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23 Best Pool Toys for Kids of 2024

Make a splash this summer with these cool pool toys.

Swimming is fun until you’ve cannonballed until you can’t cannonball anymore and you need more stimulation. This is where the pool toys come in. And we’re not only talking about pool floats (though they are pretty cool).

If you’re having difficulty finding some good-quality toys for your pool this summer, we’ve got your back. We spent our spring rounding up all the best pool toys for kids. These toys are unique, fun, safe, and durable.

Check out our top picks to help your kids fill their swim time with fun instead of fighting — so you can relax and enjoy those sunny days by the pool.

Our Top Picks

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Product Comparison Table

Product Image of the Bulzi Bucket
A Versatile Game
Bulzi Bucket
  • Less than 20 seconds to assemble
  • Portable
  • Versatile
Product Image of the Heytech Dive Toys
For The Seasoned Swimmer
Heytech Dive Toys
  • All-in-one package
  • Non-toxic
  • Brightly colored
Product Image of the Watermelon Ball
Best Pool Ball
Watermelon Ball
  • Can be dribbled underwater
  • Durable
  • Easy to fill and play
Product Image of the Swimways Finding Nemo
Perfect for Beginner Swimmers
Swimways Finding Nemo
  • Great for swim training practice
  • Each character floats at different depths
  • 6-piece set
Product Image of the Intex Pool Volleyball
Best for Pool Parties
Intex Pool Volleyball
  • Includes a repair kit
  • Sturdy 10-gauge vinyl
  • Comes with a shelf box
Product Image of the Boley Sinking Gems
Great for Treasure Hunters
Boley Sinking Gems
  • 12 vibrantly colored dive gems
  • Child-friendly
  • 100% non-toxic materials
Product Image of the Spark Shark Fish Hunt
Best for Kindergartners
Spark Shark Fish Hunt
  • Very affordable
  • 8-piece set
  • Easy-grasp handle
Product Image of the COOP Hydro Spring Hoops
For The Aquatic Lebron
COOP Hydro Spring Hoops
  • Twist-n-fold design
  • Unmatched material fabrication
  • Includes portable storage bag
Product Image of the Intex Inflate-a-Bull
Most Unique
Intex Inflate-a-Bull
  • Durable grab handles
  • Comes with a repair patch
  • 3 air chambers
Product Image of the Intex Wave Ride-On
Best Ride-On Pool Toy
Intex Wave Ride-On
  • Wide base
  • Made of 10-gauge vinyl
  • Bold and sleek design

The Best Kids Pool Toys of 2024

Here are our favorite pool toys for kids.

Bulzi Bucket Beach & Pool Toy

A Versatile Game

Kids can play this game in pools and on land, making it versatile and providing maximum fun. It’s very similar to cornhole. You toss the balls at your bucket to get a certain amount of points, depending on which bucket it lands in.

It’s easy to break down for storage and has a convenient carrying case to hold everything in. This game is great for groups but would be the most fun for children ages 6 and up.

User Experience

After enjoying this pool game at a party, I decided to get a set for myself. While the game is undeniably fun for both adults and kids, I noticed some issues with the durability of the balls and the quality of the bucket connectors. Despite these minor setbacks, the game remains a versatile and entertaining addition to any gathering, whether at the pool, beach, or even indoors.

Heytech 25-Pack Dive Toys

For the Seasoned Swimmer

This is a great option if you’re looking for a standard set of diving toys. It comes with 25 pieces, including torpedoes, dive rings, and water batons.

The toys are made of soft, flexible material and are recommended for children ages 4 and above. For those who aren’t confident swimmers, this set also includes foam guns for use in the pool or on land.

Personal Perspective

I recently purchased this pool toy set for some added entertainment, and it has been a hit with kids ranging from ages 5 to teens. The bundle includes a variety of toys such as sharks, pufferfish, and water guns, providing hours of fun for both kids and adults. One downside is that one of the corals unexpectedly released rocks into the pool, which could potentially damage the liner. Despite this issue, the overall durability and variety of the toys make it a great value for the price.

