10 activities to do with babies and toddlers
- Top activities for toddlers and babies
- Bonding time that you and your child can enjoy
- Stress-free activities that will help you relax too
1. Try free baby and toddler classes
Many libraries run free activity sessions for children and parents, such as 'rhyme time' where you can join other families for nursery rhyme sing-alongs or storytelling.
Contact your local library for details of what's on, and check out our guide to free pregnancy and baby stuff to make sure you are making the most of all the freebies you are entitled to.
2. Enjoy free museums
Plenty of museums are free and often run educational activities for children or have interactive displays. Most offer baby changing facilities and many have a café, restaurant or even a crèche.
If you're shy about breast feeding in public, you might want to buy a breast pump so you can express before you head out. We have reviewed a number of breast pumps so before you buy, find out which ones do the job best.
3. Keep fit with your baby
There are a number of keep-fit classes run for parents and babies such as buggy-fit, where you run in with your baby in their pushchair, or mother and baby salsa, where you dance while wearing your baby in a sling. There are also classes for babies, such as baby yoga, which can be great for bonding with your baby and meeting other parents.
Ask your health visitor or local library for information on classes in your area, and if you fancy mother and baby salsa, check out our review of baby carriers and slings to find the right one for you.
4. Go swimming
Swimming is a great activity to do with your baby or toddler, that is both healthy and helps develop skills.
If you don't fancy taking the plunge, many sports centres and swimming pools have classes for babies and children, so you can have a short break while they learn and play.
5. Get back to nature
A simple walk in the garden, park or wood is enough to keep your child entertained and give you some time to unwind. For curious children, the Woodland Trust has 150 free activities you can download, from treasure hunts to games.
If you enjoy getting outdoors as often as possible, take a look at our tips on how to buy the best pushchair for active parents.
6. Find parent and baby cinema screenings
Most cinemas have baby and parent screenings exclusively for little ones. You might have to put up with other babies making a noise, but it allows you to enjoy the cinema experience with your child without worrying that you will be 'shushed' the whole way through.
7. Visit family festivals
Across the UK there are a number of festivals that are packed with entertainment for kids and adults. Many are even free!
Take a look at our guide to travelling with children for tips on how to have a stress-free trip.
8. Print free activities
A number of websites have a whole host of free printable activities, such as colouring pictures and templates for crafts.
Take a look at ActivityVillage.co.uk, FamilyFun.go.com and ActivityExpress.co.uk for starters.
9. Make playdough
Children love to get their hands dirty, so make some safe playdough and let them play for hours. All you need is:
- 1 cup of table salt
- 1 cup of all purpose flour
- 1 cup of water
- Food colouring
To ensure they're safe and to minimise mess, sit them into a high chair to play. We've tested more than 30 high chairs for safety and ease of use.
10. Go to a local farm
Many local farms are open to visitors and taking your toddler along is a great way to introduce them to animals and educate them while entertaining them in the process.