Best garden parasols and bases 2020: patio umbrellas for sunny days

The best garden parasols let you enjoy the sun from the safety of a shady spot – these stylish patio umbrellas – at today's best prices – have you covered (literally)

best garden parasol: Papaye Tilting Parasol
(Image credit: Maisons du Monde)

The best garden parasols will shade you from the sun, offering UV protection and a host of handy features to help you enjoy your outside space throughout the summer. Garden parasols come in a range of different sizes and designs, so to help you choose the right one, we’ve curated this list of the best parasols for all budgets. Whether you want cheap and cheerful shade, the highest UV protection, or a party parasol with high-tech extras like solar lights, we've got you covered. 

  • Find the perfect garden chair to go under our parasol in our buyer's guide

Depending on your space and budget, there are a few different types of parasol to choose between.

Traditional parasols have straight poles that often run through the centre of your garden table, and are weighed down by a heavy base that you’ll usually have to buy separately. Many have a handy tilt function to better control your shade, and some are height-adjustable, too.

Cantilever-style parasols are freestanding and feature a curved arm that hangs over your garden furniture, keeping the main structure out of your way. They can be tilted and swivelled, and come with their own base included. Alternatively, wall-mounted parasols take up less space, making them ideal for smaller outdoor areas. Find more buying tips – and links to parasol bases – below.

Update: Some of the best garden parasols are selling out quickly. If you can't find our favourite models below, there are still plenty in stock at these retailers:

  • Amazon: browse all parasols and bases 
  • Argos: cheap parasols and bases from £15 
  • B&Q: parasols, bases and sails from £12 to £140
  • John Lewis: traditional, tilting and cantilever parasols 
  • Wayfair: save up to £60 on a wide range of parasols  

The best garden parasols you can buy right now

Image 1 of 3

TecTake garden cantilever parasol

(Image credit: Amazon)
Image 2 of 3

TecTake garden cantilever parasol

(Image credit: Amazon)
Image 3 of 3

TecTake garden cantilever parasol

(Image credit: Amazon)

1. TecTake Aluminium Garden Cantilever Parasol

Best offset parasol: this built-in umbrella is something a little bit different, but it works every angle

Specifications
Best for: Adjustable
Size: H290 x Dia. 350cm
Material: Fabric, metal
Weight: 12.4kg
Colours: Cream, green, red
Reasons to buy
+ Adjustable angle + Lots of coverage 
Reasons to avoid
- Needs anchoring 

It can be difficult enough timing your back-garden soirées with sunny spells, and keeping track of it to make sure no-one in your party ends up burnt or squinting is yet more difficult again. The way to stay one step ahead is with an adjustable patio umbrella like this TecTake Aluminium Garden Cantilever Parasol, which operates on a cantilever to lock at your preferred angle, especially useful when the sun starts to dip.

It’s a good bet for anyone currently redoing a patio or deck, as it does need anchoring in properly, but if you’re after a more permanent fixture, it’s a very practical option. 

  • Buy the TecTake Aluminium Garden Cantilever Parasol
Image 1 of 3

Papaye Tilting Parasol

(Image credit: Maisons du Monde)
Image 2 of 3

Papaye Tilting Parasol

(Image credit: Maisons du Monde)
Image 3 of 3

Papaye Tilting Parasol

(Image credit: Maisons du Monde)

2. Papaye Tilting Parasol

Best tilting parasol: with oodles of sun protection and an attractive tilting retro style

Specifications
Best for: Design
Size: H250 x W300 x D300cm
Material: Aluminium, polyester
Weight: 5.5kg
Colours: Blue lagoon, white, yellow
Reasons to buy
+Beautiful design +Tilts to give sun protection all day long
Reasons to avoid
-Not great for windy weather

The Papaye Tilting Parasol from Maisons du Monde has a gorgeous design that reminds us of mid-century beach posters and comes in three beautiful, vibrant colours (we're dying for the blue one). It's also remarkable sturdy yet lightweight and easy to operate, but best of all, you can tilt it to ensure you're getting protection from the sun all day long. Don't forget to close it down when it's windy, though.

Image 1 of 3

Kingsleeve LED Aluminium Parasol

(Image credit: Amazon)
Image 2 of 3

Kingsleeve LED Aluminium Parasol

(Image credit: Amazon)
Image 3 of 3

Kingsleeve LED Aluminium Parasol

(Image credit: Amazon)

3. Kingsleeve LED Aluminium Parasol

Best parasol with lights: designed with a built-in LED lights for al fresco entertaining

Specifications
Best for: Entertaining
Size: H330cm x Dia.330cm
Material: Metal
Weight: 5kg
Colours: Cream, red, anthracite
Reasons to buy
+Classic design+Comes with built in LED lights
Reasons to avoid
-Some may not need additional features-Doesn't come with a base

If you enjoy spending your summer evenings entertaining, the Kingsleeve LED Aluminium Parasol could be just what you've been looking for. 

In addition to providing ample protection from the sun, thanks to its adjustable height and tilt mechanisms, this contemporary model comes with built in lights that are battery operated and will help you create an evening ambience without the need for additional garden lighting. The lights can also run off solar power, which is a bonus during the summer.

