Keep kids busy all summer long with the ultimate Summer Bucket List ideas. Filled with 110 fun ideas and activities to entertain families so you don’t have to hear “I’m Bored” all summer break.
No more stressing about what to do with your kids just look through the summer checklist to inspire your day. You’ll find new ways to enjoy the summer months together.
As a bonus, there is a free printable summer activity checklist and a blank form to make your own summer bucket list. The checklist is a great way to get you ready for the best summer at home with your kids.
Look through this Summer Bucket List and start planning your awesome summer vacation with the kids today.
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Fun Summer Bucket List Ideas for Kids
Let’s go through all the fun activities you can do with your kids this summer. The list of things to do is broken up into four categories, Indoor & Outdoor Kid’s Activities, Crafts, Art & Stem, and Local Places to visit.
All great ways to spend your summer days enjoying & entertaining your kids. Use it to do all your summer planning with this huge list of summer bucket list ideas.
Grab your Free Printable Summer Bucket List and see how many bucket list ideas you can do this summer. Included is a page to make your own bucket list too.
Get Organized this summer with a free Daily Summer Schedule for Kids and keep your kids off electronics all day with free printable Summer Rules for Screen Time.
Kids Outdoor Activities
Water Balloon Fight
Fill up the water balloons and have a family water balloon battle in your backyard. Make filling up the water balloons an easy job with Bunch of Balloons that hook right up to your water hose. Bring out your favorite water toys too.
Head outside for a fun scavenger hunt with the kids. You can do this on a hike or through your own neighborhood. Old kids will love making it a selfie scavenger hunt. Use these free printable Neighborhood & Nature Scavenger Hunts.
Enjoy a local outdoor concert that your town or park district offers. Enjoy listening to the music and having a picnic.
Roasting smores is a favorite summer bucket list idea for all ages. You can make them over a fire pit or bake them in the oven. All you need is Graham Crackers, Marshmallows, and Chocolate bars.
Play in a Sprinkler
Keep cool by running through a sprinkler in your backyard or sliding on a slip n’ slide.
Summer is the perfect time for camping. Make it easy by pitching the tent in your backyard. Tell stories around a fire pit and roast a hot dog and smores to eat.
If you are more adventurous head out on a camping trip.
Go skateboarding around your neighborhood or at your local skate park.
Water Gun Battle
Get some water guns and have a fun water fight in your backyard. It’s a great way to cool off this summer.
Tip: Fill up a large bin with water to make it easier for kids to refill their water guns.
Red Light Green Light
Play a game of Red Light Green Light. The kids will run when you say green light and stop when you say red light. Pick a finish line in your yard that they need to reach to win the game.
Enjoy a BBQ
What’s a great summer without a BBQ? Host a BBQ with friends and family and enjoy eating and talking with everyone. Entertain everyone with a few backyard games to play.
Read in a Hammock
Relax this summer by reading a good book in a Hammock. Finding a new fun place to read will help encourage your kids to keep up their reading over the summer.
Let the kids scour the backyard or local trails for cool bugs to collect. Add small bugs to a bug catcher kit so you can observe the bugs up close. Then when you’re done for the day let them go.
Take a Bike Ride
Get your kids to exercise on a bike ride in your local neighborhood or try a new trail for bikes near you.
Decorate your driveway and sidewalk with chalk. You can even play a fun sidewalk chalk game that will keep the kids entertained all day.
Hosting a lemonade stand is the perfect summer activity for kids. Have the kids create a big sign, make their lemonade stand, and the lemonade to sell.
Tell Ghost Stories
Head to your backyard firepit or gather in your house and tell funny or scary Ghost Stories.
One of the best parts of summer is catching fireflies. Head out at night to catch them and don’t forget your bug catcher kit.
While you are out catching fireflies do some stargazing. See if your kids see any patterns in the stars above.
Start a Garden
Grow your own vegetables, fruit, or flowers in a traditional garden plot in your yard or in pots to grow on your porch.
