50 Outdoor Activities You Can Do Right Now
Last updated: March 2, 2021
There is no denying that people are staying indoors more and more these days. Technology, WiFi, and various other fun options are keeping everyone inside.
Updated Note: the Coronavirus (COVID-19) is absolutely having an impact on folks wanting to get outside for fresh air or simply desiring a change of scenery and mindset, which we completely empathize and understand. We sincerely hope our thoughts below can help, although we also realize that some of the below activities are not accessible during these times…
However, there are even more fun things to do outside. Regardless of your age, budget, interests, you are sure to find something that is suitable for you.
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So, without further ado, here are fifty activities that you should consider trying out:
1. Wild Swimming
It’s widely thought that swimming is one of the most fun – not to mention one of the easiest – things to do outside.
Even if you aren’t an expert swimmer, there is still a lot of joy to be gained from splashing around in the shallows.
Instead of heading to the public pool, however, you should give wild swimming a try. This is when you go to a natural body of water such as a lake or a river to get your exercise.
If there isn’t such a water feature where you live, you can just head to the ocean instead.
It is always a good idea to try this activity out with a group of friends for safety purposes.
If you have never given fishing a try, it is a time that you do so now. This is certainly an experience that most people should have.
For this activity, you are going to have to stock up on a few supplies:
This includes a fishing rod, fishing reel, line, bait, lures, and more.
If you want to try out fishing on your own, it is a good idea to do some research ahead of time or head down to the local bait and tackle shop for some help.
Depending on where you live, you should also check on the laws and regulations concerning fishing.
You know what?
The great thing about hiking is that you can really take a hike almost anywhere.
You can do so in the woods, an isolated part of the beach, mountains, or a tried and true trail.
For some truly beautiful sights, a planned trail is often the best course, particularly if you are new to hiking.
You will need to figure out just how long you want to spend outdoors and plan your trip accordingly. Thanks to online maps, this is now easier than ever.
If you aren’t all that active, to begin with, you may want to schedule a hike that is no more than a couple of hours long.
If you don’t really want to leave your property, you don’t have to. If you have nothing else to do, you may want to give yard work a try.
It is up to you, just how big of a job you want to manage.
If you are just looking to maintain the surrounding area, then you can simply mow your lawn and tidy up the flowerbeds.
If you are looking for a bit more of a challenge, you can take the first steps towards setting up your own vegetable or herb patch.
If you don’t have a particularly green thumb, don’t worry – you can give your garden a minor landscaping makeover.
With camping, you have a couple of options available:
You can choose to set up a tent in your own backyard if you aren’t interested in spending time away from your creature comforts.
Or, you can head to a camping ground where you can experience nature a little better but still remain close to civilization.
Looking to really step it up?
Why not extend your hiking trip so that you can spend the night in the great outdoors?
Just remember to take a tent, sleeping bag, food, water, flashlight (or a headlamp), and plenty of batteries with you.
6. Bird Watching
Although you may not realize it, you are probably already a casual birdwatcher or a birder. After all, haven’t you marveled at a winged creature every now and then?
If you are looking for a way to enjoy some local wildlife and kill some time, bird watching is the way to go.
All you need are a pair of good binoculars and a bird guide.
Of course, with the internet at your fingertips, a bird guide isn’t always necessary.
Still, it is a good idea to brush up on some of the birds you can expect to see during the day. This will make easier – and more exciting – to identify them.
Due to the popularity of paintball, it shouldn’t be too difficult to find some company or other that is hosting a game.
Of course, you always have the option of buying your own paintball guns and pellets and having a private game.
Sounds like a little too much of planning?
There is a DIY version:
Simply fill balloons with paint and attempt to hit members of the other team.
You can also just to choose to have an all-out war.
You should keep in mind to get paint that is safe for the skin and ingestion. You can also just use water and food coloring if you are concerned about safety.
8. Action Shooting
If you are handy with a gun, you may want to give action shooting a try.
