Summer is a time to be outdoors and enjoy a more relaxed schedule. If you’re looking for some easy ideas for how to spend some time outside, we’ve rounded up some of our favorites that are great for a variety of ages, including scavenger hunt hikes, make-your-own-bubbles, and S’mores parties.
So however you are looking to get out of your house and into the great (or just… nearby) outdoors, we’ve got something for you to try.
7 Fun, Creative Ways to Get Out of the House With Kids This Summer
Here are a few of our favorite outdoor activities you can easily prep at home:
Make Bubbles and Bubble Wands
Making your own bubbles is a great thing to do with the kids and they provide plenty of playtime fun once they’re mixed together. Just combine 1 cup of water, 2 tablespoons of Light Karo Syrup, and 4 tablespoons of dish soap and voila! You have bubbles. There’s also plenty of options for making your own bubble wands, including this huge bubble wand that’s made out of dowels and string. You can also cut off the bottom of a plastic bottle and dip it in bubbles to create fun all afternoon long.
Scavenger Hunt Hikes
Challenge your family to come up with a scavenger hunt list that’s perfect for hikes for the whole family. Include anything from types of bugs seen on the trail, types of flowers spotted, number of times you see water, or the number of a certain kind of tree or plant found on the trail. After the scavenger hunt, settle in for a family picnic where you can review everything you’ve found.
Make Your Own Jenga
Make it a game day by creating a personalized version of Jenga that can be played outside. You’ll need 2×4 boards cut into ½ inch pieces and sanded. You can use a variety of paint colors to paint the ends of each board. Younger kids can help to paint each board, while older kids can potentially help cut and sand the boards depending on their skillset. Once you’re done, set it up on the back porch for hours of fun! Check out Rails-to-Trails to get details on local trails near you.
Make a Backyard Obstacle Course
Create a backyard obstacle course to get the kids moving. You can take lots of creative freedom when putting one together and use items from around the house. Create a water obstacle course using things like balloons and pool noodles or an obstacle course using buckets and planting pots. There are many different options to choose from and you can create something fun for all ages.
Plant a Vegetable Garden
Make planting a vegetable a family activity by working together to choose and plant the seeds and maintain the garden as it grows. Once each veggie is ready to pick, you can vote on what recipes to try with each one and give kids the opportunity to expand their vegetable palette.
Go Crazy with Chalk
Get a big bucket of outdoor chalk and have the kids decorate the driveway or sidewalk with their own design, play hopscotch or draw a bullseye that the kids can aim to hit with small items like sponges. Let the kids’ creativity run wild. The best part – the chalk easily comes off with a quick spray of the hose.
If you have access to a fire pit, a S’mores party is a fun way to end the evening. You can go classic or try some new S’mores combinations, like chocolate chip Nutella S’mores or the Elvis S’mores with peanut butter, bacon, banana, marshmallow, and graham crackers. There’s no end to the fun combinations you can come up with that will be enjoyed by kids and adults alike.
You may not be planning a typical summer vacation this year, but you can still have loads of fun with the family by trying out some new outdoor activities. From hiking to outdoor games to s’mores making, there’s something for everyone on the list. Happy summer!
When I’m not hanging out with my three-year-old and husband in Brooklyn, I’m busy writing stories for Mamas Uncut and managing PR + Marketing for Magnolia Bakery, based in New York City. On weekends, you can usually find me at a local park or playground pushing my daughter on the swings, “researching” the best almond croissants in Park Slope or launching into impromptu family dance parties at home, the sidewalk or, every once in awhile, a restaurant bathroom. I’m still trying to master the whole parenting thing, but I have learned that copious amounts of coffee, humor and humility are involved on a daily basis.
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