Originally Published on July 16, 2021. Last Updated on February 12, 2024.
If you’re looking for something to do outside, consider taking up an outdoor hobby. It lets you unplug from electronics, connect with nature, and bring joy to your daily life. There are plenty of outdoor pursuits to try, but these 20 activities will let you leave your comfort zone while staying close to home.
The Benefits of Having a Hobby
Hobbies can improve the overall quality of your life. If you’re looking for a new hobby, here are several of the benefits you may experience:
- Reduced stress
- Meeting new people
- Stimulating your mind
- Boosting your physical health
- Increasing your confidence and self-esteem
- Seeing the world and experiencing new things
- Taking time for yourself
20 Outdoor Hobbies to Try
Stargazing is an excellent choice if you’re looking for a hobby you and little ones can do together. Be sure to get a high-quality telescope or binoculars to maximize your cosmos exploration.
2. Outdoor Movies
Take your movie marathons outside and watch your favorite flicks under the stars. You could even start hosting weekly movie nights for friends and family during the warmer months. If there’s a new family in your neighborhood, invite them over for a kid-friendly movie mixer.
Philanthropy is a form of self-care that also helps those around you. If you have a laptop, a good internet connection, and a quiet spot on your patio, you can volunteer in your community from the comfort of your home. Online tutoring, building a website for a local nonprofit, and grant writing are all great ways to give back.
Whenever the weather is nice, take your mat outside and flow through your sun salutations or sink into pigeon pose from the privacy of your patio. You’ll get a healthy dose of vitamin D and an instant mood boost.
If you’ve ever been a fan of darts, consider taking it up a notch with archery. It’s a stress-relieving activity that improves hand-eye coordination and builds upper-body strength. A good recurve bow, a quiver of arrows, and a target placed in a safe spot are all you need to start.
Whether you want to start a vegetable patch or grow beautiful blooms, backyard gardening can help you reconnect with nature and relieve stress. Bonus: This calorie-burning activity counts as exercise too.
If you’ve always wanted to be king (or queen) of the grill but have yet to get around to it, now is a perfect time. You can show off your culinary skills while spending time outdoors with your friends and family.
If it’s been some time since you’ve hit the links, set up a driving net or putting green in your backyard to finesse your swing or short game. And if you happen to catch your new neighbor pulling a set of golf clubs out of the moving truck, invite them over to play once they finish unpacking.
This is a fun and easy activity you can enjoy with friends during your next backyard barbecue. The standard badminton court size is 20’x44′, so you’ll need a good amount of square footage to accommodate the net and playing space.
Take your kids on a backyard camping trip. This is a creative way to save money while treating your family to fun in the fresh air. Plus, if you have young children who’ve never been camping, this lets you test the waters to see if they like it.
Grab your brushes, get outside, and paint in the open air. Creating a mural on the side of your home, finger painting with the kids, recreating your flower garden with watercolors—you have a variety of outlets for your imagination.
There’s something so satisfying about working with your hands, and this activity gives you the perfect opportunity to build your own backyard enhancements such as decor, raised garden beds, or a new deck. Woodworking is ideal for all skill levels, whether you’re a beginner building your first birdhouse or a seasoned carpenter whose handiwork is seen all over your home.
13. Keep Chickens
Interested in becoming more self-sufficient? In addition to gardening, you can try your hand at raising chickens. This hobby is a little more advanced and requires some forethought (e.g., finding a nearby poultry veterinarian, building a predator-proof coop, etc.), but if you’re willing to do the work, the fresh eggs and easy composting will be worth the effort.
Like raising chickens, beekeeping is a labor of love—but the results speak for themselves. You get delicious honey straight from the hive and support bees—the precious pollinators that play crucial roles in agricultural success.
If you don’t have a garden, you can still find edible plants in your backyard. Hunting and gathering food is an age-old practice that’s been gaining popularity in recent years. It’s a great way to connect with nature, save money, and get an extra serving of fruits and veggies.
You don’t need to live out in the country or deep in the woods to forage successfully—plenty of plants can be found in urban areas. Some cities have even created food forests specifically made for this food-based hobby. Just be sure to brush up on which plants to pick and the local laws regarding foraging.
The health boost you get from spending time outside is generous, and meditation has its own benefits. Why not blend the two for a holistic outdoor hobby you can enjoy anytime? Find a secluded spot on your patio, arrange a comfy cushioned chair and ottoman, and add wind chimes or a water fountain for soothing sounds that help you melt into mindfulness.
Taking up photography lets you immortalize moments with the press of a button. From nature shots to family gatherings, your backyard has plenty of photo opportunities. Get your photos framed and give them away as gifts or adorn your walls with pictures of your loved ones.
Preserve your family’s memories in a unique way with scrapbooking. This relaxing hobby is perfect for beginners and pros. When there’s no chance of wind or rain, take your supplies outside and design page after page on your patio.
19. Bird Watching
If you love the sights and songs of our avian neighbors, grab your binoculars and enjoy a bout of bird watching. Buy a field guide that tells you all about the local birds in your area, and hang feeders and houses around your yard to bring the winged creatures right to you.
Having a tough day? Grab your journal and go outside. Jotting your thoughts down can help release pent-up stress, and there’s no better salve for the soul than sunshine and fresh air.