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The best space gifts for kids 2021

Lego Star Wars: The Mandalorian The Child building kit
(Image credit: Lego)

Looking for a gift for a science or space-obsessed kid? From virtual-reality (VR) science kits and Baby Yoda Legos to plush astronaut dogs, has you covered. We've kept our eyes on the coolest space and science toys all year long. 

So if you're looking for a great space or science gift, look no further. 

For even more stellar gift ideas, check out our other buying guides:

Lego Creator 3-in-1 Shuttle Transporter

(Image credit: Lego)

The little builders in your life will fall head over heels for this Lego Creator 3-in-1 Shuttle Transporter building kit. With the 341 pieces in this box, kids can build a flatbed truck and 10-wheeled trailer that transports shuttles (which they can also build) to their launch site. Breaking the shuttle transporter down, they can then build a two-wheeled rugged truck and the helicopter it transports or a car with caravan. 

The realistic-looking shuttle transporter includes vertical exhaust stacks, roof-mounted horns, and a tinted windshield. The shuttle itself also looks realistic, with large engines, opening payload bay doors, working crane and a satellite.    

Kidpal Solar Powered Robotics Kit

(Image credit: Kidpal)

Give the kids in your life the gift of hours of solar-powered fun with Kidpal's build-it-yourself robotics kit. With the parts included in this kit, kids can build 12 different robots, some that walk on legs, some that roll on wheels and some that boat in the water. 

As they build and play, kids (ages 6 to 12) will learn about mechanics and how solar energy gets turned into power.    

Giggleway Electric Motor Robotic Science Kits

(Image credit: Giggleway)

For kids who love hands-on learning, Giggleway's robotic science kits are the perfect gift. This kit includes the parts to build three robots: a doodling robot, a balancing robot and a reptile robot. 

The DIY robots will teach kids ages 8-12 how to connect simple circuits, about energy conversion, and how to solve problems. Each page of the kit's colorful instruction book breaks the projects down into easy to understand steps, helping kids really learn about robotics.    

Professor Maxwell's VR Universe

Some of the coolest science gifts this year use virtual reality to really let kids dive into the worlds they're exploring. One of our favorites, of course, is Professor Maxwell's VR Universe. ($55 on Amazon)

This VR experience lets kids (and probably some adults) feel like they're astronauts floating through space, exploring our solar system, galaxy, and beyond. But VR space isn't the only thing you'll get with this box. The kit comes with 21 pieces and an 80-page interactive book, which pops to life when kids put on their VR glasses. In the box, you'll get all the materials kids need to do experiments like creating a sundial or their own compass and build crafts like a clay Earth with different colors for each layer of the planet and their very own planetarium. 

With the VR Universe, kids will follow Professor Maxwell himself through destinations no man has gone, driving a rover around Mars and flying through Saturn's rings. 

Bill Nye's VR Science Kit

(Image credit: Abacus)

Another amazing, affordable VR science kit available this year is from one of our favorite science guys, Bill Nye. When kids pop on the virtual-reality goggles in Bill Nye's VR kit, they'll find themselves standing in his science lab, learning hands-on experiments from the science guy himself. The kit comes with 50 pieces for kids to not only watch Bill do 30 of his favorite experiments, but do them along with him. 

With this science kit, kids will be able to do their experiments like building their own lemon battery, create a lava lamp, "tattoo" an egg, make slime, make perfume, and trap gas in a balloon. 

In addition to these hands-on experiments, kids will also get the chance to explore far-off destinations in virtual reality. Bill Nye takes kids on trips to volcanoes, waterfalls, icy caves and more.

Lego "Star Wars: The Mandalorian" BrickHeadz

(Image credit: Lego)

Baby Yoda (formally known as "The Child") continues to hold a place in our hearts, and the hearts of Star Wars-obsessed kids. Lego's BrickHeadz have given us a two-for-one, with both Baby Yoda and The Mandalorian. The 295-piece set makes for an awesome present for kids 10 and up. 

