Have you recently booked a long family trip and are wondering how you are going to entertain your toddler on the plane or car ride? These travel toddler toys are the perfect addition to your packing list.

The below guide is our list for the best travel toys for toddlers. This list will help you if you are looking for travel toys for 1 year olds, airplane toys for 2 year olds, or road trip toys for 3 year olds, and every combination within there.
All of the recommendations come from family travel bloggers that we asked to share their #1 travel activities for kids that keep their toddler entertained while traveling.

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Complete Travel Toys Toddlers List For Quick Reference

If you don’t have time to read the entire article, here is the complete travel toys toddler list for you in a quick and clickable reference table. If you want to find out more about each product, just click on the toy name.

How To Decide Which Are The Best Toddler Travel Toys For Your Little One

So you are finished planning your family travels and now its time to pack for your trip. There are lots of choices below that will help you entertain a toddler on a plane, road trip, cruise, or really any family trip. So how do you choose?

I recommend first thinking about what normally entertains your toddler or baby at home. Now consider the list of items below. Which do you know your kiddo will love? Which do you think your child will love? Consider those items first.
Second, how much room do you have in your carry-on bag? Some times take up more space than others. If you only have a little room then look at the small items.
And finally, are you looking for screen free toddler activities? This entire list will fit that bill and give you plenty of activities for your trip.

Benefits Of Travel Toys For Kids

While traveling, you probably have noticed there is a lot of sitting and waiting, and more waiting and sitting. This is the perfect time to play with your toddler. All of these travel toys are screen free activities that are sure to entertain. An added benefit is the education that most of these toys have.

  • Fine Motor Skill Development – The toddler stage is when your child is developing their fine motor skills. Many of the toys on this list will help improve your child’s fine motor skills which in turn helps them develop independence as they grow.
  • Creative/Imagination Play – Toddlers see the world differently than adults. A lot of times, things are new and exciting to them. Foster this mental and creative development through play time. Many of these toddler travel essentials can be used alone or combined to create fun activities that will stretch your kids imagination.
  • Sensory Skill Development – Toddlers are learning to explore the world around them through discovery with all of their senses: touch, sounds, smell, taste, hearing, and movement. These toddler travel essentials are a great way for them to explore with touch and movement.

Top Travel Essentials For Toddlers – Travel Toys For Kids

Toddler Busy Board

Esjay Toddler Busy Board



Average Rating: 5 Stars

Your kids will love the Toddler Busy Board. The busy board includes 15 sensory toys for fine motor skills, so it’s educational as well as fun. It incorporates buckles, latches, buttons, sensory beads, Velcro, and even more special surprises.
The Toddler Busy Board is made of soft-felted wool and folds up like a book so it’s easy to stuff in a backpack or the seat-back pockets in your car. This makes it a great travel toy for road trips and a great airplane toy for toddlers!
The busy board folds up like a book, has two sides of activities, and can keep two kids occupied at the same time. It keeps little hands busy and encourages imaginative play.

Magnetic Building Blocks

Tegu Pocket Pouch Magnetic Wooden Block Set


  • Perfect toy for building on-the-go
  • Magnetic blocks and shapes appropriate for toddlers
  • Safe for all ages
  • Naturally safe: no lead, no plastic and non-toxic

Average Rating: 5 Stars

Traveling with toddlers already comes with its own long list of challenges. One thing you don’t need to battle is a toy constantly falling and rolling under seats that you can’t reach or small pieces of activities getting lost. That’s why magnetic building blocks are a hit for any type of travel (car, plane, train).
Magnetic Building blocks are a fantastic screen free activity for toddlers that helps to encourage them to use their imagination, without the hassle or mess of other “building” style toys. Brands like Tegu have handy little travel pouches of the blocks which can really help keep Mom and Dad organized, too!
These magnetic blocks are a great toy to grow with your kids. Younger toddlers like to just play with the magnetic aspect of the toy, some toddlers enjoy just making stacks and towers that don’t fall over, and then older toddlers can actually use them to build things!

Lacing Boards

Lacing Boards


  • Hungry Caterpillar & Friends
  • Pre-punched holes
  • Perfect for tiny hands
  • 10 lacing cards

Average Rating: 5 Stars

Lacing Boards are a great toy for entertaining your toddler while traveling! Whether you are driving in the car, taking a trip by plane, or looking for activities to keep your toddler busy while hanging out at a hotel, lacing boards are a nice quiet toy your toddler can play with on their own as you travel.
These boards come in so many different shapes and sizes making it easy to find a design your child will love.
Not only are lacing boards a fun toy to play with, but you toddler will also be working on hand-eye coordination and their fine motor skills! This toy doesn’t take up much room and you can store your boards and laces in a small bag to keep things tidy while traveling.

