Portable Activity Kit for Little Travellers

Portable Activity Kit for Little Travellers | Mama Papa Bubba

Another birthday party means another opportunity for Grae and I to come up with a fun, homemade gift {which we love doing}.  This time around, we decided we’d put together a tinkle trunk filled with fun dress-up costumes and accessories similar to what Grae has in her dress-up station.  We were really excited about the idea until we realized that the birthday girl is headed home to the States just a few days after her party.  A tickle trunk simply wouldn’t do.  After some brainstorming, we opted for something she could bring along on her travels – a portable activity kit!  Our goal was to keep it as compact and lightweight as possible, while cramming in tons of fun {and quiet} things she could explore and play with during her travels.  Here’s what we included…

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A set of velcro craft sticks for building…

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A handmade wooden disc memory match set just like the ones I used to make and sell in my Etsy shop

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A felt name game set similar to the one I made for Gracen long ago…

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A pom pom number / fine motor game I quickly made, printed, and laminated…

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A rainbow colour matching game I found on Busy Little Bugs and laminated…

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A very simple I Spy bag made using a zip close bag, some rainbow rice, and some fun odds and ends…

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A shape matching puzzle I found on Confessions of a Homeschooler and laminated…

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And a homemade button snake {you can find instructions for these all over the web, but I used the tutorial on Happy Hooligans}.

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While putting together the activities, I kept in mind that I wanted them to fit in these B5 zipper pouches we’d picked up and hole punched earlier in the week.  {If I were back home, I would have used 3-ring pencil pouches like these, but these IBC ones worked out just fine.}

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Next, I created simple tags for each of the activities.  The zipper pouches we purchased actually include a label slot, so I made our tags to fit those, but you could just as easily contact paper them straight onto the pouch, or write directly on the pouch using a permanent marker.

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With all of the pieces ready to go, my little helper stuffed pouches and slid in labels.

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Here’s our finished collection.

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We decided that we needed a title page of some sort, so I quickly made and laminated this…

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And then Miss G got to adding all of the pouches into our flexible heavy duty one inch binder {similar to this one}.

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Before long, our gift was ready to go, though I think Gracen was sort of sad that she couldn’t keep it for herself as she mentioned a few times, ‘This is a gift for Evelyn.  It’s really cool, but we can’t keep it.  I really like it though.’

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To finish it off, we added some baker’s twine and an old-fashioned postal tag, and that was that.  Hopefully it will make our little friend’s summer travels a wee bit more fun.


Want more portable activity ideas?  Check out our portable activity kit for little boys {and don’t fret – the activities are definitely not just for little boys!}

Portable Activity Kit for Little Boys | Mama.Papa.Bubba..jpg

See our other homemade gifts here.

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99 thoughts on “Portable Activity Kit for Little Travellers


    I am posting a toddler travel blog later today, and I am going to include a link to this. Gifts like this are so amazing. I wish I had one like this for Zane with how much we have been traveling! Keeping travel exciting to a toddler can be tiring!

    1. Hi have you posted the link for the toddler travel bag yet? I love this idea, so happy I found this
      on Facebook :-)

    2. This is a really great activity pack. Hope that Evelyn will have fun with it. I made a busy bag for my son too for travels but being an explorer he was not interested in it at all. Except for Lego – I glued the base panel onto the box lid and filled with bits and bobs. I included cards with ideas/creations too. But the felt “sticker” story telling game, memory game, I spy game he just tossed aside…

  2. So love this idea! Have shared it with my teacher friends here in Perth Western Australia
    I am off to adapt them to use in the classroom
    Thank you so much for sharing your amazing ideas
    I am so glad I found you!

  3. These look like so much fun. If you don’t mind, could you please share the label template for the tags?

  4. This is awesome! I’m travellong with my 2 children 4.5yrs & 3yrs on a train all day in a few weeks and I was so worried about keeping them occupied! This is fabulous and a must have!

  5. Seriously brilliant !!! Thank you south for sharing I’m super excited to get started making one for miss 3. She often travels with me to dog shows and they can sometimes be long days this will be perfect to keep her busy and not bulky to take with us :).

  6. Would love something like this for my pre-K (almost 5) child this summer as we fly & then drive to our vacation. Any ideas for differentiation?

  7. Do you make these to sale? I’m not the creative type but would love a couple of these for my 10 and 7 year old granddaughters.

  8. I LOVE this idea! I made something similar for my nephews birthday after seeing this picture. Unfortunately, at the time, your website was down so I couldn’t find all of your instructions. Your book is MUCH better than mine! I also had to use Velcro close pouches as that was all I could find. I have since found these bags:


    I am waiting to get them shipped to see if they will work well or not. Thanks again for your brilliant idea!

