Simple Bucket List Ideas to do with your family right now
Brainstorming bucket list ideas with your family is a great way to plan fun activities for the year to come, that everyone will enjoy. It’s as simple as sitting down with the kids and throwing ideas down on paper. However, if you are short on time, or need a little help getting started, I’ve got you covered.
Below you will find a handy list of 100+ easy bucket list ideas to help your family enjoy the simple things in life, and create family memories that will be remembered for years to come.
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What is a bucket list?
Originally the bucket list came from the idea of creating a list of things you wanted to do before you died or “kicked the bucket.”
Now adays it can be anything from a yearly or seasonal list of fun family activities to try, a way to plan life goals, or even a list of places you and your family want to travel to.
100+ Ideas for A Fun Family Bucket List
Our list of family friendly activities is meant to celebrate all the things you love to do together. Maybe you will even find some new favourites.
Simple Bucket List Ideas
Family Game Night
Family game night will be a hit with a friendly game or two. Put on your pjs, gather round the table and for extra fun give out prizes for the winner.
A yummy treat awaits. Baking with kids can be messy, but well worth it for the the smells of freshly baked cookies, and valuable skills learned.
Choose a delicious cookie recipe from around the world, or an old family recipe. Make a couple of different batches and share with an elderly neighbour.
Include reuseable silicone cookie mats to make clean up a breeze.
Get Your Craft On
Pull together some paint, glue, pencil crayons paper or other crafty supplies for an arts and crafts day. Perfect for a rainy day. Create something to wear, hang on the wall or adorn your Christmas tree or seasonal nature table.
We love our friends over at Artburn Canada
Powerful Pillowcase Painting Kits = Inspirational & positive messages plus an easy to take anywhere craft kids love. Delivers to the US & Canada.
Or try out one of these fun family craft ideas from toddler to teen.
Build a Fort
Build an epic fort made of pillows and blankets in your livingroom. Add a sleeping bag or two, and hold a camp out, inside.
We love using Sarah’s Silks. Large beautiful swaths of silk fabric & easy to use wooden clips make fort building fun and easy.
Experiment a Little
Put your little scientists to work and try out a new science experiment at home. Watch volcanoes explode, crystals form, or build a robot. The sky’s the limit.
Hold a Themed Movie Night
Who doesn’t love a good movie? Plan out a themed family movie night. Cuddle up on the couch, watch a seasonal movie, add a costume or two, some special snacks and you have the perfect family evening.
- Christmas Theme: Favourite Holiday movie + matching reindeer pj’s and some delicious Christmas cookies.
- Travel Movies – Travelling soon, or want to inspire a travel spirit? Watch some family friendly films set in countries. Eat snacks from around the world
- Animation Theme: Wear your best costumes (superheros, Disney princesses, or our current favourite, characters from Hayao Miyazaki films, and Studio Ghibli now all on Netflix).
Add a family movie night to your family bucket list.
Put Together A Jigsaw Puzzle
Jigsaw puzzles take me back to a simpler time. Puzzles are a lovely way to be present and spend time together as a family on a rainy day or over the winter holidays.
Make it even more memorable by surprising your kids with a personalized jigsaw puzzle of the next destination you plan on travelling to. They won’t know where you are going until they put it all together.
Eat Breakfast For Dinner
Breakfast for Dinner is a time honoured tradition in our house. Whip up all the best breakfast foods for your evening meal. Even better, get in your pj’s before the meal.
Create a Photo Book
What better way to celebrate all your favourite memories as a family, than with a personalized photo book you can flip through anytime.
So many ideas and themes to choose from; latest family trip, summer vacation plans, graduations, or year in review. Photo Books also make awesome holiday gifts for grandparents.
Let your kids choose their favourite photos. My daughter loves this. Your kids will too.
Read A Book Series Out loud To Each Other
Reading books together is a great way to spend some time, especially as you all wind down for the night. Cuddle up under a blanket, and read a favourite story from your childhood or start a brand new series.
Our current favourite is The Book Scavenger series.
Speaking of classics, Charades is a game for all ages. Act out words or phrases written on a piece of paper. Write your own movie titles, phrases on pieces of paper or find easy topics with these charades cards.
Declutter The House
Maybe it is time for a little Spring cleaning? Declutter the house and donate unwanted items to people who could really use them.
