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Once the weather begins to turn, you probably don’t need an excuse to get outside and play. Still, the right lawn games can make that time in the fresh air even more enjoyable, whether at the beach or in your own backyard. To have more fun in the sun, make sure you’re stocked up on the best lawn games, including our picks below.
Here, the best lawn games.
Best Overall: GoSports Giant Wooden Toppling Tower
Included carrying case
Blocks can be damaged when falling
The best lawn game should be one that the whole family can enjoy, which is why we love this wooden toppling tower. It’s a backyard version of the classic family favorite called Jenga. Play is simple: Stack the 7.75 x 1.5 x 2.5-inch blocks, then let each player take turns pulling a block from the tower and placing it back on top. If the tower knocks over during your turn, you lose the game. It’s a fun and exciting activity that’ll have everyone on the edge of their seats.
The quality of this particular set is unmatched, too. Choose from five finishes of hand-selected knot-free pine blocks to best suit your outdoor space's aesthetic. They’ll come neatly packaged in a durable canvas carrying case for easy portability and convenient storage. And, as a bonus, you’ll also get a small dry erase board for creating your own silly set of rules.
Best Budget: Kan Jam Original Disc Toss Game
A little difficult to transport
Kan Jam is another very easy and family-friendly lawn game that’ll get participants moving a bit. Think of it as a more fast-paced version of horseshoes, but with frisbees and cans as opposed to horseshoes and targets. In two teams of two players, each participant takes a turn throwing the flying disc into the can and deflecting the disc. The first team to score 21 points wins.
If there’s any downside, it’s that the cans are a bit bulky. That said, they’re very lightweight, so portability isn’t really an issue–as long as you have the hands to carry everything.
Best Classic: Hey! Play! Six-Player Croquet Set with Carrying Case
Comes with carrying case
Six player game
Plastic mallet covers tend to fall off
This classic game is one that both kids and adults will love. And, like other great lawn games, it’s easy to set up and play. To do so, place the wickets into the ground to create your unique playing field. Once everything is set up, you use the mallets to knock the hard balls through the arches.
This colorful set comes with enough mallets for six people to play—perfect for a crowd—and has a convenient carrying case, so you can use the game outside of your backyard (like the park or a friend's house)
Despite the exceptional quality, this set is very affordable, so you’ll be able to enjoy this classic game for less.
Best Party: Uncommon Goods Personalized Four Across Lawn Game
Requires extra care
A fun and personalized twist on the classic Connect Four game is perfect for special events and parties—even weddings. And when the event is over? You’ll love having this lasting memory of it in your backyard.
The oversized game (it’s 39 x 24 x 48 inches) is handmade, making it extra special. It’s machine cut from attractive heirloom-quality maple wood. To make it your own, personalize up to four lines (seven characters each) with your names, anniversary date, or a sweet message for a loved one.
If there’s any downside, it’s that this game needs to be disassembled and brought inside after every use. Because it’s made of such high quality wood, you don’t want to risk the wood warping due to moisture.
Best for Kids: Elite Sportz Ring Toss Game
Easy to assemble
Comes with carry case
A bit small for older kids
Keeping the kids entertained requires a delicate balance of simplicity and intrigue. This ring toss game toes the line perfectly. Though easy to set up and play, the game (a classic!) teaches kids hand-eye coordination, fine motor skills, and simple math. To play, kids take turns tossing the colored rings onto the target. Each peg denotes a different amount of points, and the first player to reach the agreed upon amount of points wins.
The family-friendly game is highly portable, too. The kit, which includes three sets of rings, a wooden peg base, and a carry bag, is lightweight and comes with a travel bag, so you can easily bring it to the park or the beach. It also makes storage a breeze.
Best for Adults: Yard Games Kubb Regulation Size Outdoor Tossing Game with Carrying Case
Easy to play
This Nordic lawn game, sometimes called Viking Chess, is quickly gaining popularity in the United States. It makes for a great BBQ game, because the game has a very low learning curve. To play, participants divide up into two teams. During game play, each player attempts to knock down the other team’s kubbs, or wooden stakes. When all the kubbs are knocked down, you must knock the king kubb down to win the game.
It’s a relatively attractive game that looks sophisticated whether set up on the beach or in the backyard. Game pieces are beautifully crafted of durable natural hardwood, though due to the nature of the game, you should expect them to get a bit dented over time.
The pieces are a big heavy, but portability isn’t an issue thanks to the convenient carry case.