Watermelon Ball Swimming Pool Game

Best Pool Ball

This unique pool toy combines aspects of football, basketball, and rugby for water play. Kids can dribble the ball under the water like a basketball, and players score points by taking it to their side of the pool.

It’s made of durable material to help withstand intense play, which makes it great if you’re looking for something that will last. This pool toy is recommended for children aged 8 and over and also comes in a “junior” option for younger children.

Community Feedback

My family and I have had a blast playing with this watermelon ball in the pool, especially since it can be passed and bounced underwater, making it a unique and engaging experience. Even our older teens and adults found it enjoyable! It was very easy to set up by connecting the included needle to our garden hose, and although it was smaller than I initially expected, it didn't take away from the fun. Both kids and grownups will love playing catch and splashing around with this watermelon ball, making it a perfect addition to any pool day.

SwimWays Mr. Ray's Dive and Catch Game

Perfect for Beginner Swimmers

If you’ve got a little Disney lover, this “Finding Nemo” catch game is a great pool toy to have in your arsenal.

This game comes with a net in the shape of Mr. Ray and five other “Finding Nemo” characters for your child to find and catch. Some of the characters float while others sink, so this pool toy is good for children learning how to dive and swim. Recommended for ages 5 and above.

First-Hand Impression

When I first got this cute toy, I was thrilled to find that the little fish were solid, preventing any mold issues. My 1-year-old had a bit of difficulty scooping them up due to the narrow net opening, but the toy still provided lots of giggles and fun. While the quality isn't top-notch, it served as a great short-term entertainment for my child and even doubled as cake decorations.

Intex Pool Volleyball

Best Pool Toy for Pool Parties

If you’re planning on hosting pool parties this summer, this blow-up volleyball game could provide a great deal of fun for the crowd. The net is grommeted, so you can anchor it down to keep it more stable.

It also comes with a repair kit and a box you can store it in when not in use. This pool toy is recommended for ages 6 and above.

User Experience

In my experience, this pool volleyball game is a fun and affordable way to enjoy some family time in the water. While the inflatable net and ball may feel a bit flimsy and cheap, they still get the job done and have provided us with some enjoyable games. The provided anchor bags and string are necessary for stability, though I had to use my own longer string to make it work. The only real downside is the included ball, which is quite light and easily affected by the wind, but for the price, it's hard to complain too much.

Boley Sinking Gems Dive Toy

Great for Treasure Hunters

These sinking gems could be a great addition to your pool toy collection. This set comes with 12 gems in several bright colors. They are entirely non-toxic and child-friendly.

They are recommended for children ages 3 and above. While most 3-year-olds won’t be diving to the bottom of a pool, they can use them in a bathtub, on land, and later on in the pool when they’re ready for a challenge.

Personal Perspective

My experience with these dive toys has been nothing short of delightful for both my granddaughter and my grandsons. The colorful, sturdy gems are perfect for little hands, providing endless entertainment in the bath, at the beach, and in the pool. The solid design ensures there's no risk of mold growth, and they even skip like flat stones across the water, which my 6-year-old absolutely loves. While the yellow and green gems can be slightly difficult to spot at the bottom of the deep end, the pink and blue ones stand out just fine. These dive toys have proven to be a fantastic find, with great size, color, clarity, and material. They've certainly been a hit with the kids in my family and continue to be enjoyed as they grow older.

Melissa & Doug Spark Shark Fish Hunt

Best Pool Game for Kindergartners

If your children love to race each other, this is a great way to put a new spin on the classic swimming relay. It comes with two handheld shark nets and six sinking fish for you to catch.

This is generally a two-player game, but it comes with ideas to play with up to seven players. It is recommended for ages 6 and above.

Community Feedback

For both young kids and older children, this shark toy is a blast in the pool and the bathtub. The sharks have a realistic swimming motion and their heads and tails are made of durable hard plastic, while the middles are mesh, preventing mold growth. The set comes with six fish that have holes allowing them to sink slowly in the water, making it extra fun for the kids to catch them with the sharks.

