20 Classic Toys Kids Still Love Playing With

These retro toys never get old.
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By Martina Garvey, E-Commerce Editor
Updated February 27, 2023
toddlers playing with legos on the floor at home
Image: Lego
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Whatever era you grew up in, chances are you can still remember the thrill of unboxing that it toy. From Cabbage Patch Kids and Beanie Babies to the iconic Cozy Coupe, let us take you on a trip down memory lane. These classic toys are golden oldies, some of which are making a comeback and others that have never fallen out of fashion. After all, technology and trends may have changed, but you can’t beat the classics. Plus, watching your little one play with something you loved as a child is an unparalleled joy. So why not go old-school with your gifts? From battery-free playthings to classic stuffed animals, these nostalgic toys hark back to your own childhood and are still just as fun for kids today.

Play telephone

Fisher-Price Chatter Telephone
Image: Walmart

Let’s take things right back with the iconic Fisher-Price Chatter Telephone. This classic toy has been dialing up fun since 1961! The telephone toy may be kitsch but it’s also super-engaging for modern kids. It has a friendly face with eyes that move, a spinning dial and retro ringing sounds. You’re little one can take imaginary phone calls or use it as a pull toy while they walk and talk.

Ride-on car

Little Tikes Cozy Coupe
Image: Target
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Next up on our list of the best classic toys is the one and only Cozy Coupe. Created in 1979, this red and yellow micro-car continues to delight little passengers today. Kids can steer the car, beep the horn and propel themselves along by foot, or sit back and let mom or dad push them along.

Mr. Potato Head

Playskool Mr. Potato Head
Image: Walmart

This retro toy first made an appearance in 1952, but became a bona-fide classic after his appearance in the Toy Story films. It’s none other than Mr. Potato Head, of course! This figurine comes with 11 accessories, so kids can let their imagination and creativity sprout as they configure the different parts to create a unique design.

Red wagon

Radio Flyer Original Classic Red Wagon
Image: Walmart

Take your little one on a trip back in time with the Radio Flyer Classic Red Wagon. This classic toy wagon has delighted children for generations—with good reason. The sturdy steel wagon is incredibly durable and can hold up to 150 pounds. Toddlers can hop aboard for a ride around the block, while big kids can use it to tote around their other toys.

Bead maze

Melissa & Doug Classic Toy Bead Maze
Image: Melissa & Doug

Whether you were lucky enough to have one at home or looked forward to playing with it at kindergarten, chances are you experienced a bead maze at some point in your childhood. These retro wooden toys score high up on our list as they’re educational and fun. The brightly colored beads are fascinating to curious tots, and the maze helps kids practice those fine motor skills.

Play dough

Play-Doh Retro Classic Can Collection
Image: Target
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Get creative with a Play-Doh set. Toddlers love to pinch, mold and shape creations using the modeling compound. Better yet, the set features six old-school can designs taken from the Play-Doh archives for an extra dash of nostalgia.

Tickle Me Elmo

Sesame Street Tickliest Tickle Me Elmo
Image: Walmart
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Parents that grew up in the nineties will have a blast introducing baby to this iconic Sesame Street character. This Tickle Me Elmo is so ticklish, he kicks his legs and falls back laughing. And in an update to the original design, this Elmo can speak in Spanish too!

Soothing newborn toy

Playskool Classic Glo Worm Plush Toy
Image: Walmart
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Here’s a classic toy for newborns many folks know and love: Playskool’s Glo Worm. Inspired by the original 1983 design, this plush toy emits a soft glow and plays soothing lullabies.

Pull toy

Fisher-Price Classics Little Snoopy
Image: Walmart
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Fisher-Price classic toys are charming and sweet. Case in point: The Little Snoopy. This toy is shaped like an adorable beagle dog and can be pulled-along with his ears swinging.

Rocking horse

Little Tikes Rocking Horse Blue
Image: Walmart

A recent addition to the classic toy catalog, Little Tikes Rocking Horse is a great option for indoor or outdoor fun. Made from durable bright blue plastic, the rocker is low to the ground so kids can easily climb aboard.


Melissa & Doug Classic Abacus Wooden Toy
Image: Melissa & Doug

An abacus is the original classic toy. A tool to teach kids early math and counting skills, the wooden frame has rows of brightly colored beads that are easy to slide from side to side.

Retro toy cars

Hot Wheels
Image: Amazon
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Hot Wheels are retro toys loved by collectors, car enthusiasts and kids alike. This set includes 20 dinky cars that are scaled down versions of vintage vehicles. Suitable for ages 3 and up.

Jack in the Box

Curious George Jack in the Box
Image: Walmart

A Jack in the Box is a classic toy that has stood the test of time. This vintage-inspired musical toy is decorated with original artwork from the Curious George books. Turn the handle to hear “Pop Goes the Weasel” and watch your kiddos' surprise when a plush monkey pops out.

Teletubbies plush toy

Teletubbies 8″ Talking Po Plush Soft Toy
Image: Amazon
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The Teletubbies first hit our screens in 1996 and soon took the world by storm. Since then the show has had a reboot and the cute cuddly characters are just as popular as ever. Our personal favorite is Po, but you can get a sweet plush version of Dipsy, Laa Laa or Tinky Winky too. Whichever one you choose, press the stuffed animal’s tummy to hear it talk and sing.

Building blocks

Lego Deluxe Brick Box
Image: Lego

Lego has been capturing kids’ imaginations for decades (since 1932 to be precise). This classic toy set includes toddler-friendly bricks, so even little kids can build their own creations.

Doctor's play set

Tender Leaf Toys Doctor’s Bag
Image: Maisonette

Toys that encourage pretend play are always a winner in our book. And while you may not have had this exact set, in days gone by a doctor’s dress-up kit is a classic. This retro-styled canvas doctor's bag is full of all the essentials for treating poorly patients, from a wooden stethoscope to a blood-pressure monitor. It’s a great gift to encourage kids to exercise empathy.


Classic Tin Kaleidoscope
Image: Fat Brain Toys
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Fat Brain Toys|$7.95

Invented in 1816, the kaleidoscope uses mirrors and objects inside a tube to create a visual spectacle. Kids young and old, will be mesmerized by the swirling shapes, colors and patterns within.

Stacking toy

Fisher-Price Rock-a-Stack Baby Toy
Image: Walmart

Here’s one more nostalgic toy by Fisher-Price to reminisce over. The classic stacking toy comes with five colorful rings to grasp, shape and stack. And we can confirm, it’s still as fun as ever.

Baby doll

American Girl Bitty Baby Doll
Image: American Girl
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American Girl|$60

A doll is a classic toy that inspires pretend play and might even help your toddler get used to the idea of a baby brother or sister. This Bitty Baby doll doesn’t talk or cry or pee or sing (thank goodness), but is still completely engaging. It also comes in a wide range of skin and hair tones.

Etch A Sketch

Etch A Sketch Classic Red
Image: Target

Want to reduce your little one’s screen time? Swap out the iPad for an Etch A Sketch. The classic toy is a great unplugged alternative, simply turn the knobs and watch as the lines magically appear on screen. Then when your tot wants to start a new sketch, just give it a little shake and the slate will be wiped clean.

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