Family Life Fun Toys The Best Gifts for 2-Year-Olds With Active Minds and Bodies Indoors or outdoors, these imaginative toys and games will keep them occupied and happy. By Melissa Willets Published on May 19, 2023 Share Tweet Pin Email We independently evaluate all recommended products and services. If you click on links we provide, we may receive compensation. Learn more. Photo: Parents / Jaclyn Mastropasqua At 2 years old, kids still surprise us all with how much they’re growing every day! Toddlers at this age are learning new ways to use their bodies and their minds. They can kick and throw a ball, run, climb, scribble, and build with blocks (or throw them and topple over what you build). A child this age not only enjoys looking at books and being read to but is starting to understand the story and how it relates to them. You may be noticing that your 2-year-old has also started to imitate you and is engaging in pretend play; they’re an astronaut, a baker, a swimmer, a worm, a drummer, a lion, or a princess. The most important thing to keep in mind when choosing the best gifts for 2-year-olds in your life (other than knowing what they love to do), is safety. While the toys we list don’t pose a choking hazard, it’s always worth keeping in mind that before the age of 3, kids will still put pretty much anything they come in contact with in their mouths. At least they are starting to understand the meaning of the word “no”! Sort of. To help support a 2-year-old’s development in this exciting new world, we’ve compiled a list of the best gifts for helping them continue to learn what they are capable of. From climbing toys to outdoor water play to the best books, games, and puzzles, this comprehensive list includes classic toys and innovative new finds for tots alike. We also reviewed guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on milestones for 2-year-olds and toy safety tips from the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP). The good news is that whether a child is obsessed with pets, balls, cars, dolls, or technology, there’s a gift suited just for them. Our Favorite Gifts for 2-Year-Olds Step2 Splash Scoop Bay Sand and Water Table Mega Blocks First Builders Big Building Bag VTech Touch And Learn Activity Desk Deluxe Radio Flyer 4-In-1 Stroll N Trike Manhattan Toy First Soft Babydoll Fat Brain Toys Wooden Personalized Name Puzzle Top Bright Wooden shape Sorter Iplay, ILearn Kids Bowling Play Set LeapFrog learning Friends 100 Words Book Melissa & Doug Pounding Bench Little Tikes First Slide Yookidoo Bath Toy Submarine Spray Station The Wonderful Thing You Will Be Little Tikes Rocking Horse VTech Care For Me Learning Carrier LeapFrog Scoop & Learn Ice Cream Cart Little Tikes EasyScore Basketball Set B. Toys Beautifloor Alphabet Foam Tiles Moluk Bilibo Purple Toy Melissa & Doug Let's Play House! Dust, Sweep & Mop Step2 Splash Scoop Bay Sand and Water Table Amazon Buy on Amazon Buy on Walmart For outdoor fun, a water table is a must! This highly rated option features a water and a sand side, and each has a cover so your tot can play with one or both. It comes with toys for digging and a waterfall tower. Price at time of publication: $85 Mega Bloks First Builders Big Building Bag Amazon Buy on Amazon Buy on Walmart Buy on Target This top-rated preschool construction toy will carry your child from toddlerhood to their preschool years and maybe even beyond. The pieces are plastic yet durable and big enough for small hands to manipulate, so parents won’t have to worry about choking. The colorful 80-piece set includes a wheelbase so tots can create any vehicle their imagination can design. A zip-up storage case makes cleanup as easy as, um, prying blocks out of your kiddo’s hands at nap time. Price at time of publication: $16 VTech Touch and Learn Activity Desk Deluxe Amazon Buy on Amazon Buy on Walmart Two years old is a great age to introduce an activity table they can sit at in their own chair. This interactive version from VTech incorporates fun and learning with music, vocabulary, and writing-focused interchangeable pages and can also transform into an easel and chalkboard, so the ways to play are nearly endless. You can even purchase separate expansion packs with more pages to extend the fun. Price at time of publication: $55 The 14 Best Step Stools for Kids, Tested by Kids Radio Flyer 4-in-1 Stroll N Trike Target Buy on Amazon Buy on Target This my-first-bike converts to a big kid trike for a toy that will last longer than almost anything you can buy at this age. Your child starts out sitting in the infant trike, then learns to steer, ride, and, finally, is off zooming! It has a three-point safety harness, a storage bucket for snacks and toys, a stroller-like push bar, and a removable footrest. Price at time of publication: $85 Manhattan Toy First Soft Babydoll Amazon Buy on Amazon At the age of 2, kids start mimicking the behaviors of adults. What better way for little mommies and daddies to play pretend caregiving than with a sweet, soft doll that comes in a variety of skin and hair colors, so your child can pick a doll that best represents them? Every doll includes a magnetic pacifier, a diaper, and a cute outfit. Tons of super adorable accessories are sold separately. P.S. This makes a great present for a soon-to-be big sister or brother. Price at time of publication: $35 The Best Outdoor Toys for Toddlers to Ride, Climb, Splash, Toss, and Create With Fat Brain Toys Wooden Personalized Name Puzzle Amazon Buy on Amazon Buy on Fatbraintoys.com This precious name puzzle is a much-loved gift that combines fun and learning. The classic wooden toy can be personalized with up to nine letters, and it not only helps toddlers learn how to spell their name but also helps develop their fine motor skills and self-esteem as they play with their very own, made-just-for-them puzzle day after day. Price at time of publication: $27 Top Bright Wooden Shape Sorter Amazon. Amazon Buy on Amazon There are so many ways to play and learn with this cement mixer shape sorter. Your 2-year-old will learn their shapes and colors, develop fine motor skills, and even hone hand-eye coordination as they push and pull the truck, rotate the barrel, and grow their little imaginations. Parents