This is a set of competitions where the main goal is to outperform others in terms of speed, precision, and power.
In most instances, the rules require you to use a certain caliber of weapon.
For the Cowboy Action Shooting, you will need a weapon that is a replica of the ones used in The Wild West.
So, if you are looking to prove your skills against others, then this the activity for you. You just need to have a certain gun, blanks, and a scope to help you focus better.
Skateboarding is practically a rite of passage. If you used to hit the streets with your board quite often, it is time to dust it off and head outside again.
You can just cruise along and feel the wind in your hair or try to execute some of those long-forgotten tricks.
If boarding wasn’t a part of your youth, then there is no better time to start than the present.
The great thing about skateboarding is that, while it can help to have an expert around, you can pick up the basics on your own.
Just make it a point to research how to stop before you ever get on your board. Also, make sure that you have all of the necessary safety gear strapped on.
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It doesn’t matter if it is in the middle of summer or winter, it’s always a good time to fire up the grill.
Somehow, food always tastes better when it is cooked outside. So, if you don’t already have one, you should consider getting yourself a grill.
In fact, check it out.
There are plenty of affordable ones that will last you quite a while. With this piece of equipment on hand, you can turn an ordinary meal into a delicious, smoky affair.
Or, you could invite some friends over and turn the day into an impromptu barbecue/pot luck lunch or dinner. Surely, nobody will be able to resist this invitation.
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11. Street Hockey
This is a great option for people of all ages and is even better if you can get your neighbors involved as well.
This way, you can actually block off a small portion of the street so that you can dedicate it to your game.
If this is not an option for you, you can always use your driveway or even an outdoor basketball court.
You can choose to set up a real goalie or have something makeshift. All that really matters is that you have hockey sticks and a ball in hand.
If you want to make the game just a little more exciting, you should consider strapping on some roller skates.
Most people know how to ride a bike and even if you don’t, it will not take you long to catch on.
Think about it.
Biking can be something that you do for recreation, to sightsee, or even as another mode of transportation.
So, if you do invest in a bike, there is a lot that you can do.
As mentioned, you can decide to cruise around town as long as you make it a point to stay on safe streets. Or, you can head to a park or even to some pre-planned trails.
Not only is this a great way to get some fresh air, you can also get a pretty decent workout too.
Since movies such as the Hunger Games were released, archery has been at an all-time high.
This is why it will not be too difficult to locate an outdoor center that will give you access to their facilities.
If this is not an appealing idea to you, an adult archery set isn’t all that expensive and you can make your own target at home.
Now, the most important thing to remember about this activity is that it is not easy.
You will find yourself struggling a lot more than you expected and it will take you a while to get the hang of the technique.
Therefore, it is a good idea to take some much needed safety precautions.
14. Build a Rope Swing
This is yet another activity that is fun for children and adult alike.
There are various types of rope swings:
There are individual ones with no seats and just a knotted rope.
Then, there are tire swings with tires tied to the bottom while other types of swings have a proper base for you to sit.
The swing that you decide to construct will really depend on the materials and how much patience you have.
Regardless, there a few rules to follow:
First, make sure that you are tying the rope to a sturdy tree or hanging structure.
You should make sure that the structure can take the weight of children and adults.
Also, check that the rope that you are using can withstand similar types of abuse.
15. Watch a Sunset and Sunrise
This is something that each and every person needs to do at least once in their life. So, if you haven’t managed it yet, you shouldn’t wait any longer.
You don’t just have to sit and wait for the sun to rise or set. Instead, get a meal ready, get some board games, and turn it into a full blown activity.
You just have to check the times of the sunrise and sunset in your particular area and be up some time before they are due to take place.
If you want, you can watch the sunset and the sunrise on the same day. You can invite some friends over and turn it into an all day party.
16. Stand Up Paddle Boarding
In case you are wondering, stand up paddle boarding is just as its name sounds.
