0 In Kids Life

Best board games and card games for 2 to 5-year-olds

My 5-year-old has been super interested in board games and I have been trying to get him some that are easy for him to play and fun for me to want to play too. Here are some of the best board games I’ve found for my 5-year-old that we’ve been playing lately.

I like having a variety of games that can practise different skills: learning to lose, being fast, paying attention to details, maths skills (as simple as counting or as hard as spatial awareness), identifying different objects, memory development, colour learning, and of course, being fun for everyone.

I try to focus on showing items that we already own and have tested but sometimes make a little exception on items I want to get but haven’t yet had the chance. All links to Amazon are affiliate links (the price doesn’t change for you, but I get a really small fee from Amazon for doing some “advertising” for their products).

Happy Chickens (2+) – Get it here

This was one of the first board games that we got, and it’s still a big favourite. What I love about this game is that you can start playing with them since they’re 2 years old and it’s a game where you can’t always choose to lose. So it’s a good game to teach them to lose.

Setting up the game also develops fine motor skills and is a great task. The only thing I have to point out is that the chicken coop is a bit flimsy and can easily break (at least ours, which is an earlier version did break) so I suggest keeping the coop put together permanently (which means its storage needs to be kept separate). This is an ideal first game and my 5 year old (and his friends) love it.

The point of the game is to get the most chickens from the coop by removing the sticks. It’s easy and fun.

Memory Game (2 or 3+) – Get it here

(the link above is a generic link to several memory games available on Amazon, please see below for themed specific that I think are good – I explain why below)

My son is the best memory game I know (which is ironic because he doesn’t seem to have any memory of anything that happens at school when I ask him). He honestly beats all adults who try to play with him even if they’re trying as hard as possible to win. And I consider myself to be pretty good at it too! It’s a simple yet really good exercise for them (and us).

The first memory game needs to have easy-to-identify colours and items in them, with not that many distractions (as the one pictured above that you can get here). If there’s too much information and very little distinctive features in them, it makes it a much more challenging game, that is really hard to play in a theme they’re not that interested in, they won’t want to do it.

Here are a few suggestions of some that I would definitely get if I didn’t have it:

My first memory game Transport – Get it here

My first memory game Favourite Things – Get it here

Bluey Memory Game – Get it here

Memory Game Childhood things – Get it here

Memory Game Fruit and Vegetables – Get it here

Memory Game Dinosaur – Get it here

But after purchasing a few different ones (one for our home, another one for each of the grandma’s houses, a new one to substitute one that got a bit smashed and was allowing him to win with the pieces face down because he remembered the flaws in them), I noticed a few “rules” that either make it a success with the kid or make it a total uninteresting item for them.

Let’s Take a Swim, Mudpuppy (3+) – Get it here

This is a big winner and perfect to take on holidays and restaurants. It’s also a based on luck so one might win even if trying it’s best not to, so it’s another great game to teach them to lose (especially if you struggle with it). It’s a simple game of “who’ll get to the end first”.

There’s also a Bingo magnetic game but the pieces are not self contained. It’s still good to bring with you on holiday but not as good for traveling as the other one because the pieces have to be kept separate from the board. It looks like a great game nonetheless.

Mudpuppy Space Magnetic Bingo – Get it here

Dobble (4 or 5+) – Get it here

This game is fun for any age (it’s one of the games me and my brothers and cousins play when we’re together) and kids love it. The point of the game is to find the common image between a card in your hand and another one either in the center or on someone else’s hand (depends on the game – there are 5 games to be played). The one with the most points at the end of the 5 games wins.

There are several versions of it and kids from 4 years old can play the original version with no issues I find, but you might find that another version could be a slightly easier game to start with depending on your kid’s interest.

Dobble Animals – Get it here

Dobble Kids – Get it here

Dobble 1, 2, 3 – Get it here

UNO (5+) – Get it here

A classic. I don’t think it needs much explaining as at this point in life I think the vast majority of us have played it at least once. My 5-year-old loves playing it.

A really cute helper for holding several cards in one hand is this is this Little Hands Card Holder. It helps them get less frustrated.

Funny Bunny (3+) – Get it here

We have the travel version of this game and it’s pretty good, so I’m assuming the full board game must be pretty good. It’s a simple throw the dice and get your bunny to the end of the game first type of game, but it has a few unexpected twists so it’s quite fun to play.

Funny Bunny Travel Version – Get it here

Avocado Smash (5+)- Get it here

This card game is quick and fun. The aim is to get rid of the cards one has in their hands the fastest following a few rules and “suffering” some setbacks. It’s quick and thrilling. There’s a Party version of it and a similar game by the same brand called Peach Snap that also looks like a lot of fun and has the same type of rules.

Avocado Smash Party – Get it here

Peach Snap – Get it here

Taco Hat Cake Gift Pizza (5+) – Get it here

This is very similar to the Avocado Smash vibe, but it’s slighlty more tricky. My 5 year old loves it (probably more than the Avocado one) because it is sillier. Great for a large family gathering as it becomes more challenging. It promises (and delivers) a lot of laughter. There’s a second version of it called Taco, Cat Goat, Cheese, Pizza.

