Playtime for kids is always fun, but it’s even more fun when it’s outside. There’s only so much catch and tag to keep your young ones occupied, and so having the best outdoor toys is a sure way to encourage them to be in the great outdoors, playing great games, with great friends.
Toys these days are becoming more advanced than ever before. Most will have an educational element to them, although, of course, there are always a few that are purely for fun. We’re also seeing a resurgence in classic games that have been developed to suit the youth of today.
It’s never been more important or more obvious that outdoor play is so important. Here are a few benefits of outdoor toys for kids:
- Physical – Outdoor play creates strength challenges and the opportunity to improve agility, balance and coordination, without even realizing it. An active body in youth will lead to an active body in adulthood.
- Social – We know adults are adaptable creatures who love to mimic their surroundings, and that’s no different for children. By surrounding our kids with other kids who have a love for the outdoors, we can encourage a healthier lifestyle, a better BMI and better overall habits.
- Emotional – Being outdoors allows all five senses to run wild. Kids can touch branches, hear the birds, smell the fresh air, see the colors of the natural world and taste all the things that they shouldn’t be licking. It also encourages a sense of independence which isn’t usually found with indoor play.
One thing that’s clear is that outdoor play is vital to an organic childhood and a true understanding of the planet we live on. Time in front of screens should be secondary, but we can’t deny the importance of advancing technology and the growing demand for skills such as coding. However, we can do our best to motivate the next generation with the best outdoor kids toys we can provide.
We’ve searched the online toy barns to bring you a rundown of the best, most educational and skill-building toys you should bring into your favorite kids’ outdoor lives.
1. Reeves International Digger
If your little one is in awe by large machinery, the Reeves International Digger will entertain them for hours. This bright yellow manual vehicle can dig up to 15 inches deep and reach up to 33 inches when fully extended. There are separate hand controls for digging and for dumping, which allows for two-handed maneuvering and a 360-degree swivel seat for digging in any direction.
2. Stomp Rocket Outdoor Rocket Toy
Three, two, one, blast off with the Stomp Rocket Outdoor Rocket Toys. Use the force of your feet and the awesomeness of air to shoot these glow-in-the-dark rockets up to 100 feet high in the sky. No batteries or power sources are required, other than the power within, to initiate the launch. Four stomp rockets are included with the JR Glow basic package, but if you’re looking to really extend your space station, then you can upgrade to the JR Glow Combo which includes an extra three rockets. One big jump for your kid, one giant launch for Stomp Rockets.
3. BANZAI Body Bumpers
Blow up your bubble bellies with the BANZAI Body Bumpers, and watch as the kids bounce into their sumo-selves. Each inflatable body suit measures 25 x 25 x 23 inches and is made of durable PVC. A repair patch is also included in case of any punctures or pops. This game is recommended for players ages four to 12, but it’s a good idea to ensure opponents are of equal size and weight. To use, simply slip the suit over the player’s head, then step back and start rooting for your corner. Are you team red or team blue?
4. G & F Products JustForKids Garden Tool Set
Gardening is for all ages, and the younger that we all learn to provide for ourselves, grow our own delicious garden vegetables and live a sustainable life, the better. With the G & F Products Garden Tool Set, you can encourage the greener way of life from an early age. Each tool has been designed with a metal head, a wooden stick and a plastic protective cap on the end which also incorporates a hole for easy storage. The set includes a shovel, rake, hoe and leaf rake, too. So whatever the garden task, have your little helper by your side, small tool by big tool, and show them the way to a greener future.
5. Little Tikes T-Ball Set
Get them swinging, pitching and hitting from an early age with the Little Tikes T-Ball Set. The T is adjustable in height to suit that of the batter, and the stand includes cut out areas for wall hanging or easy storage. The overall design is lightweight and made with child-friendly materials to ensure safety. Once your young superstar has mastered the use of the T, why not step away from the stand and use only the bat and ball to achieve a more realistic and mature baseball training experience? For any budding baseball player, this set is a must.
6. Triumph Bag Toss
Bring the funfair home with the Triumph Bag Toss. This traditional, prize-winning game is ideal for multiple players and for both adults and children alike. Two playing platforms are included along with a set of bean bags and a set of washers, so that you can choose which throwing item is more your game. Each set is made up of three red and three blue units to create two teams. On the playing platforms, there are multicolored scoring zones that are all supported underneath by nets to catch the bean bag or washer when you throw.
7. GoBroBrand Bow and Arrow Set
Stealing from the rich and giving to the poor might be the clearest life lesson that Robin Hood taught us, but it’s safe to say he was also a master with a bow and arrow. Encourage good karma and supreme accuracy with the GoBroBrand Bow and Arrow Set. Each of the six arrows included in the set are complete with a suction cup on the end to ensure a complete connection when landed well. The full set can light up for night time use, and it has three different light settings. So whether night or day, your little archer can practice being one shot closer to their hooded hero.