You stand on a board that is slightly bigger than a surfboard with a paddle in hand. Then using your arms, you have to propel yourself forwards across open water.
But hang on.
While paddle boarding is a lot of fun, you shouldn’t mistake it for an easy activity.
This is because it involves trying to stay upright and balanced while simultaneously paddling and directing the board.
So, you really should be prepared to fall over a couple of times. Not to mention, your arms will get a serious workout as well.
If you want to find a balance between paddle boarding and rowing, then kayaking will prove to be a good fit.
With kayaking, you get to sit in a small vessel that is close to the water. You then use your paddle to move the kayak forwards or to turn.
Kayaking is most commonly done on lakes although you can go kayaking on rivers and oceans as well.
If you are new to this activity, you should consider getting a sit on top kayak as it is easy to get in and get out of. Kayaking can take some time to master.
Did you want to be an acrobat in a circus when you were younger but you just never got the chance? Well, in this case it is time to resurrect your dream once again.
One activity that is becoming quite popular is slacklining. This is when you tie a length or rope between two sturdy anchors such as trees.
The rope is tied a short distance off the ground.
And get this:
You then have to balance and walk across the rope.
This activity often requires a special rope that you can balance on.
Also, as you can imagine, there is a learning curve involved, so it is best to start off with very low heights.
Geocaching is basically a really big treasure hunt with a twist. All you need is a mobile phone or a GPS device.
Using the geocaching app, you will be applied to find various locations or caches. You then need to head to these areas where a ‘treasure’ awaits you.
This is often a small present left you for you by the previous treasure hunters. You also have to leave something behind, usually something sentimental or fun.
Sometimes, there is also a log book where you have to fill in details such as the date and maybe even a code name.
Dodgeball is definitely one of the most fun games out there.
While you require some serious reflexes and speed if you want to remain in the game, the rules are easy to understand. This is what makes it an easy activity for all ages.
Of course, if you are going to be playing an informal game, make it a point to get softer balls that will not hurt as much when they hit you.
Also, set clear terms about precisely where you and can’t hit someone with a ball to avoid hurt feelings. Once the guidelines can be set, it is time to do battle.
21. Water Fight
Water fights are a fan favorite, particularly when you are trying to cool down in the summer. There are actually more than a few ways to have a water fight.
You can grab a couple of water guns to blast your opponents with high powered streams of water.
Or, it is just a matter of filling a couple of water balloons up and tossing them at one another.
If you want a little bit more order to the game, try spray bottle tag.
This is a slight evolution on the game of tag where you just need to hit your opponents with water from your spray bottle.
Frisbee is a time honored tradition. However, it is not just for college students or playing with your dog.
One of the highlights of this game is that it can be started almost anywhere with anyone.
So, it could be a simple matter of heading to the nearest park or beach and recruiting some people to play with you.
If you choose to go with friends and family, you can be quite certain that you will get a couple of requests from people who want to join you.
Just remember, the better the frisbee quality, the truer your aim so you might want to invest in a good one.
23. Backyard Obstacle Course
Obstacle courses are fun no matter how old you get. All that changes is that the tasks get a little more physically challenging and complicated to maneuver.
Best of all, though?
You can use items you already in your home and garage.
It is up to you to decide just how little or long you want to spend constructing the course.
You can muddy up the backyard if you want make things a little bit more complicated and messy as well.
Just don’t forget to keep a record of how long each person takes with their turn so that you can determine a winner.
24. Take a Walking Tour
It doesn’t matter where you live there is always a lot of history in every town and city. So, now would be the perfect time to head outside and take a tour of the area.
However, leave your car at home. Instead, use your own two feet to uncover some interesting facts about your town.
Before you leave, do some research on sites that might be historically or culturally relevant. This way, you will not just be wondering around for hours on end.
Make sure to include some restaurants and cafes on your list of things to see so that you can take a refreshing break every now and then.