Taco, Cat Goat, Cheese, Pizza – Get it here

Grabolo (2+) – Get it here

This is a super cute game that can be really versatile, especially if you like to apply some Montessori teachings around the house. The game itself as a game is super fun and fast paced for an older child, but it’s a great game to introduce to a 2 year old (that doesn’t put things in their mouth anymore) so they can learn colours and shapes. You can even get small same colour containers for them to sort by colours or sort by shapes.

Dig in (4+ or 5+) – Get it here

This game is a more elaborate version of the prior game. It’s more challenging but very fun, especially for kids that love to play “I spy”. It’s quite challenging for adults too, so it becomes a fun game to play with them competitively. It’s also a 3 in 1 game, so it’s versatile.

Disney It’s a Small World Game (4+) – Get it here

We find this game to be adorable. It’s a search-and-find type of game and one has to find the most drawings on the “walls” before the “time” finishes. We’ve played it a couple of times. The only thing I think it should have is a rotation base to make it easy to rotate the board game on a table. If played on a coffee table or floor it’s not as necessary, but would be handy still. Nonetheless, it’s good fun.

Snakes & Ladders and Ludo (5+) – Get it here

These two classics never fail. I confess I didn’t play them when I was little, in Portugal (where I’m from) but we’ve been playing them with the 5-year-old and we enjoy it. I bought a more vintage-looking one from a charity shop, but if I didn’t find it I would have liked this one. Below is also a lovely wooden version and each of the games separately.

Wooden version Snakes & Ladders and Ludo – Get it here

3D Snakes & Ladders – Get it here

Classic Snakes & Ladders – Get it here

Classic Ludo – Get it here

Connect4 travel version (4+) – Get it here

Still following the bandwagon of classics, this is another good one and I love the fact that it’s a small, perfect-for-travelling type game. Easy concept, if you’ve never played it, one just needs to be able to make a 4 piece line in any direction.

Connect4 full size version – Get it here

The Genius Square (5+) – Get it here

For all the Tetris fans, this game is super cool. I was a big Tetris Game fan, so it was a thrill to get this and to see my son enjoying it. It’s great to develop spatial awareness and maths in general. It’s challenging but not super challenging, and it gets easier the more it’s played with. We don’t play it competitively with the kid (it’s meant to be played on “first to finish wins”) we just compare results in the end as it’s interesting to see that there’s more than one way to solve the same problem. Truly love it, he plays it with his uncles and grand parents too, and it’s the one that I recommend most frequently.

Smart Games Parking Puzzler (4+) – Get it here

I love these challenging puzzle-type games. All Smart Games are amazing and you can explore more of them here. In this game, one needs to park all the cars in the same direction whilst one given a couple of clues of where some of the cars need to be fitted. And then fit all the other ones. It has three difficulty levels. My son started playing it at 4.

Gravity Maze (5+) – Get it here

This one goes along the same Spatial awareness type of game but in 3D. With the extra of it being a marble run. It has different challenge levels so it’s another game that grows with them. I love playing it too.

Sonic Super Teams (5+) – Get it here (please read description below)

This is (obviously) a very specific themed type of game (if it gets your attention, your kid will most likely be a kid that likes Sonic) BUT the game is, actually, really good regardless of whether they like Sonic or not (it’s definitely a plus if they do).

The “get it here” link sends you to a generic search of the different language versions because the English version is the most expensive one and considering that the game itself doesn’t have any language-specific references (everything is just drawings and numbers) I don’t think you need it to be an English version of the game, you just need the instructions to be in English. So here’s the link to the instructions and I’d suggest getting any of the other versions in whatever language/price point you prefer.

English Instructions for Sonic Super Teams

The English version link is attached to the following picture.

Guess Who Travel Version (6+) – Get it here

Another classic that never gets old. I never owned this as a child but loved playing it at friends and family’s houses. My 6 year old is now starting to enjoy this and I got the travel version because this can be a perfect game to play in a car trip or to bring on holidays.

Guess Who full size version – Get it here

Penalty Shootout – Get it here

This is a very fast pace and competitive game. It’s very fun to play. The box itself is the play area.

Games I want to get next and why

Labyrinth (5+) – Get it here

We got the travel version of this game and I loved it. I’ve always been curious about how to play it and now I really want to get it, because it looks like so much fun (and friends have confirmed it). It’s about collecting things and finding the quickest way to get somewhere to get the item. Quite strategic and really fun. The traveling version is fun, but the full version looks like a much better experience.

Traveling version – Get it here

Honk (4+) – Get it here

This is on the more expensive side, but it looks soooo good! It’s a strategy game where you have to feed ducks of the same type to get more points. Looks super cute.

Capt’n Pepe (4+) – Get it here

I’m a big fan of cooperative games. Because we’re not playing against each other and it helps avoiding the “losing tantrums”. On this one, everyone is working to achieve the same goal and it starts with easy tasks and progressively gets more challenging.

Sequence Junior (3+) – Get it here

This is a connect 4 but based on random luck as it depends on the cards you deal! Looks like a pretty easy game to explain and play with younger kids. Might even be playable with a 2 and a half year old.

Sequence for Kids – Get it here

Midnight Market (4+) – Get it here

This is a memory type game, as you have to remember locations. And there’s several winners, as there’s three point systems in the game, so it looks like a good game for the whole family.

Let me know if you have any questions on the games we own and I hope you have as much fun as we have playing these.



Come follow me!
For blog updates on Instagram and Pinterest
To get to know me a bit better: milliadasilva

No Comments

Share your thoughts!

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.