Birthday Celebration Ideas for Toddlers

My son turned three this week and he was SO EXCITED!! He woke up every morning asking if it was his birthday yet. We even made a countdown so he could visually see his birthday get closer and closer. As we’ve prepped for his birthday, I did a lot of research about different celebration ideas that I thought I’d share with you all today!

The biggest decision you’ll have to make is the party size. With toddlers, they appreciate having undivided attention and giving gifts can be hard. They’ll be excited about the sugar and presents, but won’t be a good host. The best toddler parties we’ve attended have limited the amount of other toddlers that are invited to the party.

That being said, here are some party themes, locations, treats, and other ideas to kickstart your party planning.

Party Theme Ideas-

  • Dinosaurs
  • Pirates
  • Space
  • Safari/ Farm Animals
  • Sports
  • Construction Vehicles/ Cars
  • Characters: Daniel Tiger, Curious George, Mickey Mouse, etc
  • Costume/ Dress-up Party
  • Rainbow


  • The Zoo
  • A Children’s Museum
  • A Park
  • A Bouncy House Park
  • A Pool (for summer birthdays)
  • At Home


Kid’s Clubs-

  • Barnes and Noble
  • Toys R Us
  • Baskin Robbins
  • Old Spaghetti Factory


  • Making an Amazon wishlist and sharing it with relatives can be really helpful for toddler birthdays.
  • If you feel like you are drowning in toys already:
    • ask for a trip/membership to the zoo, the pool, or a museum may be a better option.
    • ask party-goers to gift a book instead of a toy.
  • Stagger opening presents so your child can focus their attention on one toy at a time.

The most important thing for toddlers is that they feel special and loved on their birthday. That doesn’t have to be done by an elaborate party or theme. Just having the undivided attention of a few people can be enough. Last year for D’s birthday we did a special mother-son day at the zoo, where I let him choose whatever he wanted to do. We didn’t do a party with other kids, and he still had a great day.

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