Great things to do outside with the kids for free
With spring in the air and summer approaching, there is nothing we want more than to head outside and enjoy the fresh air. These tips from Walkers help you and the kids enjoy quality time outdoors, whatever the weather.
Free things to do with the kids – in your own garden or the park
A fun activity right outside your door is bird watching or wildlife counting. Even in the most urban environment, there are plenty of living things to observe, and our favourite charity, the RSBP has several great resources to help you learn more about the wildlife in your garden. With binoculars and a piece of paper, note down any birds, insects and animals you see in the garden, and give the kids a prize for finding the most variety or spotting the largest number.
One of the most enjoyable outdoor experiences for children is also one of the easiest. Eating outside is a special treat, and bad weather only makes it more exciting! In the sunshine, try a barbecue or a simple picnic with shareable food and individual portions. Pack some mini oat biscuits or one of the many Walkers snack packs. If the weather is miserable, wrap up warm and wear waterproof clothes, sit on towels wrapped in plastic bags and make a tent of umbrellas. A warming soup in a thermos or hot dogs from a flask is great dinner food, or you can make it even easier with sandwiches and tea. To ensure dining al fresco is a positive experience, always include a little treat at the end, whether it is a delicious cookie, a slice of cake or a sweet fruit.
Outdoor activities kids love – in the forest
Take the whole family on a hike, pack a lunch and bring binoculars to look at birds and wildlife. Good walking boots are a must, and pack layers to keep warm and comfortable when you sit down to enjoy a treat. Even kids love long walks when they can look forward to rewards like these cute miniature shortbread Scottie dogs when they’ve reached that hill or crossed that stream. Remember to bring an extra pair of socks for the drive home, and find good places to walk on the Ramblers website.
Games bring out the competitive side of the whole family. Pick a letter and see who can collect the most things starting with that letter. You can also bring pen and paper and write down the things you see. For younger children, nature bingo is a fun way to explore, crossing off pictures in a grid. If there is a stream, you can all race little boats or Pooh sticks, with a prize for the winner. Another fun game is miming animals you can find in the forest or the farm, teaching kids about life in nature. Always make sure you leave no litter, do not disturb animals and never damage the environment. Walkers are committed to sustainable production and environmental care.
Fun things to do for the whole family – at the beach
With a bucket and spade, building sand castles are always fun. In warm weather, build moats and spires, decorating with shells and sticks. The kids can also use the bucket to collect pretty shells, unusual stones and nice driftwood, which you can all later make into a collage. It makes a fun and personal present for grandparents!
Treasure hunts are always exciting. Make a pirate map with instructions on where to find the buried treasure, and carefully burn the edges off to make it look more authentic. Dig down the loot in the sand – this shortbread suitcase tin from Walkers makes a great container, and you can add to the sweet treats like chocolate chip cookies, with chocolate gold coins and shiny gumballs.