The 11 best pool toys

For some people, idly swimming in a pool on a warm day is a lot of activity, but if you’d rather spend the time splashing, playing, and competing, you’ve come to the right place. Whether you’re looking for multipurpose inflatables, group games, or wacky gadgets to help you cool off, I’ve rounded up a handful of the best pool toys for your inner child (although some are kid-friendly, too).

If you’re looking for cool pool toys to get you in the competitive spirit, you can opt for a weighted ball or basketball hoop that lets you play an aquatic version of your favorite land sport. If you want to go head-to-head with a sworn enemy (or best friend), there’s a swimming chicken game that challenges you to wrestle your opponent into the water. I’ve also included a few kid-friendly pool toys that are fun but less competitive, like a miniature sunken treasure ship that will keep any diving enthusiast entertained.

Plus, no list would be complete without a few options that are just fun to hang out in the pool, like a float that holds all your drinks and snacks, and light-up beach balls that light up for a night swim. Just keep one thing in mind: when shopping for adult inflatable pool toys, it’s worth checking the recommended weight limits to ensure optimal safety. To improve your time in the water, these are the best pool toys on Amazon.

We only recommend products that we love and that we think you will too. We may receive a portion of sales from products purchased from this article written by our eCommerce team.

These foam shooters that blast water up to 30 feet

These multicolored water blasters come in a set of 6 for impromptu water fights and lots of pool fun. Constructed of lightweight, buoyant foam, the stud shooters can be filled with the water in your pool and when fully loaded can drench enemies up to 30ft away. The 12.5″ shooters are only 2″ tall, making them easy for even small hands to hold.

One reviewer shared: “This was so easy for the kids that even 4 year olds had no problems. Hours of fun watching the little ones play and sometimes the adults joining in. They swim too, so great in the pool or lake.”

This floating basketball hoop that turns the pool into a court

This floating basketball hoop and ball has a sturdy frame that can withstand jumping shots or dunking, and it comes with two non-slip balls for shooting competitions and multi-player games. The net, hoop, and floating base snap together without tools, and an included hand pump makes filling the balls easy. Choose between red or blue, or buy one of each if you want to play full-court basketball (er, pool).

One reviewer shared: “We’ve had several basketball hoops for our pool and none have been as durable as this one. […] Really like this. Super buoyant and won’t tip over when the pool is busy.”

These floats that you can play a friendly chicken game with

Even when you’re not sitting on them, these giant inflatable chicken floats will be a conversation starter at your pool. When it’s time for a standoff, each player mounted a chicken for friendly water-based wrestling with the goal of knocking your opponent down. The inflatable pool toys are made of durable PVC plastic that resists tears and punctures, and each one supports up to 250 pounds when fully inflated.

One reviewer shared: “We love these chickens! They’re big enough for an adult to sit on and they’re very sturdy. We have a lot of fun just trying to climb on them. Once fun to just hang out on them OR try to blow the other person away. We even took noodles, used them as paddles and raced across the pool. These are worth the money.

Those swim rings that are a physical challenge

Test your underwater athleticism with these swim rings. The 28-inch rings are weighted to float upright, and you can line them up one at a time to challenge yourself and others to a mini obstacle course. For an even bigger challenge, get two sets for a four-hoop course. When you’re ready to pack up for the day, these hoops fold up to fit in your beach bag or closet.

One reviewer shared: “The hoops connect together in seconds, and kids loved diving under the water and chasing each other through the hoops. Just like an underwater obstacle course.”

This kit that turns your spikeball into spikebuoy

If you already own a spikeball set, you know how much this fast-paced game will test your reflexes and fighting spirit. This floating kit will help you bring the same fun to your pool where it is known by the name Spikebuoy. Simply snap your existing spikeball net onto the five floating legs, which are anchored to the bottom of the pool by a weighted pocket. (The bag doubles as a carry and storage bag to take your Spikebuoy with you on the go.)

One reviewer shared: “Such a great game and getting it in the water only adds to the fun! My friends and I had a great time!”