  9. What an amazing idea! I’ve found other activities to add to the file like lacing cards and colour puzzles. I’m making a set for my almost 2 year old son.

  10. Thank you, I have been looking for inspiration for a while… I wanted some quiet time activities for my little boy and I, for when I am breastfeeding my 2nd baby due in october. Will also be making another set for my expectant friend. Thanks! x

  11. This is fantastic! Thankyou so much for inspiring me! We a travelling for our summer holiday to Cornwall this weekend, its roughly 6 hours in the car and my 2.5 year old is going to LOVE what I’ve been working on for her this week. I wandered if you like us to share our photos back with you of our handy work? You are truly an inspiration. Thanks

  12. I’d love to know where you bought this neat flexible binder and the IBC zipper pouches. Can you send me in the right direction to get some myself please? Thanks!

  13. This is perfect! We have twin nephews and I always try to do homemade gifts! First family vacay is this summer and it would be fun for the car ride! How old was your recipient and where did you get the particular pouches you used?

  14. What a lovely idea Iam flying with 4 kids alone this summer for the younger 2 this will be perfect.thankyou.

  15. Hi I would also like to know Where you purchased the binder and pockets we live in Australia, I know this question had been asked a few times but can not find the answer.
    Also do u have any ideas for toddlers :-)

  16. If only I had seen this post two months ago! Have just returned from a month of traveling with Mister 22 months. He was great most of the time but we had a few hairy moments. If we had seen this little travelers pack we would have saved a few dollars and quite a bit if weight as we bought quite a few toys and colour ing books, most of which were not even touched.

  17. When my daughter was young, not that young I made her one..but I put it in a zippered binder…some of games were 2 pages..I put the sheets in sheet pros and the pieces in a zipper pencil case…It worked out really well and kept her occupied at appointments or any place we had to wait for a while..She was only allowed to play with the games when we were waiting not at home..so it was something different and new..

  18. This is the best kit I’ve seen for a long time. I went to Officeworks last week and bought some envelopes so I can create something similar but with activities for my older kids. Thank you for the inspiration.

  19. When we travelled with our young kids, I got a couple of plastic restaurant trays. Made little pillows and used Velcro to attach to the back of the tray. They could have the trays on their laps so they wouldn’t lose pieces to their games. The dollar stores have little puzzles and games that are good for young children. I bought a Rubbermaid tote with an attached lid that held all their games and activities.

  20. Gostei muito da sua ideia. Gostaria de fazer para a minha neta, para usar na igreja. Mas aqui no Brasil, não temos os sacos com ziper e a pasta para colocar depois. Você saberia me dizer onde obter ou se você pode mandar pra mim ??? Obrigada.

  21. Hi Jen, I absolutely love this idea! Where did you find the pouches?? I’m having a hard time finding this size. Thanks!

  22. I am trying to make one of these in the UK and can’t find the binder or pouches anywhere… could you give me the names of them so I could try and find some?

    Ps your blog rocks, I just love everything on it…. your a clever lady xxx

  23. I LOVE these!
    Is it possible to have a link to a template for the bag tag labels, pom pom number match game and title page?
    Thanks so much!

  24. Hey y’all, I found some bags on Amazon. If you put in this information in the search box “3 Pcs Clear Red Plastic Zip up B5 Paper File Bag w Nylon Strap” it should pull up the red bags and you can view the other colors from the same seller. My bags arrived today. It took me forever to find this. Hope this helps :-)

  25. Fantastic Idea. Can grow with your child and change as needed. I like it too as a crafting idea for projects. I think this has multiple possibilities. Fantastic though for Mom’s on the go and trips. The more projects I see if yours the bigger fan I become, I am extremely happy to have come across you’re page. :)
    Nicky 8 )

  26. After revisiting this post, I noticed that the bags used has a pouch for labels. I looked at the bags I purchased and they don’t :-( but it’s okay they are going to work just fine. As I searched for these bags, I didn’t notice any bags with label pouches or maybe I missed it. Using some clear packing tape will work just fine to attach labels to the bags :-D

  27. When traveling, I always remember about comfort and at the same time try to save money. How do you combine these 2 factors?

  28. You can always relax in comfort, you just need to find a reliable resource. I now always fly business class and save on flights without experiencing any problems. Recently I flew to Zagreb. I liked the fact that the city center is compact and easy to navigate, there are many restaurants, cafés and shops, but most importantly, Cheap Business Class Flights to Zagreb helped me save money that I spent on additional entertainment, and it did not affect my comfort. I will now always travel business class, finding good options for flights.

  29. I was in Zagreb, but I didn’t even suspect that you can save on business flights. You talk so interestingly, but I wanted to plunge into the magical world of adventure again. Especially since the holidays are ahead, and I want to pamper myself with something beautiful and unusual.

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