Written by Terry Smith
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UK’s best bouncy castles [TESTED] you can buy for children 1 to 11 and adults
This article was last updated on March 22nd, 2022 at 3:24 pm
In these modern times, when it can be hard to pry your kids away from their computers, tablets, etc. a bouncy castle provides you with the perfect opportunity to get them out and exercising. What’s more, they’ll be having so much fun doing it, they won’t even realise it’s your ‘dastardly’ plan to get them active, improve motor skills, and keep them away from those addictive screens.
What better way to keep the kids entertained this summer than with their very own bouncy castle? These timeless classics have been putting smiles on kids faces since long before even I was a child, and that’s saying something 😀 And what is more, I’ve added some picks that the adults can get a sneaky play on too 🙂
Our children absolutely love our bouncy castle right up there with our swing set and garden paddling pool and although our garden is small I occasionally get out our garden filler 🙂 And with the lockdown roadmap out of the way we can bring over our family for a big party – the centre piece being the best bouncy castle we could find in the UK 🙂 and what better way to get through lockdown these next few months than happy kids and a nice bbq (and beer) in the garden!
Edit: since I wrote this article I have moved from a hired castle to the Little Tikes which the kids have thoroughly tested – please see below:
Best bouncy castle top picks
Best overall bouncy castle: Little Tikes Jr. Jump ‘n Slide Bouncer for Kids, Active Playset for Toddlers [personally tested with my kids]
Best bouncy castle alternative if Little Tikes unavailable: HOMCOM Kids Bouncy Castle Inflatable Bouncer Bounce House and Slide Inflatable Jumper
Heavy duty bouncy castle: YARD Bounce House Inflatable Bouncer Jumping Bouncing House If you want this then you’ll have to wait as it’s out of stock but it really is the best of the best if you are ready to pay up!
Best bouncy castle with a slide: BeBoP Ultimate Combo Large Kids Garden Bouncy Castle and Slide – this really has a serious slide for kids
Worth a look:
BeBoP Neptune Towers Inflatable Water Slide Bouncy Castle – crazy water slide!
Best bouncy castle
With bouncy castles coming in all sorts of sizes, from ones you can put in the spar room for a toddler, right up to multiple layered castles with slides and pools, the choice can be a little overwhelming. With this in mind, we decided to offer up our thoughts on the best bouncy castles that are currently available for home delivery, and while we are at it, we thought we’d throw in a best bouncy castle buyer’s guide too, just for good measure.
So, it’s your choice: you can slide right on over to the buyer’s guide before tackling the reviews, or take a nice slow bounce through the article in the order we set out for you. Whichever you go for, we are sure that you find what you are looking for in our selection of best bouncy castles in the UK.
1. Little Tikes Jr. Jump ‘n Slide Bouncer for Kids, Active Playset for Toddlers
The Little Tikes Jr. Jump ‘n Slide Bouncer for Kids is definitely my top pick – after letting my kids loose on this for a whole Summer and still seeing it standing (or inflated if you prefer) if nothing short of a miracle. They gave our trampoline a complete thrashing, so I didn’t hold much hope for this, but I have to say it worked out very well!
My kids are aged 5, 7, and 9. The 5 year old and 7 year old are boys. My daughter is the eldest. They had loads of fun on this, got way over excited, a few arguments too! But overall it put up with the whole family. In terms of size, here’s a look at how three kids fit on – it’s difficult to gauge from just reading dimensions:
Setup was surprisingly easy given I hadn’t done it myself before. I laid a tarpaulin The air pump just needs your standard extension cable, and then it ties over the funnel. Then fifteen minutes or so later and you’re good to go! I kept my air pump outside with no cover, but I very carefully tied my extension plug into a waterproof extension lead to make sure there were no safety issues. It had to be done this was as the cable on the air pump isn’t very long:
Now surprisingly the best bit about the whole thing is putting it away! You wouldn’t believe how conveniently this thing rolls up. It took myself and the wife about half an hour from the point we took off the air pump but it actually folded down neatly into a tiny little bag! I have to say, this needs to be done neatly and methodically though or it won’t fit:
What I found was there is a little slack, but not enough to half do this, all air needs to be out and it’ll fit well.
