Toddler climbing toys: only the best

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Toddlers love to climb! In fact, toddlers are hard-wired to move their bodies at every opportunity. They are gaining command of their limbs, finding their sense of balance, and gaining more stability. Below find the top toddler climbing toys. I chose these specifically with toddlers in mind, but many of them can be used before and after toddler years, and with siblings or friends! Note that each of these toys require adult supervision.

Specifically, I looked for toddler climbing toys that are:

  • Durable (who needs a toddler toy that’s going to break 15 minutes in?)
  • Easy to clean (unless you’ve got lots of free time to clean, in which case…tell me your secrets!)
  • Sturdy (let’s embrace toddler’s ability to test limits!)

Table of Contents

TL;DR: Top 5 Toddler Climbing Toys!

Why it's wonderful

toddler climbing toys pickler
Photo credit: Climb Up Toys
Photo credit: Happy Moon LV
toddler climbing toys pickler crawl box
Photo credit: Rad Kids Furniture

Best toddler climbing toys for outdoors

These toddler climbing toys are made to be outdoors- they will stand up to the elements. They can be used in your backyard, front yard, or perhaps even at grandparents’ houses.

This mini-climber has a slide, ladder, and tunnel!

Pros

Cons

This climber is a toddler’s dream! It comes with a rock wall, slide, two steering wheels, a ladder, and an open area underneath that can be used as a hideout, fort, sandbox, or toy storage area!

Pros

Cons

This contraption is sprinkler meets kiddie pool. You can adjust the height of the water being sprayed by decreasing or increasing the pressure of your hose. Toddlers can exercise their climbing muscles when they are getting into and out of this pool. Plus, splashing is great gross motor practice, too!

Pros

Cons

Best toddler climbing toys for indoors

These toddler climbing toys are made for indoor play! Many of these could technically be used in your yard during dry summer months, but shouldn’t be stored outside or used when it’s wet.

This ball pit set includes two tunnels, dart balls, and two separate areas for ball pits, and a mini “basketball” hoop!

Pros

best toddler climbing toys waldorf rocker
Photo credit: Wood and Hearts
toddler climbing toys
Photo credit: Wood and Hearts

This Waldorf Rocker was made with all of the things toddlers love in mind. It can be used as a rocker, or it can be turned over to be used as a “bridge” for children to climb over. This one has a piece that you can move to make a seat on the inside. This piece is perfect for imaginative play! It can be a pretend boat, carrying children to a far away place. It can be a tunnel for cars. The possibilities are endless.

Pros

Cons

These large foam pieces can be assembled many different ways for loads of fun!

Pros

Cons

This indoor slide is sturdy and easy to assemble. Plus, it comes with a basketball hoop and a small ball for added fun!

Pros

Cons

This play set has many stations and provides many options for children 6 months to 2.5 or 3 years old to exercise their gross motor muscles.

Pros

Cons

toddler climbing toys pickler
Photo credit: Climb Up Toys

This beautiful set is a modern twist on a Pickler triangle challenge set. It comes with all three pieces needed to set up a toddler’s paradise: a ramp, rainbow climber, and triangle. The triangle can be rotated and used to promote three different climbing skills.

Pros

Cons

Photo credit: Happy Moon LV
toddler climbing toy pickler triangle
Photo credit: Happy Moon LV

This ingenious transformable Pickler triangle can be modified to use 20 different ways! There are many buying options, so you can get the arrangements you want!

Pros

Cons

toddler climbing toys toddler gym
Photo credit: Home for Dreams

Forget 24 Hour Fitness…this toddler gym can be open in your house all day, every day! It comes with a variety of obstacles that allow your kiddo to swing, climb, and slide!

Pros

Cons

This adorable butterfly climber is soft and easy to clean!

Pros

Cons

toddler climbing toys pickler crawl box
Photo credit: Rad Kids Furniture

These 3 Pickler crawl boxes can be used as a set or individually. Think that your kid won’t like playing with just a plain ‘ol box? You may be surprised! One skeptical reviewer wrote: “I admit I was surprised when my wife wanted to buy this wooden box for our twins. But they love it. They love crawling through it and popping their heads out of the top. They love dropping every single one of their toys down the hole over and over again. They spend way more time playing with it then I imagined they would. Once they go to bed it becomes a nice little side table next to the sofa. Really solid piece of furniture for both me and the kids!”

