddlers will love this UV float suit that also protects against the sun’s rays to keep them safe as they paddle and play.
Older children will feel more grown-up in this navy blue unisex swim vest, which can be adjusted to grow with your child and fit them safely between the ages of six to ten in the smaller size and ten to fourteen in the larger version.
Remember to always supervise children when using a garden swimming pool or paddling pool.