25. Have a Bonfire
One of the best places to have a bonfire is on the beach. Of course, you should first check the local regulations about starting and maintaining a fire.
Most public beaches will have a designated area for you to get a fire going.
A bonfire is most fun when there are lots of people invited, so make sure to tell everyone about the event.
Now, of course, no bonfire is complete without s’mores. Have everyone bring their own ingredients along so that you will not have to provide for everyone.
A radio, laptop, or even just a guitar is a must as well.
26. Fly a Kite
The conditions for this particular activity have to be right. So, you are going to need to wait for a bit of a windy day to fly your kite.
Still, it will be well worth the wait considering how fun this is.
You should figure out how to fly one beforehand, though, so that you don’t get tangled up in your own string on the day.
If you can’t seem to find a kite, don’t worry. It is actually quite easy to make one.
You will just have to pay attention to the shape of the kite to make sure that it is properly aerodynamic.
27. Flag Football
Do you love football but aren’t really a fan of getting tackled by bigger opponents? Well, then flag football is a great alternative to this.
Some of the rules of football still apply, except you have to keep your flags safe if you don’t want to be ‘tackled’ and have the ball taken from you.
If you just want an informal game among friends, you can make up the rules according to what is comfortable to you.
The great thing about this activity is that there is something for most people of all athletic abilities to do during the game.
28. Visit a Zoo
Most sections of a zoo are located outside. So, you can get some fresh air as you see all the amazing, exotic animals within the zoo’s gates.
If you want to make your visit really special, check beforehand if there is anything unusual happening.
For instance, are there any new exhibits opening? Perhaps a new baby animal has been born? This way, you can experience something new.
Even if nothing particularly exciting is happening, try to visit the animals when it is feeding time.
It will undoubtedly be either an adorable or a majestic sight to behold, depending on the animal.
29. Play Badminton
Badminton is an outdoor game that can be played essentially anywhere. You just need to ensure that you have the right equipment with you.
Now, ideally, it would be nice to play on a badminton court. However, you can even just start a game in your garden.
If you want, you can tie a rope halfway down the ‘court’ to signify the net. Or, you can just agree to hit the birdie over a certain height.
When played informally, it is a rather unforgiving game. Even if you are quite uncoordinated, you should be able to have some fun with badminton.
30. Go on a Scavenger Hunt
For this game, you are going to have to gather some friends. The game can have as large a boundary as you want.
For instance, you can ask that the game kept within the neighborhood or it can even take place around the city.
You can allow people to drive to places as well. You can have a digitally advanced scavenger hunt, if you wish.
Instead of collecting and carrying the items around with you, it may be enough to simply take a picture of the object or feature.
The final score can then be tallied up by comparing the images.
31. Rock Climbing or Bouldering
Rock climbing is a fun, exciting, and physically demanding activity. If this is your first time rock climbing, it is a good idea to take a couple of classes first.
This is because there are ropes, harnesses, and various other pieces of equipment involved. Not to mention, it can be a bit dangerous.
Your other option would be to go bouldering.
Here, you only have some chalk at your disposal and you have to climb a rock or mountain, freehand.
If you wish to do this, make it a point to go with a couple of buddies who can help you out.
32. Horse Riding
There is nothing quite like riding such a majestic creature. Fortunately, you don’t always have to sign up for lessons to be able to have this opportunity.
Instead, with a little bit of research, you should be able to find a stable that will let your ride a horse for a shorter period of time, perhaps an hour or so.
Of course, they may not let you gallop across the sands just yet, considering that you don’t have a lot of experience.
Still, you can be guided around by an experienced rider and may even get to hold the reins for yourself.
33. Climb a Tree
This is yet another thing that you should have done as a child. Unfortunately, not everyone has the opportunity to do so.
Also, if you are now all grown up, it may have been some time since you clambered up a tree. Still, there is no time like the present to start recalling these skills.
If you are not entirely certain about your tree climbing abilities, it is best to take things slow.