  • Buy the Kingsleeve LED Aluminium Parasol
Image 1 of 5

Miamodo garden umbrella

(Image credit: Amazon)
Image 2 of 5

Miamodo garden umbrella

(Image credit: Amazon)
Image 3 of 5

Miamodo garden umbrella

(Image credit: Amazon)
Image 4 of 5

Miamodo garden umbrella

(Image credit: Amazon)
Image 5 of 5

Miamodo garden umbrella

(Image credit: Amazon)

4. Miadomodo Garden Umbrella

Best parasol for easy set-up: bring some colour to your patio with this great value umbrella

Specifications
Best for: Easy setup
Size: H245cm
Material: Steel, polyester
Weight: 5kg
Colours: Red, white, dark blue, grey, lime green
Reasons to buy
+ Good choice of colours + Easy-to-use crank handle 
Reasons to avoid
-Small span for larger gardens

Neutrals and nautical not really for you? Get firmly stuck into the jewel tones trend with one of these colourful Miadomodo Garden Umbrellas.

The water-repellent polyester fabric makes it a practical option for anywhere that gets sudden showers, and reviewers found it showed no signs of mildew after being left out, although they did recommend stowing it away over winter to guard against rotting. The crank handle set into the thick steel pipe makes it simple to put up and down without faffing with cords, too. 

  • Buy Miadomodo Garden Umbrellas
Image 1 of 11

best garden parasol

(Image credit: John Lewis)
Image 2 of 11

best garden parasol

(Image credit: John Lewis)
Image 3 of 11

best garden parasol

(Image credit: John Lewis)
Image 4 of 11

best garden parasol

(Image credit: John Lewis)
Image 5 of 11

best garden parasol

(Image credit: John Lewis)
Image 6 of 11

best garden parasol

(Image credit: John Lewis)
Image 7 of 11

best garden parasol

(Image credit: John Lewis)
Image 8 of 11

best garden parasol

(Image credit: John Lewis)
Image 9 of 11

best garden parasol

(Image credit: John Lewis)
Image 10 of 11

best garden parasol

(Image credit: John Lewis)
Image 11 of 11

best garden parasol

(Image credit: John Lewis)

5. John Lewis & Partners Wind-Up Parasol

Best parasol: this sturdy patio umbrella looks good and stands firm

Specifications
Best for: All-round quality
Parasol width: 2.2m, 2.7m, 3.0m
Pole diameter: 38mm
Colours: Oyster, dark grey, stripped
Material: Metal, polyester
Weight: 2.8kg, 3.6kg, 3.9kg
Reasons to buy
+Sturdy design+UPF50 sun protection +Tilt adjustment+Available in a range of sizes and designs
Reasons to avoid
-Some models selling out fast

For a wooden parasol, our current top pick is the John Lewis & Partners Wind-Up parasol range, which starts at £49. The parasols come in a variety of sizes and colours (oyster, grey, or navy and white stripped), and with either a wood effect or aluminium pole.

In addition to its stylish design, this quality parasol range offers an easy wind-up mechanism, with tilt adjustment for selecting the right sun protection. Plus, it's shower-resistant, thanks to an all-weather polyester fabric canopy, and boasts UV50+ protection. 

The wood effect design comes in a selection of sizes and colours. There's a 2.2m oyster parasol (£59), which is designed to fit a four-seater dining set (currently out of stock), or a larger 2.7m oyster parasol (£79) for four to six-seater dining sets. If you like the stripped canopy, you can choose between a wood effect 2.2m stripped parasol (£59) or 2.7m stripped parasol (£79)

If wood effect isn't for you, there's also a smart selection with corrosion-resistant aluminium poles, including a 2.2m oyster parasol (£49) or 2.7m dark grey or oyster parasol (£69), a larger 2.7m stripped parasol (£69) or a rectangular 3x2m oyster parasol (£99) that's ideal for a six-seater dining set.

Please bear in mind that most of garden parasols from John Lewis are currently out of stock, but you can sign up to be notified by email when they come into stock.

Bear in mind that you'll need to buy a base separately with this range - as with most traditional garden parasols. The larger the parasol, the heavier the base you'll need. We recommend a 15kg base for parasols between 2m and 2.5m, a 25kg base for 2.7m parasols, and a 30kg base for 3m. 

How to buy the best parasol

When it comes to buying a parasol to suit your needs, there are a few factors we'd recommend taking into account. These include:

How large is your garden?

Before you start shopping, take a look at the space your umbrella is destined for to ensure there’s clearance around any roof overhangs or awnings, and most crucially, that it’s not in danger of spontaneous combustion courtesy of a too-close barbecue.

How large is your table?

You should also consider the size of your table and choose accordingly. Roughly speaking, you’re looking at a 2m to 3m umbrella for a table 75cm to 90cm in diameter, 3m to 4m for a 95cm to 1.2m table, and 3.5m or larger for a 1.35m to 1.5m table.

Tilt adjustment

As we all know, the sun doesn't tend to shine from directly above. If you tend to get hit from an angle, or want to be able to adjust the positioning of your umbrella as the sun moves through the sky, it's worth investing in an option with tilt adjustment.

Durability

Whichever style you choose, make sure you pick a parasol that’s water, mildew and rust resistant so that it lasts longer. Here's our pick of the best garden parasols and bases you can buy right now.  

Browse garden parasol bases: John Lewis | Wayfair | Amazon
All the main parasol retailers sell weighted bases too. Round ones can be rolled, or look for four-piece designs, which are easier to move too. We particularly like the SunTime 15 kgs Concrete Parasol Base, £29.99 at Amazon; the Christow base 25kg base, £49.99 at Amazon; and the Christow four-piece 66kg base, pictured, which is £64.99 at ManoMano.

Looking for more garden advice and inspiration?