3 Year Old Boy Birthday Gift Ideas He’ll Love

My son turned 3 last week and he couldn’t have been more happy. My son has 5 main passions at the moment: superheroes, cars, construction & puzzles, board games, and exploring & experimenting. After a week I wanted to share 3 year old boy birthday gift ideas that he has loved and played with non stop.

3 year old boy birthday gift ideas Balloon

1. Balloon

On his birthday we wanted to surprise him with something special and we bought this big balloon with a three and he loved it. He looked at it in awe and just said “wooooow!”. His face was priceless. It has been great decorating his room and for pictures while we’ve celebrated his special day with family later during the week.

2. Cars race track

He was so excited when he saw this! It is a very simple track with 2 cars, Lightning McQueen and Cruz Ramirez from Cars 3. You place the cars on their track and by pressing the remote they just go. Extremely simple but such a novelty for them! He can be there 15 minutes just looking at them go round and round. But if you want a bit more fun, just play the race at the beginning the movie Cars and he just feels he is racing in it. So sweet.

3. 3 little pigs board game – Goula or Galt

This game has been an amazing discovery! On the first day he asked us to play together 9 times! It’s a collaborative game, all of us are trying to get the 3 Little Pigs Home before the Big Bad Wolf. It is a bit more complex than First Orchard – so I would suggest start playing with that one so they get the gist of rolling the dice and turn taking. Because once they have mastered that one you will really enjoy this one. You will have a very good time! (More info on the Little Orchard game in this post)

4. Spiderman costume – Disney

He has always enjoyed playing dress-up, and he has a thing for Spiderman… so it was obviously something he would love and they nailed it! This costume was from the Disney Store, it is padded and has gloves with a laser light that he can activate while doing Spiderman’s special hand gesture. A hit!

5. Water beads & sea animals set – Ainolway

What an amazing discovery! I hadn’t ventured to do these things until we got the Flisat table from Ikea, and I can not believe we did not do it before. I do not think I’ve ever seen him so invested in something for so long. I’m talking 2 hours of play, moving water beads from one tray to another, making the animals have conversations, and we read a book about sea animals that has animal sounds and he was obsessed. We’ll be playing with more of these for sure!

6. Flexible Toy Road – waytoplay

I had my eyes on this for some time and it is as great as it seemed. It is fun, creative, open ended, brilliant for either indoors or ourdoors and we’ll be taking them with us for the holidays. As they say on the box “Let your imagination lead the way” and “Build yourself an endless adventure”. We got the “King of the Road” set with 40 pieces and it is a lot. You can also add more extensions. For more inspiration follow their IG account and you’ll simply fall in love will all that can be done.

7. Flisat table – IKEA

I do not know why we had not bought it sooner! This is amazing! You can do so many things and plan so many activities with this table. They can obviously paint and draw, and you can store paper and crayons in the trays if you want, but you can also do a lot of sensory play and experiments. It’s been around for 2 weeks and I love it. I really really recommend it.

8. Mix & Measures set – Learning Resources

I am a big fan of Learning Resources. If you do not know the brand you should check it out. They have so many tools, resources and games that make play a fantastic learning opportunity. We already had the Experiment set which we’ve used a lot and we plan on playing and experimenting combining the sets.

9. Rainbow Bears Sorting Game

I had seen many of these sets on Amazon and thought it was a great idea to have around. Our Counting Bears set includes 60pcs bears (10 bears of each color) and 6 cups, 2 dices and 2 tweezers. No instructions came with it, but we just make up games as we go. It is supposed to help children with basic math such as addition and subtraction, and as a result of playing with the tweezers improve his hand-eye coordination ability and fine motor skills development. We are having a lot of fun!

10. Emperor Zurg – Disney

My son is a big Toy Story fan, and particularly Buzz Lightyear, which he already has and adores. We offered our 6 year old daughter to pick a gift for him and she asked us to go to the Disney Store and there she thought this would be something he would really like. She didn’t even have a doubt (unlike me – Zurg, really?). But, eventually she was absolutely right. “Yaaaaay! Zuuuuuurg!!!” – was his reaction, and i had to swallow my doubts 😅.

11. Hulk gloves

As you know, my son loves superheroes, and I do not know why – forgive me Mark Ruffalo – but he adores the Hulk. My husband discovered these soft big gloves on Amazon and when my son saw them he was blown away. He even slept with one of them on the first night. Now, after he builds something with his magnetic tiles or Duplo and it is time to tidy up, he puts on the gloves and smashes his creation, so he can put everything in the box where it belongs.

12. Capes & Masks set

We had a small get together at a nearby park with a few friends to celebrate his birthday. We had 4 toddlers between 2 and 3 and we got this cape set with masks and bracelets so they could play and run around as superheroes. They loved it! After the party my friends were sending me pictures of their little ones wearing the capes on all day long. They love them and they are great for imaginative play.

13. Rainbow Tomtens – Grapat

These tiny people (elves?) from Grapat are simply gorgeous. Made from wood and with simple rainbow color they feel wonderful to the touch. Fantastic for open ended play and the greenest toys we’ve ever found. Not a spec of plastic on their products or packaging. I know we have many plastic toys, and with obvious characters, but he also finds it fun to play with open ended toys like these and we can be there for hours.

