The Summer Solstice is an age-old holiday that celebrates when the sun has reached its annual peak. It’s the longest day of the year, meaning it’s the most daylight we will see than any other time of the year. Summer Solstice is an interesting holiday in the sense that it doesn’t occur on a fixed date every year, but instead occurs when the sun reaches its most northernmost point. In the northern hemisphere, this typically occurs around June 21, marking the official beginning of summer.
The Summer Solstice is celebrated around the world, so this great mid-summer holiday is the perfect excuse to celebrate the sunshine. Grab your sun hats and prepare for one of these fun socially distanced activities to celebrate the Summer Solstice this year.
It’s the longest day of the year and totally worth getting up early and staying up late to watch the sunrise and set. Depending on where you are, your sunrise and sunset times will be different. Look up your times and plan to be outside with a view and a special someone or friends to watch the sun go up and down on this magical day of the year. Remember that the air could be dewy and chilly in the wee hours of the morning. Bring along an outdoor chair to keep you off the ground and a cozy throw blanket to ensure you stay warm while watching the sunrise.
Many teachers and yoga studios offer special Summer Solstice yoga classes. Yoga is an ancient Indian spiritual tradition that puts a lot of emphasis on worshipping or greeting the sun and solar energies. Put on your women’s yoga pants and join a socially-distanced outdoor yoga class or an online yoga class to do some sun salutations and stretching to honor the sunniest day of the year while feeling good and relaxed afterward.
The Summer Solstice is a great occasion to get outdoors with friends or family and have a socially distanced picnic. Bring along separate blankets and baskets to ensure that everyone can stay well distanced while still enjoying being outdoors on the longest day of the year. This is the perfect occasion to wear that favorite sunny summer dress to enjoy and celebrate the official start of summer.
The Summer Solstice has its roots in earth-based traditions which typically celebrate the day with elaborate and ornate ceremonies, rituals, and celebrations. Do something a little special and old school to honor our Mother Earth on this special day by making a small offering. Buy or pick flowers and leave them on the earth in a beautiful arrangement. This is also a great activity for kids to participate in. You can even charge up your offering by writing down intentions you wish to see come to fruition and leaving them alongside the flowers. Don’t be surprised if all your wishes come true!
Whether you are lucky enough to live by the ocean, lake, river, or pool, a great way to celebrate the Summer Solstice is to spend it outside, enjoying the sun and splashing in the water. It’s easy to stay socially distanced during a day on the beach. Pack the beach towels, as well as swimsuits, and an umbrella, and let’s go! Because the sun is the strongest on this day, be sure to bring along ample sunscreen and sun cover-ups so you can enjoy celebrating the Summer Solstice without getting burned.
What better way to celebrate the Summer Solstice than by spending the day in the garden. Get the family or friends involved and plan to do some planting. Today is a great day to plant flowers, vegetables, or even just to weed the beds. If you don’t have a garden, you can buy a special house plant or repot plants. Or, head over to your local botanical garden to park to take in the views and scents of some of nature’s most beautiful flowers.
Another great socially distanced Summer Solstice activity is to spend the day outside on the trails. Going for a hike is a wonderful way to involve the whole family and friends. Bring along a lot of water and sunscreen in your backpack as the sun is hot on Summer Solstice. If you have kids coming along, choose local trails or make a day trip to a place where you can spend the day outside.
Camping trips are perfect for those mid-summer evenings when the sun sets late and rises early. Plan a camping trip with friends or family and keep it socially distanced by staying in different tents. Pack the tents and personalized sleeping bags! Being outside and enjoying the rise and setting of the sun from the depths of nature is a fabulous way to celebrate the Summer Solstice.
In many traditions, the Summer Solstice was a time to light a bonfire and hold different dances and celebrations around the fire. Take some inspiration from the old days and plan to have a fire in the backyard. Make it a fun socially distanced activity by inviting friends and having a BBQ. Enjoy sitting by the fire and roasting marshmallows and sausages under the stars after enjoying your late-night sunset.
The Summer Solstice is traditionally all about honoring nature and the sun. Use this occasion as an opportunity to celebrate life, spend time in nature, and connect with loved ones while enjoying the longest day of the year.