will love that the toy is made with non-toxic materials. Price at time of publication: $30 iPlay, iLearn Kids Bowling Play Set Amazon Buy on Amazon This gift brings the fun of the game of bowling home in a safe, age-appropriate way. Made of soft foam, the colorful set contains two balls and 10 pins and helps develop gross motor skills and hand-eye coordination. Strike! Price at time of publication: $28 LeapFrog Learning Friends 100 Words Book Amazon Buy on Amazon Buy on Target Animals aid in language development with this interactive toy that features pages toddlers can flip, fun songs, and 12 categories of new vocabulary, including pets, food, colors, and vehicles. There’s a Spanish mode, too, which makes this a great gift for bilingual children. Price at time of publication: $16 Melissa & Doug Pounding Bench Wooden Toy Amazon Buy on Amazon Buy on Walmart Parents and toddlers love this colorful, classic wooden toy that features pegs that go up and down but don’t come out, so they can’t get lost (rejoice!). The pounding bench helps children learn cause and effect, and hitting the peg with the mallet encourages hand-eye coordination and fine motor skill development. Plus, it’s fun for a 2-year-old to hit stuff, so there’s that. Price at time of publication: $23 Little Tikes First Slide Amazon Buy on Amazon For simple, age-appropriate outdoor play, you can’t beat a slide, and this one is plastic and right-sized for your active 2-year-old. It’s also small enough to be used indoors in a playroom or rec room, while still being stable. Parents, you’ll love that assembly is tool-free and that it folds for easy storage. Price at time of publication: $40 Yookidoo Bath Toy Submarine Spray Station Amazon Buy on Amazon Buy on Target Grown-ups may be tempted to get in on the fun with this colorful (battery-operated) submarine and spray station that makes bath time more like playtime. The shower head sprayer, which is continuously fed by the sub, is designed for small hands to grip, and the colorful cups, faces, and gears will be welcome playmates any time your kiddo needs to wash off a day of being a kid. Price at time of publication: $35 The Wonderful Things You Will Be Amazon Buy on Amazon Emily Winfield Martin’s New York Times best-selling book is a must-have for every child’s library. Parents love its positive message about the impact children can make on the world, and kids will be enchanted by the colorful, whimsical illustrations. Every family with a small child will cherish receiving this sweet book as a gift. Price at time of publication: $18 Little Tikes Rocking Horse Walmart Buy on Amazon You can’t go wrong with a classic rocking horse toy! Available in blue or pink, this plastic version is sized just for toddlers and features easy-grip handles and a seat designed for safety. Suitable for indoor or outdoor play. Price at time of publication: $35 VTech Care for Me Learning Carrier Amazon Buy on Amazon Buy on Walmart Calling all peewee pet lovers! VTech’s interactive puppy and kennel set features dozens of songs and phrases to entertain tots while they care for their furry friend. The plush puppy’s carrier lights up, and it comes with toy food, a bottle, a comb, and a ball for playing fetch. Available in pink and orange. Price at time of publication: $28 LeapFrog Scoop & Learn Ice Cream Cart Target Buy on Amazon Buy on Target Toddlers always get a kick out of the make-believe game of making treats for friends and family. This colorful, movable cart includes an attached ice cream scooper that won’t wander off, ice cream scoops, cones, and toppings. Voice prompts call out orders for kids to fill while they work on memory skills and matching. Yum! Price at time of publication: $45 Little Tikes EasyScore Basketball Set Walmart Buy on Amazon Buy on Wayfair Your 2-year-old can score big with this basketball set that adjusts from 2.5 to 4 feet in height. Help your tot practice layups, hand-eye-coordination, gross motor skills, sharing, and taking turns. The mini B-ball set comes with three junior-size balls and is suitable for indoor or outdoor play. Weigh it down with sand for added stability. Price at time of publication: $36 B. toys Beautifloor Alphabet Foam Tiles Target Buy on Target This toy will last for as long as your kids are, well, kids. The easy-to-clean, colorful, interlocking foam tiles with removable letters create a soft play space while teaching letters, sequencing, and spelling. Also, 2-year-olds can't chewing off pieces it when you're not looking. Price at time of publication: $27 Moluk Bilibo Toy Amazon Buy on Amazon Buy on Fatbraintoys.com It’s a bird, it’s a plane—well, no, it’s a durable, non-toxic, shell-shaped toy that may look like it doesn’t do anything, but according to parents, it inspires endless imagination and creativity among toddlers. Available in a variety of bright, fun colors, this award-winning toy helps little ones improve their balance and coordination as they sit in it, stand in it, stack it, or stow things in it. It’s important to note that parents of children with special needs are raving about the many benefits of this seemingly simple toy for children of all ages. Price at time of publication: $30 Melissa & Doug Let's Play House! Dust, Sweep & Mop Set Amazon Buy on Amazon Buy on Target This highly-rated, top-selling pretend cleaning set is a favorite for kids and parents. Because who wouldn’t love encouraging little ones to help out around the house? It comes with six pieces: a rope mop, broom, dustpan with a small broom, a fluffy duster that’s so real, you may just use it for real cleaning, and a stand. The set is made for kids ages 3 and older, but plenty of parents say their 2-year-old is all about it. It doesn’t contain small pieces, so it’s safe for younger toddlers, as long as they can walk and won’t pull it over on themselves. Price at time of publication: $35 The Best Play Tents and Forts for Instant Secret Hideouts Was this page helpful? Thanks for your feedback! Tell us why! Other Submit Sources Parents uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy. CDC. What developmental milestones is your 2-year-old reaching? Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. How to buy safe toys. American Academy of Pediatrics.