Summer is just around the corner and we can’t wait! To get yourself prepped for all the possibilities, check out our list of the best outdoor summer activities you can get yourself ready to partake in.
What would summer be without swimming (and lounging by the pool or the beach)? Break out the swimsuits, don’t forget the sunscreen, and head for your nearest swimming pool or body of water. Whether it’s chlorinated or natural, there is just nothing like moving your body through the water, enjoying a beautiful sunny day, and then retiring to a beach towel or lounge chair and enjoying the warmth of the sun as you dry off and chill out. There really is nothing better in the summer.
Whether you enjoy a quick stroll around the neighborhood, a walk around a beautiful lake, or hiking with a full backpack over all kinds of adventurous terrain, summer was just meant for walking and hiking. Consider layering your outfit depending upon where you are hiking. Even in summer, there are locales where mornings and evenings can be chilly. Especially if you are hiking in high elevations, consider bringing a women’s fleece jacket. Once the sun is high and you are moving you may prefer a women’s tank top, but you can always wear one underneath and then tie your jacket around your waist. When you are starting out or finishing up, you will be glad that you have it handy.
Make sure to have good footwear that is already broken in for walking and hiking. Whether that means a good pair of sneakers or hiking boots that will give you both ankle support and extra traction, good shoes and socks will go a long way to keeping you comfy and protecting you from injuries. After all, you want to focus on the great scenery and the conversation, not your feet.
Whether you are a bicycling enthusiast or haven’t been on two wheels in years, summer is a wonderful time for this pastime. It’s a great way to explore new areas, and with bicycle trailers and tike bikes, it’s a family activity for all ages. Many cities have bike trails and have maps of them available online. From a quick ride with the kids to a cool day trip, you’ll be glad that you got out there.
If it’s been a while since you have been on your bike, make sure to give it a safety inspection (or have a professional do so) before you hit the road or the trails. Staying hydrated is key with cycling regardless of your age or level of experience. If you will be going long distances, consider packing calorie-dense snacks that are easy to carry and eat when you stop for a break.
One of the great parts of camping is its versatility. You can camp in a camper, a cabin, a tent, or under the stars with amenities that range from hot showers and nearby restaurants to the full-on beauty of the wilderness and all that it has to offer.
Don’t overlook “light camping” opportunities like camping in your backyard. It can be a great experience for little ones while keeping things simple. Things like s’mores over a “campfire,” singing songs, and stargazing don't require travel. Have them bed down in personalized sleeping bags in a tent with the peace of mind that you can all have breakfast in the kitchen in the morning and hot showers at home.
Whether you are the grill master yourself or just enjoy it when others bring their skills to outdoor cuisine, this is one of the best parts of summer. Try some new marinades or grill some foods that you haven’t tried before, like new vegetables.
Grilling has so many advantages. It gives foods flavor that you can’t get when you cook inside, it makes clean-up easy, and instead of heating up your home in the summer, you can enjoy hanging out on the deck or in the backyard while your favorite meats and veggies sizzle away. If your partner loves grilling, encourage them! Go for easy side dishes that you can prepare in advance (or pick up at your local deli) to cut down on the work. Don’t forget to enjoy each other’s company during the preparation as well as during the meal and winding down afterward.
We may not think of lounging as an “activity,” but when you think back on the best parts of summer, this one must come to mind. Whether you are enjoying a cool beverage with family and friends after an active day in the sun or gathering around the table for good conversation while enjoying a summer breeze, lounging is the life.
Decorating your patio or deck with outdoor furniture can give you an “outdoor room” to enjoy throughout the summer and fall for casual meals, a quiet cup of coffee, or a glass of wine with your sweetheart by candlelight.
Whatever summer activity you choose, get out there and enjoy!