Either start with a rather low tree or one with sturdy branches that are easy to climb.
It is a good idea to have a backup plan in place like a ladder, for instance, in case things don’t go according to plan.
The world beneath the surface of the water is beautiful and magical.
It doesn’t really matter where you decide to explore, it is quite likely that you will see some interesting creatures or plants.
What’s great about snorkeling is that you don’t have to spend a bundle on gear. Instead, a good pair of goggles, a snorkel, and a pair of fins will do.
As long as you stay within a certain depth, you won’t really need any specialized training either.
Just taking a deep breath and plunging beneath the surface is all that you need to do. Then it is a matter of enjoying the view.
35. Tug of War
When was the last time that you had a really good game of tug of war? It has probably been quite a while.
Well, you can give it a go once more as long as you have enough of people on each side.
And all you need?
Well, just some sturdy rope and plenty of room to pull.
If you want to up the stakes a little, you should think about muddying the middle of the ‘battlefield’. This way, the losing team will plunge face first into the mud.
It will give everyone more motivation to do their best and pull hard.
If you live somewhere where the sky lights up with stars each night, you have a unique opportunity on your hands. For one night, you can become an amateur stargazer.
Make a note of the various constellations that you may be able to see. This way, you will actually be able to verify your finds.
If you take your laptop or tablet with you, you will find it much easier to identify the stars.
This is a great idea for a date night, particularly if you have a picnic to accompany you. You may want to check ahead of time to make certain that it will be a clear night.
37. Driveway Art
Would you like to try out your artistic ability but don’t really want to deal with the mess that always appears afterwards? Then, you should consider doing driveway art.
Well, essentially, you should be able to do this on any cemented surface as long as you don’t mind it getting dirtied.
Once you have found your canvas, get some large pieces of chalk. Then it is a matter of drawing to your heart’s content.
Once you are done and you want your driveway looking normal once more, it is just a matter of hosing it down.
This is a hassle-free method of getting creative.
38. Slip and Slide
There is nothing more fun than a slip and slide, regardless of how old you are. It is also surprisingly easy to set up. All you need is a long length of tarp, a hose, and some soap.
Then, as long as there is a steady flow of water on the slip and slide, everyone can take a turn.
The best part is that you don’t even have to feel self-conscious. After all, the best part of this activity is seeing just how badly you can wipe out.
Slip and slides are most enjoyable when there is a large crowd of people so make it a point to invite as many people as you can.
39. Build a Raft
You may not be stranded on an island, but there is no reason for you not to learn how to build a raft.
Of course, what’s really fun about this activity is that you don’t need to get technical. Instead, it is all about being as creative as you want.
You can use all types of materials to create a surface that will float.
If you want to put your raft building skills to the test, you should challenge your friends to build their own.
Then, you can have a race to see who actually made the grade and built a raft that actually does what is supposed to.
There are a bunch of ways that you can go tubing. All you need is a floating tube to get you started.
If you want to go tubing on the ocean, you can make it more exciting by attaching the tube to a motorboat.
If you only have a river available to you, you can grab a cold drink and simply meander down the body of water.
If you want to a little bit of more of an adrenaline kick, choose a lake or river with waves. This way, you can bob along as you try to get to your destination.
41. Walk Your Dog
The great thing about walking your dog is that even the tamest path can be such an adventure.
Their nose is always telling them that there is something better just a little farther away from them.
For some added fun, consider taking your pooch on a hiking trail or into the woods.
If you don’t have a dog, this shouldn’t stop you. You can always ask a friend if you can borrow their furry family member.
There are even some shelters that may let you take their occupants out for a little while.
You should be aware that there may be some jogging involved on your part, if you hope to keep up with the pup.
42. Build an Epic Sandcastle
Sure, whenever you go to the beach, you probably make a half-hearted attempt at constructing a sand castle. This time around, though, you should give it your all.
Make the sandcastle (or any other sculpture) as large as possible and with as much design as you can manage.
