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The BEST Metal Swing Sets and Other Alternatives to Wooden Swing Sets

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Not everyone wants a giant cedar swing set! Here some great alternatives to a wooden swing set- from the best metal swing set for your yard, to teeter totters, dome climbers and more. Affiliate links are shared in this post for easy shopping.

30+ Metal Swing Sets, Tree Swings and Stand Alone Backyard Playground Options

We recently moved to a house with a big back yard. At our old house we had a very small back yard but wanted to have something fun for the kids to play on.

We found the perfect small metal swing set for our (then) toddler and preschooler. In hindsight I wish it came with the flexible swings seats instead of the hard plastic ones- we did end up buying the flexible ones.

That small swing set was great for our small kids in our small yard, with our small budget. It was easy to assemble and the best part- maintenance free.

When we moved to our new house, we left that swing set in the yard for the new owners who had young grandkids.

This spring, after almost a year at our new house without our own swing set, we decided it was time to explore our options. Our neighbors had been very generous in allowing our kids free access to their yard but it was time for us to take the plunge.

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There are SO many swing sets, play sets and playground sets for your back yard these days. We've spent time in the back yards of a lot of friends and family and sampled many a playset!

We were really on the fence about what we wanted. Wooden or metal, metal or wooden.

We have more room now and wanted to get something that our kids would be able to use for years. We had saved up to afford one that would be really durable. After great consideration and many store visits, we ended up saving up for a high quality wooden swing set by Gorilla. But I know that it means we will have to maintain it to get the longevity we are looking for.

Whether you want to avoid the large footprint or the ongoing upkeep of a wooden swing set- or the price tag of one- there are some awesome affordable alternatives that will give your kids endless hours of energy-burning entertainment.

We had a big list going of metal swing sets and other backyard play equipment we were considering. Here are the top alternatives that we found for a wooden swing set.

The Best Metal Swing Set Options

Categories below:

  • Large Metal Swing Sets
  • Small Metal Swing Sets
  • Tree Swings
  • Stand Alone Backyard Play Equipment

30+ Awesome Affordable Alternatives to a Big Wooden Swing Set - Metal Swing Sets, Tree Swings and Stand Alone Backyard Equipment. OMG That Ninja line looks awesome!

Large Metal Swing Sets

Click through the colored links of each swing set below for specs, details and more reviews. 

Got lots of room? Let's fill it with fun! Check out these large swing set options. Be sure to click through for details, prices and reviews.

  • The Lifetime Monkey Bar Adventure Swing Set with 9 foot Wavy Slide was our top choice in the metal category. With hundreds of 5 star reviews and a taller size that means our kids would really get years of use from it, it was a serious contender. I liked that it has a trapeze bar combined with gym rings, and the extra special wave slide. It has a larger footprint though, so if you're looking for something smaller, keep reading.Lifetime was actually the metal swing set brand that I was most attracted to when we were looking this time around.
  • If you want a large, premium metal swing set with some really unique features, I highly recommend looking through their products. Here are the Lifetime Outdoor Playsets on Amazon. The reviews are crazy good.
  • Look at the cook tower play deck in the Lifetime Adventure tower, I love the extra touches like the climb wall and steering wheel for tons of pretend play opportunities.
  • Flexible Flyer seems to be a solid brand. We did need to anchor the small set we bought from them, but most of these types of swing sets need anchors.
  • At a mid level price range, you can add in a couple cool features with a set from Sportspower Limited. They have two main models, both with a cool flying saucer swing. The Sportspower Mountain View Metal Swing, Slide and Trampoline Set has a small single person trampoline while the Sportspower Super Saucer Swing and Slide Set does not.
  • For even more bells and whistles, you gotta see this 8 station Fitness Kids Reality sport swing set.

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Small Metal Swing Sets and Wood Swing Set Alternatives

Click through the colored links of each swing set below for specs, details and more reviews. 

Small spaces can still mean big fun! Check out these smaller swing set options that are perfect for compact, small back yards. Be sure to click the links for features, current prices and reviews.

  • For a super small footprint check out this basic metal swing set.
  • If even that is too big- I would LOVE these UFO Swing Sets. Unique, small and simple. Great for sensory needs.
  • If you have very young children or young multiples and want a compact play set, the Tiny Toddler Swingset has a small footprint with cute features.
  • Little Tikes also has a couple very small swing sets for younger kids.
  • For people who like the look of wood sets but wants to avoid the maintenance, you could seek out a set made from polymer encased wood beams. These have wooden beams that are coated with a rubbery polymer to protect the wood from the elements. Examples are these Back Yard Adventure Sets.

Tree Swings and Other Stand Alone Back Yard Play Equipment

Click through the colored links of each item below for specs, details and more reviews. 

Sometimes you don't even need a whole swing set. Sometimes less is more. Whether you want a cool, unique tree swing, a teeter totter or climbing dome, check out these non-swing-set options:

Click the links for details and reviews:

Tree Swings

Some of these come ready to be hung, while others may need special tree hanging equipment. Be sure to read through to see if it matches your needs.

Free Standing Backyard Play Equipment

No swings needed? No problem! Check out these ideas for good old fashioned back yard fun!

  • I already mentioned Lifetime products above, but in case you didn't look through the Large Metal Swing Sets section, their offerings fit in this category too.
  • For example, the Lifetime Geometric Dome is a classic playground piece that we have found in a few of our friends' yards. The kids flock to it every time!
  • I am in love with this Tented Rocket Jungle Gym, I could see so many trips to outer space happening here!
  • If you are looking for an indoor or garage option, this amazing climbing wall has so many cool options.
  • This Dome Climber With Wavy Slide would be super fun too.
  • The Gym Dandy Spinning Teeter Totter gets awesome reviews and is total two-fer. It's a teeter totter that goes up and down but it also spins so you get a bonus merry go round. FUN!
  • The Rabbit Hutch is one of the most unique outdoor playsets I've seen. I think it would inspire loads of climbing and imaginative play for sure.
  • Younger kids will love the simplicity of the Rocker Seesaw.
  • For something that grows with your child, check out this adjustable gymnastics bar.

Am I missing your favorite metal swing set or wood swing set alternative? Let me know in the comments what set you love!

kids playing on back yard play equipment

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