Post Summary: 20 camping toys for toddlers that are fun and creative that will leave your toddlers excited about camp life.
Going camping with a toddler is one of the best ways to get your wild one (and you!) some much needed time with nature. With rocks, bugs, sticks, and trees to explore, bringing toys will be one of the last things you need to consider when preparing a packing list. But don’t cross them off completely! Having a small selection of toddler camping toys at the ready is an excellent addition to any camping trip.
When we go camping, having some kids camping toys for our son helps us focus his energy when we need to do other things like prepare dinner, make a fire, or simply sit down for some resting time. I like to keep them hidden and bring one out at a time when I feel like he might need the stimulation or when I suspect a not so tiny toddler meltdown is beginning to swirl.
Good camping toys for toddlers will be toys that can be played with outdoors, are durable, and can withstand a little, or a lot, of dirt. Here are our picks for the 20 best camping toys for toddlers that are fun, creative, and sure to enhance their great adventure outdoors.
**Need more camping help? Check out the rest of our camping with toddler posts:
Our Best Tips For Camping with a Toddler
Get Your Kids Excited With These 15 Camping Books for Toddlers
A Complete Guide of What to Pack When Camping With a Toddler
*This post may contain affiliate links, which means we might earn a small commission if you purchase from them. This is at no extra cost to you.
The Best Camping Toys For Toddlers
Top on the list of camping toys for toddlers is a flashlight. This classic camping toy can be enjoyed by everyone in the group. Whether that’s telling stories by flashlight in the tent or giving them their own flashlight and letting them shine it all over the campsite. While you’ll probably have your own flashlight in your own camping gear, it’s best to buy a flashlight made for toddlers like this firefly one and this ladybug one or you can buy them these colorful mini flashlights that you can opt to use as well.
Staying in the theme of light, you could opt to buy a lantern that they could play with like a flashlight, or you could put the lantern in the tent and let them delight in making shadow figures on the tent. Either way, our son loved lugging around his kid approved lantern and thoroughly investigating how light shines on objects.
Maybe it’s because our son is obsessed with lights (it was his first word!), but he did have a flashlight, a lantern, AND a headlamp. We love this soft fleece headlamp that comes in different woodland creatures. You can check prices HERE. If your toddler isn’t as into foxes and bears, there’s also this T-Rex headlamp that is perfect for a dinosaur loving kid.
4. Glow Sticks
This is the last light-themed camping toy! We can’t help it…lights are such awesome camping toys for toddlers.
Glow sticks are one of the best toys to take camping, whether you’re looking for camping toys for a 1 year old or a 10 year old. Why? They are an open ended toy that can be creatively repurposed in a multitude of ways. You can go the standard route and get a pack of glow sticks like THIS, or you can get reusable glow sticks like THIS. The reusable ones are a great option if you have a toddler that likes to bite things and if you’re looking to reduce plastic waste.
5. Bucket and Shovel
If you’re looking to keep things simple, then one of the best camping toys for a toddler is none other than a bucket and a shovel. With dirt, rocks, and sticks a plenty at most campsites, your toddler can spend hours (more likely 30 minutes) collecting and shoveling to their heart’s delight. If you already have beach toys at home, you can repurpose them, or you can use this collapsible bucket and shovel set. We like that it comes with three buckets and that it folds down, taking up less space when we’re packing. You can find it HERE.
A fantastic camping toy that’s also one of the best outdoor toys for toddlers is a pair of binoculars. We tried to give our son small binoculars meant for adults, but they were far too complicated for his eyes to adjust to, so he ended up using them the opposite way. These binoculars are made for kids with large comfy eye pieces and no focusing needed. Your toddler can have fun looking up at trees or finding birds with these cute smashproof binoculars. You can click HERE for current prices.
7. Magnifying Glass
Keeping with the theme of exploring the outdoors, a magnifying glass is a great way to encourage them to investigate leaves or bugs roaming around the campsite. It’s perfect when you’re looking for toddler camping activities they can do on their own. We like this magnifying glass because it’s shatterproof, is easily gripped by toddler’s hands, and offers 4X magnification. You can check current prices HERE.
8. Toy Camping Sets
If you’re loving all of the ideas above and want to buy one thing that has it all, you can buy a pre-made toy camping set that includes typical camping toys for toddlers like binoculars, a flashlight, a bucket, and so on. We like this one from Outdoor Explorer that comes with a cute bag, small insect toys, and a net. There’s also this camping set from Meland Kids that includes a little pop-up tent. Perfect if you’re also looking for baby camping toys or have a younger toddler that might do well with a designated playing area.
