Best garden fire pits and chimineas to choose in 2023

Fire Pits Hero Image

Garden fire pits provide a cosy campfire atmosphere in any garden. They can make the focal point of a patio for big gatherings or part of a quiet, comfy nook to curl up in.

Garden fire pits can keep a party going long after sunset, or keep you snug while you relax after work. If fitted with grills, they can even be used to barbecue, toast marshmallows or cook popcorn. They’re a much greener and more economical alternative to patio heaters, too, which consume a lot of electricity or non-renewable gas.

There are many different types of fire pits out there – so many that it may begin to feel overwhelming. So we’ve rounded up the best fire pits in the UK, as well as answering the most common questions.

How do I light a fire pit?

Always use fire pits outside on stonework and stay a safe distance from the fire.

  1. If instructed, fill the bottom of the fire pit or chiminea with a couple of inches of sand. This will protect the bottom of the fire pit and prolong its use.
  2. Place your kindling – newspaper, kindling balls, or firelighters – inside. Cover your kindling with a pyramid of small logs, then light your fire pit.
  3. This should start a small fire. Slowly add bigger logs, taking care not to smother the flames, and enjoy.

Decorating your patio? Find inspiration in our tests of the best solar lights, our guide to the best solar water features, or our guide to choosing the best garden furniture and parasols.

If you’re in the market for a grill, check out our tests of the best gas BBQs, the best charcoal BBQs, and our guides to barbecue accessories.


Best garden fire pits to buy in 2023

Browse our selection of a range of garden fire pits and chimineas below:


La Hacienda Camping Firebowl

La Hacienda Camping Firebowl - BBC Gardeners' World Magazine
La Hacienda Camping Firebowl

Storage an issue? Try this folding fire pit. Its legs fold for storage when not in use, so it doesn’t take up too much space. An attractive, simple fire-pit at a great price.

Price: £74.99

Buy La Hacienda Camping Firebowl from Robert Dyas


Vonhaus Outdoor Fireplace

Vonhaus Outdoor Fireplace - BBC Gardeners' World Magazine
Vonhaus Outdoor Fireplace

This fireplace would make an excellent centrepiece on a patio. Its understated design suits traditional or modern gardens, and it’s large enough to warm a big area. With handy storage for your logs and kindling underneath, it also comes with a poker.

Price: £149.99

Buy the Vonhaus Outdoor Fireplace from Vonhaus


Nest Iron Fire Pit Bowl

Crocus Nest Iron Fire Pit Bowl - BBC Gardeners' World Magazine
Crocus Nest Iron Fire Pit Bowl

This interesting fire pit is designed to look like a birds’ nest and is perfect for woodland or cottage gardens. With a five year guarantee, this is a sturdy yet decorative statement fire pit.

Price: £219.99

Buy Crocus Nest Iron Fire Pit Bowl at Crocus


Prestige Large Round Firepit

Prestige Large Round Firepit - BBC Gardeners' World
Prestige Large Round Firepit

This lantern-style fire pit would look fantastic in a Japanese-inspired space, but is understated enough for any spot that needs a splash of character. Mesh sides ensure 360° of heat, and with an 80cm diameter, it’s much more generous than a traditional chimeneas.

Price: £399.99

Buy Prestige Large Round Firepit at Robert Dyas


Vonhaus Geo Fire Pit

Vonhaus Geo Fire Pit - BBC Gardeners' World Magazine
Vonhaus Geo Fire Pit

For small spaces, try this simple fire pit. We love the inclusion of a grill over the top, which gives protection from wayward sparks, and the decorative rings make it easy to move around if needed.

Price: £79.99

Buy the Vonhaus Geo Fire Pit from Vonhaus


La Hacienda Colorado Chimenea

La Hacienda Colorado Chimenea - BBC Gardeners' World
La Hacienda Colorado Chimenea

Chimeneas – clay fire chimneys from Mexico – often offer only a narrow window of heat. However, the conical grill on this stylish chimenea combines the heat coverage of a fire pit with the tall, sleek design of a chimenea. Great for modern patios.

Price: £69.99

Buy La Hacienda Colorado Chimenea at Amazon


Swallows Fire Globe

BBC Gardeners’ World Magazine - Swallows Fire Globe
Swallows Fire Globe

If you’re looking for a truly unique fire pit that can also act as a garden or patio centrepiece, then you’ve found it. The best part is that when the light of the day grows dimmer, the unique design casts interesting light and shadow effects.

Price: £199.99

Buy Swallows Fire Globe at Not on the High Street


Ivyline Leo Steel Chiminea Fire Pit

BBC Gardeners’ World Magazine - Ivyline Leo Steel Chiminea Firepit
Ivyline Leo Steel Chiminea Firepit

As well as reducing sparks and directing smoke away from guests, this easy-to-maintain steel chiminea from John Lewis has a contemporary design, which adds a sleek and elegant look to any setting.

Price: £399.99

Buy Ivyline Leo Steel Chiminea Fire Pit at John Lewis


Charles Bentley Outdoor Patio Chiminea

Copy of Product template (11)

This Charles Bentley Outdoor Patio Chiminea combines function with style. It has a rustic terracotta finish and a fun lizard motif, and comes with a useful stand and a lid in case it rains.

Price: £69.99

Buy Charles Bentley Outdoor Patio Chiminea at B&Q


Fire pit/table with copper top

BBC Gardeners’ World Magazine - Fire pit/table with copper top
Fire pit/table with copper top

A stylish coffee table by day, a fire pit by night – this fire pit from Crocus really can do it all. The copper-topped table is perfect for potted plants, a cup of coffee or a book, then when the evening comes simply remove the top and fill it with crackling logs.

