Best forBabies from birth
Top BenefitsMinimal design, rattles aren’t loud, play mat zips up into a storage tote
ConsiderationsPlay mat must be hand-washed and air-dried
Bottom lineThe Hape Portable Baby Gym is an entertaining play centre for baby that easily folds down and zips into the mat, making it great for travel and easy to store
When you consider the sheer amount of stuff parents with wee ones need to lug around, “double duty” is a prized component of any baby gear. Not only does the Hape Portable Baby Gym keep little ones entertained with its plush blanket under a wooden bar complete with an interactive bee (with wings that actually flutter), a fabric flower and a rattling apple, but it also zips up into a cute tote.The wooden bar can be used without the mat, and the dangling toys can be swapped around to keep things interesting. While its flat shape makes for easy storage, the colours and minimal design (no flashing lights and electronic sounds) are so pleasing it could be left out in a room without clashing with the decor. Even better, the materials—wood, fabric and a little plastic—are top quality and the zipper works well, so the play mat could be handed down to other babies once your little one graduates from it.