Have a Picnic
Enjoy a picnic lunch or dinner in your backyard or at a local park.
Make an obstacle course in your backyard with items you have a home. For instance having kids jump through a hula hoop, run around cones, go up a ladder, and down a slide.
Just use what you have and make small obstacles. Older kids will enjoy turning it into a race.
Kids love blowing bubbles and watching the wind take them away or running to pop them. Older kids will really like making trick bubbles with large bubble wands.
Play Yard Games
Create a bunch of DIY backyard games with Dollar tree items to keep kids busy all day.
You could even create a lawn game tournament by putting out a bunch of yard games like Ladder Game, Corn Hole, and Spike Ball in a circuit and see who can win the most games.
Color and fold a piece of paper into an airplane. Then see how far you can toss your paper airplane in the backyard.
Fly a Kite
On a windy day head outside to try and fly a kite. See how high you can get it to go.
If you want a more structured summer you’ll love our Summer Camp at Home Planner. With 8 weeks of preplanned themes, fun summer activities, schedules & more. Just print it out and your Mom Camp is planned. Bonus save tons of money not sending your kids to a traditional camp.
Kids Indoor Activities
Make a Time Capsule
Take time to keep memories of 2022 and add them to a time capsule you can bury in the backyard. Kids will love finding interesting items to add to their capsules.
Make Root Beer Floats
Learn how to make root beer floats and enjoy drinking them together.
Family Game Night
Plan a fun family game night everyone can play together. You’ll have the best time just hanging out and playing games.
Make the night easy and memorable with our 12 months of preplanned activities in the Ultimate Family Game Night Planner.
If your kids enjoy board games find out about our favorite family board games. For kids who love solving mysteries try these fun Detective Board games.
If you have Teens or Tweens in the family try one of these 32 Board Games Teens & Tweens will actually play.
Minute to Win It Games
Have a Minute to Win It contest with the kids or the whole family. These are quick 1 minute challenges that are hilarious to watch.
Get ideas in our 20 Easy Minute to Win It Games or Teen & Tween Minute to Win It Games. Everyone will have a blast playing these.
Homemade Ice Cream
Learn how to make homemade ice cream with the kids. When it’s done have a taste testing to try the different flavors you make.
Plan a Sleepover
Invite a couple of your child’s best friends to bring over a sleeping bag and have a slumber party. Be ready with some Fun Things to Do at a Sleepover.
Build a Fort
Let the kids build huge blanket forts in the house. They’ll have fun creating it and then they can use it to read new books or play with toys inside.
Cook a Meal Together
Look through recipes with your kids and pick out a meal you’d all like to try. Then cook together and try your food. If you have a favorite family dish teach your kids how to make that too.
Escape Room Games
Enjoy the challenge of solving puzzles that will give you the clues you need to escape the room. It’s a great way to get your whole family working together.
Here are some of our Favorite Printable Escape Room Games perfect for playing at home.
Play Hot Lava
This is a classic game to play with kids. Drop pillows or cushions to the floor and let the kids know they can only step on those because the rest of the floor is hot lava. Kids need to make it across the room hopping from pillow to pillow without touching the “hot lava”.
Give the kids a bucket of random Lego pieces. Then give them 10 minutes to make a cool creation. You could also give the kids a theme idea of what to build which will help give them direction.
Play Board Games
Pull out all those dusty board games and play together. You could try a new board game each week over the summer. Check out these Family Game ideas.
Play Card Games
Add to your board game rotation some fun card games to play.
Keep cool this summer by eating homemade popsicles. Use popsicle holders and add your favorite juice or fruit smoothy.
Another classic game kids really love is Charades. Kids act out the word they receive and their teammates have to guess the word correctly in 1 minute. All you need is Charades words and you’re ready to play.
Play Hide & Seek
This game is always a hit for all ages.
Eat Hot Dogs
Create a hot dog bar for the family. You can put out all different types of toppings for the kids to try eating on their hot dogs.
