My eldest daughter is turning 8 this weekend. I can’t quite believe it. She’s grown so much over the past year, and her tastes change so much that coming up with a list of what to buy her has not been easy. However, I think I’ve nailed it. So I’m sharing with you my ultimate gift guide for 8-year-olds. It’s not specific to girls or boys because everything on this list is appropriate as a gift guide for an 8-year-old girl or a boy.

Birthday Planning

Last year we immigrated to the UK between the girls two birthdays. The youngest is born in mid-June, and the eldest is born in early July. We moved right between the two so I gave them an early combined birthday/farewell party before leaving SA. In the past 6 years, I have got away with at least 2 combined birthday parties, but that wasn’t really feasible this year. So we have had two of everything.

The worst thing I ever did though, was to plan (obviously, I planned it *insert eye roll*) that my youngest’s birthday came BEFORE my eldest’s. Because that’s what we all do in the moment right … *cough* We plan to ruin our future elder child’s birthday enjoyment for life.

Seven has been a tough year emotionally for her, I won’t lie. And coming up with gifts is harder than ever before. Her birthday party this year is a Reptile Party – yes, we are having people bring snakes and reptiles into my house. That’s a mother’s love right there, people!

Here is my ultimate gift guide for 8-year-olds

A Bicycle

We have bought her a bike. Before leaving SA she was really good on her bike. She’s really athletic and adventurous (read crazy) so was able to do long skids and ramp over the curb etc. But it’s been a year. I know you don’t actually ever forget how to ride a bike, but she’s been a bit wobbly on her sister’s new bike. Hopefully, that’s only because her knees are knocking the handlebars.

We opted for a bike that hopefully won’t be too large, but I hope it should last a fair few years.

A Board Game

At the age of 8 years old, kids really do have a thirst for knowledge and their brains begin to understand the concept of competition, strategy and rules. So why not consider getting your 8-year-old daughter a gift that she can share with the whole family – a family board game.

Horrible Histories The Board Game

All About Me Book

We got my younger daughter one of these, and it was a huge hit with both of them, so I’ve got my 8-year-old daughter one, too, just a slightly different one. This one is coming from her aunt, but it’s a great gift idea for an 8-year-old. The book walks them through a series of questions identifying their likes, dislikes, opinions, choices and preferences. It’s a lot of fun and again makes them feel very important and grown-up.

Kids Alarm Clock with built-in night light.

Again, the theme that she is a big girl now is strong with this gift. That said, she still doesn’t like to fall asleep in the dark. She also refuses to go to bed 1 minute before her bedtime. So this HAMSWAN Kids Alarm Clock is perfect for her.

The clock has a built-in night light available in a variety of colours. It shows a digital time, the day, the date and the temperature of the room, as well as having an alarm clock function with 8 different alarm sounds. All-round it’s pretty cool if you ask me. And affordable.


Currently, she has her books stuffed in drawers. I have got her these clear bookends so that she can stand all her books upon her chest of drawers to be able to keep them in good condition and visible to her. She is a very organised and tidy person (just don’t look in the drawers!) so this will appeal to her neat-freak personality. There are obviously hundreds of different bookends to choose from.

Rubik’s Cube

Now obviously the actual Rubik’s Cube name is patented to that brand, but there are a surprisingly huge array of different styles and shapes and colours to choose from, all with the same concept. She asked for one of these a few weeks ago, so I am sure she will spend some time playing with this one over the summer.

If she turns out to be a genius and manages to do it, I will be sure to let you know. I’ve never managed to get one all done correctly. Have you?

So there you have it, my ultimate gift guide for 8-year-olds. As you can see, it’s not a girl or boy specific. It’s the perfect gift guide for boys or girls. If you have any other ideas please let me know in the comments.