Milk Bottle Lid Boats

I quite enjoy the rain, and try and see it as an opportunity to think of different ways for the kids to play. It’s pouring here today and there is water everywhere so we are making the most of it by creating milk bottle lid boats and sailing them in the water run off. Check out the video (below) to see how much my son loved this activity.  This can be great for fine days too: simply fill a container with water and float the boats!


Milk bottle lid



Paper (or leaf)

1. Press a small piece of blu-tack into the base of a milk bottle lid.

how to make milk bottle lid boats

2. Colour in the corner of a piece of paper and cut out. It’s a good idea to make a few sails because they tend to get wet, but are easily replaced.

how to make milk bottle lid boats

3. Thread the paper sail on to a toothpick (snip the sharp end off when you’re done) and press the mast into the blu-tack.

Paper Sail

milk bottle lid boat -- finished

Leaf Sail

milk bottle lid boats


  • To ensure the boat floats, use as little blu-tack as possible.
  • You can also use a leaf for the sail, that way, it doesn’t get soggy when wet.
  • Peanut Butter/Vegemite/Jam lids also work well.


There are many ways to play with this boat. Below are a few of them.

1. In a bowl of water

Lay a towel over a table.

Fill a small bowl wih water.

Blow the boat around the bowl.

The kids can add all sorts of toys to this play, for example animial figurines and pirates.

milk bottle lid boats

2. In the Bath

You can use milk bottle lids in the bath, with or without the sail (the sails can be a hazard so are best for older children and under supervision).

milk bottle lids in the bath

3. After the rain

After the rain has gone, there is often water in all sorts of places. Take a look and see where the boat can float.

milk bottle lid boats

4. Outside In a puddle

A puddle or a stream of water on the driveway (from the rain or use a hose when water restrictions allow) is an especially fun way to play with a milk bottle lid boat.

milk bottle lid boats

Just watch the video below to see my son’s excitement at this simple activity

5. Races

After school, all the kids joined in and played races.

milk bottle lid boat races

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