Let everyone make their own pizza for lunch. Have the kids roll out pizza dough and add the toppings they want to their own pizza.
Enjoy baking cookies together and then designing them with frosting and sprinkles. Don’t like to bake? Try these insanely good No Bake Oreo Balls the kids can decorate too.
Keep kids active when you’re stuck indoors on a rainy day with a fun game of Balloon Tennis.
Would You Rather Questions
Ask your kids silly Would You Rather Questions and listen to their hilarious answers. Use this free printable list:
Funniest Would You Rather Questions for Kids
Best Would You Rather Questions for Teens & Tweens
Crank up the music and play a fun game of freeze dance. It’s sure to get all your kids moving.
Enjoy a fun game of Bingo at home with your kids. Grab these Free Printable Bingo Cards and you’ll be ready to play.
Do a big family puzzle you can work on together or smaller puzzles individual kids can complete.
Create Mad Libs
Let the kids write a funny story and then remove a word in each sentence. Have them ask their siblings to give them words to fill in and then read the story with the new words. No time to write a story? Use pre-made Mad Libs.
Look at Old Photos
Take a trip down memory lane looking at old pictures.
Make a TikTok Video
TikTok is all the rage with teens and tweens these days so let them make a cool video you approve of and send it out.
Grab Your Free Printable Summer Bucket List
Crafts, Art & STEM
Make a DIY Bird Feeder that can hang in your backyard. Cover a toilet paper roll in peanut butter or sun butter. Then roll it in birdseed. Lastly use a piece of yarn as your string to hang it on a tree.
Coffee Filter Butterflies
Make easy and cute coffee filter butterflies. All you need is coffee filters, markers & pipe cleaners.
DIY Laser Maze
Keep the kids busy thinking of creative ways to design their indoor hallway laser maze with steamers and tape. See who can get through the maze the fastest without touching the “lasers”.
DIY Race Track
If your kids love cars create an indoor race track with painter’s tape on the floor or a large box going down the stairs.
Have the kids help you make DIY Playdough and then play with it.
Draw a Picture
Give the kids a theme and ask them to draw a picture. For example – the beach, your house, playground, family, sports
Use the sun to help you trace outdoors by using shadows. You can create shadow art with sidewalk chalk or with paper and pencil.
Let the kids first go on a hike to find some rocks. Then bring them home to paint and place in your backyard.
Create a batch of DIY Slime at home.
Get some beads or cereal and let the kids string these to make necklaces and bracelets.
Create beautiful DIY Sun-Catchers to hang on your windows or outside in the yard.
Paint with Bubbles
Kids can make unique art pictures by painting with bubbles. They’ll love seeing all the cool patterns they can make with colored bubbles.
Let the kids find a few leaves of different sizes. Then lay the leaves under a piece of paper and rub a pencil across so that you see a rubbing come through.
Local Places to Visit
You don’t need to head out on a Road Trip or family vacation this summer there are so many fun things to do in your local area.
Why not plan a Staycation and create new adventures in your own city or town? It’s a great opportunity to explore everything your area has to offer.
Here are some fun places to go.
Go to a Baseball Game
Enjoy a day out at the ball game eating hot dogs and watching your favorite team play baseball.
Tip: You’ll find cheaper tickets at a AA baseball game rather than an MLB game and they can be just as much fun.
Visit your local farmer’s market to show kids all the different products farmers grow. Then buy some fresh fruit or veggies to eat at home.
Meet New Friends
Head to a local park, playground, pool, or storytime and meet new kids and parents to play with this summer.
Ride Roller Coasters
Go to a local amusement park and try all the fun rides. Your kids will love the thrill of riding a roller coaster.
Ride a Ferris Wheel
When a carnival comes in town or at the amusement park try riding a Ferris Wheel.
Visit a Local State Park
This is a great time of year to take a hike in your local state park or nature preserve.
