The 22 Best Toys for 2-Year-Olds In 2021

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Buying toys for 2-year-olds can be so much fun, but when you’re deciding what exactly to get them it’s important to consider whether or not the toy is entertaining if it plays into their toddler interests, and if it will help them reach developmental milestones.

According to Whitney Casares, M.D., M.P.H., pediatrician, author of The Working Mom Blueprint, and founder of Modern Mommy Doc, toys can strengthen their developmental skills while playing into their age-appropriate interests. She says, “Sensory play with items like finger paints, sand, or play-doh allow them to build their fine motor and proprioception skills.”  Whether you choose an educational toy or one that reminds them of their favorite show, there are plenty of options available for your tot.

Since there’s so much that goes into finding the perfect toy for a 2-year-old, we’ve rounded up some of the best ones available to help you choose the one that’s right for your tot.

Holiday Shopping Tip

Many retailers are currently experiencing shipping delays due to disruptions in the global supply chain. As a result, we recommend shopping for the holiday season early to avoid delays.

Our Top Picks
When it’s not in use, it folds up for easy storage. This slide is made for kids between 18 months and six years old.
Designed for kids between 18 months and three years old and is made from strong, durable vinyl, so it can withstand a lot of bouncing.
Made for kids 2 years old and up, this shape sorter comes with a tray and eight blocks in subtle shades of blue and grey.
Designed to help kids learn how to play some of their favorite songs through color coordination.
Comes with six plush bowling pins and a plush ball that kids can either roll or throw to try to knock over the little monsters.
The classic toys are great for kids as young as one year old and are made from both maple wood and rubber wood.
Fantastic for strengthening fine motor skills, color matching, shape identification, and are just generally fun for kids to play.
Includes four farm animals, four wild animals, and one Eddie figurine. Best for kids between 18 months and five years old.
Kids as young as 18 months old will love this little push lawn mower that blows bubbles with every step they take.
Kids between two and four years old will enjoy this train that comes with 14 wood blocks in various shapes.

Little Tikes First Slide Toddler Slide

Little Tikes First Slide Toddler Slide

There’s so much joy in slides, and this little one is the perfect introduction for a 2-year-old. It’s three feet long, just over two feet tall, and it can be played with inside or outside. Plus, when it’s not in use, it folds up for easy storage. This slide is made for kids between 18 months and 6 years old.

Just one look at this toy and you can see why it would appeal to a toddler. Designed for kids between 18 months and 3 years old, this durable vinyl pony can withstand a ton of bouncing, moving, and riding. Just fill the little horse up with some air and let your kid hop on its back, grab it by the ears, and jump to their heart’s content.

Plan Toys x pbk Shape Sorter

Plan Toys x pbk Shape Sorter

Made for kids 2 years old and up, this shape sorter comes with a tray and eight blocks in subtle shades of blue and grey. It’s designed to help kids learn and match shapes and further develop their fine motor skills. Also, if they don’t want to play with it as intended, the blocks themselves make for fun toys on their own.

Baby Einstein Magic Touch Piano Wooden Musical Toy

Baby Einstein Magic Touch Piano Wooden Musical Toy

With this little magic piano, kids get three different sheets of music that are designed to help them learn how to play some of their favorite songs through color coordination. Between perfecting their favorite melodies, toddlers can also jam out to tunes that they make up. Ideal for kids between 6 months and 3 years old, this piano also features volume control to avoid hurting little ears.

Melissa & Doug Monster Plush 6-Pin Bowling Game

Melissa & Doug Monster Plush 6-Pin Bowling Game

Do you want to know what’s even better than bowling? Monster bowling! Perfect for kids between 2 and 6 years old, this set comes complete with six plush bowling pins and a plush ball that kids can either roll or throw to try to knock over the little monsters. Each piece is made from high-quality materials so the toy is sure to last.

Anthropologie Wooden Vehicle Toys

Anthropologie Wooden Vehicle Toys

These little wooden vehicles are so simple, but the pop of color really makes them stand out. The classic toys are great for kids as young as 1 year old and are made from both maple wood and rubberwood. Keep in mind that each toy is sold separately. 

Pretex My First Find and Match Easter Matching Eggs

These little eggs are fantastic for strengthening fine motor skills, color matching, shape identification, and are just generally fun for kids to play with. Kids get a toy carton filled with 12 eggs which pull apart to show different colors and shapes within. The eggs are made for kids between 18 months and 12 years old and are made from high quality materials to ensure they last for years.

