25 Favorite Outdoor toys for kids (that’ll keep them engaged for hours!) for 2021

Written by ElizabethThrives

favorite outdoor toys for kids

Favorite outdoor toys that will have your kids enjoying the outdoors for hours for 2021!

As a mom of five, I constantly look for non-tech ways to engage my kids. Things that get them in the great outdoors playing for a long time!

I don’t want outdoor toys that they play with for five minutes and then come back inside saying they are bored.

I want my kids to have super fun things to do in the back yard that will have them ASKING to go outdoors rather than being told to get outside and play!

Playing outside is an important part of kids’ development!

You have hopefully seen the abundant research that exposes the detrimental effects of too much screen time for children (well adults, too).

[See Screen time side effect in kids and teens from John Hopkins All Children’s Hospital]

There’s really no argument that we as parents should try to give our kids more opportunities to be in front of a screen! No way!

But there is plenty of evidence that we as parents should do all that we can to help our kids engage in active play.

And where can active play take place easily?



(  HERE.)


Here are the absolute best outdoor toys for kids!

These toys have been tested and tried, and I can attest to how long-lasting and fun-producing these outside toys truly are!

1. A big trampoline!

favorite outdoor toys for kids

This 16 foot trampoline is probably the best outdoor toy of them all.

First, the size is great because it seems to prevent accidents more than a smaller one because it’s hard to fall off of it. The games kids can come up with to play on a trampoline are never ending!

Our trampoline is hands down- the MOST played with toy we have ever had.




2. Self Sealing water balloons!

favorite outdoor toys

Seriously, the person who invented these should be given some kind of Nobel prize.

If you have ever spent quite the LONG time filling balloons with water and then struggling to tie each one…over and over and over so that your kids can have a water balloon fight, then you know why the inventor of these self sealing water balloons is a genius!

It takes about ONE MINUTE (!!!) to make 100 water balloons! And the kids can do it themselves. We get several packs for endless outdoor fun for our kids!


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3. tonka mighty dump truck!

favorite outdoor toys for kids

This truck is so strong and durable and fun for kids! Digging in the dirt or sand or hauling things. This truck is a super fun outdoor toy.

It will stand the test of time too! Ours are 15 years old and going strong in the back yard. They have been endlessly played with and still work great.


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4. spike ball!

Spike ball is such a fun game for kids! It’s easy to learn and the games last a long time!

Set one of these up outside and kids will have a great time with it! It’s also super fun for kids to play when friends come over.


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5. Toy stunt planes!

Your kids will absolutely LOVE these! We have bought different foam planes over the years and they all had one thing in common: they broke within minutes.

Still they were fun for the few minutes they lasted! I was so glad to have discovered these glider planes because they LAST and provide tons of outdoor fun for kids! They are an inexpensive outdoor toy that provides fun for hours!

6. saucer swing!

fun outdoor toys for kids

What kid doesn’t love a swing? Well this saucer swing is even more fun! Two or more can pile on plus the swing goes so high due to the nice long ropes!



7. Sand box!

best outdoor toys for kids

Every kid should have the opportunity to play in the sand! They can be so creative with castles and creations. My boys like getting cars and trucks and setting up work sites!

This is a sturdy sandbox and these sand toys help with the fun too! Of course my boys put the tonka trucks in the sand all the time too!




8. rebounder!

best outdoor toys for kids

First, I always buy SKILZ sports items because SKILZ makes quality products and their rebounder is no different!

This is a super fun way for a kid to improve throwing, pitching, and catching balls while enjoying the outdoors!


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9. Inflatable water slide pool!

best toys for outside

If you really want to go all-out, this is a crazy fun outdoor toy for kids! And yes it will definitely keep them occupied for hours! I love the climbing wall steps and this one has so many sprinklers keeping the whole thing nice and wet the whole time!

And it is HUGE and well made while only taking about 2 minutes to set up and inflate!



10. large exercise ball!

favorite outdoor toys for kids

My husband thought I was crazy to buy not one but FOUR of these for our boys! But they have had ENDLESS fun playing all kinds of outdoor games with these!

Picture a hilarious massive kickball game all the way to trying to roll through the back yard staying on top of one of the balls! So enjoyable!

