Playing & messing around with the 12 best water tables

by Joost Nusselder | Updated on:  May 21, 2021

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Yeeh! The weather will be nice again!

The perfect time to let them play in the garden and keep them sweet for hours.

But when it gets SO HOT, they have to be able to play with water, of course.

The right table offers enough to give hours of fun, that is why I look at the best tables for the age of your child in this complete buying guide.

Playing with the best water tables

Water tables are generally made of plastic, but you also have wooden water tables.

Moreover, there are also sand and water tables, with which a child can play with both water and sand.

That's why the best of the moment these Little Tikes Fish and Splash water table is, because you can tumble with water and there are nice fish for scooping and fishing. PLUS you can fill it with sand when the weather is slightly less. My son absolutely loves it!

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Toy reviews & comparisons video

Are you curious about which water tables we recommend?

In the table below we have listed our favorite water tables for you, divided into various categories:

Kind of water tableImages
Best sand water table: Little Tikes Fish and SplashCloseup photo of the Little Tikes water table in the garden

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Nicest water table with gun: Little Tikes Battle SplashBest water table with gun: Little Tikes Battle Splash

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Cutest pirate water table: Little Tikes Pirate ShipBest pirate water table: Little Tikes Pirate Ship (view more images)
Best large water table: Step2 Paw Patrol 15LStep2 Paw Patrol water table

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Best water table for toddlers: Step2 WaterWheelBest water table for toddlers: Step2 WaterWheel

 

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Most convenient water table case: Big water play funlandMost convenient water table case: Big water play funland

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Cutest pink water table: Little Tikes Spiralin 'SeasCutest pink water table: Spiralin 'Seas Waterpark ™ Pink (view more images)
Handy water table with parasol: Little Tikes Sand and SeaHandy water table with parasol: Little Tikes Sand and Sea

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Best water table made of scaffolding wood: Plum Sandy BayPlum Sandy Bay scaffolding wooden water table

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Best collapsible water table: PilsanBest Collapsible Water Table: Pilsan

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Water table with the best lid: FeverWater table with the best cover: Feber

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Best water sand table and picnic table: AXI NickBest water sand table and picnic table: AXI Nick

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Watch the 3 best in this video, or read on for an in-depth review of all 12 choices:

What do you pay attention to when buying a water table?

When you want to choose a water table, there are really only a few things to keep in mind:

  1. how sturdy / durable is it: will it last a long time?
  2. how tall is he / does he fit the age of your child?
  3. is there a play element to it and does it suit the interests of your child?
  4. do you have room for it in your garden (or balcony, that's also possible!)
  5. and… well, the price plays a role

I will include all of these elements in this review.

For example, here you can see for which ages the top choices are most suitable and I will discuss the best game elements for each separately:

Chart with the most popular water tables and their suitability by age

So, let's dive in (** Oh! Diving is a pun, but might have been better suited to the best garden pools **)

Top 12 best water tables rated

Best sand water table: Little Tikes Fish and Spatter

Photo of the Little Tikes water table with water and sand in it

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  1. Dimensions: 74 80 x x 43 cm
  2. Best suited for: 1,5 to 5 year
  3. Game element: Fishing!

Are you looking for a water table that can function as a sand table at the same time? Then the Little Tikes fish and splash water table is probably the best choice!

The plateau and water slide can be used to play with water, to pour and to scoop it up again and there are a number of accessories that make the water game super fun, such as a fishing rod, fish and landing net.

But the plateau can also be removed so that you can use the elevation perfectly to make sand cakes.

The height is perfect for toddlers and it is suitable from 1,5 years although my son played with it from 1, actually from the moment he could stand up to something with support he actually liked it.

Check the latest prices here

We have here also written about sandboxes if you also want to take a look there.

Best water table with gun: Little Tikes Battle Splash

The water cannons and things to aim for from the Little Tikes Battle Splash water table

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  1. Dimensions: 74 80 x x 43 cm
  2. Best suited for: 3 to 6 year
  3. Game element: Water spray!

Little Tikes is a household name in the toy world, and we've already reviewed a ton of products from them.