Stackable Peg Board

Toddler Peg Board Sensory Toys


  • Educational Objective – Color Recognition
  • Material – Plastic
  • Number of Pieces – 32
  • Item Dimensions – 14 x 10 x 2 inches (LxWxH)

Average Rating: 4.5 Stars

A stackable peg board is the perfect travel toy for toddlers because it is compact, great for learning and practicing fine motor skills, and can keep toddlers occupied for hours.
A stackable peg board is exactly how it sounds – it consists of a board and pegs and the pegs can be stacked on it. There are holes in the board to support the pegs and the pegs are built so they can stack on top of each other as well. The pegs are usually brightly colored to help further appeal to toddlers.
It’s not just fine motor skills that your toddler can practice but also counting, recognizing colors and more. All of this in a small bag.
You can use this toy anywhere when traveling including on planes and in hotels although in the car will only work if they have access to a tray table as you do need a flat surface.

Duplo Blocks

Big Building Blocks STEM Toy Bricks


  • Material – Plastic
  • Educational Objective – STEM building bricks
  • Item Dimensions – 15 x 10.5 x 7 inches (LxWxH)

Average Rating: 5 Stars

We always travel with Duplo blocks when going on any kind of trips with the kids! As Duplo (which are big blocks, a younger version of Lego) is already spread through our house, I scoop up a hand-full of pieces and figures, and pop them in our travel bag.
I love Duplo because they’re durable and offer so many options, plus it is relatively easy to find between airplane seats (or in the car) and just as important – if you lose a piece, it isn’t obvious. That is, we can just keep on building.
For car rides, I will take a baking tray from the kitchen and it’s easy to build Duplo on that. Having a great set of toys to play with is one of my travel essentials for toddlers.

Magnetic Puzzles

Melissa & Doug Magnetic Wooden Puzzle



Average Rating: 5 Stars

Magnetic puzzles provide some quiet moments while traveling with toddlers. They’re sturdy enough to use in the car, and are also great during times when you are waiting like at the airport or before dinner at the hotel.
We’ve found that it is a calming activity, like reading a book, which will put your little one right to sleep after a few minutes if they are needing a nap.
Our favorite magnetic puzzles are those produced by Melissa and Doug. They have themes that all children love, like the farm, transportation, and princesses. The pieces are perfect for small hands, and they fit into a frame so the pieces are kept together well.


Magnatab Glow-in-The-Dark


  • Sensory-based creative play
  • Glows in the dark
  • Ages 3 and up
  • Children use the stylus to draw anything they can imagine

Average Rating: 4.5 Stars

Our favorite travel toy for toddlers is the Magnatab. Toddler travel toys can be tricky because you want something that will keep their attention while also being durable and not annoying for the parents.
Magnatab is based on Montessori learning methods and I bring it out specifically for road and plane trips. I think it’s our only toy (other than electronics) that my kids have loved consistently across a broad age span of 2-7!
It is a magnetic tablet with a magnetic stylus and tons of possibilities for drawing and games. It’s good for traveling because it doesn’t easily erase. For some reason, it’s really satisfying to erase the magnetic beads and start over. I love that it is very durable and can be used for education on the road.

Quiet Books For Kids

deMoca Quiet Book for Toddlers



Average Rating: 4.5 Stars

Quiet books (also known as busy books) are a collection of soft pages made with felt or cloth. The book is interactive and has small elements in each page that the toddler can explore and learn. For instance, a page can have shapes and color sorting with a velcro and the child has to put the right shape into the designated space. Other popular activities include zippers and buttons or tying a lace.
These quiet books are eco friendly and lightweight, thus they don’t take much of space in your carryon bag or suitcase. Quiet books can be customized to different themes depending on the interest of the child. These quite books are great alternative to other regular toys and keeps the child engaged without using any technologies.

Lift The Flap Books

Highlights Lift-the-Flap Books


  • Reading age – 2 – 5 years
  • Print length – 10 pages
  • Language – English
  • Dimensions – 10.1 x 0.5 x 9.1 inches

Average Rating: 4.5 Stars

Interactive books are perfect toys for toddlers when traveling, and lift-the-flap books are one of the best kinds. A single lift-the-flap book can entertain a toddler for several minutes. Our toddler has spent upwards of 45 minutes reading one lift-the-flap book.
With multiple flaps on each page, your toddler will engage with opening and closing every single flap. Plus, there is the added excitement of discovering what is underneath each flap. Even beyond the entertainment factor, your toddler may learn new things while “reading” (aka looking through) their book too!
You can find a lift-the-flap book for almost any subject. From topics as basic as numbers, colors, and letters to more complex topics such as outer space, feelings, or how food is made.
These books are perfect to have in a basket in your car for a road trip, tucked in your carry-on for a flight, or packed in your suitcase for hotel room entertainment. They are super versatile and easy to pack, so our toddler packing list always has a lift-the-flap book on it.