Keep the kids engaged with a Nature Scavenger Hunt in our Kid’s Hiking Tips. If you’re willing to go further check out our Favorite National Park with Kids.
Visit a local botanical garden and learn about local plants that are native to your area.
Take a Boat Ride
Get out on the water with a boat ride to take in the views, go fishing, or do tubbing.
Go see a new movie in the theater. Oftentimes in the summer months, they have deals for the morning movie times.
Visit your local swimming pool to cool off this summer.
Add more excitement to a swimming day by visiting a local water park and riding the slides and wave pools.
Visit a Beach
Head to your local beach on hot summer days to build sand castles and swim. Make spending a day at the beach easier with our 20 Beach Hacks to Survive a Family Beach Day.
Take the kids fishing and see how many fish they can catch.
White Water Rafting
If you want more of an adventure go whitewater rafting. Make sure it’s a location that is approved for your age kids.
Be a Tourist at Home
Explore your own town and surrounding areas and visit something new.
Visit a local museum in your town or a larger museum like the Science and Industry in Chicago.
Go, Berry Picking
See what is in season and take the kids fruit picking at a local farm.
Watch a Parade
There are tons of parades in the summer for Memorial Day, the 4th of July, and Labor Day.
Visit a Zoo
Explore your local zoo and visit all the different animals. In Chicago, our favorites are Lincoln Park Zoo and Brookfield Zoo.
Free the Ducks
Go to a local pond and feed the ducks some leftover bread.
Visit a local animal rescue and learn about what they are doing to help the animals.
Ice Cream Parlor
Visit a different ice cream parlor and try a new flavor. Or head outside when you hear the ice cream truck in your neighborhood.
Head to your local library to pick out books and attend some library programs. Check if they are offering a summer reading program.
Go on a Road Trip
This road trip doesn’t need to be a big family vacation. Find something 2-3 hours away and make it a day trip. Keep the kids busy with our favorite Dollar Tree Travel Games & Activities.
Horseback Riding or Pony Rides
Depending on your child’s age try a horseback riding class or try riding a pony.
Hot Air Balloon
Another really cool family adventure would be riding a Hot Air Balloon.
Home Depot Projects
Check out your local Home Depot and see what free kids’ projects they are offering each month.
Local Nature Center
Learn about animals and plants that live in your area by visiting a local nature center.
Enjoy a fun train ride with the kids to the city.
Head to your local bowling alley and enjoy a game together.
Tip: Ask them to add bumpers on the lanes for younger kids.
Volunteer as a Family
Spend quality time together giving back to your community by volunteering as a family.
Visit a New Restaurant
Introduce your kids to new foods by visiting a new restaurant.
This is a cool scavenger hunt you can do on an app at local parks, playgrounds, or state parks.
Let the kids enjoy cooling off with a snow cone when there is warm weather at your local festival or carnival.
See if there is a local puppet show in your area you can visit. Younger kids will love this.
Trip to the Mall
At the end of the summer get rid of some of their old clothes they’ve grown out of and find new things to wear for the school year. Then head to the food court for some treats.
Act of Kindness
Talk about something nice you can do for friends or family that could be your act of kindness.
Head to your local lake, retention pond, or creek and try skipping rocks.
Enjoy an outdoor movie night at the Drive-in Theatre.
Take the kid’s miniature golfing.
Summer is one of the best times of year to see fireworks. Don’t miss out on this fun summer activity.
Make sure to grab your Free Summer Bucket List and start checking activities off!
More Summer Time Planning
Keeping planning for summer fun with these summertime printables.
Easy Daily Summer Schedule for Kids – Free Printable
Ultimate Summer Camp at Home Planner for Parents
Limit screen time this summer with a Summer Rules Checklist.
Easy Summer Camp at Home Ideas to keep your kids busy all summer long.
Are you ready for some summer fun? I hope you have found a bunch of summer bucket list ideas to try with your kids this summer. You should be able to fill your whole summer with these fun family activities.
Have a wonderful Summer!!
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