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Stuck At Home? These Quality Croquet Sets Deliver All Of The Garden-Party Vibes

Bustle / Amazon

Whether you're playing a lighthearted game of croquet with friends or family, or you're going for a ruthlessly competitive showdown, having a reliable set is key. A broken mallet or missing wicket just won't do. The best croquet sets feature durable hardwood in their build and make it easy to get your game on whether you’re playing with four, six, or even eight people.

With lower quality croquet sets, as with anything that gets punted and whacked across a lawn, you’re going to encounter some reviews that report damage on the first use. If you want a set that will stand up to the test of time (and your fierce competitive streak), invest in a durable set with all-hardwood mallets. Ones that are Amish-made will feature impeccable craftsmanship (although they often cost a premium).

Look for sturdy iron or steel wickets that won't break when they get clocked by a ball traveling at Mach 4 (forgo cheaper plastic wickets that will bend easily). Wooden croquet balls are traditional, but are often hard to find. Most sets either come with plastic or composite balls instead.

A stand will keep your mallets elevated so they stay clean and damage-free between games, making it easy to set up your next game because you don’t have to assemble the mallets. However, if you’re looking for a set you can toss in the car and take to the park, a less expensive set with detachable mallet heads might be for you. It may not last quite as long, but it wins points for portability and affordability.

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1
A Budget-Friendly Six-Player Croquet Set

This all-purpose classic croquet set includes six hardwood mallet heads that screw into the natural wood handles (for a total mallet length of 30.7 inches). You also get six crack-resistant resin balls that let you satisfy your competitive urge with gusto, nine steel wire wickets, and two ending stakes — giving you everything you need to set up a game at home, or you can take it with you in the durable nylon bag that can handle being tossed around. One reviewer noted, "Everything about it is top notch and you will love the feel of the wooden mallets and the vivid colors on the balls."

2
A Chic Vintage 4-Player Set With A Canvas Storage Duffel

This vintage-inspired croquet set looks chic set up in the yard and channels a Gatsby-esque vibe. The four mallets (measuring 38 inches in length) are cut from hardwood and glazed with a weatherproof finish for comfortable handling that staves off splinters, and even the balls in this set are made from solid wood. Six iron wickets can take a beating no matter how fierce the competition gets, with one reviewer noting they were "tough as nails" (although they may be hard to spot in low light). You also get a durable canvas carrying case. "This set exceeded my expectations," one shopper raved. "Very well-made mallets. Probably not a set for professional-level play, but for backyard use, seems to be heirloom quality."

3
This Premium 8-Player Croquet Set With A Heavy-Duty Stand

This all-hardwood croquet set with a stand is built by master Amish craftsmen in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. They use hardy maple to lathe-turn the mallets and stakes. Each of the eight mallets is finished with a brass rings to prevent splitting no matter how hard you whack the hard plastic polymer balls through their vinyl-coated metal wickets. In terms of mallet length, you can choose from eight 28-inch handles, eight 32-inch handles, or a combo set with four of each length. The storage rack neatly organizes mallets, wickets, and balls together, and features a top handle so you can move it around with ease. Reviews were nearly universally pleased with the beautiful build and made-to-last craftsmanship, with one shopper commenting that it stood up to "a family that takes croquet a little too seriously...I anticipate this set staying in the family for years to come.".