Reusable Sticker Pads Set

Melissa & Doug Reusable Sticker Pads Set


  • Pads feature Vehicles, Habitats, and My Town themes
  • Develops fine motor skills and creative expression
  • Each pad includes five backgrounds and 150+ stickers
  • Item Dimensions – 0.6 x 14.05 x 11 inches (LxWxH)

Average Rating: 5 Stars

The Melissa & Doug reusable sticker books are a perfect creation for children when traveling. These books contain very colorful scenes to be used as a background for more than 150 stickers. The stickers can be repositioned countless times.
One of the biggest challenges when traveling with children is being able to contain the amount of things you take with you, these books are of great help as there are 5 different scenes that can be restarted several times, stimulating the child’s imagination to create different stories where the characters can be positioned as desired.
Most of the vinyl decals are quite large, easy to handle, and stick without leaving any residue. Perfect to use when you are in a hotel, on the train, or even on a plane after take-off when you can use the table. Definitely one to put on every kids essential packing list.

Post It Notes

Bright Colors Self-Stick Pads


  • Can be pasted on almost all smooth surfaces

Average Rating: 4.5 Stars

Post it notes are a surprisingly perfect toy for toddlers when traveling. With a few crayons or a spare hotel pen, your child can color all over them, stick them on everything, stack them up, and then they can all get recycled at the end.
Unlike stickers, there is no worry about leaving residue with post it notes. They are perfect to stick all over the plane and easy to clean up. Toddlers love all the bright colors, and you can come up with fun sorting activities if you have a few packs. And unlike books, you won’t mind when your toddler rips them to shreds, either.
On top of it all, post it notes are cheap, easy to find, and pack incredibly light. They are perfect for traveling carry on only with a toddler! This is a simple but impactful toy that will get a lot of mileage when you travel.

Pipe Cleaners

Caydo Pipe Cleaners – 27 Colors


  • Made from wire and fiber
  • Bendable and flexible
  • Creativity-oriented item

Average Rating: 5 Stars

Pipe cleaners are my favorite best kept toddler travel secret. They truly work so well for kids of all ages. I usually buy a package before we head out on a long trip and hand them out as necessary to occupy kids.
Pipe cleaners provide opportunities for toddlers to practice fine motor skills as they bend and twist them into shapes. Also, your older kids often will jump in and want to make items for your toddler to play with (think pipe cleaner “glasses”).
They do often end up all over the car, but I don’t have any guilt over just tossing them when we are done with them.

Plastic Animals

Mini Plastic Vinyl Assorted Figures Playset


  • 5 Container Natural World Figures
  • Toxin Free Plastic Materials
  • Perfect for Kids Toddlers

Average Rating: 4.5 Stars

When traveling with a toddler on a plane, we always bring along some small plastic animals. These figures – in different shapes like zoo or farm animals – can easily be used to make up little stories together. Alternatively, your toddler can make them walk around all over the airplane chair and table.
I love how they take up hardly any space. In fact, that’s why we bring them just about anywhere: they’re easy to put in your purse when going out to a restaurant or on public transport! And when you get back to your hotel room, your toddler can create entire stories using the hotel room accessories as background and the animals as characters!

Stuff Animals

Kids Stuffed Animal Toy Backpack



Average Rating: 5 Stars

Stuffed animals work well to keep our toddler entertained. They are her companion as well as her responsibility to take care of, feed, photograph, and show around the places we visit.
While the favorite animal might change from trip to trip, in time this can become a nice tradition that also builds up anticipation before the trip (which animal to take along, which accessories it needs). Our daughter usually packs a small backpack of her own in which the stuffed friend fits in, alongside a few extra things she decides they might need during the trip.
We leave these choices at her latitude, the only rule being that everything she takes along for the stuffed friend fits into a small backpack. We have found this to be an exciting companion during road trips, train travel, or airplane rides, as well as during the trip (hotel stays, restaurant dinners, etc).

Scooter Suitcase

Lightweight Carry-on Scooter Suitcase


  • Durable and Safe
  • Easy steering, and folds and locks in place
  • Approved for Air Travel

Average Rating: 4.5 Stars

Buying a scooter suitcase for traveling with our toddler was the best travel toy we ever bought! As an expat family, we travel a lot, and typically long distances. That means a lot of time spent in airports both waiting, and transiting enroute.
Having the scooter suitcase meant he could whip around the airport, and have fun – even when we had to walk long distances between terminals. Perhaps the best part was that once we arrived at the destination, he could use it as a regular scooter to play at the park, or to make walks fun!
We bought the Zinc Flyte suitcase which comes in fun patterns, in both toddler size (2-4) and midi size (4-8). Because our son is tall for his age, we opted for the midi size straight away so it’d last the distance. And it has! He still whips around on it at 8 years old.
Best Travel Toys For Toddlers

Wrap Up Of The Ultimate Guide To The Best Travel Toys For Toddlers

I hope you have found at least one (but hopefully more) toddler travel toy that will make your family adventures more enjoyable. Do you have others that you recommend? Share them below so we can all benefit.

While planning your travels, why not check out our list of the best toddler travel strollers that fit in airline overheads, or our complete packing list of family travel must haves. If you need a toddler travel carseat, make sure you read our review of the delight travel vest.

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