Best wooden toys and puzzles in 2022

Wooden toys have soared in popularity over the last few years!

wooden toys
(Image credit: Getty Images)

The best wooden toys are not only environmentally friendly but kids love them, and they look pretty lovely too!

Better than plastic, and with a retro touch, the popularity of wooden toys has soured in recent years.

With plastic filling up landfills across the globe, many of us are opting for more eco-friendly options. Wooden toys are more traditional in their design, and often make great hand-me-down gifts for future generations.

Best wooden toys 2022 - at a glance

Personalised Pull Along Caterpillar - MY 1ST YEARS (opens in new tab) Scandibørn Kids Concept Shopping Cart Trolley - SCANDIBORN | £55.95 Londji Roads Connect Puzzle - ACORN & PIP| £35.00 Wooden Castle Blocks Set - MARKS & SPENCER | £19.99 (opens in new tab) Peppa Pig Wooden Boat - JOHN LEWIS & PARTNERS | £14.99 (opens in new tab) Personalised Wooden Kitchen Play Set - MY 1ST YEARS £75.00 (opens in new tab) Foxley Wood Skittles - JOJO MAMAN BEBE | £16.00 (opens in new tab) Tidlo Wooden Digger Construction - AMAZON | £29.99 (opens in new tab) Kids Wooden London Bus - CATH KIDSTON |  £35.00 (opens in new tab) Post Box Playset - JOJO MAMAN BEBE | £24.00 (opens in new tab) Stoie's Musical Instruments Set - AMAZON | £29.99 (opens in new tab) Wooden Carousel Rocking Horse - JOHN LEWIS & PARTNERS | £45.00 (opens in new tab)

Best wooden toys 2022

Petit CollageWooden Ferris Wheel

Petit CollageWooden Ferris Wheel

Age suitability: 3 years and up | Batteries required: None

This adorable playset would make a beautiful addition to any child’s bedroom or playroom. The moving wheel comes pre-assembled and can be spun around by turning the handle. It also comes with three animal friends: Panda, Rabbit and Cat.

VIEW AT NOT ON THE HIGH STREET | £49.95 (opens in new tab)

Personalised Wooden Pull Along Sausage Dog

Personalised Wooden Pull Along Sausage Dog

Age suitability: 2+ years

We love this classic wooden pull along dog, with it’s vintage design it’ll look great in any toy box – and is sure to be a favourite with toddlers. Not on The High street also offer similar toys, like classic wooden red and blue racing cars.

(opens in new tab)VIEW AT NOT ON THE HIGH STREET | £13.95 (opens in new tab)

Peppa Pig Wooden Boat

Age suitability: 2+ years | Batteries required: None

There are unlikely to be any homes with small children that are yet to be graced by Peppa and her oinking family. All aboard this push-along boat, George is ready to set sail! With his 'drop n play' feet, George fits into the boat, promoting hand-eye coordination for young children. Peppa’s World of Wooden Toys are made with excellent quality, durable and sustainable wood.

VIEW AT AMAZON | £14.99 (opens in new tab)

Scandibørn Kids Concept Shopping Cart Trolley

Age suitability: 2+ years

Made of great quality wood, this shopping trolley from Kids Concept makes the perfect learning toy for the little ones. The brand also sells cash registers, shopping baskets, and several sets of supermarket items to fill up the cart. Whether your children already have a toy kitchen or doctor's set, they will love feeling grown-up, pushing their shopping trolley around, and playing shop.

VIEW AT SCANDIBORN | £55.95

John Lewis & Partners Wooden Train Track Table

John Lewis & Partners Wooden Train Track Table

Age suitability: 3 years and up | Batteries required: None

Built to last, this wooden train set is a really good investment for hours of fun playtime with your child. It's got 90 pieces in total so you'll definitely never run out of bits to play with.

