Best Kids Puzzle Reviews 2018

Puzzles are popular—so popular that we may take them for granted. When we introduce them to our kids in their early years, it does them a lot of good as they’ll get to sharpen skills and learn new things. There are a lot of them on the market, but choosing the best kids’ puzzles requires some knowledge. That’s what we’ve provided you with here; we chose the top five kids’ puzzle makers after lots of searching, and we’ve reviewed one puzzle from each brand here. We also have other reviews on puzzles you can check out as well. They include: baby puzzles, puzzles for toddlers, jigsaw puzzles, puzzles for adults, 3D puzzles, Thomas Kincaid puzzles, Anne Geddes puzzles, and Disney Puzzles.
Overview
PROS
CONS
SPECS
Age
Theme
Aim
Pieces
Size
Our Top Choice
Ravensburger Ocean Turtles Puzzle
Ravensburger creates educative and fun products that promote learning and enhance family togetherness, something it believes is important in today’s fast-paced world.
Beautiful underwater picture of sea turtles. Sturdy and durable. Puzzle pieces fit and stay together nicely. Great paper quality. No-glare feature.
Some pieces are somewhat small.
8 years and up
Ocean Turtle
Learn patience
200 pieces
20 x 14 inches
Best Value
Melissa and Doug United States Map Floor Puzzle
Melissa and Doug inspires kids to venture, to see new possibilities, and to imagine and create with freedom; essentially, it’s on a mission to encourage children to be children.
Large and durable pieces. Fun way to teach kids shape, location, and capital of each state and surrounding waters. Bright and colorful. Easy to assemble.
The pieces do not fit or stay together.
6 years and up
USA map
Learn locations
51 pieces
36 x 24 inches
Buffalo Games Frederick The Literate Puzzle
Buffalo Games is an award-winning game-maker and a globally recognized leader in its sphere of the industry. Its aim is to make life rewarding and more fun with its games.
High-quality material. Bonus poster to help you put the puzzle together. Fun, easy, and challenging. Durable.
There are reports of missing puzzle pieces.
14 years and up
Cat Tales
Learn recognition
750 pieces
24 x 18 inches
White Mountain Puzzles Candy Wrappers Puzzle
White Mountain Puzzles is loved by Americans for its creativity, constant improvement of its products and services, and its commitment to excellent customer service.
Sturdy blue chipboard. Plenty of candy classics. Thick, well-cut pieces that fit snugly. Conversation starter. Bright pictures and clear design.
Some puzzles are missing a few pieces.
12 years and up
Candy wrappers
Jog your memory
1000 pieces
30 x 24 inches
Ceaco Kinkade Beauty and The Beast Puzzle
Ceaco has a clear-cut mission: to maintain its place at the forefront of its industry by creating innovative, high-quality puzzles that are distinct, fun, and challenging.
Panoramic picture with hidden characters. Uniquely cut pieces that fit and snap firmly in place. Easy to put together. Commendable quality and customer support.
Some pieces aren’t completely cut.
8 years and up
Beauty and the Beast
Learn patience
750 pieces
24 x 18 inches

(Updated )
Watch Our Kids Puzzle Review

How Do I Choose the Best Kids Puzzle?

As kids grow, it becomes important to teach them about the world around them and how to relate with it so that they get the best life has to offer. There are quite a number of ways to do this, such as sending them to school, going on field trips, watching TV, reading books, and enjoying playtime. Let’s talk about that last one, shall we? Great!

When kids play, they get a chance to recreate all the things they’ve learned in their own simple way. Play is also a great way that kids develop certain skills as they get to interact with toys and games that mimic adult life. One of those games is our focus in this review, and that is the puzzle.

The origin of the word “puzzle” is uncertain, but a puzzle in its very essence is a problem that demands our attention and patience to solve; this makes it a great game for your kids as it’ll help them develop focus, strategic thinking, and patience—3 skills necessary for a fulfilling life. There are different types of puzzle games, and they’re useful and rewarding; but each is its own kind of fun. We’ll quickly run through them below:
  • Jigsaw Puzzles: This is the puzzle of focus in this review. The game is named after the type of saw that was originally used to make it: the Jigsaw. It’s a type of puzzle where you have to reconstruct a picture that has been cut into several small, interlocking pieces.
  • Written Puzzles: These include anagrams, connect-the-dots, crosswords, Sudoku, etc. They usually require book and paper, and are mostly seen in children’s activity books.
  • Mechanical Puzzles: These are usually 3-dimensional puzzles with individual pieces that can be assembled, pulled apart, put back in different shapes, etc. An example is an activity cube, great for infants and toddlers.
Kids’ puzzles are great tools to use in the development of cognitive ability and to improve hand-eye coordination. With the various interesting themes available, puzzles can be used as educative tools to reinforce an idea or concept, and to introduce new ideas to kids.