Best Portable: L.L.Bean Bocce
Easy to play
Bocce ball is undoubtedly one of the most popular portable lawn games available. The set of nine balls (eight larger ones and one smaller one) comes nestled inside an attractive zippered carry case made from rugged canvas that can be personalized with a monogram or name up to 10 characters long.
The game is simple to play, making it extremely family-friendly. You simply divide your group into two teams and play on a court. Then, one player throws the small target ball. Each additional player then takes turns rolling the larger balls as close to the target ball as possible. Whichever team has a ball closest to the target wins that round. The game ends when one team scores the predetermined number of points, typically 12.
Best Active: Spikeball Combo Game
This fun, fast-paced game is a combination of four square and volleyball. To play, you slam one of the balls down onto the net, sending it soaring back up to your opponents. If the other team misses the ball, your team scores a point. The first team to 21 points wins the game.
To love this beach- or backyard-friendly game, you’ll have to be okay with getting a little bit of exercise. You’ll be bouncing all over the place in effort to smack the ball back down onto the net. This set, which comes with three balls, a net, and a rule book all nestled into a carrying bag, is highly portable, plus it comes with a lifetime warranty you can take advantage of in case any of the parts break.
Best Oversized: GoSports Giant Wooden Playing Dice Set
Comes with carrying case
Includes scoring board
High quality wood
Requires extra care
The whole family will have so much fun playing with an oversized set of dice. And we love the fact that the possibilities are really endless. You can use the 3.5-inch dice to play a classic game like Yahtzee (the set comes with dry erase boards for scoring this engaging, family-friendly game) or try your hand at another fun dice game.
The wooden dice in this set are not only functional, but also stylish. They are hand-sanded with numbers burned into the wood for an elegant and durable design. Despite their fun and giant size, they’re easy to take to the beach, camping, or anywhere else, thanks to a sturdy canvas carrying case.
Best for Families: GoSports Cornhole Set
Easy to care for
Easy to learn
A little flimsy
This family favorite is a barbecue staple for a reason. The game, which includes two cornhole boards, eight bean bags, and a convenient carrying case, is easy for players of all ages to figure out. You simply try to toss the bags into the hole on the board. The team with the most points wins.
If you have kids, you’ll love that this set is made of PVC and polyester fabric as opposed to wood, since it makes it easier to care for and easier to travel with.
The best overall lawn game is the GoSports Giant Wooden Toppling Tower (view on Amazon), because it’s appropriate for all ages and provides hours of fun. The game, which is modeled after a classic, also comes with a carrying case that makes it easy to tote the set wherever your heart desires, be it the beach or the park.
What To Look for in a Lawn Game
Though lawn games are most often played in our yards, sometimes we want to bring them other places too, like the beach or to a cookout. When this is the case, it's important to consider the portability of yard games. After all, no one wants to lug a 15-piece game set across a never-ending stretch of sand. Look for games that are lightweight or can easily be stored and carried in a bag.
Lawn games are meant to be played by nearly everyone, whether they're 7 or 70. This often means there will be a variety of different skill levels playing your lawn game, so it shouldn't be needlessly difficult. And the variety of people playing your lawn game also means there will likely be people who haven't played a certain lawn game, so make sure it's easy to learn too.
If you have kids (or have friends with kids), make sure your lawn game is kid-friendly. A kid-friendly lawn game is one that's easy to learn and fun for the entire family. Of course, if you want an adults-only lawn game, you can get one of those too—just make sure there's a kid-friendly one nearby.
What is the best material for lawn games?
Being outdoor games, lawn games are exposed to elements and need to be quite durable. Plastic is a lawn game favorite that can stand up to moisture and sunshine. But for a more eco-friendly option, consider treated wood. Just make sure not to leave it in the rain.
What are lawn games?
A lawn game is an outdoor game that can be played in a backyard or other casual outdoor setting. There are many different types of lawn games, but most involve throwing or some type of ball. Lawn games are meant to be played with a small group of people and are typically easy to learn.
What are the most popular lawn games?
The most popular lawn games are some of the oldest—horseshoes and bocce have been around for thousands of years and are still yard game favorites. A few more modern inventions have become classics too, like cornhole, Spikeball and KanJam.
Why Trust The Spruce
This article was written by Brigitt Earley, a freelance writer who has spent the last 10-plus years researching the best home goods for various digital publications, including The Spruce and Good Housekeeping. Throughout the years, Brigitt has also had the opportunity to try just about every lawn game on this list, with some of her favorites being bocce, toppling tower, and cornhole. Additional reporting was done by Rabekah Henderson, a freelance design and decor writer whose work has appeared on MyDomaine, Atomic Ranch, Cary Magazine, and American Farmhouse Style.