Packaworld’s portable Packabocce courts have boosted bocce ball’s popularity by allowing players to pick their spot, pump up their court, and play in a matter of minutes. Rather than you going out to find an existing court in your area, you can bring the game to wherever suits you best.
Common bocce playing surfaces
A smooth patch of grass offers a decent playing surface, and a local park or sports field is an easy option. Rain can affect grass surfaces as they don’t tend to drain well, and muddy patches might drown your enthusiasm for the game. Another drawback is that grass playing surfaces can easily become worn from too much play. However, this is less of an issue if your bocce court is portable because you can easily set up in the best patch of grass available.
A well-maintained grass court can offer a quality outdoor playing experience.
Sand is cheap, widely available and environmentally friendly, making it a convenient option – especially if you’re playing at the beach!
Sand naturally dampens the bounce of balls to allow a good degree of control and accuracy compared to some harder surfaces. It is minimally affected by weather conditions, but usually requires a rake back into shape after each game.
Crushed oyster shell
Crushed oyster shell is a traditional bocce ball court material favoured for outside courts because it drains easily and is durable. It does need to be raked regularly and maintained periodically to roll well.
Purists courting rolling perfection use a blend of oyster shell and decomposed granite with a finish of finely crushed oyster shell flour.
The smooth and consistent finish of an oyster shell blend surface is popular with fixed or in-built courts as it allows for highly accurate rolling of bocce balls.
Bocce balls bounce minimally on clay and this, combined with clay’s consistent surface, allows high-level ball control.
Clay courts are expensive due to a labor-intensive installation process, and a maintenance program involving re-leveling and adding new clay. The surface isn’t often used for uncovered outside courts, especially in wetter climates, as rain can damage it.
A well-maintained clay court can offer a high-quality playing experience and is a good choice in drier environments.
Artificial turf is another popular option and can be laid on most surfaces to make them bocce-ready. While it does incur an up-front cost, it’s durability and convenience can prove its worth. It's also a consistent surface which dries faster than other materials and retains little moisture.
Maintenance requirements are very minimal. To reduce costs, it’s best to source artificial turf from local suppliers, rather than import it.
Artificial turf is an ideal playing surface, albeit slightly more expensive than some other options.
Concrete or outdoor tiles
A patch of concrete or a well tiled area can offer a fast surface and is usually easy enough to find one. A key consideration with concrete or tiled court surfaces is that balls tend to bounce significantly. If you’re playing on a smaller court the ball may bounce out, unless your court has walls of reasonable height. Apart from that, concrete or outdoor tiles can be a relatively cheap and accessible court option that allows for fast rolling play.
Traditional bocce balls are made of hard resin but those playing on on concrete or tiles may want to consider alternative soft rubber bocce balls to reduce bounce and avoid damaging the playing surface.
Carpet is a common, consistent indoor surface allowing bocce ball to be rolled out at home, in the office or at a lifestyle or retirement village. Carpet deadens the bounce of the balls slightly to improve accuracy of shots. Depending on where you’re playing the available space might limit your court size – consider a mini court for these settings. This doesn’t change the fact that carpet is a great indoor option, especially considering the comfort of playing at home.
Leisure center floors
Wooden leisure center floors are another option providing plenty of space. Depending on the type of floor and the facility’s rules, your local school gymnasium or leisure center could be a decent option. If you want to be allowed back make sure you’re only making impressions on other players with your skillful shots rather than on the flooring!
Many school or training events held on hard flooring use soft rubber bocce balls, rather than traditional bocce balls made of hard resin. If you prefer to play with the traditional resin balls - the standard for most competition play - consider purchasing artificial turf sized to fit your court playing area.
Packabocce courts put the game in your hands. Available in Competition (60’ x 12’), Recreation (30’ x 8’) and Mini (22’ x 6’), our portable bocce courts allow you to roll up and roll out bocce ball on any kind of surface where and when it suits you.
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