In the past two decades, there has been a raft of research on children’s behaviour and their interaction with outdoor environment. The aim of this paper is to present a synthesis of 30 studies from 1985 to 2010 on children’s use of outdoor environments. The aspects taken into consideration include methodological issues and factors that influence the use of outdoor environments. The trends of the studies are discussed. In summary, the children’s place preferences and play behaviours in the outdoor environments are influenced by their developmental needs, individual, physical and social factors. Keywords: Children, outdoor environments; influential factors; Ecological Model eISSN 2514-751X © 2017 The Authors. Published for AMER ABRA by e-International Publishing House, Ltd., UK. This is an open-access article under the CC BY-NC-ND license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/). Peer–review under responsibility of AMER (Association of Malaysian Environment-Behaviour Researchers), ABRA (Association of Behavioural Researchers on Asians) and cE-Bs (Centre for Environment-Behaviour Studies), Faculty of Architecture, Planning & Surveying, Universiti Teknologi MARA, Malaysia.