Let the Fun Begin: Toy Stores Around the World
Collected by Kristin Zibell, AFAR Local Expert
Even adults find joy in toy stores and toy museums around the world. Trinkets, games, and animals on display show how that culture's youth finds fun. At the core of every place, however, there is one constant - imagination.
5 Boulevard des Filles du Calvaire, 75003 Paris, France
A few steps away from Merci store, you can find its kids version at the colorful concept store Bon Ton, which sells kids clothes, shoes and toys. The brand has more stores in the city but this one is a three level high, filled with Kids...
450 Fremont St, Las Vegas, NV 89101, USA
As a child of the 1980s, I've got to say that I love the premise of this place—they specialize in toys of the 80s, of every conceivable kind, including (for all you Star Wars nerds out there) plenty in the way of George Lucas' creations....
172 Jozo Weider Blvd, The Blue Mountains, ON L9Y 3Z2, Canada
Two things strike me the minute I step into Jack and Maddy Toy Store in Blue Mountain Village. First, my credit card loves the fact that they never had this toy store here when we used to bring our kids up to ski. Second, I'm wondering, why wasn’t...
Grasmarkt Straat 39, 1000 Brussel, Belgium
If you’re looking for gifts for the little ones in your life (or you just want to relive your own childhood) don’t miss the beautiful Grasshopper toy store in central Brussels. This store is a warren of high-end toys for all age levels. Upstairs,...
Viktualienmarkt 6, 80331 München, Germany
Fun for children and adults alike, the Children's Museum is a great place for exploration. They not only display classic toys, but they host interactive exhibits, children's toy swaps and many more culturally immersive events! While there I...
2104 Dundas St W, Toronto, ON M6R 1W9, Canada
From their site: Magic Pony is dedicated to the exhibition and promotion of the best in young contemporary art. They operate as a studio, gallery and retail environment, combining elements of art, design and popular culture to create an unique...
Incheba Expo Bratislava, 851 01 Petržalka, Slovakia
Located somewhere in the old city center of Bratislava, there is the greatest little toy shop that sells nothing but cars. I was walking through the old part of town, and happened to look down a tiny alley. There was a little sign that said 'toy...
Vimmelskaftet 37, 1161 København, Denmark
3555 W 69th St, Edina, MN 55435, USA
Year after year, Creative Kidstuff stacks up awards for best toy store in the Twin Cities. Once you step into the vibrant shop, there’s little wonder why. Everything, from the goods on offer to the numerous special events like music classes, story...
R. Tomás da Anunciação 62, 1350-162 Lisboa, Portugal
I love shops where you go back in time, where you can find the hot-water bottle that your grandmother used to warm the bed, or a typewriter that might have typed a novel, or love letters or cooking recipes... This couple decided to open their shop...
756 Broadway, Tacoma, WA 98402, USA
Vintage toy and comic collectors will find an eyeful at Lily Pad Antiques, a little shop packed to the gills with all kinds of collectible action figures, toys, figurines, cards, promotional glassware, vintage metal signs, and other memorabilia....
812 W Belmont Ave, Chicago, IL 60657, USA
Hollywood Mirror is my favorite vintage, retro, tchotchke-filled store of randomness in Boystown. It’s incredibly crowded but amidst the clutter you’ll find Halloween costumes, vintage lunch boxes, Mardi Gras beads, feather boas, 60’s style...
3094 Madison Rd, Cincinnati, OH 45209, USA
Blue Manatee is a truly fabulous store for families and kids. They have an amazing selection of great books, toys, games, and other little trinkets for toddlers, elementary-aged kids, and even middle school kids. Their decor is extensive and very...
87 E 42nd St, New York, NY 10170, USA
Brimming with unique gifts, Kidding Around is not to be missed when traveling with your family through Grand Central station. Unlike kitschy tourist shops, most toys here are made to last a childhood. Their towering window display even lured me...
2207 Millstream Rd, Victoria, BC V9B 0J7, Canada
Nothing says family fun more than an ice cream parlor attached to an arcade. This particular ice cream parlor has a very nostalgic feel, with old toys and games used as decoration pieces. If the ice cream doesn’t bring out the inner child, the...
1729 Barrington St, Halifax, NS B3J 2A4, Canada
One of Halifax's quirkier stores is the Freak Lunchbox. Inside you can find pretty much any candy imaginable. From old school Big League baseball chewing gum to (disgustingly) flavored Harry Potter jelly beans that taste like ear wax. They also...
621 N 35th St, Seattle, WA 98103, USA
Portage Bay Goods describes itself as “a gift shop for the thoughtful procrastinator,” but it’s equally handy for souvenir-seeking visitors — or even locals looking for a fun little treat for themselves. They carry tons of highly giftable and...
234 W Broad St, Falls Church, VA 22046, USA
Despite the popularity of video games and high-tech gadgets, Doodlehopper 4 Kids is one of those fun and original neighborhood stores that show that simple toys can reveal the child in everyone. Since 1992, Doodlehopper has specialized in unique...
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