Budget Beaches For Britain's Bairns!
One of the greatest and most iconic children's outdoor toys is of course the sandbox. Sandboxes let little ones create sandcastles and rivers, explore with buckets and spades, and destroy it all at the end. However finding the right sandbox can be difficult. Don't worry though I've selected a few sandboxes that I think will fit most gardens (and budgets!)
This giant sandbox is perfect for those who don't have much DIY knowledge as it is a "tongue and groove" system which basically means it slots together (afterwards it can be screwed solid.) Four little benches around the edges provide plenty of room and could have some old cushions tied on for extra comfort.
With a diameter of 180cm it really is giant which does unfortunately mean it takes lots of sand to fill; around 180 - 200 kg of sand. Thankfully a geo-textile underlay and a PE cover are provided which should keep anything from affecting the mountains of sand you will need to fill this behemoth box.
Some reviewers have complained that water pools in the middle of the tarp during bouts of bad weather. One solution is to pile toys up in the centre in order to create a tipi effect. One of the little one's buckets filled with sand with a spade stuck in it should be good enough and gives you an excuse to play with the sand!
- Massive size, plenty of room for multiple little ones
- Underlay and cover provided
- Great price for size
- Easy to assemble
- Pre-treated wood requires little care
I think this one is really cute and really cleverly designed. The curved back of the crab means water will just run off the sides without relying on a tarpaulin. Reviewers say that the lid fits perfectly and hasn't blown off in even terrible weather. However if you wanted to really make sure it sticks you could always get some strong glue and some quick release buckles.
Its front and back most claws are designed as sturdy little seats making it easier to get comfy while still having plenty of sand space to play with. However they are intended for children and will dent under the weight of most adults. A mistake a few reviewers have made! The dent can be popped out but you will need to lift the sandbox (no easy feat when filled!)
The entire crab is 120 x 119 x 40 cm which makes it good for either a single child or two co-operative little ones. It is apparently very sturdy and takes around 140kg of sand to fill and ccording to one reviewer the lid makes a good paddling pool (No harm in trying hopefully, let us know how you get on!)
- Cute design
- Sturdy material/waterproof
- Completely covered to prevent damp or bugs moving in
One of the most common complaints about outdoor sand pits is that the covers are usually too weak to withstand any serious downpour. This clever little sandbox gets around this issue by incorporating a wheeled veranda that can cover the sandbox completely. When not "closed" the veranda can make a nice little seating or additional play area for a child. Unfortunately it is too small for an adult at a total height of 1.4m.
I have noticed that this product is available through multiple pages on Amazon and while some versions are sitting pretty at multiple 5 stars, others have quite a few bad reviews. Reviews for other versions say the instructions are unclear and the pieces are unmarked. However reviews for this particular version say that the instructions are okay and that the pieces are sturdy enough. The only complaint is that there is no bottom to the pit so you will have to buy a tarpaulin to stop sand leaking out.
- Low space footprint
- Protected from the elements
- Attractive design when closed
Buckets Full of Fun!
While Amazon has lots of sand available the best place to get lots of sand cheaply is your local Tesco or Asda. While a generic bag on Amazon may put you back £10 - £15 similar weights from Tesco or Asda only cost £5 or less depending on their deals at the time!