Puzzles are generally lightweight and virtually all of them come in their own storage container, which makes it easy for kids to carry around; the smaller puzzles can fit into their backpacks, making them a lot easier to transport.

While you know your kids better than we do, we believe that you’ll be able to find a puzzle with just the right number of pieces and themes that your youngster will enjoy.
Price
The prices of kids’ jigsaw puzzles differ based on the overall size, complexity, number of pieces, and material. Let’s go a little deeper on this one. Take material for instance; a 24-piece wooden puzzle that comes in a wooden storage box may cost more than a 24-piece puzzle that’s made with high-quality paper for the simple reason that wood is wood while paper is, you said it, paper. Even among paper puzzles, you’ll find some of them with accessories such as sorter trays and trays that hold and frame the puzzle; those types of puzzles may sell for more than the regular floor puzzle.

That said, jigsaw puzzles can range anywhere from around $8 or $9 up to around $20 or even more. We advise against cheap kids’ puzzles because you’ll want puzzle pieces that’ll hold their own when kids are being kids.
Features
In order to get the most rewarding puzzle-piecing experience for your kids, there are certain things you have to first consider. They include:
  • Age
  • Theme
  • Material
  • Pieces
  • Size/weight
Construction and Design
When looking at the construction and design of your puzzle, aside from the obvious puzzle picture, you should consider the material and how many pieces there are. Here’s why.

Material

Jigsaw puzzles are generally made from paper or wood. The paper puzzles are the more popular kind, and are made with heavy-duty cardstock; the paper is super-thick and constructed in such a way that the edges do not fray. The pieces are also properly cut so that they aren’t sticking together, giving the job of pulling them apart which may damage them. The paper is extra-thick so that the pieces do not get bent and become impossible to lay flat; when puzzle pieces do this, it becomes difficult and rather frustrating to fit them together.

Wooden puzzles, on the other hand, are more durable than their paper counterparts; they’re also bulkier and, even though they’re designed to be lightweight, they’ll probably weigh more than paper. This would have been inconveniencing if most wooden puzzles did not come with storage trays and boxes.

Pieces

The number of puzzle pieces varies according to the difficulty level. Your kids’ age and their previous exposure to puzzles determine the best difficulty level for them. Generally, the higher the number of puzzle pieces, the more difficult a puzzle will be—so the older the child, the higher the number of pieces.

However, if the kid(s) haven’t tried puzzles previously or isn’t really into them, it’d be best to start with the lower-piece puzzles and gradually move up to puzzles with more pieces. For toddlers and kids less than 2 years of age, puzzles shouldn’t have more than 15 pieces so that they don’t lose interest before the picture is complete. As they grow older, the committed puzzlers amongst them will rapidly move through difficulty levels and get to the higher levels in no time.
Performance and Ease of Use
The performance of your puzzle really depends on your child and the theme chosen and the ease of use will greatly depend on the number of pieces and also size of the puzzle pieces and puzzle as a whole.

Theme

If your kids are going to show any interest in a puzzle, you’ll have to find one with a theme that they love; most kids will respond better to puzzles if they’re about something that they’re interested in. For instance, if your young man is into fire trucks, pick-up trucks, trailers, and other heavy-duty vehicles, you find him a puzzle with pictures of those vehicles and watch him devote himself to piecing the puzzle so that the picture comes together.

If your baby girl is into princess, fairies, and glitter, you’ll find plenty of puzzles that’ll keep her pleasantly occupied as she fits the pieces and dreams of fairies.

The beautiful thing is that you’ll find puzzles in a variety of themes, from farm animals to astronomy, from burgers and fries to Disney characters; so, you can rest assured that there is a puzzle theme to meet your child’s quirkiness.

Size/Weight

The size of a puzzle and its pieces is important as it determines how easy to hold and handle the pieces will be and the number of people that can play at a time. As with all good things, the rule of “the more, the merrier” applies to jigsaw puzzles. If the puzzle is large enough, the family can gather around it and put it together. Further, large pieces are great for kids’ little hands and it keeps them engaged for longer than smaller pieces would. Seeing as puzzles may be constantly carried around from one room to another, from home to school or on a road trip, it’s important that they are lightweight so that they don’t become burdensome when you’re carrying them around.

What is the Best Kids Puzzle?