VIEW AT JOHN LEWIS | £75 (opens in new tab)

Personalised Wooden Doctors Set Toy

Personalised Wooden Doctors Set Toy

Age suitability: 3 years and up | Batteries required: None

Do you know a budding doctor or nurse? This five piece medical kit is perfect for wannabe medics. Each bag includes a wooden blood pressure monitor, stethoscope, reflex hammer, syringe and thermometer all contained in a red doctors bag. And, you can personalise with the child’s name.

VIEW AT NOT ON THE HIGH STREET | £38 (opens in new tab)

Londji Roads Connect Puzzle

Age suitability: 6+ years | Batteries required: None

A set that will keep your children busy for countless hours, this puzzle-style wooden toy set is designed to challenge their little minds. A cooperative game that children can involve friends and family in, there are over 1000 possible road routes to be designed. Those that love playing with cars and other vehicles would be delighted to find this puzzle wrapped up for a gift!

VIEW AT ACORN & PIP | £35

Wooden Castle Blocks Set

Age suitability: 4+ years

Children can create a magical setting with this castle-building set, designed for the greatest of princes and princesses. With 75 pieces to assemble including towers, bridges and arches, children can put their building skills to the test. Fingers crossed that no dragons are lurking nearby to blow those turrets down.

VIEW AT MARKS & SPENCER |£19.99 (opens in new tab)

Cath Kidston Wooden London Bus

Age suitability: 3+ years | Batteries required: None

London double-decker buses are British icons in their own right, and so make a lovely nostalgic addition to any toy box.

With 9 passengers, 1 bus driver, and a removable top deck and staircase, this bus can provide hours of fun. A sturdy set that can handle knocks and bumps that toddlers will throw at it, this bus will last for many years to come.

VIEW AT CATH KIDSTON | £35 (opens in new tab)

Melissa & Doug Wooden Farm and Tractor Play

Melissa & Doug Wooden Farm and Tractor Play Set

Age suitability: 3+ years | Batteries required: None

Both classic and innovative, your little one can build their very own world with this 33-piece of farm-themed animals, buildings and play pieces. The small toys are made out of wooden but brightly decorated on one side and are ideal for sorting, stacking, counting and building activities.

VIEW AT AMAZON | £20.99 (opens in new tab)

Personalised Children's Wooden Tool Belt Toy

Personalised Children's Wooden Tool Belt Toy

Age suitability: 3 years and up | Batteries required: None

Containing a wooden spanner, claw hammer, screwdriver, bolt with two nuts and even a spirit level – this cute tool kit is perfect for any young budding mechanic. The velcro belt can also be perosnalised, by adding a child’s name along with the phrase ‘can fix it’. So sweet.

VIEW AT NOT ON THE HIGH STREET | £36 (opens in new tab)

Le Toy Van Noahs Balancing Ark

Age suitability: 12  | Batteries required: None

10 animal blocks  are included in this cute Noah's Ark shape sorting set. Perfect for any little one turning one or two - they're sure to love balancing the pieces, which should help their cognitive skills and hand-eye coordination.

VIEW AT JOJO MAMAN BEBE | £19.95 (opens in new tab)

Personalised Wooden Kitchen Play Set

Age suitability: 3+ years | Batteries required: None

You can show your little ones what really happens in a kitchen (well, sort of) with this personalised play kitchen set. Complete with a hob, oven, sink, and even cupboard space, there is plenty of fun to be had.

The many play options in this kitchen are ideal for getting multiple cooks involved, and help with finetuning children's motor skills.

VIEW AT MY 1ST YEARS | £75 (opens in new tab)

Personalised Pull Along Caterpillar

Personalised Pull Along Caterpillar

Age suitability: 1+ years

Our favourite for several reasons, and not least its brightly coloured segments. A pull-along, wooden animal is a traditional find in all great toy boxes, and this caterpillar comes with the option of free personalisation for an additional magical touch.

A classic child favourite, this pull along toy will give your child hours of play and even look super cute when not put tidily away.

VIEW AT MY 1ST YEARS | £18 (opens in new tab)

Foxley Wood Skittles

Foxley Wood Skittles

Age suitability: 3+ years

Many children seem to love knocking things down, and if yours fall into that category, then they will love playing skittles - especially when these adorable woodland animals are involved.

