The 10 Best Sandboxes for Endless Outdoor Fun

Who needs the beach when you've got a backyard?

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Best Kids’ Sandboxes

Parents / Jaclyn Mastropasqua

Sandboxes are classic way to occupy the kids with amazing hands-on activities and sensory stimulation. In addition to sparking their active imaginations, kids’ sandboxes offer the opportunity for pretend play and strengthen problem-solving and motor skills. Not to mention simply getting outside to soak up some sun and fresh air!

But before the fun can begin, you need to shop for a model that best suits your child’s age range and play preferences, as well as your backyard space. Consider additional features, like a secure lid to keep animals and insects out of the sand.

When you've installed and filled your box (with play sand instead of builder’s sand because it’s already been properly sifted and cleaned), your work won't quite be over. To maintain it, regularly sift debris and disinfect the sandbox’s wall to ensure your children are playing in a hygienic environment. If anyone has been sitting in the sand with a dirty diaper, it’s best to change the sand completely. If the sand is wet from weather or playtime, make sure it has dried completely before your child digs into the sand again.

In order to share the scoop on the coolest backyard sandboxes, we researched more than 30 products on the market to find the best options. We also reviewed guidance from the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) on sandbox safety and how to keep a sandbox clean. When reviewing products, we considered design, features, size, assembly, age recommendations, sandbox safety, and overall value. From big to small and classic to canopied, these are the best sandboxes for kids to deliver hours of entertainment.

Our Favorites

Best for Toddlers: Step2 Crabbie Sandbox

Step2 Crabbie Sandbox


We wouldn't mind snapping up this Step2 Crabbie Sandbox to entertain our tots. The super cute box features two claw-shaped seats for the kids to sit on and comes with a convenient cover for when playtime is over. It holds up to 300 pounds of sand for kids ages 1 and up to enjoy.

Price at time of publication: $89

Best Wooden: KidKraft Backyard Sandbox

KidKraft Wooden Backyard Sandbox


Summer is no time to think outside of the box when there's so much fun to be had inside one, like this spacious KidKraft Backyard Sandbox. The high-quality wooden, weather-resistant sandbox features built-in seating for four and plenty of play space for kids ages 2 to 8. This style has a mesh cover to protect the sand when not in use.

Price at time of publication: $120

Best Budget: Starplay Novelty Sandbox

Schkyra Zoomie Kids


The Starplay Novelty Sandbox is a wallet-friendly option that will entertain children ages 2 to 4 for hours on end. The hippo-shaped sandbox doubles as a kiddie-sized pool for your little ones and holds 50 pounds of sand. It comes with a lid to ensure that the sand is protected from critters and the elements, and it's available in two vibrant color options (purple and green).

Price at time of publication: $84

Best Seating: Badger Basket Deluxe Covered Convertible Cedar Sandbox

Badger Basket Covered Convertible Cedar Sandbox


Great for building castles in the sand, the fabulous, wooden Badger Basket Deluxe sandbox has plenty of room for older kiddos to play inside, and parents can join them while being comfortably seated in the shade. This spacious sandbox requires assembly, but it features two benches, which can support up to 200 pounds. A lid protects the sand (up to 750 pounds of it) when playtime is over.

Price at time of publication: $170

Best With Cover: Creative Cedar Designs Solid Wood Octagon Sandbox With Cover

Creative Cedar Designs 75" x 72" x 9" Solid Wood Octagon Sandbox with Cover


Prevent critters and animals from ruining the fun with this paneled, octagon-shaped sandbox from Creative Cedar Designs. The wooden sandbox (assembly required) has a sturdy weather-proof nylon tarp that securely covers the sandbox to keep the sand clean while providing adorable seating for your little ones, thanks to its wide seat boards. The sandbox can up to 800 pounds of sand and has an easy-to-use drainage system to help everything dry out after a storm.

Price at time of publication: $195

Best With Canopy: KidKraft Cabana Sandbox

Cabana 4.77' Sandbox with Cover


This super cool, KidKraft Cabana Sandbox holds up to 662 pounds of sand in the shade, so you can beat the heat while having fun outdoors! After you put the weather-resistant wood together, kids can play safely while sheltered from the sun. On warmer days, roll up the canvas and enjoy the breeze through mesh windows.

Price at time of publication: $305

Best Indoors: Be Good Company My Little Sandbox Doggie Day Camp Play Set

My Little Sandbox - Doggie Day Camp Play Set


What better way to while away the dog days of summer indoors than with this Be Good Company My Little Sandbox? This Doggie Day Camp PlaySet is a soothing way for little pet lovers (ages 3 and up) to play in the sand. The 10-inch by 10-inch wooden tabletop sandbox comes with a play mat, six plastic dogs, dog toys and accessories, a doggie bed, and a dog house.

Price at time of publication: $29

Best for Multiple Kids: KidKraft Pirate Sandboat

My Little Sandbox - Doggie Day Camp Play Set


Batten down the hatches and prepare for a raging storm of activity! Kids can climb aboard this awesome KidKraft Pirate Sandboat with buckets and shovels in hand for a boatload of fun. This mighty sandbox, which features pirate-themed decorations, comes with a steering wheel and two large compartments for storage. It’s roomy enough to fit multiple mates. Ahoy!

Price at time of publication: $280

Best for Small Yards: Step2 Play Cascading Cove Sand and Water Table



Those with limited outdoor space can still enjoy a sandbox like the Step2 Play Sand and Water Table, which has a compact and versatile design that creates endless playtime possibilities. This elevated table also acts as a small pool for your little one’s favorite water toys and comes with a textured cover, which can double as a racetrack for toy cars. It works for indoor and outdoor use and comes with a nautical-themed umbrella to block out the sun. A secure cover ensures no critters can get inside when kiddos aren't playing.

Price at time of publication: $110

Best With Water: Step2 Splash 'N Scoop Bay Water Table

Splash 'N Scoop Bay


Take your child’s sensory play up to new heights with the Step2 Splash N Scoop Water Table, an elevated sandbox with water compatibility. This dual-purpose sandbox holds 1.5 gallons of water and 15 pounds of sand in its bins, which can be covered so your child can choose to play with sand, water, or both at the same time. It also has a drain plug for easy clean-up and comes with a water tower toy for extra splish-splash fun.

Price at time of publication: $95

Our Review Process

To find the best sandboxes for kids, we studied the design and features of dozens of products on the market. We also researched reviews from customers and competitors, and monitored shopping trends to bring you the best and most up-to-date offerings for kids’ sandboxes. Moreover, we considered size, assembly, features, design, age recommendations, sandbox safety, and cost when reviewing products. 

We also reviewed guidance from the AAP on sandbox safety and how to clean a sandbox for children. We chose sandboxes for kids that are easy to assemble, fun for all ages, and fit into a range of budgets.

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Parents uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.
  1. Safety in the sandbox. American Academy of Pediatrics.

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