Sometimes a last-minute weekend adventure is just what your family needs! No matter the season, there’s always something you can do together. By clearing your calendar, turning off your notifications and going out into the world together, you can make memories that will last a lifetime.
Here are 14 last-minute weekend activities to do with your kids:
- Take a Hike
Make some trail mix, grab your walking shoes and hit the nearest park. For more ideas on things you can do together in the great outdoors, check out 101 Outdoor Activities and Games for Kids.
- Rent a Room
Rent a hotel room close to your home for a mini getaway with the kids. You don’t need to go far away to enjoy an indoor pool and room service in bed.
- Be a Tourist
Make a list of the places you’ve always wanted to visit in your hometown. Then, put on your tourist hats and go out and see it all with a fresh perspective.
- Get Out on the Water
If the weather cooperates, rent kayaks, take a ferry or visit the beach. Just be sure to bring some hot cocoa along for the trip on cooler days.
- Hit a Trampoline Park
Over the past few years, trampoline parks have been springing up all across the country. If you have an active family that’s up for some fun, a 90-minute jumping session or a trampoline class is a great way to spend the day!
- Play Laser Tag
Think your family has what it takes to win? Hit the laser park with another family, or split up into teams and challenge each other.
- Take a Family Cooking Class
Cooking classes are a great way to get your kids to try new foods, and learning a new skill together can really help you all bond as a family. You may even get your kids to start cooking meals for you!
- Go Fish
Fishing on a pier or boat is a nice, quiet way to relax and connect with nature. One of your kids may even catch the night’s dinner.
- Take in a Show
Entertainment doesn’t have to be Broadway-quality to be enjoyable. Grab the kids and go to a performance put on by a local theater, or just go and enjoy your favorite coffee house’s live entertainment.
- Visit a Museum
“Museum” probably sounds like a dirty word to your kids, but you should keep an eye out for exhibits that may strike their fancy. Your little fashionista may love to see a costume exhibition, while your son the gamer may go over the moon for a show that depicts the history of video games. Some TV exhibits, like those in Los Angeles and New York, even let you binge-watch old shows for free!
- Seek Out Nature
Many areas have a year-round nature center that features information about local flora and fauna. If that strikes your family’s fancy, check out the center nearest you.
- Ride a Bike
Did you know that there are thousands of miles of old railroads that have been converted to free trails all over the United States? The Rails-to-Trails Conservancy has been working since 1986 to create trails that cover miles of prairies, mountain passes, canyons and riverbanks, each with its own story. Grab your bikes, find your nearest rail trail and head out on an adventure.
- Search for Stars
Are you a family of night owls? Then take in a planetarium show or visit a local observatory to see some real stars.
- Do Good
Lending a helping hand is a great way to spend your spare time as a family. You can clean out your closets and donate old clothes and toys, stock shelves at a local food pantry, make peanut-butter-and-jelly sandwiches for a nearby soup kitchen or grab work gloves, a litter stick and trash bags for a beach cleanup. Teaching your kids that it’s important to help others is a major parenting win!
Do you have more ideas for last-minute weekend outings? Let us know in the comments below!
Cara Stevens is a freelance writer who lives in Connecticut with her husband and two children. She has authored several books for children and writes frequently about parenting, hair care, DIY crafts, food and healthy living. Follow her on Facebook and Twitter.