Whether you’re nine years old or ninety years old, toy stores never get old. Sure, you’ve seen all the usual dolls and LEGO kits in every department store in your city, but you can never grow out of real toy stores. We just take our kids as an excuse to go play… right?
If you agree with every word I just said, then you should definitely make a trip or two to see the most amazing toy stores in the United States. From New York City to San Francisco, there are some incredible toy stores selling gum eyeballs, life-sized Barbie houses, and more! Read on to learn about the ten coolest toy stores in America.
Playthings, Etc. calls itself “The World’s Coolest Toy store.” This might seem like a pretty tall claim, but walk through the doors, and you’ll start believing it. This isn’t one of those toy stores that says you can look but not touch. Nope—everything is a game in this store! Walk into the futuristic building that houses the store and you’ll find yourself surrounded by fun for everyone.
Does the phrase “World’s Largest Train Store” excite you? Then you should definitely make a trip to Charles Ro Supply Company. This huge toy store looks just like a train station, and it is filled with every kind of train toy you can imagine! Climb the stairs to the second level to see an intricate train set in motion. This store is mostly geared toward collectors, but there’s always something magical in store for kids as well.
Although FAO Schwarz is no longer in business, it’s still worth taking a trip down memory lane to commemorate this incredible toy store. If you never visited this store in real life, you’ll almost certainly seen it in the movies. The huge floor piano was part of a scene in Big, and it was also the set for Duncan’s Toy Chest in Home Alone 2: Lost in New York. This incredible toy store was a popular tourist destination as well as a local favorite. It had life sized games, dolls, and more, plus just about any toy you could imagine!
While Toys R Us Times Square (along with their Ferris wheel) has recently moved out of Times Square, it’s back for holidays! Visit this sorely-missed icon when you travel to New York City this year. You’ll find three levels of shopping, including favorites like LEGO and Nintendo, plus an animatronic dinosaur! Your kids can even hang out in a play area after you’re done looking around.
For the historical fiction fans in the audience, this place brings back many memories of fun and longing. The toys at this store are based on a line of books, dolls, and accessories that teach girls about different time periods in American history. The line has expanded to include modern dolls other toys, but the spirit is the same. Let your imagination take flight at Chicago’s American Girl Place, where you’ll find thousands of toys, plus a doll salon, restaurants, museums, and more!
You’ve never seen a toy store like this before. This store carries an astounding variety of toys, from classic favorites to stuff you never thought would exist, like Super Mario teethers and alpaca stickers. You could even buy slug finger puppets. Why would you want a slug finger puppet, you ask? We don’t know, but you can find a package of these at Toy Joy, plus a million other things you didn’t know you needed.
This place isn’t just a toy store. It’s a family fun emporium! You can, of course, find toys of all kinds here. But you can also watch the toys being made in the workshop! When you’re done there, you can play mini golf or take a carousel ride. You’ll also love the imaginative bookstore, where you can find a wide array of children’s books and a few cozy reading corners. Parents and grandparents will be sure to have fun taking their kids through Memory Lane, a collection of vintage toys housed in brightly-painted little store fronts.
San Francisco’s iconic Embarcadero Center is home to one of the West Coast’s best toy stores. Want to cuddle up with a life-sized stuffed lion? Read a favorite book? Build a marble run? This is the place to do it! This store carried endless options for toys, including toys imported from Europe and limited edition collectors’ items. Ambassador Toys also gifts wraps everything you need, a service that is very popular with customers. Be sure to stop by while you’re touring San Francisco’s famous buildings.
Address: 186 W Portal Ave,
San Francisco, California, CA 94127
Like dinosaurs? You will love this! The Dinosaur Farm has everything you can imagine with a dino twist. Find a ridiculous variety of dino figurines that even dinosaur experts would be impressed with, and buy anything –mug, shirt, napkins – with dinosaur designs. You can even find huge dinosaur inflatables! Of course, your smallest paleontologists will love the educational games and toys. You can find plenty of fun activity kits that will teach kids more about their favorite extinct lizards.
Address: 1510 Mission St, South Pasadena, CA 91030
This store is for lovers of the weird and wacky. There are plenty of things for kids here, but it’s also a popular place for teens and adults! You’ll know you’ve arrived at this bizarre toy store when you see a brightly-painted building covered with murals of monkeys, bacon strips, and more. Step inside the door to discover things you didn’t know existed. There’s a whole section for weird masks, a rack of crazy socks, interesting pet clothing, and anything else you can think of…it even has a wedding section!