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The best toys for outdoor-loving kids

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What are the best outdoor toys for kids?

Kids have far more room to run, play and jump outdoors, and it’s no surprise that they need toys to keep up with them. From toddler basketball hoops to STEM toys like stomp rockets, there are many fun toys, games and activities kids can enjoy while they soak up the sun outside.

Shop this article: Cat Construction Steel Toy Dump TruckFaux Boy Bow & Arrow Archery Set and SplashEZ 3-In-1 Splash Pad.

Age and safety

Many toys include a recommended age range for both safety and developmental reasons.

  • Age-wise, third parties determine age-labeling for developmental reasons. As explained by the American Academy of Pediatrics, this labeling is only for toys without small parts warnings. While not legally required, several toy manufacturers elect to have age labeling.
  • Safety-wise, the Consumer Product Safety Commission requires toy manufacturers to state whether toys pose safety risks, choking hazards or both.

Individual vs. group toys

An easy way to narrow your options among outdoor toys is to determine how many children can play with them.

This bubble mower and similar toys are fantastic for independent play. However, kids can share these toys and play together by taking turns with the toy. Group play toys, such as this cornhole game, let several children participate. 

How much room you’ll need for outdoor toys

With more room to play outside, it opens the door to a myriad of toys and games that aren’t indoor-friendly. Stomp rockets, for example, don’t require much ground space. Instead, they need plenty of overhead clearance. Some sports require a field or pitch to accommodate safe player movement and gameplay such as tee-ball or soccer.

How much do outdoor toys cost?

Most toys range in price from $10 to $150. Here’s what you can expect to find at each price point:

  • Many independent play toys and small group games or activities cost $25 and below. They won’t be too involved or have many accessories, but they’re still fun. 
  • Midrange options, priced $30 to $100, usually include sports equipment and some electronic toys. Toys in this price range are generally good quality and built to last.
  • The most expensive outdoor toys, such as riding toys, outdoor playsets and swing sets, cost $150 to $1,500.

Best outdoor toys for younger kids

Cat Construction Steel Toy Dump Truck

This 16-inch steel dump truck with a working dump bed lends itself to plenty of outdoor play, especially in the sandbox. The toy comes with a lifetime warranty.

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Little Tikes Jump N’ Slide Bounce House

There’s much to love about this bounce house, which has a wealth of safety features. It inflates in less than a minute and comes with a convenient carry case, inflatable blower and repair kit. 

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Kid Trax Toddler Dinosaur Quad Ride-On Toy

This bright green dino quad is suitable for riders up to 44 pounds. It earns praise for its easy-to-use push-button drive system and has a peak speed of 1.5 miles per hour. 

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Best outdoor toys for older kids

ArmoGear Laser Tag Set

This laser tag set includes four laser blasters and four adjustable vests. The lasers have accuracy scopes and boast a 150-foot shooting range.

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Faux Boy Bow & Arrow Archery Set

Kids can flex their archery skills with this foam bow and arrow set made with non-latex and phthalate-free materials. It comes with six arrows that have a 100-foot range. 

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Best outdoor water toys for kids

Max Liquidator Water Blaster Set

These kid-safe water blasters use the same materials as soft pool noodles, letting them float. You can use the colorful set of six in a pool, beach or lake. 

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SplashEZ 3-In-1 Splash Pad

Kids will stay cool with this three-in-one splash pad that is suitable for kids 12 months or older. The shallow pad uses BPA-free and phthalate-free plastic components.

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Melissa & Doug Pretty Petals Sprinkler

Made by a trusted toy manufacturer, this charming sprinkler blasts water through twelve holes. Parents say it’s easy to set up and connect to any standard water hose. 

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Best outdoor STEM toys for kids

Motorworx Toy Rocket Launcher

Enjoy a fun lesson in physics with this toy rocket launcher, whose rockets soar up to 100 feet in the air with the right stomp. The backyard-friendly set includes eight foam rockets and a durable launch stand.  

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Holy Stone Kids’ Mini RC Drone

From 3D flips to speedy rotations, there isn’t much this beginner-friendly drone can’t do. Its rechargeable batteries offer 21 minutes of fly time. 

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Crazy Forts 69-Piece Construction Kit

Designed for kids ages five and older, this life-size building kit creates various structures ranging from igloos to pirate ships. It comes with kid-friendly instructions to guide kids through different configuration ideas. 

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Sian Babish writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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