This group of the best toy garages for toddlers make playing with cars extra fun, particularly for little boys, who in my experience are always fascinated with them.
When my son Benjamin was very little, he loved toy cars and trucks more than anything else. I remember when we took him on a tour of a neighborhood preschool, he was mesmerized by the toy car garage in one of the classrooms. Days later, he was still saying that he was looking forward to going to preschool and hoped he would get to be in “the class with the parking garage toy.”
Here are nine toy garages for toddlers that received good customer ratings and looked like something Benjamin would have loved. (In fact, he is nine years old now and I bet he would still enjoy playing with some of these!)
This garage set includes one tow truck and the two AAA batteries that you need for it, although you will also need two AA batteries for the garage, a screwdriver, and about twenty minutes of time to fully assemble it. There are nine different points on the tracks that you can roll the tow truck over to hear different phrases, music, or sound effects. There are also three different songs that you can hear by pressing the button on the truck.
One possibly downside to this set is that it takes up a lot of space and isn’t easily transported once you set it up. It would probably work best in a big playroom area where it stay for long periods of time.
There’s a lot going on in this garage play set. It has ramps, an elevator and helipad, a car and figure, and a gas station and car wash. It’s sized so that Matchbox and Hot Wheels cars fix on it as well. It’s also worth noting that the manufacturer, Play Toys, prides themselves on being of environmentally responsible and strive to reduce waste and save energy when creating their toys.
This toy parking garage is another clever and well-made wooden toy from Melissa and Doug. Like many of their toys, it’s portable (the cars can be securely stored by closing the garage doors), so it’s great for taking along to restaurants and doctor waiting rooms. Two unique feature are its drive-thru car wash and the gas station pump that actually connects to the car. And since kids who love cars usually also love trains, it’s a real plus that the two cars in this set are compatible with both Thomas and Brio train track sets.
This wooden stacking car garage is made by Melissa and Doug, who you can always count on to make sturdy, well-designed toys with a lot of “play value.” It comes with ten wooden cars that in different colors that have pegs on the front. You drop them into the slot at the top of the parking tower or pull them out from the bottom of the stack, and the colorful counter on the side adjusts every time you add or remove a car. This is a great educational toy because it includes colors, numbers, counting, and fine motor skills.
This large playset stands at just over two feet tall and does require some assembly. It’s a great toy for two closely-spaced siblings to play together. For example, one child can play with the straight ramp while the other uses the spiral slide. Another nice touch is the traffic light at the bottom that goes from red, yellow, then green to count down when two cars race down the straight ramp. One child can push the button to start the lights, while the other child can race the cars.
One nice perk about this playset is that if you already own Hot Wheels or Matchbox car, they both work perfectly with it.
My mother was always very impressed with the quality of Brio toys, and this Brio wooden parking garage is very durable and able to stand up to any toddler abuse. It has two cars, a car trailer, two rail ramps, a road ramp, and a gas storage tank. It even has numbered parking spaces, which I think is a nice touch.
The garage comes completely assembled. All you have to do is set the tower in place and snap on the red slide. Kids can crank the red handle to raise the car to different levels, and then have them ride down on the slide.
Another plus is that, at only fifteen and a half inches tall, it can easily be stored on a shelf as opposed to just constantly sitting in the middle of the room because it’s too big to be “put away.”
This toy connects to any and any Brio wooden railways, trains, and vehicles, so you can creatively expand it over the years if you choose to.
My nine year old son Benjamin had this exact garage playset when he was younger (in fact, I think it’s still in our attic), so I asked him to describe this one. Here’s what he said:
“It’s really fun. There are more like this that can be connected to the set, so if you’re that kind of person, this would be great for you. It gives you the impression that you’re actually fixing a real car. I LOVED the elevator. When you turn the grey wrench, it moves the platforms up. The car is detailed. The set itself has a handle on it, making it easy to pick up and carry with you somewhere else.”
So there you have it. In fairness, some reviewers called the set “flimsy” and complained that you can’t use the bigger Matchbox vehicles, like SUV’s and trucks on it, but I don’t remember that ever being a problem for it.
This playset comes with one Hot Wheels car, so no matter what your toddler does or does not already own, they can begin playing with it right out of the box. However, if he does already own other Hot Wheel sets, he can start linking them together to build an even bigger car world. (This is something my son still loves to do!)
By itself, this set is fairly small. At 15 inches in length..and about 12 inches high, it fits nicely on a small play table or the corner of a room, so it’s perfect for families that don’t have a lot of available floor space.
The beauty of this toy is that there are plenty of places for the cars to visit on multiple levels, so kids can easily enjoy playing with it for a long time. In addition to the parking garage itself, cars can ride the elevator up to visit the penthouse suite at the top, then roll down the ramp to see a movie at the movie theater.
Did you find a toy garage on this list that’s the best match for meet your budget, space constraints, and toddler’s age and interest? I hope so!