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Top 8 Play Gyms and Play Mats for Baby

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Baby play mats and play gyms offer baby a fun time even before he or she is able to sit up or stand. For younger babies, play gyms encourage reaching, lifting the head and sitting up. Older babies can learn cause and effect, and even begin learning songs and words. Play mats and gyms make great baby gifts, too, for baby showers or for the holidays. These baby play gyms and play mats have plenty of fun toys and activities for baby to enjoy, in a range of prices and sizes for your convenience.

1. Lamaze Space Symphony Motion Gym

Lamaze Space Symphony Motion Gym
Photo courtesy of Pricegrabber.com.
I love the space theme on this play gym and mat. There's a big sun with a mirror for tummy time. On the gym bars, a plush rocket ship dangles, along with stars, planets and a monkey in a spacesuit. The toys can be detached from the bars to take with you away from home, too. There's a music feature, and the gym bars move along with the tunes. There's plenty for baby to look at and touch, from quiet moments to much more active play.
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2. Skip Hop Funky Farmyard Play Gym

Skip Hop Funky Farmyard Gym
Photo courtesy of Pricegrabber.com.
You can begin using this Funky Farmyard as soon as baby is ready for tummy time, and a little pillow is included to help support baby while he or she is learning those tummy time muscle skills. On the play mat, there are plenty of activities to hold baby's interest. Crinkly pieces, squeakers and lots of bright colors are all within easy view. Five animal friend toys can be clipped onto the toy arches when baby is ready to use the play gym. You can take the toys off for individual play, too.
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3. Cariboo Activity Gym

Cariboo Activity Gym
Photo courtesy of Pricegrabber.com. Used with permission.
Cariboo's gorgeous activity gym will blend nicely with your home decor and provide a fun and soothing spot for baby at the same time. It's available in several wood finishes, and has four plush toys that hang from the bars. The Cloud B baby sheep, baby lab, turtle and moon don't flash or make music, but baby will love looking at them and reaching for them anyway. This gym is made from sustainable pine and it has lead-free finishes.
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4. Infantino Explore & Store Elephant Gym

Infantino Elephant Gym
Photo courtesy of Pricegrabber.com.
If you'd like to have a play may and gym for your baby without it taking up a lot of space, check out the Explore & Store Elephant Gym from Infantino. The play mat portion is just big enough for baby to lay on, and it's shaped like an adorable elephant with bright colors and modern dots for visual interest. There's a single toy bar with three plush animal character toys on it, too. The whole play gym folds up quickly so you can store it, or take it along with you when you travel.
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5. Fisher Price Ocean Wonders Kick and Crawl Aquarium Play Mat

Fisher Price Ocean Wonders Play Gym
Photo courtesy of Pricegrabber.com. Used with permission.
Part of Fisher Price's popular Ocean Wonders series, the Kick and Crawl Aquarium play mat and gym features soothing colors, a soft play mat and lots of exciting toys to keep baby entertained from birth through toddler years. Infants will love the mirror and dangling toys, while older babies can enjoy crawling through the aquarium tunnel and peeking out of the portal window. Music and other toy noises excite babies of all ages. At under $30, this play gym is a great value, too.
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6. Baby Einstein Discover the World Gym

Baby Einstein Discover the World Gym
Photo courtesy of Pricegrabber.com.
In classic Baby Einstein style, this play gym features very bright colors and lots of friendly animal faces for baby to look at and touch. There's a globe with lights and Baby Einstein music and sounds. There are real-life images from around the world on the play mat, too. The plush animal toys and globe are detachable for travel.
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7. Tiny Love Gymini Monkey Island Play Mat

Tiny Love Gymini Monkey Island Play Mat
Photo courtesy of Pricegrabber.com. Used with permission.
Whether your baby is still laying down or has learned to sit, the Gymini Monkey Island play mat will entertain for hours. A mirror captures baby's silly faces, and the monkey toy makes noises, music and has lights to captivate baby. You can adjust the height of the bars so the toys dangle in front of baby for tummy time, or up above when baby is laying on her back. This play gym also folds nicely for travel.
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8. Bright Starts Baby's Play Place

Bright Starts Baby's Play Place
Photo courtesy of Pricegrabber.com. Used with permission.
The classic play gym gets a makeover with the Bright Starts Baby's PlayPlace. The sides of the mat fold up to create a cozy hideout for baby, and the soft bars overhead hold a variety of toys to kick at and play with. As baby grows, you can configure the sides and bars differently to encourage tummy time fun or to create a tunnel to crawl through. Later on you can remove the bars entirely and use it as a play mat. The whole thing folds up for storage or travel, too. I love the way you can customize this play mat and gym for your baby's skills and environment.
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