Now we’ve covered maintenance and ability to take a hard play session it’s worth talking about the kids. They absolutely loved it. My littlest one was obsessed with the slide so we had to get some extra padding at the front – something worth considering yourself. The side netting was amply for 5 to 9 year olds. If the daughter bounced hard she was a bit too close to going over in my mind but we had no injuries – just the image of seeing her bounce so hard was enough! The other two kids were fine.
I let them have dinner on there a couple of times too when we’ve had a bbq. You can imagine the tomato sauce – I tried to limit it but they love it. Cleaning though was easy – we simply wiped it down with wet wipes and everything comes straight off. I mean for a year old and daily use the thing looks in pretty decent nick.
What I liked most when I looked at buying these when compared to the others available, I preferred the pillars on these and I have to say these ones are pretty robust. When pumped up the whole thing feels sturdy.
Overall with a young family you can’t go wrong. We’ve got on ourselves for a bit of fun – I haven’t ‘jumped’ though – just laid in there with the kids – it’s definitely a strong heavy duty bouncy castle for the money and have no hesitation recommending it to families with young kids. By comparison you could save a few quid with my second pick the HOMCOM – both are really good or the money.
2. HOMCOM Kids Bouncy Castle Inflatable Bouncer Bounce House and Slide Inflatable Jumper
When I first wrote the article I had this rated second, but the last year has showed me it’s definitely the real deal in terms of quality and value for money! If not for the Little Tikes ( I always like to buy brand names where I can – not just for the service, but because my kids really play hard 😀
This bouncy castle from Homcom is a bit like the things in the Goldilocks story: it’s not too big, or too small, and this means that you can feasibly use it both indoors and out if you have a spare room that can handle the 1.8m x 3m dimensions.
Although designed for kids in the 3-10 years age range, like with most of these bouncy castles that is a bit of an exaggeration and I think a 6 to 7 year-old is the max unless your child will play alone.
It has a fairly simple design. Comprising a standard bouncing area with netted walls, and an inflatable slide acting as the entranceway. The bouncing enclosure has a maximum weight capacity of 45kg, so that’s another reason I suggest this should only be bought for younger kids.
Your young ones will love this bouncy castle though, especially seeing as it comes with an electric air blower to help inflate it, and the toy can be ready to be played on within a few minutes.
Once inflated, they can enjoy a game of bouncy basketball with the inflatable hoop inside the main enclosure, or simply have fun bouncing around to their heart’s content.
To keep everything stable, Homcom have included a set of ground anchors. These are made of thick plastic, and feel quite strong, so they should last.
The 420D nylon material used for this bouncy castle seems quite hardy, and is claimed to be water and fire resistant. Obviously, we didn’t test out the fire part, but the double stitched seams and joints gave the impression that it has been put together well, especially considering the low price tag.
3. YARD Bounce House Inflatable Bouncer Jumping Bouncing House
It’s all good having lots of different sections to these bouncy castles, but sometimes it means that the actual ‘bouncy’ section is not all that big. So, if you are looking for a bouncy castle with enough room for a few children to bounce around in without banging heads every five seconds, this one might be for you.
Not only is there enough space for four children to use at once, it can also take their weight comfortably as long as combined they don’t exceed the 400-pound maximum load.
Made from a combination of 840D and 420D nylon polyester, and having had all seams reinforced with commercial grade, double stitching, this is sure to be a hard wearing and long-lasting bouncy castle. Even the mesh netting on the walls feels nice and strong, and I like the fact that it can be fastened or undone with Velcro for easy access.
The front of the castle is taken up by a wide, but not very tall slide, and I think it is designed more as a fun way of getting in and out of the large bouncy area than to ne used a proper slide, although younger kids will still love it.
Using the free 450W air blower, I was able to fully inflate this sizeable bouncy castle in around 3 minutes, and I like the way that the inflator tube was long enough to keep the fan away from the main castle, thus preventing any damage from heat.
As you would expect, in addition to the blower, you get all the ground anchors that you need, a repair kit for emergencies, and a handy carry bag for storage.
At a penny under 500 pounds, I think it is fairly priced when you consider the overall quality of the bouncy castle, and the expected longevity.
4. Happy Hop 9003 Bouncy Castle with Safety Enclosure
Another good option for very young kids is the Happy Hop bouncy castle, available for around 200 pounds.