Choosing the best kids’ puzzles will require some knowledge, knowledge that you’ve already gained from our guide. So go on and enjoy the product review.
Our Top Choice
The Ravensburger Ocean Turtles 200-Piece Puzzle is an underwater-themed puzzle with an enthralling picture of 2 sea turtles. It’s made with Kappa cardboard that’s sturdy and durable to withstand constant handling. Maybe your kids are canine lovers; if so, there’s a 100-piece puzzle with cool dogs on the beach that your kids should find interesting. Check out the Ravensburger No Dogs on The Beach Puzzle.
Ravensburger Ocean Turtles 200-Piece Puzzle

Ravensburger Kids’ Puzzles 4005556126088


Features
When a brand is able to keep puzzling families for more than a century, you should know that it’s not here to play games; it means business. Ravensburger AG was established in 1883 by Otto Robert Maier as a publisher of instructional folders for architects and craftsmen; by the next year, he introduced his board game “Journey around the World.” Today, the company’s product offering has grown to include activity kits, children’s activity books, Happy Families and non-fiction books, reference books, and more. In 2015, it acquired BRIO, a Swedish maker of toy trains, thus increasing its product offering. This is the company that broke the world’s record for the largest jigsaw puzzle in 2010 with 24,000 pieces, and its Disney's Memorable Moments with 40,320 pieces is the current holder of that record.

The Ravensburger Ocean Turtles Puzzle is a 200-piece puzzle that forms a beautiful underwater scene of 2 magnificent sea turtles swimming above colorful fish and coral life, while an underwater diver a short distance away takes pictures. It’s made with an extra-thick Kappa cardboard and heavy, linen-textured paper, exclusively developed for this brand. This gives it a beautifully glare-free image quality, increasing convenience and enjoyment of the game.

Each piece is well-made and no two pieces are the same, having been cut by hand-crafted cutting tools, guaranteeing a solid interlocking fit across the board. We love that adults can enjoy this game too, and that it can be used as an interesting way to spend family time as everyone can gather ‘round and help or sit around and share wonderful underwater stories the picture is sure to spark off. This puzzle is recommended for kids ages 8 and above.

Here are some of Ravensburger’s other puzzles for your consideration:
  • Ravensburger World Map Puzzle: a colorful 60-piece puzzle depicting the continents of the world and countries in them—great for a geography lover
  • Ravensburger Outer Space Puzzle: a 60-piece rendition of intergalactic awesomeness, recommended for kids 4 years and above
  • Ravensburger Realm of the Giants Puzzle: a 200-piece puzzle that’ll take your kiddos back to that era when dinosaurs walked the earth
  • Ravensburger Mermaid and Dolphins Glitter Puzzle: a 100-piece puzzle with glitter and a pink-tailed mermaid—what more could a little girl ask for?
  • Ravensburger Disney Planes Fire & Rescue: Fighting The Fire: a 100-piece puzzle showing Disney’s fire-fighting planes—it’s hero time, boys!
Best Value
Melissa and Doug’s United States Map 51-piece Floor Puzzle, once put together, shows the shape, location, and capital of each state of America and the surrounding waters in a bright, colorful picture. If you’ve got toddlers, they too can enjoy puzzles with a farm-themed set of chunky, wooden pieces in the Melissa & Doug Farm Wooden Chunky Puzzle.
Melissa and Doug United States Map 51-piece Floor Puzzle

Melissa and Doug Kids’ Puzzles 440


Features
Melissa and Doug is a toy-making factory that was set up in 1988 by—you guessed right—Melissa and Doug (yes, they’re real people). It began as a start-up in Doug’s parents’ garage from where the company’s first toys were made and delivered to buyers (in Doug’s dad’s station wagon) around the East Coast. Today, the company has come a long way from those humble beginnings to become a major producer of stimulating children’s toys. It believes that child-led play is essential to the complete growth of a child as it stimulates imagination and open-ended thinking. In its words, today’s kids are “overstimulated, overscheduled, and facing undue pressures” with little or no free time to just be themselves. That’s why it’s on a mission to Take Back Childhood—a campaign it invites parents and child care-givers to participate in.

Melissa and Doug’s United States Map Puzzle is a large floor puzzle with large pieces, practically all of which have been cut into shapes of American states. When all the pieces are correctly placed, you’ll have a map of the US states showing their capitals, iconic features, and prominent water bodies; for instance, there is a picture of the Golden Gate Bridge and the Hollywood sign on the California piece, a pink fat pig in Iowa, and the lakes surrounding and dividing the upper and lower peninsulas of Michigan. It’s a great way to get your kids started on a path to acing their geography quizzes and tests as they get to interact with each piece and relate them with their landmarks or industry.

