When it comes to toddlers, no piece of furniture is off-limits. If it can be climbed, it will be climbed. That’s just one of the many undeniable toddler truths. And if you have a child who loves to climb anything, chances are you’re ready to invest in one of the best climbing toys for toddlers. The good news is that you can accessorize both your living room and yard (or both) with structures that allow your tot to do his thing safely.
While some risky games are a natural part of childhood, you want to give your toddler as many safe opportunities to exercise during the day as possible. Finally, toddlers need a way to burn energy, especially if they are active kids and naps are difficult.
Chances are, you’re already chasing your toddler around every minute of the day. Climbing toys give your toddler the opportunity to develop important motor skills – like strength, coordination and balance. Also, climbing can be great for imaginative play, teamwork, and goal setting.
Are you ready to get something that will stop your kid from climbing on everything from furniture to walls? Check out our most popular indoor and outdoor climbing toys for toddlers. (Note: While the sets below are categorized as indoors or outdoors, some are so versatile they can be moved indoors or outdoors as the seasons change.)
The best indoor climbing toy for toddlers
1. This 4-Piece climbing toy set For customizable game
Rated 4.8 stars from more than 2,000 reviews on Amazon, this popular multi-piece playset is customizable, easy to clean and “great quality”. The four individual pieces can be used individually or linked together to give your toddler lots of opportunities to crawl, play and climb. Each piece serves a different purpose and creates different opportunities for learning and growth. It’s compact enough to fit in any space at 40″ x 40″ x 10″ and is made of CertiPUR-US certified PU foam with a leatherette cover.
2. A wooden climbing toy that folds for easy storage
Although this wooden climbing toy set is a bit more expensive, it’s worth it for all the different ways to customize it – eight in total. It is suitable for toddlers from 12 to 72 months old, so it can be adjusted to suit your child’s needs as they grow. It comes with a miniature climbing wall and monkey bars shaped like a house. Toddlers can build a fortress under the monkey bars for even more fun. Best of all, this set can be folded up and put away once your toddler is done playing, making it perfect for small spaces. “It will last for years because it can be molded into many shapes. It’s very stable… Excellent quality and very easy to assemble and fold,” raved one reviewer. “I can only recommend it!”
You can also spring the double-sided slide as an add-on if you want to enable sliding and climbing.
3. A playhouse for small toddlers learning to climb
Are you looking for the perfect climbing toy for your toddler? This Little Tikes garden playhouse is the right choice for you. Recommended for ages 6 months to 3 years, it offers a variety of activities and can be used as an enclosed playhouse or an open, two-sided activity center. The mini slide offers plenty of climbing opportunities to develop multifunctional motor skills, and the ball drop, shutters and telescope add to the fun. With over 8,000 reviews, it’s a popular choice with parents. One reviewer said: “We gave this to our granddaughter when she was 6 months old. She is now 14 months and is playing with it more and more… She loves to crawl through all the orifices.”
The best outdoor climbing toy for toddlers
4. A versatile one Climbing toy playset This is built to last
One of the best things about this playset is that it can be used both indoors and outdoors. With over 1,200 reviews, this climbing set is extremely popular with parents with small children. In fact, it’s so popular with parents that it even won the 2019 Parents’ Choice Award. It has doors that open, wheels that spin and an amazing slide for your toddler to play on. Plus, its weather and UV resistant construction means it’s tough enough to withstand the elements. Just note that some assembly is required. One reviewer remarked, “This is built to last. We have [it] for our 3 year old and when he’s ready our 10 month old – but our 5 and 7 year olds play on it too. It can endure fairly heavy play from three kids at a time. Our kids LOVE it.”
5. A climbing toy with a slide and ball run
If you’re looking for a climbing toy with extra bells and whistles, the Step 2 Fun Climber is perfect for your household. The front slide is attached to a ladder that your toddler can climb up for hours of fun. It also includes a ball pit that doubles as a water table, a ball maze and 10 balls included in the playset. It can be used indoors or outdoors. With over 1,600 reviews, it’s clear parents love it as much as their toddlers. One reviewer said, “This is such a great set for an active 18-month-old who, by the way, climbs on every piece of furniture in our house!” Relatable, right?
6. This caterpillar climbing toy with adorable design
This cute caterpillar climbing toy would make a great addition to any playroom or garden. With its colorful design, it’s perfect for helping your child develop more than just their motor skills – especially since it’s intended for the 2-4 year olds age group. They can learn their numbers by counting the caterpillar’s feet, learn their colors by identifying them on the structure, and more. It’s weather resistant too, so you can count on it to look good season after season. Reviewers love this climbing toy for its durability and easy assembly, finding it perfect for their wild little ones. One reviewer called this caterpillar “a great outlet for an energetic toddler!”
7. The sea creature climbing toy that doubles as a ball pit or sandpit
Having multipurpose toys that can be used throughout toddlerhood can help you save money in the long run. That’s always a bonus, isn’t it? This KidKraft climbing toy is a fun outdoor toy for your toddler as they grow up, including a sandpit or ball pit (although sand and balls aren’t included) and monkey bars. It can help them build muscle strength, fine motor skills and develop their imagination. Reviewers love this for its easy assembly, saying “So easy to put together out of the box and so easy for my kids to set up when they want to use it.”