Little Tikes has a wide variety of toys and ensures that children play actively and learn something at the same time.

Which Little Tikes water table is definitely one of my favorites? That is the Little Tikes Fun Zone Battle Splash water table. If your kid is a little older than mine then this is the one to have.

This cool water table is designed for kids from 3 years old. The purpose of this water table is to make boats race against each other.

Do you win against your boyfriends or girlfriends? The water table is equipped with water spray, so you can fill each other's boat with water and then let it sink.

Do you dare to fight? The water table can be connected to a garden hose and has a size of 74,9 x 71 x 20,80 cm.

It offers wonderful outdoor fun and can provide a pleasant cooling in the summer because you can of course also just spray each other nicely!

Watch it here

Best pirate water table: Little Tikes Pirate Ship

3 children play outside on the grass with a pirate water table

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  1. Dimensions: 91 74 x x 43 cm
  2. Best suited for: 2 to 6 year
  3. Game element: Pretend play!

Ship Ahoy! Is your little one a real pirate fan? Then let him or her go on an adventure with this Little Tikes Pirate Sand and Water table!

This pirate-themed water table comes with XNUMX pirates, a shark spouting water, a water cannon with pump, an anchor and a fountain with running water.

This water table will provide hours of fun in the water. The table measures 91 x 74 x 20 cm and is suitable for kids between 2 and 6 years old.

The large size makes it possible to let four children play with the water table at the same time.

Check prices and availability here

You don't have to buy a water table, of course, only for the accessories that come with it. You can also add enough from your bath toys, such as some of them these super cute bath toys, I have written about that extensively before.

Best Large Water Table: Step2 Paw Patrol 15L

Children play in the garden with the large paw patrol water table

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  1. Dimensions: 74 80 x x 43 cm
  2. Best suited for: 1,5 to 5 year
  3. Game element: Pour water!

Do you have a large family at home, or do your kids often have boyfriends or girlfriends over? Then of course there must be a somewhat larger water table.

In such a case you could go for the Paw Patrol Water Table - including 3 characters - suitable for 15L of water.

This water table with the theme Paw Patrol comes with various accessories, such as three puppies from the children's series, a sieve, bucket, slide and a scoop.

With the shovel you can shoot the puppies into the water and then search for them thanks to the periscope on the lookout tower.

Did you find the puppies? Then let them go down the water slide! This gaming table will stimulate your kids' sensors.

You may consider filling the water table with something other than water, such as rice or beans. That is especially a tip if you let kids play indoors with the water table.

Check the most current prices and availability here

Best water table for toddlers: Step2 WaterWheel

2 toddlers use the Water Wheel table from Step2 with water and sand

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  1. Dimensions: 74 80 x x 43 cm
  2. Best suited for: 1,5 to 5 year
  3. Game element: Pour water!

What a cute water table for a toddler is this Step2 WaterWheel Play Table - Water table!

The blue water table with green and yellow elements makes every child happy.

It has two separate water basins that represent lakes and can hold about 10 L of water. The water table has a water tower with tunnel.

When you throw water through the tunnel, the water wheel starts working and the water is pushed into the two small harbors.

The water table has a perfect playing height for your toddler and will also ensure as little mess as possible.

The water table comes with a cup and two boats, and of course the water tower.

The size of the table is 70,9 x 80 x 80 and is intended for children from 1,5 years.

View it here at bol.com

Most convenient water table case: Big water play funland

Nicest water table suitcase from BIG

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  1. Dimensions: 50 115 x x 8 cm
  2. Best suited for: 1 to 4 year
  3. Game element: Water course!

BIG is a great toy brand that designs various products for children. This also applies to the Funland water table.

This water table provides complete and hours of fun!

The water table is portable like a suitcase and can therefore be taken anywhere:

The table comes with a ramp where the car can drive in the box and you can use the box together with your Duplo because of the studs on the box.

The water table is also equipped with a bridge, a crane and a transport boat with container. Turn the paddle wheel and let the water flow through the channels!

The water table will teach children how water can move.

Super handy for the little ones to play with so I like it from 1 year, but the manufacturer says from 3.

