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5 outdoor activities to do with your family

A bit of fresh air does everyone the world of good, so why not do one of these fun outdoor activities with the family?

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Staying inside all day can be tempting, especially when you’ve got a house full of tech to entertain you. But when it comes to creating healthier habits, not much beats getting outside.  

Spending time outside boosts your mental wellbeing, gives you a great opportunity to get active, and may even help you sleep better – and that goes for the whole family, so get the kids off their games consoles and head outside with our activity ideas. 

  1. A nature scavenger hunt

A scavenger hunt is the perfect activity for little ones that’ll really capture their imaginations. Create a list of items or specific things to find in nature (ideas include a big leaf, shiny stone, a spider, a tree stump) and get your child(ren) to tick them off as they find them. You can make it as easy or as challenging as you like, and you could either work as a team to tick off everything on your list, or get competitive by seeing who can find everything the quickest. 

If you’re not sure what to include, check out the Woodland Trust’s guide to creating a scavenger hunt for every season here.  

  1. Geocaching 

If your kids are a little too old to be impressed with a scavenger hunt, give geocaching a go. It’s like a real treasure hunting game and should hold the interest of those who’d rather be playing video games.  

A geocache is a cleverly hidden container hidden by fellow players, and there are millions of them across the world. There are thought to be over 200,000 in the UK alone, so chances are you’ve got some in your area to find.  

Finding a geocache may involve solving riddles or finding camouflaged containers. A lot of geocaches have a logbook, featuring messages from others who have found it, and you’re encouraged to leave your own message. Some people add their own bits of treasure to the container, but that’s not essential. 

The golden rule of geocaching? Don’t spoilt it for others. Leave the container where you found it and enjoy the fun of finding something cool. 

Head to the Geocaching website here to find everything you’ll need to get started. They’ve got a handy app that’s free to use that’ll show you locations, then it’s up to you to get outside and find them.  

  1. A family bike ride 

If you’ve all got bikes, a family bike ride is a wonderful thing to do when the weather’s nice. Plan a route that’s suitable for all members of your family and pack a picnic to eat along the way. Remember to make sure everyone’s got a helmet that fits, and that everyone feels comfortable when cycling, especially if your route involves cycling on the road. 

If you’ve got children who are too young to cycle alongside you on their own bikes, consider getting a bike seat for them on your bike, or a bike trailer. You may be able to find some cheap ones on Facebook Marketplace or eBay. 

Not got a bike? Search online to find cycle hire nearby – a lot of outdoor attractions like parks or popular bike paths have ones you can borrow.  

  1. A family gardening day 

If you’re lucky enough to have your own garden, or an allotment, get the whole family involved with its upkeep. You can buy small tools especially for little hands, so let them get stuck in with planting.  

Gardening is something kids of all ages can get involved in. Plan your garden together and decide what you’d like to plant, then give each family member a specific responsibility to make it a true collaborative effort.  

Think about planting your own vegetables and herbs as well as attractive flowers, as then you’ll have the added bonus of harvesting your crops at a later date, and you can work together to use them in a meal.  

  1. Go for a walk 

Going for a walk is the simplest thing you can do together as a family. Walking is fantastic exercise, so it’s great for getting you all moving, but it’s also a lovely way to reconnect.  

Having said that, you may experience some resistance from some family members who see ‘going for a walk’ as something boring and time consuming. Set a positive example: don’t frame it as exercise, rather a fun bit of exploring. Plan a good route (the Ramblers have over 4,000 routes in their walking route library here, take some snacks, and have as many breaks as you need along the way. 

You could even try turning your walk into a photography challenge if older kids and teens are reluctant to join in. Bring smartphones or cameras and set a competition to take the best nature photo. 

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