The Best Water Toys for Kids This Summer
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It’s finally the season to play with water! After being cooped up for months, families can finally get outside to play and explore to their hearts’ content. Water toys allow children a way to cool off, learn through STEAM related fun, play, and make the most of the outdoors whenever weather permits. They can turn an ordinary day into something exciting and bring forth the true feeling of summer water fun without requiring a pool or beach. We’ve got this summer’s best water toys for kids lined up for you to help your family have tons of fun with outdoor water toys.
Our Top Picks
The Best Water Toys for Babies:
- The Best Toy to Introduce Babies to Water Play:MAGIFIRE Tummy Time Baby Water Mat at Amazon
- The Best Water Toy for Babies Learning to Grasp:Munchkin Float and Play Bubbles Bath Toy at Amazon
- The Best Baby Water Toy for Learning:Yookidoo Baby Bath Toy 3 Stackable Cups and Automated Spout at Amazon
The Best Water Toys for Toddlers:
- The Best Introduction for Toddlers to a Splash Pad:BANZAI Jr First Splash Mat Backyard Sprinkling Fun at Amazon
- The Best Sprinkler Toy for Toddlers and Up:penban Unicorn Sprinkler Inflatable Water Toys for Outside at Amazon
- The Best First Water Table for Toddlers:Step2 Rain Showers Splash Pond Water Table at Amazon
The Best Water Toys for Big Kids
- The Best Water Blasters for Big Kids:Max Liquidator 3-Pack Water Blaster Set at Amazon
- The Most Exciting Backyard Water Slide:TEAM MAGNUS Slip and Slide XL at Amazon
- The Best Way to Transform your Trampoline into a Waterpark:Bobor Trampoline Sprinkler for Kidsat Amazon
What to Consider When Purchasing Water Toys for Kids
Before you start letting your dreams of summer water toy fun carry you away, here are a few things to consider before purchasing water toys:
- Your Children’s Ages: Whenever water is involved, there are always safety considerations. Err on the side of what is appropriate for your youngest child to be on the safe side.
- Your Budget: Prices can range when considering water toys. Although many water toys are generally inexpensive, some of the more elaborate or long lasting toys can be surprisingly pricey.
- Are You Ready for Inflatable Toys?: There are so many fun water toys that require inflation first. When inflatable toys are on the larger side, you may want to consider purchasing an inflation device to save your sanity and your breath throughout the summer.
- The Size of your Outdoor Space: Some water toys naturally keep kids within a certain area. Others encourage taking up lots of space (Think: water guns). Depending on your children’s ages, space may be a consideration.
- Adaptability: Consider whether you are looking for a toy that can only be used in summer or whether you would like a toy that can also adapt to other seasons or being used indoors. For instance, a toddler water table set up can also be filled with sand or used as a sensory bin inside when filled with items like raw beans, raw rice, or play-doh.
How We Chose Our Favorites
We have chosen our favorite water toys for kids in 2020 using various trusted resources. We’ve based these choices in the personal experience of real parents and kids, the voices of experts, and through scouring many reviews on top websites. We’ve included some of the most helpful reviews of each water toy below.
The Best Water Toys for Babies
The Best Toy to Introduce Babies to Water Play
We love this water play mat because babies can safely play with water without getting wet. It checks all of the safety requirements for very young babies as your little one cannot fall into water, plus it’s both BPA-free and non-toxic. Your baby can experience a whole new world of tummy time with this mat and get to experience water play just like the big kids. We recommend this toy for babies who can easily hold their heads up.
Amazon: “The toy is very durable, does not leak, and is of cute design. I really like the detail all around, and the color choices. All you have to do is rinse the mat once in a while with slightly chlorinated water, and you can use it for a long time. My baby loves playing on this mat, & banging on the fish.”
The Beast Reviews: “MAGIFIRE is a stylish sea-themed mat that benefits kids of all ages. The eco-friendly PVC used to make it is not only durable but also safe for kids. It is resistant to leaks and scratches too.”
The Best Water Toy for Babies Learning to Grasp
These adorable bubbles spin, rattle, and float making it perfect for tiny hands who want to have some fun in the bath or in a kiddie pool. They will stimulate all of your baby’s senses, and little ones will enjoy watching the fun characters inside of the bubbles move around. We recommend this toy for babies at least four months of age.
Amazon: “I purchased these to replace my son's moldy bath toys. These are great! They float very well, have NO holes for mold/mildew build up, are cute, a good price, and dry quickly”
Amazon: “I got these for my 5 month old's bathtime, and they're just as great outside of the bath! Baby likes picking these up and watching them bob up and down in the water, and these dry easily since they have no cracks or crevices. Outside of the bath, she likes playing with these during tummy time. I also sit her in my lap and put these balls in a large tupperware tub in front of us. She loves taking them out of the tub, putting them back in, and slapping them to make them rattle around in the tub. I like that these are on the bigger side- baby can still pick them up with two hands, and they're not a choking hazard.”
The Best Baby Water Toy for Learning
The Yookidoo Flow N Fill Spout will provide your little one nine months of age and up with so much stimulation. They can learn cause and effect as they turn the water spout on and off, experience sensory development, and watch the water run through three different places at once. There are spinning gears, tumblers and sprinklers, and you can even use the suction cup to affix this to the wall to make the most of baby’s baths.
Amazon: “Between two kids and 6 years of bath toys.. this is by far the best bath toy we have ever had… Even with two kids pulling at it all the time. I love that the spout can turn left/right/straight and also if you cover the stream it turns out of the top sort of like a sprinkler! The stream has a great water flow and it's easy to turn on and off.”
