Our 2-year-olds can toddle just about everywhere and get into just about everything, so gifts for 2-year-olds should be able to keep up with them–even if you can’t. Imaginative play toys can help channel that boundless curiosity into something more productive than, say, taking a crayon to your wall, while other toys will help build important skills like strengthening their memory or learning to follow directions. (Win!)
In fact there are so many cool ideas for gifts for 2-year-olds, the biggest challenge might be getting them to sit still long enough to unwrap all of them.
All gifts have been editorially determined by our staff, there is no compensation in exchange for picks. CMP is an rstyle and Amazon affiliate.
($44.95 at Oompa toys)
Love these gorgeous German-made beechwood blocks from Haba, which make a great early building toy. You can even pair them with other block sets, or place them in the window for a colorful prismatic effect. And hey, they’ll look nice scattered across your living room rug when your toddler plays their favorite game: Knock Over the Block Tower.
($54 and up at Ellery Design)
We can’t tell you how to get to Sesame Street, but we can tell you how to get this amazingly cool personalized sign that lovers of Grover, Cookie Monster, and Big Bird will recognize right away.
($24.95 at Amazon)
Soopsori Toys’ wooden doctor kit is made for the youngest MD’s who are ready to look after their willing patients with a stethoscope and a syringe. This is also a great toy to help make those real doctor’s visits a little less scary for reluctant patients.
($24.99 at Pinhole Press)
When do flashcards make the most special gift? When you make them using the easy-to-follow format from Pinhole Press that lets you add your own photos and text. What a great way to include all those VIP’s in a child’s life on each of the 26 individual photo tiles.
($35.95 on sale at Fat Brain Toys)
One of our own favorite childhood toys, the Fisher Price vintage turntable is not only so easy for little hands to use, but the nursery songs it plays are fun for toddlers too. Plus, it’s a great way to teach them about records without pulling out your own beloved stash of 45’s.
($189-539, Elves and Angels)
Calling all future top chefs: This pint-sized, totally handcrafted wooden play kitchen from Elves and Angels is ready for some creative culinary play. Exquisitely handmade by a master woodworker, you have to see these heirloom-quality play kitchens. And they’re made to last through many years, making them the perfect birthday party gift for a 2-year-old. Next year, just add some play food or a tea set!
($45+ at Land of Nod)
The fox might say that he’s happy to keep your child snuggly warm after bathtime in this bright hooded towel from Land of Nod. Love the paw and tail decorations, and you can have this one personalized too.
($17.49 at Amazon)
No modern children’s library is complete without the new classics from Mo Willems. We don’t know if it’s more fun watching the kids respond to all the questions in the book, or getting to do the pigeon’s silly voice ourselves.
($129.99, Micro Kickboard)
We love this fun ride-on gift for kids around 2 year old since it’s designed to grow with them. It’s easy to steer and balance, and once kids have it mastered, you can remove the seat and drawer and add a T-bar to convert it to a stand-up scooter. Just add a helmet!
($24.99 at Magic Beans)
Musical instruments are such essentials in a developing child’s repertoire of playthings. Get yourself a good pair of noise-dampening headphones and you’re set. (Ha.)
($36 at Manzanita Kids)
With just enough chunky wooden pieces for a 2-year-old to handle, Manzanita Kids’ personalized shapes puzzle is so lovely in different shades of american hardwood. This is like the gorgeous, handmade keepsake version of the cheap versions we see in toy stores all the time.
($69.99 at P’Kolino)
Give your 2-year-old a cozy spot of their own to curl up with a good board book or stuffed animal. We love P’Kolino’s many patterns and colors almost as much as we love the fact that the covers can be removed and machine washed. Hey, we are talking about toddlers after all.
($28 at manny & simon)
It’s still probably a little early to hand over your own phone to let the kiddo snap some shots, so let him use his imagination with this lovely keepsake quality wooden play camera in red or blue.
($48-68 at Cuddle + Kind )
We are so smitten with these soft, cuddly, hand-knit dolls in so many adorable styles. But the best part may be that for every doll you purchase, 10 meals will be donated to major hunger-fighting charities both here in North America and around the world. Plus each little penguin or bunny or mermaid sports a little bracelet reminding you of the good it’s done just by you bringing it home. Wow.
($248 at Paloma’s Nest)
One of our favorite indie makers has the most adorable collection of children’s furniture, like this pony chair in your choice of wood or color. You can even have a color matched just for your decor. And if your child isn’t pining for a pony (what?) they also have elephants, lions, and giraffes.
($53 on sale at nununu)
This shop steals our heart for all kids, birth to 14, with their edgy but very wearable collection of cool duds for cool kids. We love their iconic star pattern, and it looks so cute on this cozy sweatshirt style A-line dress that would look great over jeans, leggings, or as-is with those cute toddler knees poking out below.