Last Updated on March 29, 2022 by admin
I consider myself a Duplo superfan. I’ve recommended Duplo in many categories in this blog already: miniature sets, blocks, and train sets, to name a few. In case you’re not familiar, these interlocking blocks are made by the Lego company specifically for younger kids.
Duplo has the same reputation for quality that Lego has, but with a few extra perks for younger kids:
- Zero choking hazards – These were designed for toddlers, so unlike Lego, they will never be small enough for kids to swallow — or even for your pets to swallow! (Our kitten loves carrying tiny Legos around in his mouth, which is both annoying to clean up after and could be dangerous if he were to ever swallow one.)
- None (or very few) of the weird-shaped parts – Lego has gotten pretty complicated over the years, with a lot of pieces that aren’t exactly easy to fit into an imaginative build. The complexity has its perks times, but there’s something satisfying about just having the basic block shapes available: cubes, rectangles, and a few with rounded or slanted tops.
- Larger builds that are fun to use with other toys – Even though my kids are big enough for Lego and love assembling Lego sets, they still occasionally use Duplo to build larger bases for their other figures, and they can do it more quickly than they can with tiny Lego parts.
This is a blog about gifts for toddlers, so you probably weren’t considering Lego at this point, anyway — but the point is that these blocks work for 2-year-olds but also get used for many years afterward. That kind of longevity is relatively rare for a toddler toy. All the little play vacuum cleaners and kitchens and even baby dolls are so well-loved for the toddler years, then typically outgrown. Not Duplo, though! Their official age range suggestion stops at 5 but I can attest that my kids have played with them at age 6 and 7, too.
I love having a big bag of Duplo ready to set out when younger kids visit. I can do it with no worries and be confident that they’ll be entertained. (Related post: The Lego Organization Strategy I Wish I’d Used From the Beginning)
Mega Bloks seem to be the other popular option/alternative for interlocking blocks on the market. They’re easier on the wallet, and my kids did like playing with them, too — but never as much as they liked Duplo. Mega Bloks are made from a different type of plastic; Mega Bloks have some “give” to them. That does take some of the pain out of stepping on them, but also somehow makes them less compelling to build with.
Here are just a few of the fun Duplo sets available now on Amazon, in a variety of price ranges.
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