This sunken shipwreck that makes you dive for hidden treasure

This 18 inch sunken shipwreck offers the ultimate scuba diving activity for everyone aged 4+. The two halves of the boat separate and load the included jewelry, coins, shark, skeleton and safe inside. Once secured and placed in your pool, the leaky boat fills with water and sinks to the bottom, beginning a treasure hunt. In addition to the included treasure (and any other waterproof toys you might want to hide), the ship’s “chimneys” double as scuba sticks for another fun challenge.

One reviewer shared: “Ordered this for our grandson as he is so in love with the Titanic story. He just loves to sink it in the pool and dive to the ‘chimneys’ at the bottom of the pool. Great pool toy for an 8 year old boy! !”

This water weighted ball for playing underwater sports

The watermelon ball may look like a regular beach ball (or actually a melon), but it has an innovative design that uses water, not air, to give it neutral buoyancy. This means once inflated it stays submerged long enough for you to kick, throw, dribble or carry as if you were on land. Use it to stay active by playing games like underwater football or soccer, or use it as a challenging water polo. Conveniently, it comes with a hose adapter for easy filling.

One reviewer shared: “This ball is an absolute blast! I have a lot of pool toys but this is the one worth fighting for! I think I might have to buy another one because my daughter and I play with Stay Away more than anything else. “

This inflatable ride-on bull that brings the rodeo to your pool

Host a pool rodeo with this inflatable bull and ring float that’s fun for both riders and spectators. A great pool toy for adults (and children aged 9+). also), it has a large tube that attaches to the bull via four flexible, non-inflatable connectors – this makes the bull unstable, challenging the rider to stay on it. Up to five friends can use the sturdy handles on the outside of the tube to rock and spin the float for a splashy finish. Made from PVC, the bull can carry riders up to 220 pounds.

One reviewer shared: “Super fun! Bigger than I expected, just blow it up and lots of laughs watching people use it.”

Those glowing beach balls that light up night swimming

All beach balls float, but these light-up beach balls take things up a notch. The two waterproof balls are perfect for night swimming and feature battery operated LED lights. They come with remote controls so you can adjust the brightness, toggle between 13 colors or switch between four modes for flashing, strobing and fading patterns – all to add some serious fun and ambiance to an evening pool party. For safety reasons, the LED bulbs and batteries are secured in a fully sealed, waterproof and leak-proof box.

One reviewer shared: “These FLORYBERCEA BEACH BALLS look wonderful floating around the pool with the lights on. The old, boring beach balls just don’t cut it anymore.”

The rocking float guaranteed to get you soaked

With the Aqua Rocker you fall into the pool in the most beautiful way. The inflatable float features a ladder-like internal construction that keeps it (relatively) stable on the water, but the curved design means you can rock back and forth until you and your partner are soaked. On days when you’re feeling a little more reserved, it doubles as a pool lounger, making it a great two-in-one purchase. No weight limit is stated, but it can accommodate up to two adults depending on size.

One reviewer shared: “We put it out last week and the kids had a blast. It’s a large float so you can accommodate a couple of riders. I even tried the swing fun. […] Highly recommend to keep the kids entertained. And adults.”

Also great: This float that brings the bar & snacks to you

If you like having your favorite drink or snack within reach when you cool off, you’ll love this inflatable floating tray. It has a built-in bucket that can be filled with ice to chill large bottles, and eight compartments for standard beer or water bottles, smartphones, a tablet, snacks, sunscreen and more. You can drink, enjoy your favorite music and see important lyrics without having to jump out of the pool. Two sturdy handles make it easy to carry or tow the tray in the water when loaded with your essentials.

One reviewer shared: “I wanted a large floating tub that would fit all the essentials we need in the pool. That was PERFECT! It will hold anything you want with great stability, and unlike many other inflatables we own, the “double valve” that this brand advertises works beautifully.”

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Mike Hunter

Mike is the owner of the local pool shop. He's been in the business for over 20 years and knows everything there is to know about pools. He's always happy to help his customers with whatever they need, whether it's advice on pool maintenance or choosing the right chemicals. He's also a bit of a pool expert, and is always happy to share his knowledge with anyone who's interested.

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