As you probably know by now, Florence loves animals. Last year while looking for birthday presents for her I stumbled upon a range of chunky wooden toy animals that looked like they were more than up for the challenge of surviving a one year old’s […]
Category: Toy Reviews
It’s been a long time since I shared any of our tuff spot play, but today I thought I’d show you one of the Christmas play activities we’ve been loving throughout Advent. This morning I created a winter wonderland tuff spot using the SnoBall Play […]
Ever since Florence was born I have been SO excited to introduce her to the wonder of train play. I don’t remember having a train set myself as a child, I think I had cars and vehicles but not necessarily an actual train set with track and such. However, a friend and her Thomas obsessed children showed me how wonderful playing with trains can be and just how many opportunities for learning and imaginative play it can bring and so it’s been at the top of my toy wish list for Florence. Our friends over at Hape have made my train play dreams come true just in time for Christmas and have sent us this Busy City Railway Play Set to test out and share our thoughts with you. I’ve not actually shown it to Florence just yet, as it, along with some other train bits, is one of her Christmas presents however I have had a go myself! Once the cat is out of the bag and she’s opened it on Christmas morning I’ll probably be back to share some different ways to play with train & track as well as any further thoughts we have on this little (it’s actually not that little) set.
The Hape Busy City Railway is comprised of over 40 pieces including wooden track, trains and carriages, a station, a bridge and a tunnel as well as people and signs. Included in the box is an instruction leaflet which shows just one of the ways you can set up the track and I’ve followed them to create the scene in the photos below. I think though, to start with we may opt for a more simple configuration when it comes to play and then move on to make more ambitious routes as Florence’s understanding and enjoyment builds.
There is a bright red passenger train which has a total of three carriages which connect via magnets. It seemlessy pushes around the track and fits perfectly through all of the elements, even serving the Busy City commuters from the station platform. The station is sturdy and detailed, complete with a ticket machine and timetable and even has little details like the yellow line on the platform.
Designed to demonstrate the idea that trains aren’t just for people, they are important as working vehicles too, there is a crane and freight train included with removeable and magnetic shipping containers that can be loaded onto the truck and driven away through the automatic gates at the level crossing.
Predominantly made from sustainable wood with only certain parts being plastic, the Busy City Rail Set is clearly built to last ready to be played with again and again. Full of colour and jam packed with realistic features the set offers so much potential for teaching little one’s not only about trains themselves but also colours, numbers and language through their play.
Being that I don’t drive yet, Florence is already fairly familiar with train travel and we often talk about the different parts of our journey and trains while out and about so I am excited to bring this real life experience into our play at home.
The Busy City Railway is marketed as suitable for three years and up with clear instructions not to leave little ones unsupervised when playing. I can imagine this is most likely due to the small parts included. You can buy it from Amazon for £64.54.
DISCLOSURE: We were sent a Busy City Railway play set for the purpose of this review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
I’ve teamed up with one of my favourite toy brands to share my thoughts on their top picks for Christmas for babies & toddlers as part of my toy review series. Hape are the worlds largest producer of wooden toys priding themselves on their use […]
Over the next few weeks, as we all busy ourselves with Christmas shopping and preparing for the most wonderful time of the year, I’ll be sharing my thoughts on some of the many toys out there on the market for babies & toddlers. I am […]
Florence was bought a trike for her birthday by her Grandparents & and Great Grandma and I really wanted to tell you all about it, because it makes such a great gift for little one’s and Florence absolutely loves it.
The Little Tikes 4-in-1 Trike is suitable from aged 9 months to 3 years with evolving features to grow as your child develops and learns new skills. We’ve only used the first position so far, in which little ones use the foot rest as they’re pushed along rather than the peddles themselves but Florence absolutely loves this alternative to the pushchair! Since she was given it, we’ve basically taken it on pretty much all of the little trips we’ve made around our village – toddler classes, pops to the shop, dog walks to the park and even to the doctors for her 12 month jabs. I think if I could guarantee she wouldn’t need a nap, I probably would have taken her into town on it too. She loves being able to sit upright and look all the way around on the go and it puts her in the perfect dog watching position.
When it comes to safety, it very much feels like every base has been covered. There is a five point harness and safety bar to prevent little ones from falling or climbing out on the go and as well as the non slip pedals and fold away foot rest for littler legs, there is a fully adjustable sun canopy designed to protect up to 99% of UV rays.
It is very easy and light to guide and push with either one or both hands and I was really surprised how well it copes on all sorts of terrain. It’s actually easier to push on gravel than our pushchair and just doesn’t seem phased by any changes in terrain. I was initially a bit concerned about the lack of brakes but having tested it, the trike tends to just stay put when you let go rather than roll away which I think is a genius feature. It’s also quite quiet when you push unlike others I’ve seen so that’s always a bonus.
The trike also has a handy storage bucket at the rear which can hold everything you and your little one could need for a trip to the park, including dolly – of course. There’s an ideal little drink cup holder too which seems to hold a whole host of different kids cups (we’ve tried the munchkin 360 cup, the Nuby Incredible Gulp & a Skip Hop straw bottle).
Overall, the Little Tikes 4-in-1 trike is a super sturdy and practical alternative way to get around for toddlers. I love that it offers plenty of opportunity to learn as Florence grows and she seems to absolutely love trundling along or even just sitting in it! I have lost count of the amount of times we’ve wheeled her around the garden on it too!
As you know, we’re working with Hape in the lead up to Christmas to share our thoughts on a selection of their baby toys. Last week, I told you all about all the fun we’ve been having with our Penguin wobbler and this week I […]
We are so thrilled to be working with one of our favourite Toy Brands again in the lead up to Christmas. If you’re a regular around here, you might remember that a few months back, Hape sent us an adorable set of bath toys to […]