10 best garden benches: stylish and affordable

The best garden benches for the patio or lawn; from classic wooden garden benches to decorative metal loveseats and practical storage benches

Looking for one of the best garden benches for your budget? From classic wooden garden benches to decorative metal outdoor seats and useful storage benches; we've rounded up the Ideal Home team's top picks for style, affordability, and practicality.

After all, a garden bench is an outside essential, no matter whether you're after a compact version for a small patio, a focal-point design for the end of the lawn, or a contemporary option that blends with a modern garden; the must-have bench seat will provide year-round outdoor seating whenever the sun decides to shine.

Not sure which materials will make for the most durable garden bench? Scan our top tips at the bottom of this guide to get an overview of the pros and cons of the most common garden bench materials, whether that's super hard-wearing (and super expensive) teak wood, or a budget powder-coated steel or PE-rattan number.

Want more great outdoor buys? Make sure to check out our guide to the best garden furniture of the year. Otherwise, read on to find the best garden bench for your outside space.


The best garden benches

A Lutyens-style teak garden bench

(Image credit: BrackenStyle)

1. BrackenStyle Lutyens Grade-A Teak Bench

Specifications

Dimensions: H105 x W165 x D60cm
Seats: 3
Materials: teak wood

Reasons to buy

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Weather-resistant and hardwearing teak wood
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Decorative styling

Reasons to avoid

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Some maintenance required in applying wood preservative to prolong optimum lifespan

Named after its creator, Sir Edwin Lutyens, a British architect who designed English country houses in the early 1900s, the Lutyens bench, also sometimes known as a Sissinghurst bench or Marlborough bench, is a look now emulated by a variety of manufacturers. This teak option offers a spacious three-seater frame, along with the distinctive rolled arms and high scalloped backrest.

Buy now: Lutyens Grade-A Teak Bench, £399, Amazon (opens in new tab)

A folding metal bistro bench

(Image credit: Charles Bentley)

2. Charles Bentley 2 Seater Folding Metal Bistro Bench

Specifications

Dimensions: H82 x W82 x D45cm
Seats: 1-2
Materials: powder-coated steel

Reasons to buy

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Affordable
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Space-saving design
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Easy storage

Reasons to avoid

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Powder-coated steel is best stored under cover during inclement weather to prolong lifespan

If you have a petite patio or bijou balcony, that doesn't mean you can't still get in on the bench action, especially if you opt for a space-saving foldable design that packs away easily when not in use. And this small Charles Bentley number does just that, with the powder-coated steel design offering (just) enough space for two to squeeze on with a slatted seat that makes for quick draining and drying after a downpour.

Buy now: Folding Metal Bistro Bench, £64.99, Amazon (opens in new tab)

A contemporary garden bench made from grey rattan

(Image credit: Habitat)

3. Habitat Nordic Spring 2 Seater Garden Bench

Specifications

Dimensions: H79 x W125.5 x D68cm
Seats: 2
Materials: PE-rattan and powder-coated steel

Reasons to buy

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Modern design
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Matching outdoor furniture

Reasons to avoid

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Powder-coated steel is best stored under cover during inclement weather to prolong lifespan

This compact and contemporary PE-rattan bench seat is a great choice for a modern garden, and if you opt for a set to create conversational seating then you can stack one on top of the other to save space when they're not in use. The Acapulco-style design adds a sculptural quality to the patio, whilst the grey colourway is perfect for injecting some simple Scandi style, although the powder-coated steel frame is best stored under cover over winter to prolong the seating's lifespan.

Buy now: Nordic Spring Garden Bench, £140, Argos Home (opens in new tab)

A wood and metal garden bench

(Image credit: Home Discount)

4. Home Discount Slatted Garden Bench

Specifications

Dimensions: H82 x W120 x D62cm
Seats: 2-3
Materials: wood and tubular steel

Reasons to buy

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Very affordable
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Modern design

Reasons to avoid

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Timber not specified so likely to be a less hardwearing option
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Some maintenance required in applying wood preservative to prolong optimum lifespan
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Powder-coated steel is best stored under cover during inclement weather to prolong lifespan

It's very hard to beat this wooden slatted bench on price, with the two (three at a push) seater design coming in well under £100. The timber and tubular steel design is contemporary yet classic enough in style to suit most types of garden and patio decor styles, and although those sloping arms don't necessarily make the most comfortable armrests, they do add some statement design.

