The Best, Most Fun Climbing Toys for Your 1-Year-Old

Climbing promotes strength, creativity, and essential motor skills. Help your toddler stay active with toys that encourage them to climb and have fun.

 

Just a few short weeks after my son learned to walk, he was climbing on everything. Couches, beds, tabletops – nothing was off limits. To satisfy his curiosity, I purchased several climbing toys and play structures that allowed him to climb without sacrificing his safety.

“You can’t – and shouldn’t even try – to stop a toddler from climbing,” says What to Expect. “It’s yet another way for him to learn about his environment and gain confidence in his abilities. You can, however, steer him to appropriate places for indulging his vertical urges.”

Most children start trying to climb on surfaces in or out of the home between age 12 and 24 months, according to Parenting.com. As most 1 year olds still lack coordination and balance, it’s important to choose climbing toys that are suitable for this age range. You’ll also want to consider your child’s size and abilities when choosing climbing toys.

If you lack space indoors, you may want to choose an outdoor climbing toy. Here are our top choices for best climbing toys for 1 year olds.

Best Climbing Toys for 1 Year Old

Best Climbing Toy Features

If your toddler is a natural born climber, provide toys that will give him a safe place to practice his skills. Learn what features you should look for in climbing toys for a 1 year old.

Material

Most children’s climbing toys are constructed from heavy duty plastic for durability. Eco-conscious parents may want to choose a climbing toy made from natural and sustainable materials like wood.

Height

Safety should be of the utmost importance when choosing a climbing toy for your 1 year old. As falls are often inevitable, choose a climbing toy that is low to the ground to keep your child safe from accidents.

Function

In addition to climbing, many children’s toys offer other functions for little ones to enjoy. You may want to choose a climbing toy that provides several functions, such as climbing, crawling, hanging, and sliding.

Portable

Look for a climbing toy that is portable, allowing you to move it from room to room or from inside to outside. It should also fold up or disconnect for easy storage when not in use.

1. Step2 Play Ball Fun Climber with Slide

Best Climbing Toys for 1 Year Old Step 2

Your tot can achieve hours of fun with the Step2 Play Ball Fun Climber with Slide for Toddlers. For just under $100, the multi-function play structure offers several activities for toddlers to enjoy indoors or out.

The play set encourages toddlers to enhance their gross motor skills by climbing, crawling, and sliding. Your child will also develop their sensory and cognitive skills as they grab, throw, and squeeze the colorful play balls which come with the climbing toy.

Sturdy stairs lead to an elevated base, giving your toddler a chance to climb and practice walking up stairs. The smooth slide is a fun way to exit the structure. Under the climber is a crawl-through area for additional play fun. On the outside of the structure you’ll find a play ball maze. Your tot will love watching the balls zig-zag down the wall.

The Step2 Play Ball Fun Climber with Slide for Toddlers has been recommended by reviewers across the web.

“This is one of the lowest-priced toys on our list,” says BuzzParent. “But it provides excellent value for the money. It’s small enough that it can be used indoors when the weather is poor meaning parents will really get their money’s worth.”

Things to Keep in Mind

This toy set only comes with ten colorful play balls. However, additional balls can be purchased separately.

Who’s it Best for?

This budget-friendly option is perfect for parents who value quality construction at an affordable price. Due to its compact size, this climbing toy is best suited for children 1 ½ to 3 years of age.

2. Constructive Playthings 5 Piece Soft Play Forms

Best Climbing Toys for 1 Year Old Constructive

If safety is a concern for your wobbly 1 year old, the Constructive Playthings 5 Piece Lightweight Vinyl Soft Play Forms are an excellent option. Designed for babies and toddlers, the soft, moveable shapes act as building blocks your tot can safely climb on.

In addition to climbing on and over, the super light blocks can also be stacked to build forts, tunnels, and other fun structures. Due to their weight, there is no fear that the blocks will tumble and injure a child.

