Traditional Mexican Toys

In Mexico there is an old and valuable toy tradition in which objects made of wood and decorated with bright and attractive colors abound. It is no coincidence that Mexico is the third largest producer of toys in the world, after China and Spain, with more than 220 companies that manufacture traditional toys, employing some 28,000 workers and representing exports of around two billion dollars per year.

In an age of tablets and electronic gadgets, there is still a place for traditional toys in the hearts of Mexican children and babies. Mexican toys have great historical value, surely your grandparents, your parents or you know some of these, let’s not lose the beautiful habit of using them.

What are the most popular traditional Mexican toys?

  • Lotería
  • Balero
  • Matraca
  • Trompo
  • Yoyo
  • Canicas
  • Saltar la cuerda
  • Luchadores
  • Pirinola
  • Matatena
  • Juguetes de madera
  • Muñecas de trapo

Lotería : A game in which each player gets cards decorated with certain drawings or symbols that correspond to those present in a deck. The first to complete his card obtain everyone’s money. This is a popular game at Mexican family gatherings.

Balero: It is a toy that encourages manual skill. It is made up of a long wooden stem that is attached to a ball of the same material that has a hole slightly larger than the diameter of the stem. You have to get the ball through the stem using just one hand and swinging the ball until you do.

Matraca: This kind of ratchet is intended to make as much noise as possible. La matraca are seen in stadiums and at popular festivals. Other traditional “musical” objects are ceramic whistles that, previously filled with a little water, imitate the sound of birds.

Trompo: It is a wooden peg-top that is rotated by a rope that is wound around it, throwing it to the ground with force. Spinning “combats” they are quite common among Mexican children.

Yoyo: The yoyo are two wooden circles, made by artisans and are joined by a rope that is what will give the movement to this toy.

Playing yoyo basically consists of putting the yoyo string on your index finger, dropping it, and making it return to your hand with the movement.

Canicas: It is a sphere of different sizes made of glass or ceramic. The players try to put the canicas into a hole or a drawn circle and the player who manages to make his canica enter to the circle, gets the others that have not entered.

Saltar la cuerda: Jumping rope consists of that, having a line, a rope, a string that you have to jump it, the fun and interesting thing is that you can play with your friends or by yourself.

Luchadores: Luchas is one of the best known popular sports in Mexico and the world, and what thing is better than having your favorite wrestler as a toy. In fact, playing the luchas is playing with small figures that represent the fighters of your choice, you could have the rude or the technical. They were made of plastic, with their capes made of plastic bags, and they also had their distinctive masks.

Pirinola: They are usually made of wood, plastic or any other material, they have a pointed tip which is what will make this toy turn.
This is a very simple but fun game, it is for two or more players and each one must put something that has value for them.
In addition to the fact that each player must turn the pirinola, when it stops, the player gets what the pirinola decides.

I invite you to discover for yourself the magic of these beautiful toys and the tradition that it hide the next time you visit Mexico.

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