The perfect playset for children who like active play, these super cute animals are both fun and useful for developing hand-eye coordination.

VIEW AT JOJO MAMAN BEBE | £16 (opens in new tab)

Tidlo Wooden Digger Construction

Tidlo Wooden Digger Construction

Age suitability: 36 months+ | Batteries required: None

Make light work of construction with this brightly coloured digger. Children will be delighted to play with this durable groundworks vehicle which can swivel a full 360 degrees.

With working caterpillar tracks, this wooden toy is as realistic as can be without any real working engine! Encourage your children to engage in creative and imaginative play with this high-quality, and responsibly sourced wooden set.

VIEW AT AMAZON |£30 (opens in new tab)

Post Box Playset

Age suitability: 3+ years

Perfect for children who are learning to write, this post box set is ideal for preparing and posting letters and special messages.

Inside, there is also a set of chalkboard letters for your little one to practice their handwriting on, and a clock on the front to set a pickup time - so you can even incorporate time learning, and tick off lots of essential skill building with one toy set.

VIEW AT JOJO MAMAN BEBE | £24 (opens in new tab)

Stoie's Musical Instruments Set

Stoie's Musical Instruments Set

Age suitability: 3+ years

Calling all budding musicians. If your child likes to sing and make music from whatever they can, they will love this percussion set. Stored inside a cotton bag, there is a tambourine, castanet, 2 handbells, maracas, flute, a wooden block, agogo block, and a chime bar.

With enough instruments for all of the family to get involved, children are able to develop their collaborative skills.

VIEW AT AMAZON | £30 (opens in new tab)

Wooden Carousel Rocking Horse

Age suitability: 18 months+

There is nothing quite as nostalgic and sweet as a rocking horse, and this makes the ideal first one. With a beautiful, carousel-style design, children can rock away the hours.

The high quality and environmental wood will ensure that future generations will be able to enjoy this horse just as much as your little ones will. Giddy up!

VIEW AT JOHN LEWIS & PARTNERS | £45 (opens in new tab)

Are wooden toys better than plastic?

Wooden toys are the best way to ensure that you're getting high-quality toys, while not having to pay an arm and a leg. There are many brands out there (such as the ones below) that offer a huge range of wooden toys for any budget and they all guarantee quality - without no phthalates, PVC or chemicals which are used in plastic toys.

Research also points to wooden toys being better than plastic ones, offering the chance for unstructured play. This helps young children learn through play (opens in new tab), by developing their imagination and creative thinking skills - especially as there's never just one use for a wooden toy. Sensory toys (opens in new tab), with bright colours, sounds and pictures, are also great choices for improving baby and toddler development. Water babies, will also love these cheap bathtime toys (opens in new tab).

They're also much, much better for the environment.

How sustainable are wooden toys?

Wooden toys are undoubtedly a helpful solution to the current overflow of plastic in our world. They're supremely long-lasting, meaning they're much less likely to break over the years, and as such, can be passed down from generation to generation.

Are wooden toys good for babies?

Being more durable - and less likely to break - also means that your wooden toys are arguably safer too. There aren't any sharp edges or small pieces likely to snap off, so you can rest ever so slightly easier when it comes to playtime for your little ones.

Wooden toys also tend to not be quite as high-tech as plastic toys, meaning they're more likely to naturally spark your child's creativity whilst they're playing. Hand your child a couple of wooden building blocks, or a wooden kitchen set, and see what kind of scene they create for themselves!

Another upside - for all the parents among us - is that wooden toys are inherently more peaceful - and what mum or dad doesn't crave a little more quiet time? Without the beeps and boops, alarms, voices, and all the other noises from your typical electrical toys, you might be able to let your child enjoy play time without an array of sounds exploding from their bedroom - within reason of course, after all, they're still children.

Mollie Davies
Mollie Davies

Mollie is a lifestyle journalist, focusing mainly on health and beauty.