Again, it has quite compact dimensions of around 2 metres square, and stands only 160cm tall, so you can bring this inside to carry on the fun if the weather changes.
Included with the Happy Hop is an air blower, to help inflate the bouncy castle quickly, and to keep up the required air pressure so that your kids can keep on bouncing. This model also packs away quickly, and will fit into the free carry bag without too much of a struggle, so you can take it with you to Grandma’s house, or to visit a friend. It’s not too overpowering even in a smaller size garden either:
In addition to the air blower and carry bag, you also get some plastic ground anchors for stability, and even a repair kit should your bouncy castle spring a leak. Not that that should happen too quickly or frequently, as the PVC material used in this bouncy castle’s construction should prevent tearing if used as instructed, and not exceeding the maximum load of 68kg (that means keeping dad off it after he’s had a few ‘summer beverages’).
This isn’t fire retardant material though, so you’d better be careful with the barbecue, and any hot ash or cinders that may blow towards the bouncy castle.
If there are major problems with the Happy Hop that aren’t your fault, you can always take advantage of the 1 year warranty.
5. BeBoP Ultimate Combo Large Kids Garden Bouncy Castle and Slide
If you’re kids are a bit older, then you need a larger bouncy castle to keep them entertained, and at 375 x 274 x 172 cm, this offering from trusted brand BeBop provides you with just that.
Having an overall weight capacity of 152kg, this can take on larger kids than with our two previously reviewed bouncy castles, but the manufacturers still only suggest that each child should not weigh more than 38kg to play on it with others.
Like the Homcom bouncy castle, this one also features a slide. However, this slide is much higher, and would entertain older kids much better. For safety, the slide has high inflatable sides, and a cool looking archway above it at the top, and the short climb to the top of the slide is made fun using foot and hand holds.
On the rear of the Bebop castle, you’ll find an inflatable hoop that can be used with the included ball, and as the hoop is on the outside of the castle, it means that mum and dad can join in the game too without fear of damaging the product.
There are also three coloured hoops built onto the netting on the main enclosure, and I’m sure it won’t take you children long to come up with some kind of game using these, but I’d warn them not to try to climb on them or they could tear the netting.
As you would expect, the BeBop bouncy castle comes with everything you need: an air blower, ground anchors for both the castle and the air blower, a repair kit, and a carry bag for easy transportation and storage.
Although twice the price of the Homcom and Happy Hop bouncy castles, you still get your money’s worth with the BeBop. It’s larger, has better features, and feels better quality all round.
The Intex Jump-o-lene castle bouncer is a very popular product with a ton of mostly positive feedback (hey, you can’t please everyone, right?), but we thought we’d add our thoughts on it right here for you anyway.
First of all, I think a lot of its popularity is due to the very low-price tag of just under 60 pounds, which in comparison to other bouncy castles, is a steal. The thing with very cheap products though, you can’t expect them to be as durable as something that costs five or ten times as much.
Now, I’m not saying this is poor quality and won’t last, but I am saying that you probably won’t get away with having kids any older than toddlers playing in it together, and then only a max of two children at a time. If you stick to this, I’m sure you’ll get plenty of use out of it.
Also, because of the low price, you don’t get any extras like an air blower to inflate it, or any inflatable balls or toys, but as a basic bouncy castle for little ones, its actually very good. It is surprisingly stable and well balanced, and the high inflatable sides keep your children safely inside, no matter how much they throw themselves about.
At 69″ L x 69″ W x 53″ H, this is the smallest of our featured bouncy castles, but this makes it easy to bring indoors and use all year round.
So, pretty good bouncy castle for the price, but you will still need to purchase something to inflate it, and I would also invest in a repair kit too.
7. BeBoP Neptune Towers Inflatable Water Slide Bouncy Castle
Ok, so this is more like a bouncy slide than a classic bouncy castle, but it is a high-quality product that will not only keep your children smiling from ear to ear this summer, but keep them cool at the same time.
Made in the UK to our safety standards, you can be sure that your children are safe when they are scaling the climbing wall up to the top of the water assisted slides.
At around 7 feet, these twin slides are taller than most of the ones you usually get in home bouncy castles, but again, your children will be fine playing on them thanks to the high sides.
having two slides, side by side, means that your kids will never get bored of racing each other down into the paddling pool, and you can make it even more exciting by spraying them with the built-in water cannon.