14. Magnetic cars set – Playmags

They’ve had magnetic tiles for a while now and I must say they are some of their favourite toys to play with. They’ve been playing with them daily for some months now. There is a booklet with ideas to inspire them and there were these trains and cars built on these platforms. He has loved creating his vehicles on them. They are great.

15. Magnetic tiles – Playmags

As I was saying before, we’ve had these for some time and they are wonderful. We didn’t have enough to get them both creating at the same time and at their level of imagination, so we expanded a bit their lot. We expect to have many more hours of play creating with these.

16. Batman action figure

He had been staring at it for weeks when we went by a toy store near our house. He had Spiderman from last year and always asked to say hi to Batman as we went by the store window. My mother-in-law couldn’t resist it and he was really excited. This is a traditional articulated action figure of Batman with a real cape.

17. Abracadabra – by Marta Comín

What a beautiful and creative book! It has many cut outs and when you flip the pages it seems as if magic has happened. With visual tricks that are fun and surprising. Illustrated with very simple geometric and basic colors it is a really original gift for a birthday. Unfortunately it can only be found in Spanish and Catalan at the moment.

18. Chalks – Eberhard Faber

Chalks are wonderful. They are an incredible creative outlet and so easy to clean after. Just wipe or through on some water and they are history. We live near a park where they have the most amazing pavement to draw on, and they’ve enjoyed it so much! Being creative outdoors is a lot of fun. We bought some more chalks for his birthday party and it was a great activity for the kids to be able to just grab some and doodle and draw. These are particularly great because they state they are Gluten Free and for our family this is very important feature.

19. Magic magnetic cube

When I saw this gift I was a bit sceptical. It said 3+ but it feels more difficult because of the challenge cards that it comes with. To be honest, he doesn’t look at the cards and just has fun playing with the different pieces and making them fit – he sees it as a puzzle, but can’t really make the cube again (yet). My 5 year old daughter did manage to redo the cube and has taught me how. I feel this is something we’ll have around for a long time.

20. Beach racket ball – BS Toys

These particular rackets are specifically designed for 3 year olds and older. The racket is softer which is supposed to cushion the ball and make it easier for the children to learn how to play with them. We need a lot of practice, but it has clearly sparked a lot of interest. We’ll be playing a lot this summer for sure.

And although the following gifts were not for him, I think they are worth mentioning. These were some of my daughter’s 3rd birthday gifts that we still have around (they have even survived 2 moves and been with us for 3 years). She loved them then and now my son also enjoys playing with them, so I really thought I had to share them.

21. High tea set – Tidlo

I still remember her face when she opened this present. It is simply stunning. All made of wood and beautifully painted. The stand has specific shapes so the cakes fit, and numbers so you must find the right cake to go in the right spot. My son has also grown up playing with it and we’ve played tea parties and picnics countless times with it. Find it here!

22. Honeybake ice lollies set – Le Toy Van

This wooden ice cream set is gorgous and one of our favorite toys of all time. We’ve played so many times with them. From the picture you can see they have also been tasted and eaten numerous times 🙈 but they are still standing. It’s great for pretend and role playing.

23. Safari set – Janod

I love love love Janod’s wooden figure sets. They are so lovely! This particular set also has a truck and a wagon that can go on the Ikea or Little Dutch train tracks (sorry they are not in the picture… they are misplaced at the moment and I’m sure they will appear under the sofa or some other place some other time this week).

24. Doll & bed

Traditionally gifted to girls, but you’d be surprised how much boys also like to play with dolls if they have some around. I think it is great to see him take care of the doll, and put her to sleep just as his dad and I do with him every night. Of course, this bed is also Spiderman’s, Buzz’s and now Batman’s bed as well. All are invited to take a nap here if they need to rest 😉.

25. The Enormous Crocodile Memory Game

This game is a classic. Who hasn’t played memory before? Memory games are fantastic games to start playing together as a family. It helps them, obviously, with memory and matching. This particular game comes with illustrations from Roald Dahl’s book “The Enormous Crocodile” and illustrations from the brilliant Quentin Blake. A detail I really like from this set is the tin box that makes it more durable and stand time.

3 Year Old Boy Birthday Gift Ideas I Hope You’ll Love As Well

I really hope this list can be helpful. Putting traditional action figures aside, you will discover there are so many other fun toys and games that will improve his quality of play and boost skills and imagination.

You can not always control what people gift your child, and that is ok. You can help a lot by suggesting things you might like him playing with, or get them yourself (because some people will ignore your ideas, but at least you tried 😉). At home we mix and match (plastic, wooden, open ended, close ended…) and they are having a lot of fun discovering the world through them.

I would love to hear your thoughts! If you have any ideas that have worked for your kids, please share in the comments section. We are all for learning and discovering new ways to play, have fun, learn and grow.

Happy birthday!*

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  1. Pingback: Waytoplay Road: Our New Play Time Discovery! – The Fairy Glitch Mother

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