You should try and get some of your other friends involved as well so that you can actually complete it within a day.
To be successful at this, however, you should come up with an organized plan ahead of time.
You should make it a point to document your creation once it is all done so that you can prove to everyone what you managed to construct.
43. Play with Bubbles
There is a lot of fun to be had with bubbles. Of course, if you are not content to simply blow bubbles out of a store-bought bottle, you can take things up a notch:
Grab a big bucket or tub and make a batch of incredibly strong soapy water.
Then create your very own bubble blower with some wire that has been twisted into a circle with a size of your choosing.
Here, your challenge is to create the biggest bubble possible and to keep it from popping as long as you can.
Not only is this is fun, it is also a large scale science experiment as well.
44. Create a Mini Golf Course
Mini golf is something that keeps children and adults entertained for hours on end. This does depend on how complicated the course is, though.
If you are bored with your local mini golf course, why not try your hand at constructing your own?
Not only can you get really creative with your ideas, you can also spread it over a larger area.
You should be able to find all you need in your home.
However, if you want a more permanent option, you may have to take a trip to the hardware store. The end result will certainly be worth it though.
Surfing is one of those activities that finds its way onto most people’s bucket lists, and with good reason. It is fun, exhilarating, and a great workout.
The good news with this sport is that it is actually quite widespread. So, you should have no problem finding a rental spot near the beach.
But take note:
You may want to get a lesson or two before you head into the water. This way, you may actually manage to stay upright for a short while at least.
For the best surfing weather, you should wait until the wind has picked up a bit so that there are decent sized waves to choose from.
46. Go Treasure Hunting on the Beach
Do you have a metal detector with you? If you do, great and if not, don’t worry. It is quite easy to find a metal detector on your own if you know what you are looking. You just need to figure out what your best option regarding models is before heading to the store.
Once you have your metal detector in hand, it is time to head to the beach. As you probably are aware from experience, it is quite easy to lose a number of things among the shifting sands. As a result, you will be able to find lots of interesting things – some may even be valuable.
47. Pick Fruit
So, depending on what time of year it is and where you live, there may be some restrictions with the fruit that you can pick.
However, as long as you find a nearby farm, there should be able to pick fruits or vegetables. While you may have to pay a fee, you will get fresh produce.
It is a good idea to call ahead and make an appointment, though.
You should also check just what is in season for you to pick. Still, this is a great way to pass a couple of hours, even if you have to drive to your destination first.
48. Outdoor Photography
As the name implies, outdoor photography refers to any pictures taken, well, outside. It doesn’t always have to be of nature, however.
Instead, the images that you capture can simply be meaningful or attractive to you. So, outdoor photography can include pictures of the city or buildings.
If you are quite serious about this endeavor, then it would be worth it to you to invest in a good camera.
On the other hand, if it is simply a hobby, you can use your smartphone, which probably has a rather powerful camera built into it.
Some people also prefer using Polaroid cameras for added effect too.
49. Outdoor Movie Experience
It is quite possible that there is an outdoor movie theater close to where you live. Of course, these aren’t popular everywhere.
You may even be able to find a play that is being hosted in the open air.
If these services aren’t available to you, it is time to simply construct your own. You can borrow a projector and set up your very own outdoor movie screen with a white sheet.
Then it is just a matter of inviting people over (and asking them to bring their own cushions).
This activity is best carried out at night when visibility is better.
50. Soap Soccer
If you enjoy playing soccer, there is an excellent way to make it even more fun for you and your friends – add soap into the mix!
This game is best played on a softer surface, such as grass.
You will need to lay out a tarp that covers the area that you want to play in. Then introduce soap and water onto the ground and spread it around.
You will need to set up goals on either end of the ‘field’. Once this has been done, it is time to get the game started.
You and your teammates can slide around trying to score in your opponents’ goal.
These are some of the best things that you can do outdoors if you are looking for fun ways to get some fresh air.