When the sun is shining, the garden is the place to be. Gardening with kids is a great way to get them outside and learning about the natural world. However, if your kids would rather spend time with a screen than a garden spade, it can be a struggle to get them outdoors. Luckily, there are plenty of kids’ garden toys to make being outdoors more fun – from toys they can play with by themselves to games for the whole family to enjoy.
There are child-sized versions of classics like croquet and skittles, as well as rocket launchers and bubble-making toys to discover. We’ve curated a joyful selection of children’s garden games, which are sure to encourage them to get outdoors.
10 of the best children’s garden toys
Browse our selection of some of the best outdoor toys below.
Little Tikes Cozy Coupe
This pretend car is a classic garden toy. Let kids burn off some energy by propelling themselves around the garden, with their feet sticking out of the bottom of the car – Flintstones-style. Or, this updated version, from Little Tikes, has a removable floor so toddlers can keep their feet inside while an adult pushes them along.
Adjustable Basketball Stand
Great for developing hand-eye co-ordination. This basketball hoop and stand is height-adjustable to suit children of different ages. There’s no need to attach it to a wall – when you have it in position, simply fill the base with water to keep it steady. It comes complete with two inflatable basketballs and a pump.
2 Junior Football Goal Set
Young football fans will love having their own set of goals.These are supplied with ground pegs to secure them outdoors, or they are suitable for use indoors – for rainy days. The set includes two goals with nets, a ball, hand pump and ground pegs.
Wooden Handled Children’s Skipping Rope
You can’t go wrong with a classic skipping rope, and this wooden handled version should be sturdier than plastic alternatives. Skipping is great exercise – perfect for at-home PE lessons. And this is a toy that children can play with on their own or with siblings.
A children’s version of the classic game Pétanque. The brightly coloured plastic balls should be light enough for children aged six-and-up to throw, and the grooves make them easier to grip. They come with a handy carry case, to make them easy to transport and to pack away tidily.
Encourage budding astronauts with these air-powered rockets. You can use them to try to teach children about gravity and trajectory or, more realistically, you can simply let them have fun stomping and launching their rockets high into the air. The rockets and launch pad can be easily assembled in a few minutes and then kids (and adults) can send the rockets into orbit (or at least the air).
Junior Lawn Croquet
Up to four players can enjoy a game of croquet with this child-sized set. The mallets are 75cm long, and the set includes mallets, hoops and balls, as well as a canvas storage bag to make it easy to carry around and to keep all of the bits together, so nothing gets lost.
Mookie Catcher Ball
Make the simple game of ‘catch’ more fun with these Velcro pads. Children throw a tennis ball to each other, which sticks to the hand-held pads – ideal if you don’t have space for a tennis court in your garden! Suitable for children from the age of three, this set will help develop hand-eye co-ordination and comes with two Velcro bats and one ball.
Orange Tree Toys Woodland Friends Skittles
These colourful skittles play music when you knock them over. Designed for tiny hands, the skittles are small and topped with animal characters to catch children’s attention. The set includes six hand-painted wooden skittles and two balls. In the garden or indoors, they will help develop children’s co-ordination and their listening skills. Other sets available include safari animals and Paddington Bear skittles.
Dr Zigs Giant Bubble kit
These are no ordinary bubbles! With this kit, children can make super-size, colourful bubbles. The concentrated solution makes enough bubble liquid for at least 1,000 bubbles. It’s non-toxic, and suitable for children from the age of three (adult supervision recommended).The starter kit includes a wooden wand, cotton rope and 100ml of concentrated bubble solution – everything kids need to get started.