Buy now: Slatted Garden Bench, £58.99, On Buy (opens in new tab)

A brown outdoor bench with hidden storage

(Image credit: Keter)

5. Keter Eden Bench Outdoor Storage Box

Specifications

Dimensions: H80.5 x W132.5 x D75cm
Seats: 2
Materials: plastic

Reasons to buy

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Hidden storage
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Low-maintenance plastic

Reasons to avoid

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Plastic not an eco-friendly option

This wood-effect polypropylene garden storage bench is a low-maintenance, useful and practical solution for a garden without a shed to store tools and outdoor paraphernalia. The 265 litre storage capacity offers plenty of space to stash patio paraphernalia, plus it can seat two adults and the lockable storage compartment will bring peace of mind.

Buy now: Keter Storage Bench, £129.99, Amazon (opens in new tab)

A wooden garden bench with Art-Deco style backrest

(Image credit: Garden Trading)

6. Garden Trading Chastleton Garden Bench

Specifications

Dimensions: H90 x W160 x D67cm
Seats: 3
Materials: teak wood

Reasons to buy

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Hardwearing and durable teak wood
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Spacious seating
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Stylish design

Reasons to avoid

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An investment
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Some maintenance required in applying wood preservative to prolong optimum lifespan

This reclaimed teak wood garden bench may be an investment, but crafted from the most durable solid hardwood it's designed to last a lifetime, with the dense grain and natural oils present in slow-growing teak offering long-lasting protection from the elements. Wide enough to seat three comfortably, the geometric backrest design gives this garden classic a modern edge, making it the perfect addition to any contemporary outdoor space.

A wooden sleeper bench

(Image credit: B&Q)

7. B&Q Wooden Sleeper Bench

Specifications

Dimensions: H45 x W120 x D20cm
Seats: 2
Materials: wood

Reasons to buy

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Affordable
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Perfect for placing in front of a garden border without blocking a view

Reasons to avoid

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Timber not specified so likely to be a less hardwearing option
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Some maintenance required in applying wood preservative to prolong optimum lifespan

If you want to keep things simple then this rustic timber bench is the perfect low-key option, blending easily into planting or providing a contrast to modern materials. Made from pressure treated FSC® certified wood the natural grain has been smooth-planed for a splinter-free finish.

Buy now: Wooden Sleeper Bench, £98, B&Q (opens in new tab)

A classic wooden garden bench

(Image credit: Barlow Tyrie)

8. Barlow Tyrie Lavenham Bench

Specifications

Dimensions: H90 x W147 x D62cm
Seats: 3
Materials: eucalyptus wood

Reasons to buy

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Weather-resistant eucalyptus wood
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Timeless style

Reasons to avoid

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Some maintenance required in applying wood preservative to prolong optimum lifespan

Designed by Barlow Tyrie, the company responsible for the iconic 'London Bench' that's now a familiar sight in most public parks, this classic shape makes for the quintessential wooden garden bench. Although eucalyptus wood isn't quite as long-lasting as teak, its natural oils still give it plenty of outdoor weather-resistance, and a little maintenance with a regular top-up of wood preservative will ensure good durability. We like the simple and sturdy design which will work perfectly in any style of garden.

Buy now: Barlow Tyrie Lavenham Bench, £395, Barker and Stonehouse (opens in new tab)

A black metal garden bench

(Image credit: Habitat)

9. Habitat Indu Metal Bench

Specifications

Dimensions: H85 x W125 x D57cm
Seats: 2
Materials: powder-coated steel

Reasons to buy

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Contemporary
+
Quick to dry
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Doesn't block a view

Reasons to avoid

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Powder-coated steel is best stored under cover during inclement weather to prolong lifespan

This streamlined powder-coated black metal bench from Habitat will work well in either a contemporary outdoor setting or to complement any number of other garden styles. The open slat design means the bench drains and dries quickly after a downpour, and the 'see-through' style works particularly well in a smaller garden or patio area, avoiding the seating feeling too bulky or risking the seating overwhelming a compact outdoor area. Powder-coated steel isn't quite as rust-resistant as an aluminium option when exposed to water (although the metal is significantly cheaper) so if you want to prolong the benches lifespan it may be wise to store it somewhere dry over winter.