Pros

Cons

toddler-climbing-toys-pickler-triangle-set
Photo credit: Wood and Hearts

This fabulous set comes with three top Montessori structures included: Pickler ramp, Pickler arch, and the Pickler triangle. The ramp is double sided– it is smooth on one side and rock-wall like handles on the other. The ramp cam be adjusted to be perched on any bar.

Pros

Cons

Best toddler climbing toys that can be used inside OR outside

These toddler climbing toys are rated for indoor or outdoor use. Many of them are handmade from Etsy sellers, and you can indicate if you would like to use it as an outdoor toy when you purchase it.

This set comes with 12 stepping stones. They are a variety of heights and can be arranged in limitless ways! These are completely open-ended…give them to your child and see what they come up with! Perhaps they’ll set them up and pretend they are helping them step over hot lava. Perhaps they’ll be a rock bridge to a faraway kingdom. The possibilities are endless. And the best part is: they promote gross motor coordination, balance, depth perception, and body awareness.

Note: they are portable (you don’t permanently attach them to the ground), and so they can be used outside. However, they should be stored inside when not in use.

Pros

Cons

This tower is a great way for young children to practice using their big joints and muscles!

Pros

Cons

This play structure can turn any indoor or outdoor space into an adventure! It includes a ladder, pirate flag, and two decks for playing.

Pros

Cons

Magic Mom Hack

If you’re feeling overwhelmed (#momlife), try reframing the “Terrible Twos” as the “Terrific Twos”!

And, to learn more about the development of kiddos at this age, check out this post for a closer look at the wants and needs of 2(ish) year olds.

This two-sided toy can be used as a boat or a climbing structure!

Pros

Cons

This caterpillar can be used for children from when they start crawling through 8 years old! When they are younger, they can use it to pull up and crawl through. When they are out of their toddler years, they’ll likely be ready to climb on the top, as well! It activates the enclosure schema and can lead to endless creative play!

Pros

Cons

This toy will turn your space into an amusement park! Children can ride in the car and go down the ramp, push the car on the ground, or climb on the ramp without the car!

Pros

Cons

Magic Mom Hack

Active days make for easier bed times! Creating opportunities for movement and play can help kids spend their (seemingly unlimited) energy.

For more ideas about how to promote active play, check out this post on the best outdoor toys for kids.

This is a Pickler triangle gone wild! It has many ladders, a black board, ropes, slide and a rock wall attachment!

Pros

Cons

toddler climbing toy gym
Photo credit: Active Wood

Calling all toddlers! This MASSIVE play set has many ways to play.

Pros

Cons

This large climber is perfect for rainy days indoors, or a a backyard!

Pros

Cons

Pros

Turn your yard, playroom, or even living room into a castle! This slide comes with an anti-slip ladder, telescope, tunnel, and basketball hoop.

Pros

Cons

Toddler climbing toys FAQs

What are the benefits of climbing toys for toddlers?

This can be a tricky age for us (the parents). Toddlers aren’t quite steady on their feet, but they’re seeking out independence for the first time. Toddler climbing toys such as the ones above can help children move their bodies and explore their own limits (when safe). Plus, they’re a great way for kiddos to spend their energy. Climbing toys = better sleep, in my experience.

What should I look for when picking out a toddler climbing toy for my toddler?

This depends a lot on your lifestyle and home. In general, I recommend taking the following into consideration to choose one that will work the best for you and your family:

  • How much space does it take up when it’s in use?
  • Do I need storage space for it long-term?
  • How long will my child be able to use it?
  • Can it be used with older or younger siblings?

Considerations about toddler climbing toys:

  • You’ll need to make sure it has the right surface underneath it. These toys encourage climbing, so you should put something something soft underneath it. We opted for these 1 inch thick mats. If it’s inside, this could look like foam mats or carpet. If it’s outside, this could look like grass. Check the manufacturers instructions for more information.
  • Many of these are made for children at a range of ages and weight limits. Take a look at the manufacturers instructions to see if each play-thing is right for your family.
  • Many of these require some assembly. I know that’s a deal breaker for some folks. But the good news is– many of these have pretty minimal assembly.

Found a toddler climbing toy that you absolutely love? Find @momjeanmagic on Facebook or Instagram and share a photo!

Happy climbing !

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