11. slack line!

outdoor toys for kids

Set this up between two trees in your backyard and you have a super fun outdoor experience! Kids perfect balance, coordination, focus, posture, and core strength with a slack line!

I especially like this one because it is super long, easy to set up in minutes, and has the second strap to go over the first one that kids can hold to help balance!

12. T-ball set!

This T-ball set is so fun and great for your little ones! The height can easily be adjusted as they grow. Kids can practice hitting a ball and playing games with this t-ball set in the backyard for hours!

13. Basketball goal!

basketball goal outdoor toy for kids

A basketball goal is a must for the outdoors. Kids can enjoy simple games like “PIG” and “Around the World” all the way to full on basketball games! If you have a basketball goal, you will soon see how often kids make their way to it when they are playing outside.

14.  Ninja Obstacle Course!

favorite toys for kids to use outside

What kid doesn’t love to try an obstacle course! This one is so great because you can customize it however you like with all the different obstacles!

This one has several obstacles such as gymnastic rings, monkey bar holds, hanging ladder, and monkey fist. Kids have a blast on this obstacle course!

15. Slip n Slide!

slip n slide outdoor toy

In warmer weather, you simply have to let your kids enjoy a slip n slide in the yard! My kids are always up for a slip n slide time. Now, in my experience, they are not made to last for years. I have gotten more expensive ones and cheaper ones and they all seem to last one season.

So go with the less expensive versions like this one knowing that you can get them another one next year! I always make sure they have a sprinkler all the way around so it stays slippery the whole time!

16. Zip Line!

This is something that takes playing outside from fun to totally awesome. If your backyard has a possible zip line path between two sturdy trees, you simply have to get a zip line one day! This one is a great one for lots of outdoor playtime for your kids!

17. soccer ball, football, and basketball!

Great sports balls are an outdoor toy that every kid needs! Even if they don’t play each of these in organized sports, you are helping their physical development by having a great quality soccer, football, and basketball for them to enjoy playing with in the backyard. These particular balls are the simply the best picks for kids!

18. sidewalk chalk!

Drawing a big picture, maze, or a big city is fun for kids for a nice long time!

19. bubbles!

Does anyone not love making bubbles? Kids can race blowing the most bubbles or trying to blow a really big bubble, etc. Taking pictures of them with bubbles always make cool pics as well! This outdoor toy doesn’t last as long, but I had to mention it because it’s so fun.

These are great to keep on hand so you can just give your kids a bottle and tell them to enjoy outside!

20. water table!

best outdoor toys for kids

As a parent, it is so enjoyable to watch a little guy or gal have a blast playing with this water table! They really are occupied outside with this for a lengthy time! This spiraling set and ferris wheel on this one set it apart from the rest! It’s a very engaging outdoor toy!

21.  Wet or dry slide!

best outdoor toys for kids

This slide is too much fun really! Making it a water slide with the hose in the backyard is so fun and then just planting it somewhere and letting your little ones enjoy is so great!

Many people take it up a notch and let this slide land in this kiddie pool for loads of enjoyment outside!

22. frisbee golf set!

fun outdoor toys for kids

Frisbee golf discs are so great for kids to throw and perfect aim and precision. They make a great outdoor toy for kids because they can easily set up “holes” throughout the yard and play frisbee golf at home!

23. rubber playground balls!

This outdoor toy for kids is another one that allows your kids to use their imagination to come up with all kinds of games! My boys always lean towards different versions of kickball and dodge ball. There are numerous games and activities kids can enjoy using the rubbler playground balls!

24. practice cones!

If you simply give your kids a set of practice cones, and tell them to enjoy them outside, you will probably be amazed at all they come up with! The obvious fun is dribbling a soccer ball or basketball between cones. But that is just the beginning! Practice cones can help with sports practice but also make a super fun outdoor toy for kids.

25. badminton set!

kid outdoor toys backyard

The backyard fun of a badminton game can go on for hours! It’s easy for kids of all athletic abilities to enjoy. That’s why kids will play it for so long!

This one is easy set up and take down which makes a huge difference too.




More play outdoors with less screen time indoors is a great goal for our kids. This list of outdoor toys for kids is all you need to help your kids get outside and enjoy playing outdoors!



Try some of these 25 outdoor toys for kids for 2021!

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