A GARDEN playhouse is a great way to give kids their own space to use their imaginations and role-play, while enjoying the fresh air and sunshine.
With one of ourpicks from the best kids' playhouses you can put in your garden, the kids will be itching to get outside at every opportunity.
1. Smoby Garden House Playhouse
- Smoby Garden House Playhouse, £207.50 at Amazon – buy here
Is your little one a budding gardener? This cute garden playhouse from Smoby features a real planter and trellis that you can hang flower pots on.
It also has a water butt, watering can and three tools (shovel, rake, dibble) to help kids take care of the garden themselves.
The playhouse has plenty of space inside and two half doors, windows, shutters and porthole windows for a unique, homely feel.
Suitable for children from two years, this plastic playhouse can be used inside or outside and has been anti-UV treated to help it stay in the best condition.
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2. KidKraft Modern Outdoor Wooden Playhouse
- Modern Outdoor Wooden Playhouse, £331.66 at KidKraft – buy here
If you're looking for something special and long-lasting, this KidKraft wooden playhouse has plenty of features that little ones will love.
This modern playhouse includes a built-in kitchen and an attached picnic table so kids can prepare and enjoy a garden picnic with their friends.
There's also a postbox, chalkboard and BBQ grill – tons of great extras to encourage imaginative play.
The house itself is sturdy and durable, made from reinforced wooden panels to prevent warping and weathering – and has fabric curtains, making it feel like a proper little house.
Plus, the pre-assembled parts mean you'll have this playhouse up and ready for visitors in no time.
3. Chad Valley Magic Playhouse
- Chad Valley Magic Playhouse, £45 at Argos – buy here
Looking for a bargain? This simple, little playhouse can provide hours of entertainment without breaking the bank.
There's a swing front door, back gate and side shutters, which open and close.
Plus, there's a little post slot in the front door so children can pretend to get mail.
This polypropylene playhouse is suitable for toddlers from two years and can be set up inside or outside as needed.
4. Little Tikes Picnic on the Patio Playhouse
- Little Tikes Picnic on the Patio Playhouse, £229.99 at Very – buy here
Another great choice for little picnic fans, this Little Tikes playhouse has an extended picnic table and play food included.
There's also two stools, a working doorbell (with six sounds) as well as a sink and stove.
There's plenty of space to play and the playhouse looks sweet with a stone-effect walls and shingle roof – plus, large windows and a half door.
Suitable for children from 18 months, this is a great little space for imaginative play.
5. TP Hideaway Wooden Playhouse with Mud Kitchen
- TP Hideaway Wooden Playhouse with Mud Kitchen- FSC, £339.99 at TP Toys – buy here
TP Toys are the experts when it comes to wooden outdoor toys and kids are sure to love this wooden playhouse with mud kitchen.
The outdoor kitchen features a real working tap, splash bowl and a set of stainless-steel cooking utensils for cooking up some extra-messy mud pies.
Made from FSC® certified pine or spruce, this quality wooden playhouse is more eco-friendly than plastic and built to last.
It has plenty of room inside as well as perplex windows and a full-height door – plus, it's quick and easy to assemble with prefabricated panels.
However, please note the wood requires pre-treatment before you use the playhouse outside.
6. Plum® Boat House Wooden Playhouse
- Plum® Boat House Wooden Playhouse – Teal, £649.99 at Amazon – buy here
If you're looking for something a bit more substantial and traditional, the Plum Boat House is 270cm high and has plenty of space inside for children to make their own.
It has steps going up to a deck with a 1.2m slide from the other side to give the feel of a boathouse on water.
The playhouse looks stylish in teal with a whitewash trim and an apex roof.
Suitable for kids from three years, but this wooden playhouse is made to last and is likely to become a garden play staple as the kids get older.
7. Dolu Indoor and Outdoor 'My First House' playhouse
- Dolu Indoor and Outdoor 'My First House' playhouse, £78.97 at Amazon – buy here
Little ones can have lots of fun diving in and out of this colourful playhouse from Dolu.
Whether they want to invite friends over or play by themselves, they can make this little playhouse their own private space for role-play fun.
This plastic playhouse can be used inside or outside and is waterproof if you decide to keep it outdoors.
Suitable for children from 2-5 years, this would make a great first garden playhouse for toddlers and preschoolers.
8. Mercia Buttercup Shop Playhouse
- Mercia Buttercup Shop Playhouse, £279.99 at Robert Dyas – buy here
If your child loves to play 'shops', this playhouse will provide plenty of entertainment.
It's versatile and open-plan so can be used in a variety of ways – is it a lemonade stand or village shop? It's all down to your kids' imagination!
It's sturdy and weather resistant, made from high-quality wood, with shiplap cladded timber boards and a mineral roofing felt.
Please note, it's required to paint the playhouse with a high-quality wood preservative and a waterproof topcoat to activate your 10-year anti-rot warranty.
9. Smoby Kids Nature Playhouse
- Smoby Kids Nature Playhouse, £109.99 at Robert Dyas – buy here
We had to include another Smoby playhouse in our list as there are so many to choose from!
This simple, colourful house would make a great first playhouse for children from two years.
It's bright and airy inside and features sliding shutters, a half door and sweet red roof.
Suitable for indoor and outdoor use, it's made from anti-UV treated plastic so the colours shouldn't fade in the sun.
10. Pink Childrens Playhouse
- Pink Childrens Playhouse, £69.95 at Amazon – buy here
If your child loves all things pink, they're sure to be happy with this sweet little playhouse from Garden Store Direct.
Suitable for kids from three years, there's plenty of room for imaginative role-play games.
The house features pink windows and front and back doors that open and close – as well as a letter box so kids can deliver notes and post to each other.
Reviewers claim it's 'great value for money' and 'easy to build'.
What to put in a playhouse
It's up to parents and kids to decide what to put in a playhouse. Many kids want to make it like a home with storage and furniture, such as chairs and a table.
Often children like to make a play kitchen in their playhouse with pretend food – or a play shop with a till and shopping basket.
It's also nice to make your playhouse cosy and comfortable with blankets, cushions and soft toys – as well as decorations such as fairy lights and bunting.
Can my neighbour build a playhouse overlooking my garden?
Yes – in general, the majority of playhouses do not require planning permission.
However, larger playhouses – which are within 2 metres of a boundary and over 2.5m high (2 storeys) – may require planning permission so it's best to check if you're thinking of building something this substantial.
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