COOP Hydro Spring Hoops

For the Aquatic Lebron

Let your children channel their inner Lebron or Curry with this floating hoop and ball. The game floats on the water as you and your kids try to score points by throwing the fabric-covered ball through the net.

This set is easy to set up and take down and includes a storage bag for easy cleanup. Suitable for children ages 5 and up.

First-Hand Impression

Definitely an enjoyable addition to our pool activities, this basketball hoop is easy to set up and surprisingly durable with my three tween boys playing with it. Although the ball it comes with is a bit heavy and small, the hoop itself holds air well and doesn't fall apart like the old PVC pipe ones. However, be prepared for it to be pushed around by the wind in an outdoor pool, but you can always tether it or use the included ball as a weight to help stabilize it.

Intex Inflat-a-Bull Novelty Float

Most Unique Pool Toy for Kids

On the larger side of things, this rodeo toy is sure to bring hoots and hollers when the family gathers around. One individual sits on the bull while the others pull it from side to side. The goal is to stay on top, much like in the rodeo.

This pool toy is best for kids ages 9 and above. We like the unique spin this option takes, and we have a feeling the adults will want to join in, too.

User Experience

After purchasing this inflatable bull for my kids, I found it to be a fantastic addition to our pool time. The material is durable, and we haven't experienced any issues with deflation. It's a challenging yet fun activity for both kids and adults, as everyone tries to balance and stay on the bull. However, I would highly recommend using an air pump to inflate it, as it is quite large and would be difficult to do manually.

Intex Wave Rider Ride-On

Best Ride-On Pool Toy

This pool toy is made to look like a jet ski and is the perfect size for older toddlers and preschoolers. It has a broad base to make it more stable in the water and provides good balance for your child.

This pool float is recommended for children ages 3 and above. Although the base is wide, your child should still have close supervision riding it, especially if they aren’t a confident swimmer yet. The durable handle up top should provide some support as well.

Personal Perspective

This inflatable jet ski is a fun addition to our pool time, capturing the excitement of both our 5-year-old and 10-year-old. It was easy to inflate using a hand pump, although the blow-back valve could use some improvement. The jet ski seemed better suited for younger kids, as it was a bit challenging to stabilize and paddle for older ones. Despite this, my son absolutely loved it and its durability has impressed me so far.

Melissa & Doug Sunny Patch Kickboards

Best Pool Toy for Learning to Swim

These kickboards are a great investment if your child is a new swimmer. They’re buoyant and provide your child with balance and stability as they learn to move their arms and legs in the water.

Not only will this toy make your child a more confident swimmer, but it will also encourage the use of their gross motor skills. Melissa & Doug products are known for being durable, and these kickboards are no exception. They hold up to rough play and plenty of swimming practice.

This set comes with two kickboards: a dolphin and a shark. These pool toys are suitable for ages 4 and up.

Community Feedback

Great kickboards for young swimmers! I recently gifted these to my neighbor's son and my 4-year-old granddaughter, and they both absolutely loved them. Although I was initially concerned about the durability of the styrofoam and fabric-like coating, they surprisingly held up well during a weekend at the ocean. The cute design and affordable price make these kickboards a hit for both kids and parents. However, I do recommend being careful with the printed lining as it feels a bit flimsy and could easily snag or tear.

Inflatable Unicorn Pool Float

Best Pool Float for Girls

Unicorns are all the rage right now, and this giant unicorn is recommended for children as young as 3 years old and up. It also comes in a larger size for bigger pools and older kids.

While this is a bigger float toy, it’s easy to inflate and deflate thanks to its rapid-valve system. No passing out from blowing too hard or too fast.

First-Hand Impression

After purchasing this inflatable unicorn for my niece, I found it to be a cute and durable raft that has held up nicely with the grandkids. The float is of good value and decent thickness, making it perfect for frequent use in the pool. However, inflating it can be a bit of a challenge, and I recommend using a manual or electric air pump to make the process easier.

Intex Great White Shark Ride-On

Best Pool Float for Boys

This inflatable shark ride-on toy is designed with heavy-duty grab handles for your child to hold onto, keeping them afloat — we hope.

