The best kids’ binoculars open up the world to them. They can see bugs in exquisite detail, and spot birds nesting in towering trees. You can even up the ante and get night vision binoculars so they can pretend to be ninjas in training. And that’s why we, at Fatherly, chose the immersive Geosafari Jr. Kidnoculars Extreme as one of our toys of the year. Sure, they let kids explore nature up close. But thanks to a microphone, they can fully immerse themselves in the sounds of birds chirping and leaves swaying in the wind.
If you want a truly immersive experience, these badass binos both amplify what kids see, want what they hear.
For your aspiring birder, or just kid who needs a little encouragement to come hike with you, these next-level binoculars should do the trick. They amplify sights and sounds three times so kids can wear them like sunglasses and see the wonders of nature up close but also hear the birds by means of a locational microphone.
And lest you think that the only benefit here is an appreciation of nature, sure, that’s one selling point. But the child development experts at Zero to Three point out that you’re also establishing the foundation for a love of STEM learning. Kids start to learn about science when they make observations, and use tools to take exploration to the next level. And by tools, we mean binoculars.
Best Binoculars For Kids
If you’re exploring other options for kids’ binoculars, look no further. Our friends at REI have a few solid suggestions for picking out binoculars. You want a full-sized pair for watching wildlife. A mid-sized pair is great for all-around sporting use. And a compact set, while being the lightest, are also the least comfortable because of their size (or lack thereof). In terms of magnification, binoculars have two numbers showing magnification power and lens diameter.
Binoculars with a magnification power of five, for example, make objects appear five times closer. And if you’re taking your kid out to spot some hawks or eagles, get binoculars with a wide field view. And if you’re heading out in nasty weather, consider getting a pair that’s waterproof or weather-resistant binoculars, which are not 100 percent waterproof.
These durable yet affordable binoculars will take a beating and still keep working.
Their rubber coating and recessed lenses protect them during all kinds of scrapes and tumbles. The lenses themselves are no slouch—anti-reflective and offering eight-times magnification, they’re a great option for vacations and neighborhood exploration.
These binoculars are great for older kids and are absolutely perfect for hikes and camping trips.
OK, while not technically for kids, if your tween or teen has shown responsibility with cheaper options, SkyGenius is an affordable upgrade to adult-quality optics. The 10-times magnification of a 50mm lens will have him or her picking the nose of local wildlife. Some slip- and shock-resistance is standard, and it’s even adaptable to a tripod.
Best Binoculars For Sports
Kids can customize these sports binoculars to best see their favorite teams, based on the color of the jersey.
These water-resistant binoculars are no joke. They have awesome permafocus technology that keeps distant objects in focus, so kids don’t need to constantly make adjustments. And they come with red, blue, black, and white color tiles so kids can focus on their favorite teams from a distance.
Best Binoculars for Birding
These waterproof binoculars are great for bird-watching because they have 10X magnification.
Plus, these bird-watching binoculars are fog-proof, so weather won’t be in the way when you spot a cardinal. They have a smooth and large center focus knob that’s easy to use. And these binoculars magnify things 10 times, so you can even spot a hummingbird. They come with a neck strap and weigh just over one pound.
Best Night Vision Binoculars
True night vision binoculars cost a small fortune. Here's a hardy, handy set that's great for kids.
Call us crazy, but we’re guessing you do not want to shell out a car payment for top of the line night vision binoculars that your intrepid explorers will lose somewhere in the yard. So check out this pair. They have 12x magnification, and work great in low-light conditions, but not in complete darkness. For that, you need military-grade or hunting-grade binos.
Every product on Fatherly is independently selected by our editors, writers, and experts. If you click a link on our site and buy something, we may earn an affiliate commission.