Price: £119.99

Buy Fire pit/table with copper top from Crocus


How to choose the best fire pit for your garden

When choosing the best fire pit for your garden, there are several things to take into consideration.

Space

What works perfectly for a little city garden may not work as well for a large garden in the country. Make sure your fire pit is large enough to give comfortable heat while you can enjoy it at a safe distance.

Storage

A fire pit can be quite a large item and one that you are unlikely to use in the depths of winter. So if space is an issue, check that it can be dismantled fairly easily for storage.

Style

There are a number of different styles of fire pits available in the UK, each one with its own look, advantages and disadvantages.

  • Bowl fire pits: these are the most basic fire pits – a bowl that holds a fire for sitting around. While they’re usually portable and can be used for cooking, they emit a lot of smoke nearly at ground level, meaning that you’re sometimes running for cover to avoid breathing it in.
  • Hanging fire pits: these fire pits are suspended above the ground on metal chains to further reduce the risk of scorching a patio.
  • Table fire pits: these are a great design for get-togethers with friends and family. They’re also ideal from a safety point of view, as they’re not on ground level, and the table surround keeps everyone a reasonable distance from the flame.
  • Gas fire pits: in addition to wood, these fire pits can also be powered by gas. However, gas is bulky, expensive and non-renewable.
  • Camping pits: compact and portable, these fire pits are designed to be taken outdoors for safe, cosy campfires on the go.
  • Chimineas: based on a traditional Mexican design, these are usually made of clay, but more modern versions can be made of metal or stone-effect material. They have a hole in their front for wood, and they direct smoke up and out of the top of their chimney.

How much to spend on a garden fire pit

Fire pits can start from £30 and range upwards of £1,000. You can find lovely fire pits under £50, but they’re more likely to rust and crack than more expensive models, and less likely to come with a reasonable warranty.

How to choose between a garden fire pit and a chiminea

To sum it up, chimineas are better for small spaces, taking up less room and directing smoke upwards and away from people more efficiently.

Fire pits, on the other hand, usually take up quite a lot of space and can heat a wider area, making them better suited to a larger garden or patio. They also allow for a more open, communal experience for gatherings and roasting marshmallows.

Which material is best for a garden fire pit?

  • Carbon steel is lightweight and cheap but likely to rust.
  • Cast iron is cheap and durable, but its weight makes it difficult to move around a garden.
  • Clay chimineas and fire pits are cheap and colourful, but clay is prone to cracking.
  • Corten steel is durable and weather-resistant but is always rust-coloured, so may not suit all gardens.
  • Copper is lightweight but will need maintenance, and turns blue over time.
  • Stone fire pits are completely fireproof and weather resistant; however, they can be expensive and very heavy.
  • Stainless steel is durable and rustproof but tends to be more on the expensive side.

Why choose a garden fire pit over a patio heater?

Subject to a lot of controversy in recent years, patio heaters are surprisingly inefficient and guzzle electricity, which is bad for both the planet and your pocket. Fire pits can be cheaper to run, especially if you have access to your own firewood, and using this as your fuel has a lower environmental impact as it’s renewable. Fire pits also have something that a patio heater can never really provide: that unbeatable ‘fireside’ ambience.

What should you burn in a garden fire pit?

Almost all fire pits are designed to burn logs. The best logs are from hardwoods like oak or ash – because these woods are dense, they burn over a long period of time. Depending on the materials, many fire pits are also safe to use with coal or charcoal, but it’s best to check the instructions before doing so.


This Product Guide was last updated in October 2023 and we apologise if anything has changed in price or availability.

Carts

Accessories

Flower Seeds

Composting

Choosing the right fruit trees for your climate
How to harvest herbs: How and when to harvest homegrown herbs
what weed is it? putting names to pesky plants
Georgia’s Farming and Gardening Sector: Top 10 Easiest Veggies to Grow [Infographic]
15 Garden Trends To Avoid in 2024: Experts Warn Against These Outdated Designs
How To Overwinter Ollas For Years Of Use: Get More From Irrigation Pots
How To Grow An Indoor Lemon Tree
No-Till Cover Crops: How To Grow Healthier Soil Over Winter
Discover a garden fit for Royalty with your 2 for 1 Gardens card
How to plant and grow a sumac tree
How to care for a monkey mask plant (Monstera adansonii)
Win The Ultimate Decorating Bundle from Harris
I tried the Vertefarm Vertical Hydroponic Indoor Garden
Preparing Your Yard for Spring: Tips for Safe and Efficient Lawn Equipment Use
Quick Tip: Save Your Seeds
Quick Tip: Plant Where You Can Easily Water
Top 6 Struggles of Growing Herbs Indoors (w/ solutions)!!!??? // Garden Answer
Top 5 Beginner Tips For Apartment Gardeners Aja Dang Epic
How To Grow Tomatoes Indoors
How To Care For Indoor Plants + GREENIFY YOUR SPACE
How to Grow Vegetable Seedlings
Try it now | How to grow Bean Sprouts in the fastest and easiest
Try it now | How to grow Bean Sprouts in the fastest and easiest
Biggest & Thickest Buds on Cannabis using This Organic Hardener & Sugars
Biggest & Thickest Buds on Cannabis using This Organic Hardener & Sugars
MY SECRETS TO BIG MONEY PLANT (POTHOS) | MONEY PLANT CARE TIPS - COMPLETE GUIDE
MY SECRETS TO BIG MONEY PLANT (POTHOS) | MONEY PLANT CARE TIPS – COMPLETE GUIDE