The Little Tikes Cape Cottage Red is our best playhouse for kids to enjoy. The playhouse with contemporary style is very light weight to carry and has been made for toddlers. It already comes with two doors and two window shutters that are easy to open and close and it includes mail slots as well as a flag holder. It is very easy to move around in the kid’s playground place.
Our step-up pick is the Step2 Neat and Tidy II Playhouse and it has an open design that makes it very visible for you to see kids while they are playing. It has a wide space for kids to move around and enjoy role playing and it comes with a mailbox with a pass-through design. In addition, the doorbell is realistically designed. It also comes with a molded flower box for putting in flowers, whether real or fake and there is an easy to open Dutch door at the front and shutters on the right side.
The budget pick is the Truedays Kids Outdoor Indoor Tent Playhouse and it is an easy to set up tent playhouse with colorful designs. It has a waterproof floor and the pole system is PU coated and patented shock-corded. It is as large as 55 by 47 by 47 inches, making room for lots of kids at the same time and the setup is a double purpose as a playhouse and a tent at the same time for children. It is indeed ideal for outdoor playtime or even indoor playtime.
A Little Background
Finding the perfect gift or toy for kids is very hassling, especially because kids have a short attention span. Buying toys for children is always a challenge for parents or guardians, especially if you don’t really understand what your kid actually likes, since he or she is engaged in a wide variety of toys.
There are many factors and skills to consider as your children grow and develop throughout their early toddler years. Choosing a great toy or activity setup for your children is very important. Playmates are not always there so it will be hard to entertain your child without the right toys or activity system.
Playhouses provide high quality playtime and a safe environment not just for your kids but also for adults when bonding with their children. Playhouses are not just safe and interactive – they will definitely provide you hours of entertainment for you and your children and it sets the independence and decision-making skills of any child, boosting their imagination and social skills.
How We Picked
A great playhouse must be easy to set up and take down. If you are buying a common plastic playhouse then you are looking for portability and a light weight feel. Plastic playhouses are low-maintenance and are easy to put up and put down.
There must be many amenities and features present in the playhouse. For instance, the playhouse can even have a slide or an activity wall for your kids to enjoy. At the very most, a playhouse will have a flappable table top and some benches or so. Most playhouses also have realistic sinks and kitchenettes.
The playhouse should be made from safe material. Since kids are going to use it, a playhouse should have safe materials and do not have sharp edges that might potentially injure your children.
The playhouse must engage the child’s social and imaginative skills. A unique playhouse with all the amenities such as realistic table tops, sinks, benches, windows, doors, wall clock and even activity areas will definitely make your kids enjoy playing – whether it’s by themselves, with parents or with other children around them.
A good playhouse must meet your child’s spatial needs or fit your backyard or play area. Do know the dimensions of the playhouse and how many children can fit in or if adults and teens can also fit in for guiding their kids. In fact, some playhouse designs are also widely open so you can see what the kid is doing even if you don’t get inside the playhouse.
Remember that playhouse prices depend on their features and size. Playhouses range from as low as $50 for pop-up tents and as high as $400 for fully-functional playhouses with slides and other features.
Top Pick: Little Tikes Cape Cottage Red
The Little Tikes Cape Cottage Red which is made for toddlers is our best playhouse. It even includes mail slots as well as a flag holder and it is generally very easy to move around in the kid’s playground place. This is a playhouse with contemporary style and it is very light weight to carry. In addition, it comes with two doors and two window shutters that are easy to open and close.
The Cape Cottage Red is indeed very detailed modern windows, bricks and arched door. It is small and compact design that will definitely fit most toddlers. The playhouse is red colored but also available in tan color variation.
Generally, the playhouse helps to build the social skills of any child as they play together with family or friends and it is recommended for kids aged 2+ years. It looks like a real house or cottage with realistic features and it can also be used indoors or outdoors.
It comes complete even with a house number at the top right and detailed shapes on the roofing as well as bricks on the sides, both inside and outside and it makes a great addition to any sandbox, swing set or playground.
This Little Tikes Cottage is an awesome addition for role play with kids to enhance their imagination and it makes kids feel more comfortable while playing. It is also very easy to operate for kids when it comes to opening and closing the doors and windows and it is hassle-free to assemble as all the pieces can snap together easily. It holds up in any weather outside and it is very attractive in its looks.
Flaws but Not Dealbrakers
There only a few flaws about the Little Tikes Cape Cottage Red that aren’t very major. For instance, the doors can be a bit flimsy and the stickers are a little bit challenging to put on. And like with most playhouses, it requires more effort to take down than to build up.