Burrito Buzz: “The Flow ‘N’ Fill Spout is so unique. The spout actually pulls up bath water and creates a fountain. The fountain can be pulled from side-to-side and there are three different cups that the water can flow into. Each cup has a different effect: one has a turning wheel, one has holes in the bottom to create a kind of sprinkler, and the other has an interior cup that pops up when it’s filled with water. The cups are easily interchangeable and surprisingly sturdy.”
The Best Water Toys for Toddlers
The Best Introduction for Toddlers to a Splash Pad
This inflatable splash mat is so much fun for toddlers eighteen months old and up. It is rimmed with little sprinklers and has a water sprinkling flower. It attaches easily to a garden hose and will keep your little one feeling refreshed without placing them in an actual pool of water.
Parenting.com: “This water-fun play mat is part sprinkler and part splash pool. It’s the perfect size for toddlers and kids. Pet-friendly parents have found that their dogs like it just as much as their children, too.”
theZ8: “This sprinkle and splash water mat offers convenient playing for kids of different ages. It provides easy learning and also enhances strength for your kid. It delivers strength for their hands, neck, and back. Something else, the product provides enough water for your toddler, thus ensuring that they enjoy each moment.”
The Best Sprinkler Toy for Toddlers and Up
This inflatable unicorn sprinkler is giant - approximately 87"L x 31.5"W x 63"H” - and will delight kids of all ages. Toddlers and big kids will love cooling off from a water spray coming from high up at the top of the unicorn horn. This sprinkler will be a big hit for water play, parties, and all around summer fun outdoor play. It comes with stakes so it won’t blow away on windy days.
Amazon: “My kids love unicorns. Especially my daughter. It has been extremely hot these days, and children love this product very much, which brings them cool. No complaints. It filled it perfectly.The younger kids wanted to sit on it.”
Amazon: “PERFECT. This product is easy to use and so fun to watch our almost two year old run around in!My 5 year old daughter play with her little 2 year old baby sister together! It was beautiful! And the colorful space design looked amazing on my backyard lawn. Highly recommend.”
The Best First Water Table for Toddlers
This Little Tikes water table helps toddlers develop early motor skills while having lots of water play outdoor fun. Little ones will love scooping up water from the pond and pouring it into the top waterfall tray. The put-and-place maze pieces allow kids to create new waterfalls for fun cause-and-effect STEM play. We recommend this for kids age 24 months and up.
Amazon: “Absolutely love this! I put the table in the bathtub and it's been a big hit! Life saver for little ones with energy during rainy weather! He saw me put the table in the tub and every night he jumps in to play. My husband even sat on the side and played with him.”
Amazon: “This water table has the most activities and parts of ALL the water tables we looked at. It does "rain" from the top, pours down into spouts and moving parts, includes a toy frog flipper, a water wheel, cups and buckets for pouring... I don't think there is a table my child would enjoy more. I even enjoy playing with the chain reaction and flinging the included toys.”
The Best Water Toys for Big Kids
The Best Water Blasters for Big Kids
These water blasters look like foam pool noodles except they provide hours of water shooting fun. They are colorful and safe and can even float in the pool or the pond as kids play. These are fun pool toys for kids ages six years and up or for use as water toys to cool off with while running around the yard. Just make sure to have buckets of water handy so the water blasters can be filled.
Amazon: “I got these for my kids to play with in the pool and they most certainly didn't disappoint. The maximum range on these (around 30' with a little elbow grease put into it) surpasses any super-soaker that I've ever tried, and they're extremely easy to use. Granted they have no water reservoir, so you have to use them in the pool, lake, ocean, etc. for them to be effective, but aside from that they are a fantastic water toy.”
Amazon: “I ordered for my son's outside, summer birthday party. There were a bunch of kids, varied ages and ability, but they all had a blast with these.”
The Most Exciting Backyard Water Slide
This giant water slide is not the slip and slide of our youth! At 31 feet long and over 5 feet wide, The Team Magnus Slip and Slide is equipped with double lanes for racing. It is easy to set up and extremely durable. Kids ages 5 through 12 will love taking water play to the next level. They will especially love the built-in sprinkler system and water blast zone.
Parenting.com: “If you’re looking for a fun backyard water toy, this take on the classic slip-and-slide is just right. Connect it to a hose, and the sprinklers keep the sleek slide perfectly slick for super speed. Oversized bumpers at the end collect the water to ensure a major splash every time.”
Amazon: “Worth the extra pennies to get a slide that is extra long - especially for growing kids and teens. Tough and sturdy material that held up to a tirade of tween and teen use - much better quality than other slip and slides that move, tear or blow in a gust of wind. Loads of fun was had in our garden.”
The Best Way to Transform your Trampoline into a Waterpark
If you have a trampoline in your backyard, the Bobor Trampoline Sprinkler is the ultimate way to turn your yard into a waterpark. It is easy to connect the sprinkler to the trampoline net, and it will be safely out of the way while your kids are jumping. Bouncing on the trampoline becomes much more exciting on a hot day when you get soaked doing it. The sprinkler can also be set up around the yard if your kids need a break from jumping on the trampoline.
Amazon: “This is a must-have for anyone who has a trampoline. I got this for the kids to play with throughout the summer and am so glad I did. It has become the hit of the neighborhood and keeps the kids happy for hours.”
Amazon: “I was worried that this sprinkler wouldn’t be quite long enough to go around our 15’ trampoline but it is a perfect fit. Installation was super easy with the zip ties provided. I like that the zip ties are the type which can be removed so that we can either adjust it, or remove it for winter storage. My kids had a blast jumping on the wet trampoline.”