This pool toy measures 68 inches long and 42 inches at its widest and comes with a repair patch for small punctures. It’s suitable for children ages 3 and up.

User Experience

My experience with this inflatable shark has been positive, as it is both sturdy and visually appealing. Inflating it was quicker than expected, and it has proven to be durable even after extensive use by my kids. However, the shark may not be suitable for older children due to its size, and the midsection can bend if not positioned correctly.

COOP Hydro Lacrosse Game Set

Great for Physical Activity

This is an excellent toy for families with a wide age range because its design makes it easy to use for everyone. The set comes with two sticks and a ball, and the colors may vary. Scoop, catch and throw your way through the summer.

Suitable for children ages 8 and up, this toy can be used in the pool and on land, making it a versatile option.

Personal Perspective

Love these lacrosse sticks for their versatility and fun factor! I initially bought them for a beach trip, and my family enjoyed playing with them for hours. They are not only great for pool and water games, but also for creative uses like making flower arrangements for special occasions. The sticks are durable, well-made, and suitable for both kids and adults. Just wish it came with more than one ball, but overall, this pool toy has added a lot of enjoyment to our outdoor activities.

SwimWays Gobble Gobble Guppies

Best Game for Toddlers

If you’re struggling to find good pool toys for your toddler, this fishing game may be your saving grace. It’s recommended for children from 2 years old and helps teach counting and color recognition.

Your toddler will use the trigger on the whale’s belly to open and close its mouth to gobble up the four numbered guppies. The guppies float, which makes it easier for little hands to figure out.

Community Feedback

If you're looking for a versatile and entertaining pool toy, these little swimming and diving torpedoes are a fantastic option. I've personally had a blast playing catch with them for hours, and they also serve as a great workout for both adults and young children. The quality of the plastic is top-notch, and they can even be used as bath toys for toddlers. With various games and uses, these torpedoes are perfect for enhancing swimming skills and providing endless fun for all ages.

Joyin Water Blasters

Best for Water Combat

If you’re a gaming family and you like a little play combat, these water guns could be a fantastic option. This set comes with two easy-to-pump water guns that can hold up to 25 ounces of water and shoot up to 36 feet.

They’re made from durable, non-toxic plastic and come with a 90-day money-back guarantee. These water blasters are recommended for children ages 6 and over.

First-Hand Impression

In my experience, these water guns have been a hit with my family. The plastic is sturdy and the size is perfect for kids to hold, providing endless fun. We even played a game called "alien invasion" with frisbees, which kept them entertained for hours. However, I noticed that the water guns tend to leak out the back when filled, which can be a bit of a nuisance. On the bright side, they still managed to last a whole summer of frequent use before breaking. Despite the minor leaking issue, the affordable price and overall enjoyment make these water guns worth it.

Halovin 12 Pack Inflatable Drink Holders

Best Refreshment Floats

This multi-functional drink holder can be used in the pool and on land. This set includes 12 drink floaties your child or even you can enjoy.

This can serve as a pool toy or a beverage holder capable of carrying up to 15 ounces of beverage. However, if you don’t want spills in the pool, we recommend using sippy cups for younger children.

We’ve even used these handy tools to hold baby bottles so our little ones can top up their tank while enjoying a little swim time.

User Experience

Definitely a fun and quirky addition to our new pool, these inflatable drink holders not only look adorable but also serve their purpose well. While a few of them had air leaks and one wasn't able to stand up for the ring toss game, the majority stayed inflated and held drinks without issue. My 4-year-old daughter particularly enjoyed using them as pool floats for her dolls. Just be aware that you may need a pump to inflate them, and they might not hold taller drinks as securely.

Wave Runner Soft Foam Water Ball

Best Multi-Use Pool Toy

Measuring 3.5 inches in diameter, this brightly colored water-skipping ball can be skipped, bounced, and more because of the unique HyperBounce technology. It makes for hours of pool fun.

