Three of the best activity play mats
Tired of doing monkey impersonations and blowing rasberries for your little one to laugh at? Invest in an entertaining activity mat and you’ll have them occupied for hours. (Well at least until they learn to crawl their way out and hunt you down for more daddy fun...)
Tree Top Activity Gym
If you’re after something that’s practical but lots of fun, then this activity gym from Skip Hop is perfect. Baby mats are not cheap and although some carry a price tag to make your heart skip a beat they’re well worth investing in. Although not a gadget filled music and lights show, Skip Hop is famous for its colourful designs that last the test of time. The Tree Top gym is cosy with enchanting woodland animals for little hands to grab, some of which rattle and chime. There are also plenty of additional loops high and low to hang other toys they love. The gym is quick to assemble and washes easily. The bars can be removed when they get a bit bigger and included is a pillow to help prop them on their tummies.
Skip Hop, www.johnlewis.com, £69.00
Stargaze Stripe Playmat
If you want your kids to become budding scientists then start by sending them to the galaxy with this Stargaze activity mat from Magic. The price tag might have you digging deep into your pockets but this really is an all bells and whistles gym that will take your child through several stages of their development. It comes with the usual array of textures, crinkle fabrics and squeaker sounds to stimulate and there are some detachable teething toys for sore gums. The galaxy ceiling comes to life with lights and sound when kicked but the most impressive feature of the Stargaze is its interchangeable programmed packs that can be slotted inside to play twenty minutes of unique content with different themed characters. Better still it’s also MP3 compatible so you can connect up your own player. Nursery rhymes or rock and roll, the choice is yours.
Magic Kids, www.mamasandpapas.com, £89.00
Rainforest Melodies & Lights Deluxe
The rainforest deluxe gym from Fisher Price has been around a while but it’s one of those play gyms that will never grow old. With its bright hanging birds, cheeky monkeys and soothing jungle sounds you’ll be forgiven for falling asleep under the branches with them. Make no mistake, you really will feel like you’ve been transported to the Amazon. As with most interactive gyms, you’ll need to fork out for the three AA batteries but they last a very long time. The looped mirror and different fabrics are great for their sensory skills and a tall giraffe watches over them whilst they play. The jungle style canopy will have them enthralled whether you choose the fun musical tune or the sound of creatures croaking.
Fisher Price, www.argos.co.uk, £54.99