Seeing as this puzzle’s pieces are going to undergo a lot of handling (you know how kids try to force a wrong piece into the wrong spot), we’re pleased to inform you that it’s made with heavy-duty cardboard with an Easy-Clean surface made with plastic coating. This makes them not only durable, but waterproof as well and easy to maintain.

Some other puzzles from this company include:
  • Melissa & Doug Traffic Jam Jumbo Jigsaw Puzzle: a 24-piece floor puzzle showing vehicles stuck in traffic
  • Melissa & Doug Construction Vehicles 4-in-1 Wooden Jigsaw Puzzles: a 48-piece puzzle with a sturdy, wooden box
  • Melissa & Doug Mermaid Fantasea Wooden Jigsaw Puzzle: a colorful 48-piece set with a storage tray
Buffalo Games’ Frederick The Literate Cats of Charles Wyoscki Puzzle is a 750-piece puzzle that depicts a cat slumbering in a packed bookshelf. It’s made with high-quality materials, with a bonus poster that helps you put the puzzle together. If you’re into Star Wars, let the Force guide you as you put together a 1000-piece puzzle with the Buffalo Games Star Wars "You're All Clear, Kid" Puzzle. Check it out!
Buffalo Games Frederick The Literate Cats of Charles Wyoscki Puzzle

Buffalo Games Kids’ Puzzles 17077


Features
Buffalo Games was established in 1986 by Paul Dedrick. It’s a leading maker of party games and jigsaw puzzles in the world, and prides itself in making games that people will find not just fun and easy, but also something to come back to time and again—games that you’ll not find boring. Its creativity in game-making has won it quite the number of awards which include the Game of the Year Award in 2011 by Creative Child Magazine for Gotcha and iParenting Media Award for Outstanding Product both for Last Word in 2007. It also holds licenses to work with popular brands such as DC Super Friends, National Geographic Channel, Darrell Bush, Charles Wysocki, and many more. It ensures that only the thickest premium paper and durable materials are used in the making of all its puzzles.

Buffalo Games’ Frederick the Literate Puzzle features Charles Wysocki artwork depicting a cat (whose name is presumably Frederick) snuggled comfortable on a shelf crammed full with books (this probably explains why Frederick is considered literate) and other knick-knacks. The fun begins when you start putting the puzzle pieces together to reveal the picture; you find yourself giggling at the interesting book titles such as Lusting for the Giant Rodent, Rat Holes of the World, Wallowing in Garbage – Trashy Cuisine Recipes, The Sardine in all of its Splendor, and the list goes on. We have to agree, that Frederick is a learned fellow.

This 750-piece puzzler comes with a bonus poster of the whole picture to serve as a guide as you fit the pieces together. Thanks to the precision-cutting technique employed in the making of this puzzle and its makers’ trademark Perfect Snap, each piece is guaranteed to fit beautifully to create a lovely picture at the end of puzzle—quite rewarding.

Some other puzzles from Buffalo Games you might like include:
  • Buffalo Games - Dino Adventure: a large 48-piece puzzle for kids 5 years and older, with an activity book of 15 educative and interesting activities
  • Buffalo Games Large Piece Travel, London: a 300-piece puzzle with bonus poster
  • Buffalo Games - Josephine Wall - Nature Boy - 1000 Piece Jigsaw Puzzle: the glitter edition with gold glitter highlights throughout the puzzle
  • Buffalo Games Kid’s Jigsaw Puzzle: Ready for School: a 24-piece puzzle with a fun and educating activity book for kids 3 years and older
The White Mountain Puzzles Candy Wrappers 1000-Piece Puzzle brings back memories of candy-fueled childhood days with a picture of candy classics. It’s well-made with blue chipboard and fits snugly together. For younger kids, a puzzle that combines safari wildlife and friendship in a cute picture will bring a smile to their face. Take a look at the White Mountain Puzzles Best Pals.
White Mountain Puzzles Candy Wrappers 1000-Piece Puzzle

White Mountain Puzzles Kids’ Puzzles 862PZ


Features
White Mountain Puzzles is a company that’s committed to family; it believes that family is important and incorporates family values into its ethical system. It creates fun puzzles to enhance family time and promote the feeling of togetherness among players with interestingly-themed puzzles. The company was founded by Cronan Minton and Ted Wroblewski in 1978 as a small poster company in Vermont. It’s a family-owned business, but the daily running of what has now morphed into a nationally acclaimed brand is the capable hands of their sons. All of its puzzles are made in the US and it makes efforts to ensure that it becomes better with each passing year, creating puzzles that are original, more colorful, entertaining, and educating.