This is mainly due to the small parts that are included, so it is best to leave them out until they are older AND ALWAYS stick with them of course.

The set offers a lot of possibilities, but on the other hand, the set is also collapsed when it is time to clean up.

To make it portable, attach the large yellow ports to the openings of the stitching area.

This way you have all parts neatly together for the next turn.

Check it out here at Amazon

Cutest pink water table: Little Tikes Spiralin 'Seas

3 children show all parts of the spiraling seas pink water table

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  1. Dimensions: 74 80 x x 43 cm
  2. Best suited for: 2 to 6 year
  3. Game element: Ball fun!

Does your little one love toys and should it be pink? A fun, dynamic water table with pink elements is the Spiralin 'Seas Waterpark ™ Pink.

With this water table your child is able to practice fine motor skills and let imagination run wild.

The toy includes a scoop bowl and five squirting balls.

The balls can be thrown into the large central funnel, or you can shoot the balls into the water using the ball shooter.

The balls can be scooped out of the water with the Ferris wheel. The table has several more functions and is suitable for 25 liters of water.

The water table is ideal for developing 'give and take' and for training motor skills.

Check the latest prices here

Handy water table with parasol: Little Tikes Sand and Sea

Handy water table with parasol: Little Tikes Sand and Sea

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  1. Dimensions: 120 83 x x 35 cm
  2. Best suited for: 1 to 4 year
  3. Game element: Water and sand!

Playing in the garden is nice, but too much sun on your child's bulb is of course not good. That's why Little Tikes comes with a water table that includes an integrated parasol!

This Little Tikes Sand and Sea Table also has two playing surfaces, so that children can play with sand and water at the same time.

At the water (and sand) table you get boats, a water wheel and a bridge. You also get a shovel and sieve.

Thanks to the lid, the water table can also be neatly tidied up and the contents of the table are protected against rain and dirt.

The play table is suitable for children from 1 year old if you stay with it, actually from when they can stand. It is a bit lower than many of the other models, so they can reach it a little earlier.

Watch it here

Best water table made of scaffolding wood: Plum Sandy Bay

Plum Sandy Bay scaffolding wooden water table

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  1. Dimensions: 120 83 x x 65 cm
  2. Best suited for: 3 to 7 year
  3. Game element: Water and sand!

In case you want to purchase a robust water table, you could go for the sand and water table.

This table is made of strong scaffolding wood and has been neatly planed so that the surface does not contain splinters, so your child can play safely.

In addition to being a toy, the table can also be a cool accessory for the garden. The table has a height of 57 cm, is 120 cm long and 49 cm wide.

Children play with the Plum Sandy Bay water table

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The product comes with play troughs, but without accessories.

Check prices and availability here

Best Collapsible Water Table: Pilsan

Best Collapsible Water Table: Pilsan

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  1. Dimensions: 58 38 x x 30 cm
  2. Best suited for: 1 to 3 year
  3. Game element: Water course!

A water table is nice, but it can take up quite a bit of space. That is why many parents often find it useful if the water table is also collapsible.

And rightly so!

This Pilsan-Sand and Water table-58x38cm-Yellow-From 3 years-Non toxic is a nice example of such a table that you can fold and store after playing.

The water table has cheerful colors and comes with nice accessories. With the boats you can sail around the castle and under the bridge.

The water table is designed with non-toxic substances. The table is 38 x 58 x 38 cm and is suitable for children aged 3 years and older.

View it here at bol.com

Water table with the best cover: Feber

Water table with the best cover: Feber

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  1. Dimensions: 71 70 x x 35 cm
  2. Best suited for: 1,5 to 4 year
  3. Game element: Accessories!

Feber didn't make much at all, but with this lockable water table they have a perfect find!

The handy lid makes it easy to take more and it is small enough to easily fit in the car.

View it here at bol.com

Best water sand table and picnic table: AXI Nick

Best water sand table and picnic table: AXI Nick

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  1. Dimensions: 98 95 x x 49 cm
  2. Best suited for: 3 to 8 year
  3. Game element: Sit comfortably!