This indoor activity consists of five lightweight forms, including a cylinder, large half cylinder, ramp, and two blocks. Each piece is made from wipe-clean vinyl and feature vibrant colors.

Things to Keep in Mind

Due to the slippery vinyl, these blocks do tend to slide around on slick surfaces. To help prevent slippage, this climbing toy should be placed on rubber flooring or high pile carpet.

Who’s it Best for?

The Constructive Playthings are recommended for children ages 12 months and over. Parents who are worried about their tot falling off higher play structures may prefer these low, soft shape blocks.

3. Little Tikes Hide and Seek Climber and Swing

Best Climbing Toys for 1 Year Old Little Tikes

The Little Tikes Hide and Seek Climber and Swing offer toddlers several fun activities, including climbing, sliding, swinging, and crawling.

On the back side of the play set is an easy climbing wall for beginner climbers. Once at the top of the platform, your tot can exit on the slide. The swing offers a three-point safety harness that keeps your little one secure as he swings just above the floor. Your tot will also enjoy peeking through the clubhouse windows and crawling under the slide.

The Little Tykes Hide and Seek Climber and Swing is a top choice on the ‘Best Climbing Toys for Toddlers’ by Imagine Loving Life, and currently has more than 200 positive reviews on Amazon.

Things to Keep in Mind

The slide is a little steep but since it’s so short it doesn’t matter much. However, you’ll still want to keep an eye on your child while he’s playing.

Who’s it Best for?

This fun play set is recommended for toddlers’ ages 12 months through 3 years. At just over $100, it’s also an affordable climbing toy.

4. Step2 Naturally Playful Lookout Treehouse

Best Climbing Toys for 1 Year Old Treehouse

Give your little adventurer plenty of space to stay active and discover new things. The Step2 Naturally Playful Lookout Treehouse provides hours of fun and make believe for curious toddlers.

The Treehouse playset is the perfect outside climbing toy with its “shingled” roof that provides a shaded, comfy environment. Large, easy-to-climb steps lead your child to the 19-inch tall platform and down the 33-inch slide.

On the platform is a periscope that pivots 180 degrees, giving your tot a view of the entire backyard.

Things to Keep in Mind

Adult assembly is required for this climbing toy. It comes in separate pieces in a box and you will need basic tools to put it together, which generally takes 15 to 30 minutes.

Who’s it Best for?

The Step2 Natural Playful Lookout Treehouse has a maximum weight per climber of 50 lbs. Due to its larger size; the Treehouse can grow with your child from 18 months up to 5 years of age.

5. 11 Piece Shape and Play Obstacle Course

Best Climbing Toys for 1 Year Old Childs Factory

Create a safe climbing area for your tot with the 11-Pc Shape and Play Obstacle Course. While it’s a more expensive option, it’s also the safest choice for young toddlers still mastering walking.

The 11 piece obstacle course can be built in a variety of configurations using hook and loop attachments. Sewn-in flexible mirrors allow your toddler to look at himself while at play, and the various climbing and crawling structures are sure to keep your child active.

The Play Obstacle comes in a variety of vibrant colors and shapes to keep your toddlers attention. It measures 60-inches long by 60-inches wide by 18-inches tall.

Things to Keep in Mind

The playset is slightly smaller than you would expect it to be but that doesn’t take away from the fun factor.

Who’s it Best for?

The 11-Pc Shape and Play Obstacle Course is recommended for children between 12 months and 2 years of age. At just under $440, this climbing toy is defiantly a splurge but most buyers agree it’s worth every penny.

Once children reach the one year mark, many parents begin to worry about them climbing on dangerous surfaces. Keep your active toddler safe by providing climbing toys that encourage your little one to climb, crawl, slide, and move about – all while enhancing their strength and motor skills.

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Brandon Young

Brandon is an amazing dad to twin toddler daughters and a preschooler son. He enjoys taking his family to new destinations and exploring. When not writing the world’s best parenting articles, he enjoys hiking, cooking, and spending time with his wife and kids.

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