Step2 Neat and Tidy II Playhouse
The Step2 Neat and Tidy II Playhouse is our step-up pick which comes with a mailbox with a pass-through design. It has an easy to open Dutch door at the front and shutters on the right side and the doorbell is realistically designed. It also has an open design that makes it very visible for you to see kids while they are playing.
With a wide space for kids to move around and enjoy role playing, the Step2 Neat Playhouse comes with a molded flower box for putting in flowers, whether real or fake. The playhouse comes with everything your kids need for playing house such as a kitchen sink with faucet, a kitchen table that is portable, built-in shelves, a fireplace, a wall clock, a kitchen seat and a play phone.
Furthermore, it also has drain holes on the built-in floor in case it rains, which makes it perfect for both indoor and outdoor playtime. The fully-detailed brick designs on the side and on the roofing as well as on the upper walls to make it look very authentic as a playhouse. It is also good for role play for kids to exercise their social and imaginative skills and critical thinking in tasks such as cooking and cleaning and playing house in general.
The design resembles a real stone and wood house and it definitely looks great on just about any backyard or playing location. This playhouse is a fun outdoor or indoor activity with parents or with fellow children which is suitable for kids 2 to 8 years old.
The playhouse measures 44 inches by 48 by 26 so you get more room to play for the kids and the open design makes it easy for parents to interact with children without having to enter the playhouse itself. In addition, the built-in floor makes it safe and convenient for children to sit on the ground.
Truedays Kids Outdoor Indoor Tent Playhouse
The budget pick, the Truedays Kids Outdoor Indoor Tent Playhouse is a double purpose as a playhouse and a tent at the same time for children and it is ideal for outdoor playtime. The playhouse is an easy to set up tent playhouse with colorful designs and the pole system is PU coated and patented shock-corded.
Being as large as 55 by 47 by 47 inches, making room for lots of kids at the same time, the Truedays Kids Playhouse has a waterproof floor.The roll down flaps accompanies the two tunnel ports for easy opening and closing.
In addition, there is a Velcro front door closure for easy securing and it can accommodate as much as 2 to 4 kids all at the same time. It has been neatly packed in a polyester cloth bag and it was tested by CPSA USA.
As a matter of fact, you can place pit balls here to make it a great playground for children. It is made with 190T polyester cloth that is equipped with environmental protection features and of high quality and it has a fancy, vibrant and colorful design with windows and roofing which kids will definitely enjoy.
The Truedays Tent Playhouse has been made with safe material for children and it is super light weight but sturdy. It is applicable for kids 1 year old and above and it is okay to use for indoors or outdoors provided that you properly stake it outdoors and keep the windows and doors open to promote air flow and keep things comfortable.
Best Coloring Playhouse
My Very Own House Coloring Playhouse
A truly unique playhouse to consider is the My Very Own House Coloring Playhouse which is easy to assemble by folding up and down. It greatly enhances interactivity and the imaginative skills of children and it improves the art skills of your kids by allowing them to color the playhouse as they wish.
Being made only with safe and recyclable material that is friendly to the environment and to your child’s health, the cardboard material does not contain formaldehyde and is biodegradable. It is a great playhouse for kids to enjoy. With the Coloring Playhouse, there is no more worrying about kids vandalizing expensive playhouses with crayons – this is the ultimate solution to bring out the artist in your kids as it stands at a height of 49 inches.
The cardboard coloring playhouse comes complete with 2 mails slots, 4 windows that opens and closes and 2 doors. With this playhouse, your kids can create a custom home design based on their preferred colors and coloring materials. As we said, it greatly improves hand and eye coordination skills through coloring.
As a matter of fact, you can even let them decorate the house as they wish so it will further enhance the thinking and creativity skills of your kids. It already includes 8 nontoxic and washable jumbo markers so your kids can enjoy coloring and playing house at the same time. It also comes with a mail slot near the door and you only need to fold 6 times to store it, which makes it super easy and portable.
Moreover, you can even glue things on it which makes it ideal for occasions such as Christmas, birthday parties and many more, aside from coloring the house itself. It does not have sharp edges or tabs that might potentially hurt your child. On stability and safety, the reinforcement flaps on the bottom of the walls make it super sturdy while your child colors the sides.
The said playhouse is applicable for kids 3 to 15 years of age and makes a great bonding and learning time for kids with family or with friends. It is the perfect gift for any child with artistic needs.