The mini Lego version of The Mandalorian includes his signature weapons, a blaster rifle on his back and a blaster pistol in his hand. In probably one of the cutest moves from Lego, The Child's ears are adjustable to create different expressions. His hoverpram also "floats" on a clear Lego piece, so it looks like he's hovering over his base plate. 

Each BrickHeadz stands 3 inches (8 centimeters) tall and is meant to be proudly displayed once it's built.    

Lego "Star Wars" Baby Yoda building kit

(Image credit: Lego)

If a small Lego Baby Yoda isn't good enough, get this bigger Baby Yoda instead. With 1,073 pieces, kids can build a Baby Yoda that stands 7.5 inches (19 cm) tall. 

The new Lego "Star Wars: The Mandalorian" The Child buildable model captures cute features from The Child, including a posable head, movable ears and an adjustable mouth so kids can create different expressions. 

The set includes a gear-shift knob, The Child's favorite toy, which he can hold in his hand. The kit also includes a sign with information about Baby Yoda and a minifigure.   

Astrophysicist Barbie

Astrophysicist Barbie

(Image credit: Mattel)

Barbie has had many, many jobs over her more than 60 years of existence, but our favorites (of course) are when she takes to space. Last year, Mattel partnered with National Geographic to create new STEM jobs for the world's most famous doll, including astrophysicist Barbie. This doll comes with her very own telescope, a star chart, and a space-inspired outfit. Space-obsessed kids will love her. 

Lego Space Rover

Lego City Rover Testing Drive

(Image credit: Lego)

Looking to the future of NASA, Lego has created a rover kit that'll teach kids a bit about what it'll take to get to Mars. The Lego City Rover Testing Drive building kit includes 202 pieces to build a space rover with opening cockpit, articulated grappling arm, removable solar power generator, and large all-terrain wheels. It also includes two mini figures, a solar panel generator on a stand, a camera with a stand, two geodes, two helmets, and a remote control. With one astronaut and one crew worker, this set teaches kids about different roles that are needed to complete a space mission and about testing equipment like rovers before it gets sent to space. 

Thames & Kosmos Space Explorers

Thames and Kosmos Space Explorers

(Image credit: Thames and Kosmos)

One of the best toys for little space lovers is Thames and Kosmos remote-control Space Explorers (currently on sale at Amazon for 28% off). This engineering kit has won a parent's choice gold award. The kit includes all the pieces kids need to build a remote-control robotic rover similar to the ones used to explore Mars. The 64-page instruction book also teaches kids about the history of Mars exploration, robotics in satellites, deep-space exploration, and the robots in popular science fiction. It also explains how to build nine other space-themed models, so your kid has plenty of opportunity for building fun. 

"World's Best Geode Kit"

(Image credit: Discover with Dr. Cool)

If rocks and gems are your science lover's obsession of choice, Dr. Cool has an incredible Geode kit. The box comes with 15 premium-quality geodes, a magnifying glass, adventure guide, activity booklet, display stands and safety goggles. 

Kids will have a grand time breaking open their geodes and learning about the crystals that grew inside these hollow rocks.  

Boo the space dog

(Image credit: Gund)

Everyone's favorite plush dog went to space (not literally, though Baby Yoda did make it to space). Gund's plush dog is based on the wildly popular, internet-famous pomeranian, Boo. He's had many jobs and costumes over the years, but our favorite, of course, is astronaut Boo. 

This squishy, soft, huggable astronaut pup is dressed up in an orange jumpsuit and holographic hat, ready to explore the stars. 

Design & Drill Bolt Buddies Rocket

(Image credit: Educational Insights)

For the younger space lovers on your shopping list, check out Educational Insights' Bolt Buddies Rocket. Little builders use a real, working (kid-safe!) drill to first build the rocket and then screw the Bolt Buddy astronaut and his astro-pup into the cockpit.

Through the build, little ones can learn basic construction and engineering while tuning their fine motor skills. Once the rocket is finished, the box it came in unfolds to create a space backdrop for kids to play with their rocket, pretending they're soaring through space and landing on the moon.  

Follow Kasandra Brabaw on Twitter @KassieBrabaw. Follow us on Twitter @Spacedotcom and on Facebook. 

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