9. Flying Rings
Fun camping toys and games for toddlers should include a few camping items to get their bodies moving. We love to bring balls from home and play a simple game of toss and retrieve so we can burn off energy before bedtime. If you want something different from the balls you have at home, you can try out these lightweight frisbees from Activ Life that are perfect for young kids. Eighty percent lighter than standard frisbees, your little ones can attempt to catch it without hurting themselves. It’s also perfect for playing ring toss! Check current prices HERE.
10. Bean Bag Toss Game
We love this lightweight and packable bean bag toss game from Melissa & Doug that you can easily slide into the back of your car. It’s a great choice if you’re camping with toddlers and older kids since they can enjoy it as well. Check current prices HERE.
11. Truck Set
This truck construction set is perfect for any toddler who is enthralled by dirt and trucks. Put your toddler in some clothes you don’t mind getting dirty and let them shovel and pile as many rocks as they can. We like this truck set because they come with three and are small, making them easy to pack up. You can buy them HERE.
12. Camping Stove
If you’ve got a toddler that loves their kitchen toys, then there’s no doubt they will love this toddler-sized camping stove. It’s identical to the Coleman stove commonly used in campsites, so it’s a fun way for your child to engage in pretend play while camping. You can purchase the Coleman Camping Stove HERE
13. Kids Walkie Talkies
One of our favorite toddler toys for camping are walkie talkies. While most young toddlers won’t grasp how to do it, it’s a fun camping toy that can grow with them. If you have more than one child, it’s a great way for them to play together, and there’s an opportunity for all kinds of imaginative games to be created with them. We like the walkie talkies from Obuby because they are small, have a flashlight on them, are easy to use, and can handle rough play. You can buy the walkie talkies HERE.
14. Scavenger Hunts
Taking a toddler camping can often mean thinking up elaborate toddler activities for you to do with them. Keep it easy and bring some scavenger hunt templates to whip out when you need something fun to do together. You can make your own, or you can buy a pre-made one like this one HERE. I also love these cute scavenger hunt cards from GoFindIt that are great learning resources since they can also teach your toddler new words. You can find them HERE.
15. Swing Hammock
If you’re bringing a hammock to your campsite, you might want to buy these brightly colored kid-friendly pod chairs that they can sit and swing in as well. It goes without saying that it’s the kind of camp activity that would require your supervision at all times, but you can also opt to fit it low to the ground so you can feel more comfortable. Swinging in our hammock remains one of our toddler’s favorite things when we go camping. You can find prices HERE.
16. Camping Coloring Book
Coloring books that have a camp theme are a great toddler camping toy to bring when you need your toddler to sit for a little bit. Pull out some kid-friendly crayons like THESE that are perfect for kids working on their fine motor skills. You can even bring your own adult coloring books and color beside them. I always find that if I offer to color beside my son, he’ll color for longer. You can find cute camping coloring books HERE.
17. Toddler Camping Crafts
Having a small supply of camping crafts for toddlers is a great tool to have in your handbag. Besides promoting creativity and artfulness, having toddler camping crafts at your disposal can be great for if it rains, and you need some activities to do in the tent. We love these Dab and Dot Markers, but you can also include things like construction paper, toddler markers, glue, kid scissors, and washable paint.
18. Camping Books For Toddlers
If you have a toddler that loves being read to, buying a few camping books for toddlers can be a great way to teach them about the outdoors and camping in general. We read a fair amount of camping books before we went camping with him for the first time, and he loved them so much we brought them with us. A great classic book to read is Curious George Goes Camping. For more book suggestions, you can read our full post on our favorite camping books for toddlers.
Play-doh is a great camping toy for toddlers because it’s affordable, and if it gets too messy, you’re okay with tossing it out. Grab a big pack of it and let them roll, toss, and squeeze play-doh all day. I find the best prices for Play-Doh are online in bulk rather than at stores where the individual prices are much higher. You can check prices HERE.
20. Starry Night Light projector
I know I said there would be no more light-themed toys, but I had to include one more! This is a magical battery operated light projector that you can turn on at night in the tent and enjoy together. And, yes, there are real stars outside, but stargazing can be difficult with a toddler. This light projector is a beautiful way to unwind at night in the tent and prepare your toddler for bedtime. Our son loved his projector and would quiet down and watch in wonder as the lights spun around his room. You can find the light projector HERE.
That’s our complete list of the best camping toys for toddlers. Remember, a little goes a long with kids. Choose a few toddler camping toys you think they’ll like and then let nature do the rest.
If you want one place to see all the toddler camping toys we recommend you can go straight to our Amazon store HERE.
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