The mega ball is recommended for children ages 6 and above, but since it’s very soft and made from non-toxic materials, younger children could also use it with adult supervision.

Personal Perspective

When I first tried out these water balls, I was expecting them to bounce and skip effortlessly on the water, just like other brands I've used in the past. However, I found these balls to be firmer and less bouncy than I would have liked. On the plus side, they don't get too heavy or waterlogged, which made them enjoyable to play catch with in the pool. Unfortunately, they started to show wear after just a few days of use, and I felt they were a bit overpriced.

SwimWays Baby Spring Pool Float

Best Pool Float for Babies

Babies need fun pool toys too, and with this pool float, your baby sits inside by inserting their legs into the provided holes so they can float leisurely. The great thing about this float is that it also has a canopy to protect your baby from the hot sun. Furthermore, it includes an interactive play station with six toys.

No need to worry about storage and transportation. You can fold this pool float easily, and it also comes with a carrying case for convenience. Choose from an octopus or lobster design.

This pool float is recommended for ages 9 months to 2 years.

Community Feedback

If you're looking for a reliable and well-designed float for your little one, this product is an excellent choice. The hyperflate air valves make inflating the float a breeze, and the canopy provides much-needed sun protection. The float is comfortable and secure, even for younger babies, and the included toys add an extra layer of fun. However, be prepared for a bit of a learning curve when it comes to deflating and storing the float, as it can be slightly cumbersome.
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Intex Stingray Ride-On Baby Float

Best Pool Float for Toddlers

If the sea calls to your baby as it does to Moana, this stingray float is a must-have. It comes in a dark blue stingray design and includes a durable handlebar. It’s also equipped with two air chambers for added safety.

The only downside to this is that it doesn’t have a sunshade. This float is suitable for kids 3 years old and can safely hold up to 88 pounds.

First-Hand Impression

I'm impressed with this stingray float; it's been a hit with both kids and adults in our pool. The size is perfect for everyone, and the durable handles make it easy to float on your belly. However, there's really only one way to use it without slipping or tilting over, and the numerous warning labels on top can be a bit annoying. Despite these minor issues, this float has provided endless fun and has proven to be quite sturdy, even after being left inflated for an extended period of time.

SwimSchool Rainbow Baby Boat

Great for Pool Introduction

This pool float comes with a 3-ply safety seat and measures at an optimal length for stability. The seat will keep your baby comfortable as it keeps them upright while they play.

It has an adorable cloud design and a rainbow-shaped canopy for babies aged 6 to 18 months, ensuring your baby is adequately covered. To give you plenty of options, there are four designs to choose from.

User Experience

This pool float has some excellent features, but also a few disappointing drawbacks. On the positive side, the float part where the baby sits is perfect and provides a comfortable space for infants once they can sit up. However, the rainbow sunshade is a letdown, as it fails to stay up and requires constant readjustment to protect the child from the sun. Additionally, this float may not be suitable for younger infants, as some users have reported their babies tipping over onto their faces.

Inflatable Emoji Beach Balls

Best Beach Balls for the Pool

If your child is into emojis, these beach balls are an affordable pool toy to add to your collection.

This set comes with 12 themed beach balls, so you won’t have to worry if one gets a hole. The beach balls each have one of three common emoji face designs, so you can play according to your mood.

These balls are super compact and easy to blow up.

Personal Perspective

I'm thrilled with these chair volleyball balls for our retirement home. In my experience, they have proven to be the most durable balls we've tried so far. The quality is impressive, and they've withstood countless fun-filled games without showing any signs of wear. I appreciate how well they hold up, making our chair volleyball games enjoyable and hassle-free. We'll definitely be reordering these in the future to keep the fun going!

Joyin Giant Inflatable Pizza Float

Best Pool Float for Teens

This pizza float is made of super-durable raft material and can hold up to 300 pounds, clearly made for more than one to hop on board!

It’s both UV- and fade-resistant and comes with directions to ensure the valve is correctly sealed to prevent air leakage. It is appropriate for children ages 8 and above.