A chevron patterned wooden garden bench

(Image credit: Sol 27)

10. Sol 27 Outdoor Wooden Bench

Specifications

Dimensions: H89 x W114.5 x D62.5cm
Seats: 2
Materials: acacia wood

Reasons to buy

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Weather-resistant acacia wood
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Timeless style

Reasons to avoid

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Some maintenance required in applying wood preservative to prolong optimum lifespan

Offering a little more pizzazz than your standard wooden garden bench, this chevron-patterned design brings some decorative detail to its otherwise practical design. The acacia wood design features shaped seats designed to make sitting a more comfortable experience, and although there is only space for two on this bench seat, the collection includes a wide range of additional furniture to create a more extensive coordinated seating group.


The best garden bench materials

Wooden garden benches are a classic choice for a reason, with hardwoods like teak resisting the elements to look good for decades to come. Slow-growing teak will be one of the most expensive timber options on the market though, so if your budget won't stretch this far then look for faster-growing and more affordable hardwoods like acacia or eucalyptus. These aren't quite as dense and moisture-resistant as teak, but contain similar natural oils which deter outdoor rotting and weathering. To prolong timber's outdoor lifespan, just keep the wood-topped up with a yearly coat of a wood preservative.

Metal garden benches come in two main materials; aluminium and powder-coated steel. Aluminium is the most weather-resistant, rust-resistant, and low-maintenance metal option, but (unless you can snap up a bargain on our garden furniture deals page) will also be the more expensive option. Steel is less durable outdoors, but a powder-coated finish helps to offset its corrosive nature, forming a barrier between the metal and the elements. Powder-coated steel will generally be the most affordable metal option, but you'll need to take a little more care to keep it covered or protected from the worst of the weather and to avoid chips and knocks which may damage the powder-coating and allow rusting to set in. Metal can also get very hot in the sun and cold to the touch in winter, although nothing a few outdoor cushions can't solve and compared to wood, the ability to wipe off any moisture from a metal garden bench immediately after a downpour is a bonus.

Rattan garden benches are most likely to actually be made from 'PE-rattan' or polyurethane rattan, which, as a plastic, makes for low-maintenance, moisture-resistant, and practical outdoor options, albeit not necessarily the most environmentally-friendly choice. The durability of a rattan garden bench is mainly down to the metal used as the structural frame, with aluminium proving the most robust, and powder-coated steel the more affordable yet slightly less durable option.

And, whatever it's made out of, a garden storage bench seat is a great multifunctional option for a smaller garden as it offers space to hide away gardening tools and equipment whilst also delivering useful seating. For more tips on styling a compact outdoor space make sure to visit our small garden ideas.


How we chose the products in this round-up

To find the best garden benches for this list we visited some of the most popular outdoor stores, dived into the specifications to sort the wheat from the chaff, grilled the Ideal Home team for their expert knowledge, asked friends and family for their top-rated products, and took into account third party opinions via online reviews. Click here to find out more about how we review products on Ideal Home.

Amy Lockwood
Amy Lockwood

After studying Print Design at Winchester School of Art, Amy spent multiple years working in the interior industry, including styling and visual merchandising for many well-known brands. She’s now Decor Editor at Ideal Home, offering advice on creating your dream interior, whether that's choosing the perfect shade of paint, investing in a new sofa, or sourcing on-trend and sustainable products for the home. She also writes about all things interior for Livingetc, Homes & Gardens, and Real Homes, and brings her design knowledge outdoors at Gardeningetc, where she advises on what to look for when shopping for the best garden furniture and how to create a practical and stylish outdoor living area.