What's better than a toy that can be turned into a picnic table?

This AXI Sand and Water Picnic Table Nick - Gray is multifunctional and ensures that both the kids and the parents enjoy the same product.

The table consists of two parts so that you can play with sand and water. Let the children have fun!

Have the children finished or is it time for a snack? Then you can transform the table into a real picnic table in no time.

At the table you also get a parasol so that everyone is always protected from bright sun rays.

The table is made of 100% FSC wood and has a size of 90 x 80 x 56 cm.

Check the most current prices and availability here

Water and sand

Water and sand are great materials for a child to play with, because you can easily shape them.

Children can dig holes in the sand, fill buckets with water, and smooth out a pile of sand. They tend to constantly repeat the actions.

Children are creative and will soon come up with their own game.

For example, children can use moist sand to bake cakes that they can decorate with shells and / or flags.

Sand can be used to dig tunnels, build houses, and you name it.

It is also important to have the children tidy up after playing: mopping water on the floor and sweeping up sand.

Sensory motor skills and the water table

When a child plays with a water table, a child is engaged in an essential part of their development: sensor motor skills.

Sensory motor skills means the acquisition of stimuli with the help of the senses (seeing, hearing, tasting, feeling and smelling) in combination with the ability to move.

Another good example of sensorimotor skills is when someone throws a ball at you: with your eyes you follow the fall and then with your arms you catch the ball.

You use your senses (eyes) and movement (extending your arms to catch the ball).

Explore with your mouth

Children often put things in their mouths. That can be dangerous, but there is a reason behind it.

Children try to investigate the properties of an object by using their mouth: does it feel soft, cold, smooth, etc?

When they get older, they use their little hands more to understand the characteristics of an object.

Sensorimotor development is essential

Through sensorimotor skills, children learn the properties of their own body and those of the world in which they live.

Unfortunately, there are children who do not develop their sensory motor skills sufficiently, perhaps because they do not get the chance to play outside enough or because they may not have access to various materials.

This can have consequences for the sensorimotor skills.

When a child has problems in sensorimotor skills, this can lead to problems in social development or in language and math development.

What else is a water table good for?

Children can create whatever they want with water and sand and that in a safe way. It stimulates creative play.

Sand and water are materials that cannot be broken, so that they can be played with again and again. In addition, they are products from nature.

In addition to developing sensor motor skills and stimulating creativity, playing with sand and water has a relaxing effect and can promote the social-emotional development of a child.

By playing with sand and water, a child also learns, for example, about floating and sinking. When does a boat sink and when does it float?

A child can find out by filling and pouring.

Mixing sand and water makes a child understand that together they form a boggy structure. Let the children bake sand cakes and 'hand them out' in a cozy way.

Cognitive development is thus also stimulated.

The water table at school

The sand or water table is a popular toy that we often see in kindergarten.

Unfortunately, there are also many schools that do not have one, because there is simply no room and teachers sometimes do not understand what the table can be good for except for messing around and playing.

Schools that do not have space for a water table could choose to simply place a large container with sand or water, made of plastic for example.

Take one that is not too high above the ground, so that most children can easily reach it.

It is important that a teacher explains to the children that the table is not meant to mess around.

Of course, some water or sand will occasionally spill over the edge, but it shouldn't be done on purpose.

Make sure there are toys near the water (and / or sand) table, such as scoops, buckets, sieve funnels, cake pans, and dolls.

Need even more toy tips for the outdoors now that the nice weather is approaching? Check out our in-depth article about the best outdoor toys for the garden full of original play ideas!

Conclusion

It is very important to give children the space to explore, experiment and play with sand and water.

The water table is therefore an essential toy that can contribute to the healthy development of your child.

We hope that after reading this article you see the use of a water table and that you have become enthusiastic about purchasing one for your child.

Joost Nusselder, the founder of Speelkeuze.nl is a content marketer, father and loves trying out new toys. As a child, he came into contact with everything around games when his mother started the Tin Soldier in Ede. Since 2016, he and his team have been creating helpful blog articles to help loyal readers with fun play ideas.