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The best gifts for two-year-olds

Choosing the best gift for a child too young to tell you what they want can be a pretty daunting task. Luckily, we've found some tried-and-tested recommendations from Mumsnetters to make sure you nail it.

By Mumsnet HQ | Last updated Jul 14, 2021

Dad giving two-year-old gift

Janod Tatoo Xylo Roller, £32.69

Another wooden choice, this toy doubles up as both a roll-along toy with a carry handle, and a glockenspiel for sensory play. This one is a great choice as two-year-olds usually love musical toys (some would say too much…), and when a child hears music, it helps them to build neural pathways in the brain, boosting their development.

"I got my daughter a xylophone when she was about that age. She loved it. And I'd recommend Janod as it was properly in tune and therefore much less awful to listen to than the cheaper - and totally out of tune - one we had previously."

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Melissa & Doug Magnetic Wooden Bug-Catching Puzzle Game, £8.99

This bright colourful game is great for two-year-olds to help develop their hand-eye coordination and problem-solving skills. The board features numbers which can be used as a memory game or to keep score, keeping things challenging for older children. If you're not a bug lover, there are loads of options available from the traditional choice of fish, or erm…poos.

"I'd add a vote for a fishing game - they're really popular with that age group and also versatile since, once you've fished the pieces out, you can put them back in like a puzzle (but it's more appealing/less intimidating than just a puzzle). It can be played alone or as a group game."

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Toy Story 4 True Talkers Forky Figure, £14

For young children just discovering the joy that is Toy Story, these talking toys are sure to be a hit. One of Dreamtoys' top toys from Christmas 2019, they bring characters from classic Buzz to the new Forky to life. Each toy can speak over fifteen real phrases from the films, and is in relative scale, to make the toy as realistic as possible.

"After seeing Toy Story 4 I think the Forky toys will be big."

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Related: From Disney to space-themed, these are the best lego sets for younger kids

VTech Toot-Toot Drivers Garage, £27.98

The VTech Toot Toot sets are great gift for children up to five years old. They help to develop fine motor skills, and have a range of different sounds and songs included to help children stay engaged. If garages aren't your child's thing, there are loads of other setups, from amusement parks to princess castles, so there's sure to be a choice that's perfect for your family.

"They are brilliant. We bought our first set when our eldest was two and we are still using them now he's nearly six. Both kids play with them every day. We have the garage, construction site and railway station - plus two sets of extra track and extra cars to stop fighting. Best buy ever!"

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Peppa Pig's Camping Trip Playset, £21.80

This Peppa Pig set is great fun for fans of the show. It's another excellent choice for two-year-olds as it's well made and durable, with little individual figurines you can take everywhere to play with – including at bath time. As well as the whole Pig family, it comes with bikes, a tent, a pot and even a shower.

"Please get the camper van - it's fab. You get the whole family, they all come out and the top comes off the van. I think we got a barbecue and picnic table too."

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Playmobil Floating Noah's Ark, £82.97

Playmobil is a classic in the world of children's toys, and on the Mumsnet Talk boards too. For any animal-loving children out there, the Ark is a great choice. The set floats on water so it's another toy perfect for bathtime. The boat is a lot bigger than it looks so it allows your children to explore all the nooks and crannies.

"The Playmobil Noah's Ark looks very good and you can even send out for extra animals for it."

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Stick Man, by Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler, from £5.99

A heartwarming story with a festive theme, this is another children's book by Gruffalo author Julia Donaldson. The book is a lovely way to explore themes like family and relationships with your two-year-old. As always, the illustrations by Axel Scheffler bring the story to life, with vivid detail and bright colours.

"Stick Man! My two-year-old daughter loves this book. We got it out of the library and renewed it twice, but eventually had to give it back. She was very upset when we went back and they didn't have it. Ordered it off Amazon and she nearly ripped it out the postman's hand when it arrived."

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Related: Best books for two-year-olds