10 Brilliant Activity Rugs That Help Your Little Ones Learn and Play

updated Dec 17, 2021
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Credit: Pottery Barn Kids

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Kids spend a lot of time playing on the floor, from the time they can crawl. In our home, we’ve chosen to ditch coffee tables and other obstructive furniture in exchange for empty floor space. Our girls love to grab play sets, spread out on the floor, and let their imaginations run wild! 

When our oldest daughter was born, we purchased a colorful play rug that featured a road design. All three of our daughters still love to play on that rug with their cars and dolls. Although I still have a special place in my heart for that bright road rug, I have recently stumbled across lots of other unique activity rugs that combine floor coverings with creative play. Here’s a roundup of 10 of my favorites — some are soft rugs, some are wipeable mats, and some are even reversible!

1 / 10

This 2-in-1 double-sided runner helps to optimize smaller spaces where kids love to play! It could easily fit in a hallway, kitchen, bathroom, or even the foot of the bed. This narrow playmat looks like a modern, gray and white patterned runner, but can be flipped over to reveal a road map on the other side. (This is particularly nice if your kid’s room doubles as a guest room.) I especially love that this runner is the perfect size to double as a workout mat or yoga mat for kids or adults!

2 / 10

This Beach House 3D play rug is a wonderful dollhouse alternative for small spaces, and allows multiple kids to spread out and play. Designed by an architect and mom, this unique rug features raised edges that define rooms, furniture, and accessories. I love that this design allows kids to truly enter the playhouse with their favorite dolls. This 3D play carpet is available in three sizes, so it’s perfect for any size room.

3 / 10

This Mini City 3D play rug features an airport, marina, and dozens of ways for cars to move about the city. Simply add your favorite cars or characters and let your kids explore the city on this 3D rug. The beautiful colors and textures are sure to inspire imaginative play. Our family loves to travel and we have a set of toy airplanes that would love to taxi down this airport runway!

4 / 10
Bed Bath & Beyond

This colorful rug brings the classic hopscotch game indoors! It is narrow enough to transform a hallway into a play area, and even comes with two bean bags. The hopscotch rug features skid-proof backing which makes it ideal for hardwood or tile surfaces. I know our family would get a lot of use out of this rug on rainy or cold days, as it encourages active play inside for the coming winter months.

5 / 10
West Elm
was $199.00

Perfect for crawling or playing, this thick, reversible play mat also features a delightful game board! When paired with a foam number cube, this game board play mat transforms into an interactive game for kids and adults. The other side of the play mat has a black and white polka-dot design which is a fun, neutral addition to any room.

6 / 10

There’s a classic debate: which is better, city life or country life? This machine-washable activity rug combines the best of both worlds, as the city and the farm are only a short drive away from each other, across a winding river that divides the rug in half. My favorite feature is that this play rug comes with 49 wooden pieces, including vehicles, play people, buildings, animals, traffic signs, so as soon as it’s opened, it’s ready for play!

7 / 10
West Elm

This portable play rug is perfect for the “on-the-go” family. This rug can be folded, making it perfect to throw in the back of the car for a weekend trip or visit to a grandparent’s house. It is handwoven, made of 100% cotton and features a non-slip synthetic latex backing. The playful neighborhood design is sure to delight children of all ages!

8 / 10

This whimsical play rug is inspired by nature. It looks like a miniature landscape, filled with a river and scrolling path. The Path of Nature play rug is made from different pile heights and weaving techniques, and comes with a carrying bag and horse-shaped play character. This beautiful and sophisticated rug would complement the design of a neutral playspace for kids and inspire imaginative play.

9 / 10
Pottery Barn Kids

This activity space rug will take imaginative play into the stratosphere. It’s a large round rug that is hand-tufted and made from 100% recycled polyester. It features a colorful aerial view of the solar system set against a starry gray backdrop. We have a round rug in our daughter’s room and I love how it breaks up the boxy feel of their square room and rectangular furniture.

10 / 10
Pottery Barn Kids

This play mat is perfect for the design-conscious parent. It features a neutral grey pattern on one side and a fun play road on the other side, complete with cars and trucks. This reversible play mat is made from thick memory foam and is comfortable for babies and kids who are busy crawling and playing!