Terra Toys makes me smile. It has all the fun-loving, funky flavor of Austin and is packed to the brim with every kind of toy and doll imaginable. The best part: you can actually play with the toys! This makes it a fun destination for my kids when the weather is hot and we just need a little cheering up.
Over 25 years ago, Terra Toys started out as a family-owned snow cone stand that made some extra income in the winter months by selling hand-carved toys. Since then, they’ve gone through several expansions, and today they sell items from over 900 vendors at their 12,000 square foot North Austin location- so there’s lots to look at and explore! I love that they carry classic, interesting, and beautiful toys; very few require batteries.
Brightly colored toys and scarves lined the entrance as we entered the store one hot morning last week. My two-year-old quickly saw one of the ride-on trucks that are scattered throughout the store; he scooted along with us as we traveled from one area to the next. (They have plasma cars available to ride too, which is always fun.)
The book nook manages to be both large and cozy. While my kids looked at picture books at the table and curled up on the rug on the floor, I browsed the bookshelves, reading the little notes scattered around that were the staff “favorite book” recommendations. (Always good to get new ideas for Christmas and birthdays!)
Other play stops in our journey around the store included: the really cool wooden rainsticks that were hand-made by Terra Toys employees, a couple of train tables, various musical instruments, the puppet area, a dollhouse, a vintage pink swirly chair that for some reason captivated just about every child in the store, and the numerous bins of bouncy balls and novelty thingamajigs.
My kids would have loved to have stayed longer, but thankfully, they were hungry; so I was able to lure them out of the store with promises of food. We will be back another day. The fun-loving, knowledgeable employees and laid-back, play-friendly policy of the store make it a stress-free destination.
Terra Toys (website)
2438 W Anderson Lane
Austin, Tx 78757
Katey writes about activities for families and children at Having Fun at Home. You may also enjoy posts Katey has written about exploring the Bee Cave Sculpture Park, Barton Creek Greenbelt, Sweet Berry Farm, Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center, Longview Park, Austin’s Superlative Landmarks, the Elisabet Ney Museum, and Oakwood Cemetery. She has also written about taking kids to explore fun Austin stores like Callahan’s, The Natural Gardener, Nature’s Treasures, Zookeeper, and the Asian Supermarket.