When I first saw pictures of this product, I thought it was going to be a bit of a pain to set up, what with the hoses and water sprays, but actually BeBop have done a good job at making it all fairly painless with decent instructions, and to be honest, there’s really not that much to it.
The included air blower is fairly powerful, and it only takes a matter of minutes to get it to take shape, although like all bouncy castles you’ll have to top it up with some more air from time to time.
All the plastic tubing for the water features is included in the packaging, as are ground anchors, repair kit, and storage bag, and you can claim a refund if there are problems with the castle, however these problems must be found before you inflate the castle or it is void. I think this will catch a lot of people out, so I thought it best to clarify it here.
8. Outsunny Kids Bouncy Castle
A large bouncy castle with multiple play areas for under 300 pounds? Sounds like a good deal to me.
With overall dimensions of 3 metres long, 2.75 metres wide, and stretching 2.1 metres tall to the top of the castle spires, you’ll have enough space here for a few kids to play in harmony.
There’s plenty for your children to do on the Outsunny bouncy castle, and it features a bouncy area, a small slide, and a water pool for when they need to cool off. To top it all off, there is an inflatable basketball hoop in the water enclosure. Of course, you could always fill the water poll with plastic balls instead.
This is a great looking bouncy castle that is sure to capture your kid’s imaginations. With the four main corners having a brick effect pattern and being topped with pointed, fairy tale style spires, this is a bouncy castle that actually resembles a castle.
Outsunny have chosen hard wearing oxford fabric and polyester as the materials for their bouncy castle and the high density of it gives this product a higher quality feel to it than I was expecting for around 300 quid.
The usual extras are included- air blower, repair patches in various colours, ground anchors, and a carry bag, and they too are decent quality, well, the storage bag could be better if I’m being completely honest, but you can’t have everything at this price.
The Outsunny bouncy castle is a low-cost alternative to other large products that are usually over 500 pounds, and would suit someone with kids between the ages of 3 and 7. Any older than that, and I would pay extra for a top notch castle to make sure it stood up to the roughhousing.
Best Bouncy Castles Buyers Guide
Whether you’re buying your first bouncy castle, or in the market for an upgrade, we recommend having a quick read of this buyer’s guide before making your final decision. You never know, it could stop you from making a costly mistake and put you on the right path.
Always check the dimensions of any bouncy castle
The photos used in the advertisements are often misleading and can make the castles seem larger, or sometimes smaller, than they actually are. The best thing you can do before buying is to note down the actual measurements, and then get your tape measure out to get a good idea of just how big it will be. If you look at my garden, I hired one first and it over filled the whole thing – needless to say I then scaled down when I bought the Little Tikes
Be wary of age limits
Just like with the photos, the age limit set by manufacturers is often too high, especially on cheaper and smaller bouncy castles. I advise always being cautious and knocking at least 2 years off what the advertisements claim, so if it says a maximum age of seven, I would take that as five years and under. This isn’t always the case, and more expensive bouncy castles are usually more accurate, but it is still better to be safe than sorry.
Check the maximum load and recommended weight per child
A more accurate way to know if a bouncy castle is big and strong enough for your children is to check the maximum weight load, and also the maximum weight per child recommendations as these will give you a better idea than just age limits alone.
How much use do you expect your child to get out of the bouncy castle?
The age of your child or children should play a big part in how much you are willing to spend on a bouncy castle. If they are still quite young, say under 5 years old, then spending a bit more on a large, well-made castle they can use for a few more years ahead might be a good investment. On the other hand, buying a small bouncy castle for a toddler is fine, but I wouldn’t spend too much as they are likely to outgrow it rather quickly.
Things to look out for when buying a bouncy castles
Try to look for a bouncy castle that has been made with a material that has a high density: 840D is quite good for the bouncy enclosures, although 420D isn’t bad for smaller kids. You also want a product that has double stitching in the seams, and comes with an air blower, anchors and a repair kit.
Well, that’s all for now on bouncy castles. Covid-19 has made a lot of products unavailable at the time of writing, but rest assured that we will be updating this page, and indeed all our pages as things improve. Nonetheless we hope you’ve found something that interests you, and we sincerely hope that it makes your kids very happy this summer.