Community Feedback

Great float for summer fun, this pizza-shaped pool float has been a hit in my household. It's large enough to comfortably fit two small adults and has a crust-shaped headrest, making it perfect for lounging. Although the cup holder is a bit small and not very useful, the float itself is sturdy and has held up well with regular use. Unlike some other reviewers, I haven't experienced any major air leaks or punctures, but I do need to add air occasionally.

Safety First

There’s no question that swimming is one of the most popular summer activities among children. Nothing feels better than being able to cool off in the water and have fun while you do it. But as fun as swimming is, safety should always be the number one priority.

There are several precautions you can take to ensure your kids stay safe in the pool (1):

  • Never leave a child unattended.
  • Always swim with a buddy.
  • Use lifejackets on beginner swimmers.
  • Set family rules about water safety.
  • Don’t consume alcohol when supervising swimmers.

When shopping for pool toys, be aware of any safety information provided, and follow any guidelines established by the company. Using too many pool toys at once can pose a threat if a child starts to panic and can’t clearly see their way around the objects.

Types of Pool Toys for Kids

When we think of pool toys, we often think of the generic pool “noodle” or a themed float toy. While those are great pool toys, there are many others to consider, especially for kids who are more active in the water.

Sports Games

There are many sports games, like volleyball and basketball, that are specially adapted for water play. These make a great addition to your pool toy arsenal, especially if you like to host pool parties for a group of children.

These pool toys are made to last and are great for a wide range of ages, making them the perfect addition for families with multiple little ones.

Diving Toys

Diving toys are another option if your kids enjoy being underwater and are competent swimmers. These usually come in the form of rings, batons, or other weighted shapes. Once they sink, your kids can dive to the bottom and retrieve them.

Pool Floats

A classic option, pool floats have evolved immensely. What used to be generic blow-up circles has evolved into giant floats in the shape of flamingos and other animals. You can even buy floats that look like your favorite foods.

These are great when you need a quick break from all that swimming and diving. They come in designs for any age, so you should easily be able to find suitable options for all your kids.

While these toys are meant to keep kids afloat, remember that any child who isn’t a confident swimmer should still wear a proper safety vest. Children should also be supervised at all times while swimming (2).

Pool Toys for Toddlers

There are plenty of pool toys that are great for older kids, but when it comes to toys for toddlers and preschoolers, it can get a little trickier. Check our list for some great options.

But bath toys are just as good for a kiddie pool as they would be in the bathtub.


How Do I Keep My Toddler Entertained In the Pool?

Keep your toddler entertained in the pool with age-appropriate toys like inflatable rings, diving toys, water balls, and floaties. Engage with them in simple water games, songs, and activities to make pool time fun and educational.

How Do You Make a Successful Kids’ Pool Party?

Make a successful kids’ pool party by ensuring safety first with adequate supervision and pool rules. Include various water games and activities, provide colorful and fun pool toys, and consider themes or decorations for extra excitement.

Don’t forget snacks and a place for kids to relax out of the water.

What are Good Pool Party Games?

Good pool party games include treasure hunts (diving for items), relay races, Marco Polo, and water balloon tosses. Ensure games are age-appropriate and safe for all participants, and always supervise children during pool activities.

What is the Best Storage For Pool Toys?

The best storage for pool toys is a large, breathable container like a mesh bin or a deck box specifically designed for outdoor use. These allow toys to dry out and prevent mold and mildew. Ensure the storage is easily accessible and can be securely closed.

How Do You Keep Pool Toys Clean?

Keep pool toys clean by rinsing them with fresh water after each use and allowing them to dry completely.

Periodically clean them with a mild disinfectant or a mixture of bleach and water, especially if they’ve been used frequently or left out. Store them in a clean, dry place between uses.

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Headshot of Mary Sweeney, BSN, RN, CEN

Reviewed by

Mary Sweeney, BSN, RN, CEN

Mary Sweeney, BSN, RN, CEN is an oncology nurse navigator and freelance medical writer. Mary has 4 years of experience as an officer in the Navy Nurse Corps. including emergency/trauma, post-anesthesia, and deployment medicine.