What is the best Lego Duplo set?
If your toddler or preschooler is a budding builder, foster their interests with Lego Duplo sets, which are designed for kids ages 18 months through 4 years old.
Lego Duplo sets are larger, non-toxic bricks with rounded edges so they’re safe for play. They’re considered ideal introductory building sets that let kids get used to holding and connecting bricks.
Learn more about Lego Duplo sets with this buying guide. LEGO DUPLO Big Construction Site Building Set includes a bulldozer and working crane lift.
What to know before you buy a Lego Duplo set
Regular Legos vs. Lego Duplo sets
The first difference you’ll notice between regular Legos and Lego Duplo sets are brick sizes. Regular Legos are too small for toddlers and preschoolers. For safety reasons, Lego Duplo sets feature much larger bricks.
Lego Duplo sets have soft, rounded edges that are safe for younger kids to hold and manipulate. Regular Legos, on the other hand, tend to have sharp, pointed edges.
Regular Lego sets have piece counts that range from 12 to a few thousand pieces, whereas most Lego Duplo sets peak at around 100 pieces. There are, however, a few deluxe Duplo sets that have 200-500 pieces.
Lego Duplo sets are made for kids ages 18 months to 6 years old. All Lego Duplo sets indicate the recommended ages on the box. They typically advise against giving the sets to kids younger than the recommended age range.
Perks of playing with Lego Duplo sets
In addition to having fun while they build, kids derive a number of benefits from playing with Lego Duplo sets.
- Lego Duplo sets offer creative, open-ended play. Kids are able to use their imagination and role-play with bricks. They also learn new skills as they build.
- Holding and connecting bricks develops fine motor control, and in turn, kids learn coordination for small, precise movements.
- Lego Duplo sets aid in preschool and kindergarten readiness, namely those that feature numbers, letters and simple vocabulary.
- Lego Duplo sets are considered early STEM education learning tools. As they build, kids develop critical thinking skills and learn basic engineering concepts.
What to look for in a quality Lego Duplo set
With the exception of open-ended or creativity building sets, most Lego Duplo sets are themed. Some sets feature animals or people, whereas others feature entire scenes of stores, castles, police stations or construction sites. Train and vehicle sets are also popular, many of which have articulating parts, functioning wheels or seats for Lego people.
There are also some licensed Lego Duplo sets that feature popular franchises from DC Comics, Marvel, Disney or Pixar movies.
Specialty pieces refer to any pieces in Lego Duplo sets that aren’t standard bricks.
Lego characters: Lego characters include people and animals. These have painted faces and bodies, and some of them have articulating parts.
Structural pieces: These include windows and doors, which often have moving parts that swing open. Fences, ladders and certain roof pieces are also included in this category.
Wheels: Small rubber wheels with treads are seen in vehicle and train kits. They’re also present in engineering kits, though they aren’t necessarily used as wheels. Instead, they function as moving parts of a larger apparatus.
Plants: Plants and flowers are often seen in outdoor- and building-themed Lego Duplo kits. They have well-defined leaves and petals and usually attach to cylinder bricks.
A few Lego Duplo sets are sold with storage boxes in the shape of a giant Lego brick.
The boxes typically have more space than the set requires, mostly so it can serve as a storage unit for additional Lego Duplo sets.
How much you can expect to spend on Lego Duplo set
Lego Duplo sets with less than 10 pieces usually cost $10 and below. Mid-range sets with around 20 to 40 pieces cost $15-$40. Themed sets with many specialty pieces cost $50-$150.
Lego Duplo set FAQ
What do I do if I lose some of the pieces to my Lego Duplo set?
A. You may be able to purchase bricks and pieces directly from Lego, provided they’re not rare or retired pieces. If you happen to live near a Lego store, you may be able to purchase replacements there.
Will my kids be able to build a Lego Duplo set on their own?
A. Some kids are able to complete a build project without assistance, where others may require a little help. Each Lego Duplo set comes with detailed instructions with images, which many kids are able to understand on their own.
What’s the best Lego Duplo set to buy?
Top LEGO DUPLO set
What you need to know: A favorite among kids who love trucks, this set lets kids build the vehicles and machines of construction sites.
What you’ll love: Builds three construction vehicles and includes Lego workers with safety helmets. Instruction booklet is user-friendly for kids and adults. Lots of bright colors.
What you should consider: Some operational issues with the crane.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
Top LEGO DUPLO set for the money
What you need to know: Kids get to use their thinking caps for building and counting in this train-themed set.
What you’ll love: Numbers are large and easy to read. Several options for different train configurations. Comes with two Lego people and a Lego cat. Great for role-playing.
What you should consider: Set has far fewer pieces than other Lego Duplo sets.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
Worth checking out
What you need to know: If you’re looking for an open-ended set, this one has 65 pieces with endless possibilities.
What you’ll love: Set is packaged in a charming brick box. Includes a well-rounded assortment of bricks and specialty pieces, like windows and wheels. Can be used with other Lego Duplo sets.
What you should consider: Only comes with one Lego person.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
Sian Babish is a writer for BestReviews. BestReviews is a product review company with a singular mission: to help simplify your purchasing decisions and save you time and money.
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