The White Mountain Puzzles Candy Wrappers Puzzle is a fun 1000-piece puzzle that you and the kids can put together on a slow weekend. It’s a great way to get everyone off their phones and the internet so that quality time is spent putting the bright-colored puzzle of yummy candy wrappers together and reminiscing of the good old days of sugar-fueled childhood. It features a whole collection of old-time candy favorites and was created by Charlie Girard, an artist notorious for doing one puzzle a day, when he decided to make his puzzle so as to keep his artistic mind entertained.

On the box in which the puzzle comes, is the complete picture of the whole thing which you can use as a guide for putting the puzzle together. It’s recommended for kids 12 years and above, and its pieces are well-cut and made durable from blue chipboard and recycled paper. This puzzle is designed to be long-lasting.

See some more White Mountain Puzzles below:
  • White Mountain Puzzles Best Places in The World Jigsaw: a 1000-piece collage of enticing travel posters and photos
  • White Mountain Puzzles What I Did as a Kid Jigsaw Puzzles: a rendition of classic children’s games in a thousand puzzle pieces
  • White Mountain Puzzles Princess Unicorn: a 100-piece puzzle depicting an enchanting scene of a princess and her pet unicorn in a fairytale paradise
  • White Mountain Puzzles Things I Ate as A Kid: a 1000-piece, tantalizingly delicious puzzle
  • White Mountain Puzzles Trucks & Tractors Jigsaw Puzzle: a 24-piece puzzle showing heavy-duty vehicles at work
The Ceaco Kinkade Beauty and The Beast 750-Piece Puzzle features a panoramic picture of the Disney classic with most of our favorite characters hidden in it. Each piece fits and snaps firmly in place. If your kids are fans of Disney, you can thrill them with a puzzle collage of Disney all-stars in the Ceaco Disney Classics Collage Puzzle. Go on and have a look.
Ceaco Kinkade Beauty and The Beast 750-Piece Puzzle

Ceaco Kids’ Puzzles 2903-03


Features
Ceaco is the home of superb-quality jigsaw puzzles. It has a vast array of beautiful and intriguing puzzles made by popular artists Thomas Kinkade, Jane W. Scott, and Jan V. Haasteren. It was established in 1987 with one mission, which is to create innovative puzzles of the highest quality that are challenging and keep the whole family entertained for hours on end. Through a skilled team of professionals, the company is constantly on the lookout for ways to improve its offerings, for the latest trends and rising artists, and the latest technology that’ll improve all the processes involved in the creation of its games. Its desire is to always keep its customers supplied with nothing but the best in offline family entertainment.

The Ceaco Kinkade Beauty and the Beast Puzzle is made with high-quality materials to meet the demands that’ll be placed on it as its 750 pieces are manipulated into their spots on the puzzle. We love, love the picture that’s formed at the end, and the process is quite rewarding as you get to discover other characters from the story that are not immediately visible in the picture on the box. The picture shows Belle and Beast on a terrace beside the river with the castle on the other side, holding hands and looking into each other’s eyes. In the picture, we also see Cogsworth, Lumiere, Mrs. Potts, and Chip. In the distance, we have the village and above in an aircraft we have to assume his inventive hands have made, is Maurice, Belle’s father.

The finished picture is beautiful and a work of art indeed. The paper is thick and sturdy so that the pieces last for a long time; they are cut in different, interlocking pieces that fit together and snap in place so that kids won’t have a hard time piecing the puzzle together. What’s more, it’s as challenging as it is entertaining.

Here are some other puzzles from Ceaco:
  • Ceaco Beach Party Selfie Puzzle (550 Pieces): showing furry felines and canines on the beach
  • Ceaco Dragons Old Friends at Play Puzzle (1000 Pieces): features a wizard and a dragon at a game of chess
  • Ceaco Spring has Sprung Puzzle: a 100-piece picture of furry bunnies
  • Ceaco Disney Family Christmas Puzzle (400 Piece): showing Mickey and his friends in Christmas cheer

Get the Best Kids Puzzle of 2018!

We’ve come to the end of the review; we hope you found something to keep the younglings productively puzzled. Enjoy! In case you aren’t satisfied, feel free to visit the featured brands for more options.

Our Top Choice
Ravensburger Ocean Turtles Puzzle
Best Value
Melissa and Doug United States Map Floor Puzzle
Buffalo Games Frederick The Literate Puzzle
White Mountain Puzzles Candy Wrappers Puzzle
Ceaco Kinkade Beauty and The Beast Puzzle