Wondering what toys to take when travelling with kids?
Here are 10 fantastic activities and toys for travelling with 4-5 year olds.

Travelling with kids can be a lot of work! Never mind the actual travelling part, but even just the packing and getting ready can be tricky. In addition to the basics (clothing, toiletries, etc), now you also have to think about what activities and toys would be best to take with you.

You want to make sure your child is entertained while travelling, but you also don’t want to bring excess baggage or take up too much space in the car.

So to help with some suggestions and ideas on what to take when travelling with kids, we’ve rounded up our favourite travel toys for 4-5 year olds.

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10 Best Toys for Travelling with 4-5 year olds

As we mentioned above, the best travel toys for 4 and 5 year olds should be small enough to fit in your luggage without taking up too much room, but still provide hours of entertainment.

While we’ve listed our favourite activities and toys to travel with, these are just a suggestion – each child is different and enjoys playing with different things! Stick with what you know your child likes and enjoys doing – there’s not much point in packing a new toy, only to find out that your child isn’t interested in it and it stays in the luggage the entire trip.

1. Magformers

One of our all time favourite toys are Magformers. These magnetic, geometric pieces can be used to build all kinds of things (cars, people, buildings) and then taken apart again just as easily. There are many different sets of Magformers available now, but the ones without wheels or added pieces are best to travel with. Each of the boys have a basic set which packs really flat (we use a pencil case to store them but anything will work).

2. Colouring and Activity Books

Colouring is a great activity for kids. Not only does it help develop their fine motor skills, it’s a quiet activity that can be done almost anywhere. Many colouring books also include some activities like dot-to-dot or mazes, to keep kids busy and provide a bit of variety. Don’t forget to pack the crayons and markers!

3. Colour by Number

Similar to colouring books, these colour by number books are a great activity to take travelling. Kids can practice their fine motor skills while also learning numbers and letters. My guys love the small colour by number books that you can usually find at the dollar store. They come with markers and are easy enough to pull out while waiting in the airport or playing in a hotel room, while still being small enough to fit in their backpacks. You can also find some on Amazon, like this one from Melissa & Doug.

4. Puzzles

Puzzles are a great way to keep kids entertained, but also help them with their problem-solving skills. If it’s a new puzzle, be sure to bring a Ziploc bag to store the pieces after. If a puzzle that’s already been opened, put the pieces in a bag before packing it, to ensure none of the pieces get lost. This Ravensburger World Map is perfect to bring travelling!

5. Hand held toys like cars or dolls

Kids love to play make believe, so why not pack a few of their favourite small hand held toys like cars or dolls? My boys can easily amuse themselves for hours playing with their hot wheels, whether it’s waiting at the airport or in a hotel. If your child loves playing with dolls, Melissa and Doug also make a portable doll house with carrying handles. Although it’s not small, it IS pretty portable and makes for a great toy to travel with if your child loves playing with doll houses.

6. First Paint

The First Paint art pads only require water, which makes it a perfect art activity to take travelling. The paint comes in solid cubes at the top of the art pad and when water is added, it turns into a liquid paint. There’s no messy paint spills! Paintbrush and paint are included.  

7. Sticker Books

Stickers are always a hit with kids. You can find plenty of educational sticker books, like this one from Scholastic which is great for teaching STEM concepts, or these from National Geographic. Melissa and Doug also make great sticker books, which have reusable stickers that can be used on different scenes, perfect for creating multiple adventures!

8. Wiki Stix

These colourful waxy sticks can be shaped into all kinds of different shapes and figures which is good for developing fine motor skills, as well as encouraging creativity. The wax provides that ‘stickability’ factor so they stick to paper and other smooth surfaces but no glue or paste is required. Best of all, they are easy to peel up and reuse! We’ve used these for a few years on road trips and travels and they are still going strong!

9. Card Games

There are lots of great card games out there designed for young kids and they are a great activity to take travelling! Cards are small and compact, but provides hours of educational fun. Games like Go Fish and Memory are great for young kids, or you can find specific sets of card games like these ones here.

10. Books

Kids love books, so be sure to pack a few favourites to read while you are away. If you are travelling for a few days, the 5 minute stories books are great – there’s a new bedtime story every day!

And don’t forget to pack a Stuffie!

This might seem like an odd thing to add to the list, but it’s the easiest option of all! If your kids play with stuffed animals at home, bringing one or two (but not a favourite one – just in case!) will help them feel more comfortable and will also give them something to play with while travelling.

Hopefully this post has given you some inspiration and suggestions on what toys to take travelling for 4-5 year olds. If you have any other great suggestions, let us know in the comments below.

Click HERE or the image below to download a printable pdf.

Happy travelling!

For more activities and ideas for travelling with kids, be sure to check out these posts:


  1. Can I just say that I am sooooo glad I am not traveling with little ones anymore. My girls are all late teens and twenties and are great travelers now. Making the effort then was a lot of work but totally worth.

  2. This is a great resource! Those long trips we are about to be taking with our toddlers to spend Thanksgiving and Christmas with family. This will help so much on those trips!

    1. Thanks! Glad it will help!

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