Fisher Price Little People Exploring Animals See ‘N Say Gift Set

Fisher Price Little People Exploring Animals See ‘N Say Gift Set

With this bundle, toddlers get two classic toys in one: a See ‘N Say and nine Little People toys. The Little People set includes four farm animals, four wild animals, and one Eddie figurine. Your toddler will love using the See ‘N Say part of the set to learn the names and sounds of different animals. This little bundle is best for kids between 18 months and 5 years old.

Lydaz Bubble Mower

Kids as young as 18 months old will love this little push lawn mower that blows bubbles with every step they take. In addition to the mower itself, you get three bottles of bubble solution, three bubble wands, and three AA batteries (which are required for the mower to run) so you won't have to worry about replacing any of the necessary components for a while.

Also, when it’s not in use, the mower folds up nicely for easy storage.

Melissa & Doug Jumbo Wooden Stacking Train

Kids between 2 and 4 years old will enjoy this train that comes with 14 wood blocks in various shapes. The train consists of three cars, each with a peg that the blocks can stack on. After your toddler has stacked all of the blocks, they can grab the attached cord and pull the train along with them as they go about their day. 

Educational Insights Plush Mixaroo Stuffed Animal

If you’re looking for something that involves imaginative play, then this is the one. It comes with 11 pieces that kids can mix and match together to create their own unique stuffed animals; pieces include dragon wings, an elephant trunk, lion manes, fox ears, and more. This toy is made for kids as young as 2 years old and was designed by teachers to help foster kids' motor skills and cognitive development

Lily & River Little Climber

Lily & River Little Climber

2-year-olds can burn off some of their energy with this climbing tower and the rock wall/slide accessory. The tower itself is made for kids between six months and four years old, and the slide/rock climber is good for kids as young as 18 months.

Each piece is made from strong, sturdy bamboo wood (so the toy won’t fall apart easily), the accessory features a smooth slide on one side and a rock climber on the other, and when your kiddo isn’t playing with the tower, it folds down for easy storage. Finally, kids also get a copy of the board book “The Little Climber” with their tower.

Manhattan Toy Playground Adventure

Manhattan Toy Playground Adventure

There is no way a toddler will get bored with this toy because it features four separate sections, each packed full of different ways to play. It includes gliders on tracks, an abacus, spinners, bead runs, animals, among other little games to help strengthen motor skills and expose kids to different colors, shapes, animals, textures, and more.

Step 2 Little Baker’s Kitchen

Step 2 Little Baker’s Kitchen

Every toddler needs a play kitchen, right? This one is made for kids as young as two years old and features shelving, a play sink, little storage drawers, a pretend oven, as well as 30 different accessories. Plus, the frying pan and boiling pot both make realistic sounds and the set even comes with a mini high chair kids can put their baby dolls in.

CoComelon Musical Bedtime JJ Doll

CoComelon Musical Bedtime JJ Doll

If your kid can’t get enough CoComelon, this little bedtime JJ doll is a great toy. It’s made for kids as young as 18 months old and it can say seven different phrases with just a little squeeze of the tummy. Kids will recognize JJ’s footie pajamas and teddy bear from the show, and the toy makes a great, snuggly bedtime companion.

Manhattan Toy Musical Lili Llama

Manhattan Toy Musical Lili Llama

Little ones as young as 1 year old can start exploring music with this little llama toy. It features several ways for kids to make music including four spinners, a maraca tail, a xylophone, two gears, a washboard, clackers, and two mallets, which can be stored away in the llama’s head when they’re not being used. 

Leapfrog My Own Leaptop

LeapFrog My Own Leaptop

Kids between 2 and 4 years old can stop trying to steal their caregivers’ computers and play with this little Leaptop instead. It’s available in either pink or green and features four different learning modes for kids to learn about different letters.

When it’s in music mode, the toy can play 16 different songs, and in other modes, kids can learn different animal sounds and even practice spelling their names.

Tender Leaf Toys Audio Sensory Tray

Made for kids 18 months old and up, this little tray comes with four wood pieces that are designed for sensory exploration. Each block is a different shape and color and makes its own unique sound. Kids can put the pieces on the tray like a puzzle, make different sounds, stack the blocks, or find other fun ways to play with this toy. 

Pottery Barn Kids Wooden Cooking & Eating Set

Pottery Barn Kids Wooden Cooking & Eating Set

Little ones, two years old and up, who enjoy playing pretend will love this little wooden eating set. It comes with 12 pieces including salt and pepper shakers, plates, forks, knives, a pot, a pan, and more. All of the pieces are made from a combination of beech wood, fasal wood, schima wood, and engineered wood.

