present ideas for a three year old

Apart from a couple of obvious big ticket items, (like bikes and scooters) I always get a bit stumped when it comes to present ideas for Arlo. A year is such a long time in his development, it’s hard to know which presents will have longevity. And as Arlo is my first child, I find it difficult to look into the future and know what an almost four year old might need / want in terms of stimulating toys.

However, for similarly uninspired parents, the benefit of having a child whose birthday falls two months before Christmas is that I can share my knowledge of which gifts were popular, and which toys are still being played with a month on. Here is my list of sure-fire present ideas for a three year old to suit all budgets:  

snakes and ladders

Snakes and Ladders The perfect introduction to family board games. The rules are simple enough for a three year old to follow, and it’s a fun way to improve numeracy skills.  

playmobil campervan

Playmobil The amazing detail on Playmobil toys provides the perfect tools for imaginative play. Arlo received the campervan for his birthday, which has proved a huge hit.

marble run

Marble run Construction, gravity, cause and effect – lots to learn about with this toy.


Magnadoodle Mess-free creativity to keep active little minds busy.

hot wheels track

Hot Wheels Cars that speed down tracks and race round loops? I don’t think I’ll ever forget the sheer joy on Arlo’s face as he realised what this toy did. If your birthday boy or girl is a fan of all things vehicular, this is the ultimate present for a three year old or older. These were all gifts that Arlo received for his third birthday, and are still being played with on a regular basis today. But of course, Arlo’s absolute favourite present was the most shortlived: kinder egg

6 present ideas for three year olds. These sure-fire present ideas for a three year old will be loved by any child.  If you are sttruggling with ideas for what to buy a three year old, here are some present ideas for three year olds that will suit every budget.



  1. Love the fact you’ve included the kinder surprise… they rock Elfie’s world! She’s really into the YouTube vids of people unwrapping kinder eggs and it’s what she requests each and every morning. At 6am :/

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