Best Tent Playhouse
BATTOP Large Space Play Tent 2-Doors
The BATTOP Large Space Play Tent with 2 Doors is made from polyester nylon fabric and it comes complete with two working and roll-up doors. It gives your child a wide playing space at 34 by 34 inches and it is made with super colorful designs.
Being weatherproof and applicable for both indoor and outdoor use and it acts as both a playhouse and a play tent. Being a playhouse that will surely be easy to put up and take down, the BATTOP play tent stands at a height of 44 inches and it is relatively easy to carry and set up on any location.
This playhouse is great for kids 1 to 7 years old and it has a great systolic function and easy to fold. It has a square door and a circular door and it already comes with 2 mesh windows with a square lattice design.
As a matter of fact, there are see-through mesh windows on every side of the playhouse tent. The polyester fabric is very easy to clean as it is water resistant and the convenient Velcro attachments for rolling and strapping doors.
It also comes with 4 stakes for added durability when using outdoors in the grass or at the beach and the tent sides are made from high density gauze with good permeability and has been made with double stitching method to reinforce its durability. It comes with a carrying bag for travel and portability so you can set up your playhouse tent whenever and wherever and it is also backed by a 3 month warranty and money back guarantee.
Playhouse with Garden and Fence
Little Tikes Deluxe Home Garden Playhouse
The Little Tikes Deluxe Home Garden Playhouse comes complete with a lot of functions, features and amenities such as a working door and a mailbox and the kitchenette comes with a built-in stove for playing house and it is fully-detailed with clicker knobs and a convenient sink.
There is also a workbench station for your kids to play and set up things with. Being made in the USA, this is a playhouse that will surely entertain your kids and make them get the best of play time which also comes with a portable sand and water table equipped with a cover and other accessories that can entertain your child. The mailbox is designed to be attached on the fence.
It is ideal to be placed on the garden or backyard or even indoors and it is beautifully-designed and greatly detailed in every aspect – from the authentic wood shapes and creases to the stones and to the roofing.
Furthermore, the design is a wide-space playhouse style with an open feature and looks so that parents and people outside can easily interact with their children or playmates and easily watch over them. It is a perfect playhouse for the summer and it stands at a height of 52 inches.
You can make your children develop their social interaction and imaginative skills with this cool playhouse. In addition, the design also allows children to customize where they want to put the fence and other accessories with ease. Being suitable for kids 2 years old and above, the sand box can take as much as 1 gallon of sand.
Playhouse with Slide
Step2 Neighborhood Fun Center
If you want a larger playhouse, you should buy the Step2 Neighborhood Fun Center which comes conveniently with a 4 feet slide so your kids can play house and slide at the same time. It can fit a lot of kids at the same time and it is ideal for any backyard or even establishment such as a restaurant or fast-food for kids to enjoy while the grown-ups are doing business.
The playhouse includes extras such as a ring toss in its activity wall as well as a hook and loop ball target and this is a playhouse for kids to enjoy and learn. It enhances your children’s physical, mental, emotional and social skills all in one playhouse and already comes with 2 blue rings, 2 red rings and 2 balls for extra entertainment.
It is quite expensive but fully-packed with features for multiple play. It is fairly easy to set up and take down and it is equipped with 2 entrances: a crawl through portal and a Dutch door.
There is also a convenient snack table is at the side of the playhouse for your kids to enjoy snacking with two seats and a countertop. All in all, this is an ideal all-in-one activity center for your youngsters which is suitable for kids 2+ years.
Best Playhouse for Girls
Step2 Sweetheart Playhouse Pink and White
For those who have little girls, you can buy the Step2 Sweetheart Playhouse Pink and White as a birthday or Christmas present. It comes with a unique electronic doorbell that actually works and the doorbell even has a chime sound.
It also comes with an electronic phone for realistic neighborhood play among kids. Being suitable for kids 2 years and up, it has been coated in pink and white with full details on every aspect such as the roofing, the walls and even the interior of the playhouse and stands at about 55 inches in height.
Unlike most playhouses that have Dutch doors, this one has a full-sized realistic door. This is a playhouse that will surely impress your little girls as window shutters are very easy to open and close. In addition, the table top is convertible and ideal for pretending barbecue grill role play and comes with realistic clicking knobs.
It is complete with a decorative heart-shaped flower pot and it also comes with a skylight on the decorative roof. You can educate your children on telling time due to the movable clock hands. Furthermore, the outdoor grill is perfect for playing cooking and restaurant role play. The Step2 Sweetheart is a great playhouse to consider. As there are electronic components, it requires 4 AAA batteries.