Playskool Sit ‘n Spin Classic Spinning Activity Toy

Playskool Sit n Spin

This toy is a classic for a reason; it’s so much fun! Kids as young as 18 months old can enjoy this spinning toy which is great for practicing balance, coordination, strengthening motor skills, and just getting out some of their endless energy. Even though there isn’t much to this little toy, there’s no doubt that your kid will have a lot of fun with it.

Cyiecw Piano Music Mat

It doesn’t get much better than dancing on a keyboard, does it? This mat consists of 19 different keys, each playing its own unique note. In addition to piano sounds, this mat can also play the sounds of other instruments including the saxophone, violin, accordion, trumpet, harp, vibraphone, and guitar.

The mat also has five different play modes, is made from high quality, durable materials, and is safe for kids as young as 2 years old.

Wee Gallery Bamboo Nesting Snail Toy

How cute is this little snail? It’s made from bamboo wood and is the perfect toy for kids as young as 1 year old. The nesting toy comes apart into four separate pieces that can be stacked together or played with in totally different ways. With this toy, you also get a cute little cotton bag for storing and transporting the snail when it’s not being played with.

What to Look for When Buying Toys for 2 Year Olds

Interests

At 2 years old, little ones are beginning to (if they haven’t already) develop interests and preferences in everything from colors, to characters, to activities. This makes it all the more fun to shop for toys for them because any toy that plays into their interests is sure to be an absolute hit.

Ideally, you will be able to find a toy that falls into one of your tot’s categories of interest and helps boost their development at the same time. For example, according to Whitney Casares, M.D., M.P.H., pediatrician, author of The Working Mom Blueprint, and founder of Modern Mommy Doc, if your 2-year-old enjoys playing with their hands then toys/activities that allow for finger exploration are great options for development.

Milestones

While toys that involve sensory play are always a good choice for toddlers, there are plenty of other games and toys that can also aid in their development. By the time a child reaches two years old, they’re still learning and mastering new skills all the time, though it doesn’t happen quite as fast as it did throughout their first years of life (that just means these toys will last them longer, though). Here are some common developmental milestones for 2-year-olds and toys that are great for fostering that development.

  • According to the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), at around two years old many kids are able to climb up and down on furniture unassisted, so the Lily & River Little Climber with Reversible Rock Wall/Slide (view on Pottery Barn Kids) is an excellent toy for this skill. 
  • The AAP says that 2-year-olds also start playing make-believe, and Dr. Casares notes that this is a good thing because “pretend play with toys that have context [help to] build social and communication skills.” Given this information, the Step 2 Little Baker’s Kitchen (view on Buy Buy Baby) would make for a fun and developmentally friendly toy. 
  • There’s a lot for kids to enjoy about the Melissa & Doug Jumbo Wooden Stacking Train (view on Amazon), but it’s especially great for 2-year-olds because by this age they can pull toys behind them while walking, according to the AAP. 

Entertainment

2-year-olds have short attention spans, so if they don’t find a toy particularly entertaining, it will be tossed aside to collect dust, so you definitely want to keep this in mind when you’re on the hunt for a new toy. A lot of what a 2-year-old will find entertaining will have to do with where they are developmentally, and Dr. Casares explains that one thing these tots can’t get enough of is exploring the world around them.

“Two-year-olds are ready to take on the world, but often don’t understand how it works or the dangers that can arise within it,” she says, “[but] these toddlers learn emotional regulation skills and natural consequences when the adults who care for them...provide a warm, loving, safe environment where they can explore.” So, any toy that gives them the opportunity to safely lean into their natural curiosity is sure to be entertaining.

Final Verdict

There is something for just about every 2-year-old on this list, but if you’re not sure what their specific interests are at the moment, you’re sure to get a smile out of them with the Little Tikes Slide (view at Amazon), the Playskool Sit ‘n Spin (view at Amazon), or Monster Bowling (view at Amazon).

Why Trust Verywell Family?

Ashley Ziegler is a staff and freelance writer who covers lifestyle, home, parenting, and commerce content for a variety of platforms. She’s a wife to a public school administrator and mom to 1-year-old and 3-year-old daughters. In addition to regularly scouring the internet to find the best things for herself, Ashley spends multiple hours a week researching, comparing, and writing about products specifically for kids and families.

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  1. Developmental milestones: 2-year-olds. HealthyChildren.org.