Enjoy more of the great outdoors without spending a lot more. Try these free (and almost free) activities and take in a breath of fresh air while having fun with your family.
1. Be a tourist in your neighborhood
If you are like many people, perhaps you are so busy with your day-to-day activities that you have never given thought to some of the sites that are right in your own backyard. Springtime is a great time to get out and explore. Visit the statues in town and learn more about their significance. Check out the lobbies of schools or government buildings for exhibits on local history. Visit a park on the other side of your city. Take the elevator to the top floor of the tallest building in town and enjoy the view. Go window shopping downtown. Be creative! There are many opportunities to gain a new perspective on where you live.
2. Go geocaching
If you enjoy hiking and a good treasure hunt, geocaching might be the ultimate activity for you and your family. Using your smartphone or GPS device, you can search for hidden “caches” in your area based on its GPS coordinates. Visit Geocaching.com to learn more and to go on your own exciting and free adventure.
3. Fly a kite – one that you make yourself!
Head out to an open space on a clear, breezy day and fly a kite. Of course you can purchase a kite, but you can save money and have some extra fun by making one yourself. To help make your flight a success, read this Beginner’s Guide to Flying a Kite from Kites.com.
4. Get growing
Whether you use a few flowerpots or a small section of your yard, it is easy to start a garden. Garden solo or get the whole family involved. Kids will love the chance to get their hands dirty and see the rewards of their hard work in the following weeks and months. Before heading to the nursery, do some research together to determine what flowers, plants or vegetables will work best in your garden’s location. Here are some other tips for starting a garden with your children.
5. Have fun with flashlights
A warm clear night is the perfect time to play flashlight games. From flashlight limbo and flashlight tag to flashlight hide-and-seek, there are a variety of ways you can have a blast with beams of light.
6. Visit a museum for free
The Blue Star Museum program gives military families the opportunity to visit thousands of museums throughout the country free of charge. To take advantage of this program and enjoy the outdoors, consider visiting a sculpture park, a botanical garden, wildlife sanctuary, or a children’s museum that has an outdoor play area.
7. Hunt for natural treasures
Encourage your children to love and respect the environment by having a nature scavenger hunt. Whether you go to a park or stick to your own backyard, you are sure to find many natural treasures. Write a list of what everyone should look for such as a heart-shaped rock, a red flower, a brown leaf, a nut, etc. This is a fun activity for any age group. Here is a free printable that includes some other great ideas.
This spring and summer, step outside with your children and encourage them to play, learn and explore! It’s a wonderful way to spend time together and make special family memories.