Playhouse with Lights
HearthStrong 7′ Teepee and Lights Special
For those who want to camp outside with their kids in a cozy environment or have the kids play on an outdoor camp out, you can buy the HearthStrong 7′ Teepee and Lights Special for them, which is a playhouse and tent that can be used for both day and night play.
The unique feature of this playhouse is that it comes with 6 LED light strings that provide a cozy atmosphere for your kids due to its soft glow. In addition, the LED strings are encased inside plastic tubing lines on the 6 support poles made from wood.
This playhouse can fit as much as 2 to 3 children at the same time and it is indeed very comfortable and cozy space due to its structure. It is made with cotton canvas material that is heavy-duty, resistant to mildew and flame retardant. Safety is assured as all the LED lights are UL listed and approved so they are safe for children.
It stands at 7 feet with a 5 feet diameter and it complies with the regulations of CPAI-84 and ASTM. As a matter of fact, you can easily decorate or paint the teepee playhouse tent to your own design, since it is made from cotton canvas. It is ideal for backyard and camping use and since it fits up to 3 children, it can also fit 2 adults with legs folded so it is perfect for bonding with your kids.
Best Wood Playhouse
Backyard Discovery Summer Cottage Wood Playhouse
For those who like a western-style playhouse, they can choose to buy the Backyard Discovery Summer Cottage Wood Playhouse which is made from legitimate cedar wood and comes with side serving stations for eating snacks and a side snack window with a bench included.
It is also complete with a faucet, a toy sink and a play burner for realistic farm and ranch playhouse and it includes a magnetic door latch. Being equipped with vista viewing windows and a wooden roof, this is a playhouse for your summer backyard.
Additionally, it comes with a chimney and it has a full front door and flower pot shelves on either side of the main door so you can decorate it yourself and place flowers or anything you like on them. All of its panelized wood walls are made from cedar.
Furthermore, the cupola has a country style design and the wood roof has open gables and with a design of a scalloped trim. It is easy to assemble due to its panelized construction and the inside measures 4 by 4 feet in dimensions. It stands at a height of 5 feet at the center and can be set up in about 3 hours or so.
Playhouses that did not meet our standards were not as much as sturdy or did not have amenities and features that make these playhouses that we included here stand out and unique.
Other Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What should you consider when choosing the best playhouse for your kids?
A: According to Big Game Hunters , you should make sure the size is enough for your kids to enjoy. Know that bigger playhouses have more amenities and are pricier and some playhouses are just tents while some are equipped with slides, tables and others. Generally, playhouses are never cheap but are a good investment for your children to develop social and imaginative skills.
You should make sure the materials are safe to use for kids. Wood playhouses are more for the durability but the more common plastic playhouses are more suitable for younger children. The assembly should be very easy and come with instructions. Plastic playhouses are easier to move around and take down than wood houses. Do consider the place you will put the playhouse. Plastic playhouses are also easier to maintain than wooden playhouses but still need to be cleaned properly.
Q: How important is it for a child to experience playtime in a playhouse?
A: According to Room to Grow , playhouses develop social, mental, physical, emotional, creative, critical thinking and imaginative skills of any child. Also, playhouses also boost the self-esteem of children. Pretend plays allow them to explore and have a sense of independence and the amenities of a playhouse will also be a great asset for developing your child’s personality and how he or she manages throughout his or her life.
Generally, playtime with friends or family will definitely be improved with playhouses. In fact, playhouses that are highly customizable will enhance the imagination and creativity of a child so that their critical thinking and decision-making skills will also improve. You should know that playhouses know no gender gap and are both for boys and girls so they can further explore and enhance their social skills, especially when they play with their friends.
Wrapping It Up
As a whole, the Little Tikes Cape Cottage Red is our best playhouse that will really get your youngsters moving, learning and playing all at the same time.
Jen Miller is a former electrical engineer and product specialist with more than 20 years of product design and testing experience. She has designed more than 200 products for Fortune 500 companies, in fields ranging from home appliances to sports gear and outdoor equipment. She founded Jen Reviews to share her knowledge and critical eye for what makes consumers tick, and adopts a strict no-BS approach to help the reader filter through the maze of products and marketing hype out there. She writes regularly and has been featured on Forbes, Fast Company, The Muse, The Huffington Post, Tiny Buddha and MindBodyGreen.