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5 Inflatable Pools to Keep Your Kids Cool This Summer

Children playing in a kiddie pool.
Kzenon/Shutterstock

The long hot days of summer are just around the corner. Keep your kids active and cool with these fun and affordable inflatable pools, splash pads, and slides. Plus, they all pack away easily when summer’s over.

It’s unclear when public pools will open due to extended social distancing rules. Meanwhile, your kids are growing bored and restless from being stuck at home. (We are, too.) Here’s the solution—turn your backyard into your own exciting water-play adventure land!

You might be hesitant to splurge on a fancy permanent-style swimming pool. No worries, we’ve got you covered. These five popular inflatable options range from $25 to just under $400, offering something for everyone’s budget.

Keep in mind that kids need to be supervised by an adult at all times, even when using a shallow wading pool. This applies even if your child is a confident swimmer. Rules help keep the summer adventures fun and safe!

Intex Kiddie Pool

Kids playing in a three ring pool with pink, yellow, and green rings, plus a woman supervising them outside of the pool
Amazon

This durable wading pool has 12″ walls made up of three colorful rings. It measures 58″ x 13″, offering enough space for 2-3 kids to splash around comfortably.

The bottom also inflates, making it an extra comfy option for use on harder surfaces. Plus, it adds a layer of protection for any slips or tumbles.

Parents have even admitted to using this wading pool to hold icy cold drinks at parties. Hey, whatever works.

You can even turn it into an indoor ball pit during the colder months. (Get your balls here.) Just be prepared—your house will be overrun by those annoying plastic balls. It’s all part of the fun, right?

The Intex Kiddie Pool is currently listed for $25 from Amazon.

SpashEZ 3-in-1

Blue wading pool with the alphabet and animals painted on the bottom plus water spraying upwards.
Amazon

Not sure whether to get a sprinkler, splash pad, or wading pool? Well, you’re all set with this fun 3-in-1 water play center.

The base is painted with colorful letters and animals, inspiring and educating your child as he plays.

Even when filled to the top, it’s very shallow. This encourages your youngsters to experiment with water play without being intimidated or overwhelmed by a deeper pool.

The set up is quick and easy, plus it packs down for compact storage. Its durability is impressive, with families using it over rocky surfaces without a hint of tearing. You can’t really get anything better for this price.

The SplashEZ is currently listed for just under $30 at Amazon.

Intex Fun ’n Fruity Inflatable Play Center

Children playing in a fruit themed wading pool with a watermelon slide, plus a woman supervising outside the pool.
Amazon

This sweet and fruity design will definitely brighten your backyard decor. Plus, it’s got everything—a small pool for younger kids, a large pool for more explorative fun, misty sprayers for those extra humid days, and a cool watermelon slide to boot!

There’s a padded landing mat at the bottom of the slide, offering extra cushioning for your adventurous little otters.

It’s recommended for ages 2 and older, but babies can chill in the smaller pool with an adult holding them. The pool has a max weight of 178 pounds, allowing multiple kids to play at once. We just don’t recommend adults trying out the slide.

Also, there are 6 balls included, which fit into the orange sliced wall. You’ll need an electric pump to inflate this pool, which is sold separately.

The Intex Fun ’n Fruity play center is currently listed for $54 at Amazon.

Homech Inflatable Swimming Pool

Blue inflatable swimming pool full of water
Amazon

This simple sturdy model is a bestseller on Amazon thanks to an economical price and sturdy construction. While it’s no rigid-above-ground-pool, it’s definitely spacious as far as inflatable pools go, with 95″ of swimming space and a capacity to hold 162 gallons of water. It can fit two adults and four children for a family-fun splash party.

This pool is made with extra durability in mind. The walls are 0.4mm thick, which is double the thickness of standard inflatable pools. There are three separate air chambers, helping the pool to hold the extra weight while also preventing air leakage. A repair patch is included in case you get an unfortunate tear.

It inflates in a quick 3-4 minutes (electric pump not included) and packs down for easy storage.

Due to the extra depth on this one, it’s recommended for ages 3 and older. Use puddle jumpers for your less confident swimmers. And remember, don’t ever leave those kiddos unattended when a pool is full of water.

The Homech Inflatable swimming pool is currently listed for $106 at Amazon.

Summer Waves Above Ground Swimming Pool

Family playing in a backyard pool.
Amazon

Here comes the ultimate in family fun. This pool measures 15’ x 36″ and is ready to keep your entire family (and friends) cool and refreshed for summer after summer. It’s also another #1 Bestseller on Amazon.

The sidewalls are made with puncture-resistant 3-ply materials, guaranteeing it’ll hold up to any amount of water acrobatics.

It comes complete with a filter pump, which keeps water circulating, improving water quality for your dedicated swimmers. Also, a chlorinator and D filter cartridge are included. However, the air pump needs to be purchased separately.

Taking just about 10 minutes to inflate, it can hold 2,640 gallons of water when 90% full. Plus, it packs away easily, offering easy storage until next summer rolls around.

Parents admit it does take some weekly maintenance, but it’s definitely worth it to keep your family active all summer long.

It’s recommended for ages 6 and older, with plenty of space for adults to swim and do some underwater handstands. Make sure to use a puddle jumper for your less confident swimmers, so they don’t feel left out.

The Summer Waves swimming pool is currently listed for around $390 at Amazon.


Investing in a pool this summer doesn’t need to cost a fortune. These inflatable options are suitable for every budget, offering a chance to cool off without needing to leave your backyard. Plus, all these inflatable options pack away easily once those fall leaves start falling.

Looking for more backyard adventures? Consider getting a swing set or a bounce house. The cost is worth it to guarantee years of entertainment for your wild monkeys.

Jill A. Chafin Jill A. Chafin
Jill A. Chafin is a freelance writer, aerialist, dancer, food enthusiast, outdoor adventurer, and mama, based in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. Read Full Bio »

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