8. GIGGLE N GO Flarts Outdoor Game
The kids will probably be laughing before the game has even begun with the GIGGLE N GO Flarts Outdoor Game. It’s near impossible to even say the game name without finding it funny, and once the game has begun, the fun only grows. Flarts is a flying darts lawn game designed for safe use by toddlers, children and even adults. Three inflatable flarts are included with each game as well as a darts mat for scoring and some pegs to keep the corner down in case of wind. After all, we don’t want anyone flarting and blowing it away, do we?
9. Exploding Kittens Throw Throw Burrito
Ever wanted to hit your friend in the face with a giant inflatable burrito? Well, now you can with the world’s first dodgeball card game. Throw Throw Burrito from Exploding Kittens has upgraded their original take on the game to now bring the “Extreme Outdoor Edition” into your life. Race against your opponents while doing your best to dodge the three foot tall flying burritos. Card collecting equals more points, and getting hit by a burrito equals less points. 120 over-sized cards are included in the game along with two giant burritos, which are, of course, the most important part of the game.
10. Obuby Walkie Talkies
This is SPY.com to reader, are you receiving? We have an important message. Yes? Great. Obuby’s Walkie Talkies make two-way communication easy, so that young explorers can keep in touch over distances up to three miles. Three handheld devices are included, and they’re all ergonomically designed to be small, light and easy to carry, even by children. There’s also a simple push-to-talk side button which enables the microphone for the other two users to hear the message. Roger that.
11. LAEGENDARY Outside Tree Swing
As a brand, LAEGENDARY is committed to their people-over-profit mantra, and so with each purchase of this tree swing, they’ll ensure that a child, who would otherwise go hungry, will be fed for the day as part of the ShareTheMeal Program. The tree swing is easy to install and can be between 4.3 and 6.6 feet long. There’s also a 4.2-foot rope included for lower branches. The red rubber disc that hangs at the bottom of the rope acts as the base on which your little Tarzan or Jane can sit or swing while giving their best jungle yell.
12. Obuby Construction Fort
BEST BUILDING KIT
Here we have the Obuby Construction Fort, an educational and exciting building kit that’s sure to get the brainpower flowing for young builders and the architects of the future. Within the kit, there are 54 sticks along with 16 blue balls and 15 green balls which are used as the connection points. This outdoor toy for kids is designed for ages five and up, and there are enough pieces included in the set to build any of the castle, rocket, igloo or mansion designs that are shown on the box.
13. Step2 Picnic Table
With the Step2 Picnic Table, you can create a fun eating, drawing and playing station for the kids to enjoy in the backyard. The table is super easy to put together as the pieces snap together without any tools needed. It also folds flat when it’s disassembled for easy storage. A 42-inch umbrella is also included, making this the ideal table to keep outside for your kiddos in the summer.
14. Hide N Slide Play Tent and Tunnels
This pop-up obstacle course combines many tents and tunnels to create a playhouse in which any child can lose themselves for hours (but really they won’t be lost at all). At one end of the course, there’s an area which is ideal for transforming into a ball pit. The balls aren’t included, but the Hide N Slide suggests 400 to 600 balls to fill the space. There’s also a tent zone which has a target wall game for which four dart balls are included. This really is a fun overload!
15. GoSports Giant Wooden 4 in a Row Game
Imagine drinking some of Alice in Wonderland’s shrinking potion, and then playing a game of Connect 4. Alternatively, buy the GoSports Giant Wooden 4 in a Row Game, and live out the experience. This large scale version of the classic, quick-fire game is a fantastic addition to any outdoor space, and it’s ideal for full family play. This game is available in a classic white or dark stain and is three-feet wide by 32-inches tall. The 42 red and blue tokens are made from plastic for durability, but the frame itself is 100% wooden. Think fast and make the right choice by getting your hands on one of these for your backyard.
16. Kidzone Bumper Car
BEST REMOTE CONTROL
Get your kids zooming around the yard or driveway with the Kidzone Bumper Car. Designed for cruising, bumping and recharging, this 360-degree, spinning vehicle is ready for even the most early-learning drivers. It’s controlled by two joystick remote controls that are located either side of the action seat, and the car is available in a range of 10 colors. It’s also ASTM-certified, and it has a built-in safety belt, lights and anti-flat tires, too. Plus, you don’t need to worry about your little ones speeding off down the street, as this mean machine has a modest maximum speed of 0.75 mph.
17. Little Tikes Bouncer
It’s the outdoor toy of all outdoor toys; it’s the bouncy castle. This colorful bouncing palace has an arched canopy with a maximum height of 67 inches, a slide for an easy exit and shaded sides. The sides and slide also act as a barrier around the lower part of the castle, meaning that if you want to, you’re only a few hundred balls away from a backyard ball pit, too. The inflatable surfaces are designed to be puncture resistant. Plus, the heavy duty blower that’s included will provide the continuous airflow, so that all focus can be on hours of bountiful bouncing.