Share Something From Your Childhood
There is something so special about sharing something with your children from your childhood. Maybe its a favourite game, park, or activity you loved to do when you are young. Kids get a kick out of it too.
Give new life to old (or new) white t-shirts or create a fun tie-dyed gift of reusable grocery bags for your favourite adult.
I’ve had friends who did this as a fun activity while camping too.
Tye-die kits are fun and make things much easier.
Design Your Own Paper Airplanes
Design and make your own paper airplanes, then see whose can fly the farthest. Spice it up by offering prizes for the most creative design, the airplane who flies the farthest, the least likely to make a transatlantic flight…get creative.
Need some inspiration? Fold n’ Fly your way to the runway.
Go Berry or Apple Picking
Show your kids where food comes from. Head to a local farm for some U-Pick options, or if you are lucky enough head on out to your special wild berry picking spots.
Picking berries is a fun adventure. I have such fond memories of picking blackberries in the back of my grandparents property each summer.
That also can lead into our next bucket list idea, delicious pie making.
Make a Pie
Teach your kids the art of pie making. Crust + fruit + love = deliciousness.
Learn the Art of the Pie with a pie making classic.
Create Chalk Art
Brighten your neighbourhood with a chalk art masterpiece. Turn it into a learning experience by studying a famous artist and recreating one of their works on your sidewalk.
Have a No-tech Day
Ok this may be a scary idea for some people, but putting your devices away for the day, is a wonderful opportunity to spend time as a family without distractions.
More Bucket List Ideas for Families:
- Make your own ice cream
- Fold an origami crane
- Volunteer somewhere as a family
- Hold a yard sale and donate the money to your favourite charity
- Write a letter or postcard and mail it
- Eat a color themed meal ( Example: only green foods).
- Play flashlight tag
- Eat dessert for dinner (Apple pie is our favourite)
- Lego Creations
- Dance Party in your kitchen
- Watch a documentary on something you are interested in learning about
- Try an online class together – art, yoga, math, music
- Draw / Paint a family portrait
- Bury a time capsule
- Make a music video
- Have a pillow fight
- DIY Spa Day
- Hold a family talent show (or expand to your neighbours too)
- Visit a farmer’s market
- Write poems
- Create a comic strip
- Listen to a podcast, or create your own
Bucket List Ideas By Season
Winter Bucket Lists
Winter presents such fun opportunities for cozy indoor activities like games night and hot cocoa by the fire or outdoor adventures like snowball fights, making snow angels and taking a sleigh ride.
We have a whole Winter Bucket List post of 50+ winter bucket list ideas for travel, indoor & outdoor activities, Christmas and more. Plus FREE winter bucket list printables for you to make your own so oyu can avoid the winter blues and cabin fever.
Oudoor Bucket List Activities
Ice Skate on a Frozen Pond
Combine fun and fitness with a skate on a frozen pond, or a scenic ice skating rink in the city. Hot cocoa afterwards is a must.
Take a Ski or Sledding Trip
Slide down a local hill, or head on up a nearby mountain. Snow sports are a fun way to spend the day. Try something new, and take lessons as a family. Maybe it’s a little cross country skiing, downhill skiing, snow boarding or snow shoeiing. Let the snow adventures begin!
Build Snow Sculptures
Got snow? Build a snowfort, and have a snowball fight. Or create a snowperson. Add a scarf, toque and carrot nose. Or just play in the snow.
If you live in a place with no snow, consider a road trip for the day, or make a sandman/woman/child/person at the beach.
Go on a Scavenger Hunt
Scavenger hunts are adored by kids of all ages ( I still love them as an adult). Search for a fun list of items on a family scavenger hunt list. Many themes to choose from.
Looking for scavenger hunt ideas? Try one of these family outdoor scavenger hunt adventures.
Search for Treasure
With millions of geocaches around the world, searching for treasure is gold.
Geocaching uses GPS device to locate hidden items in a “geocache” by navigating to specific coordinates. It’s as easy as downloading an app to your phone and finding one you are interested in hunting for.
Create a Garden
Creating a garden is an awesome way to promote a healthy lifestyle, and help your children learn where our food comes from.
It can be as simple as a pot or two on your deck, or more ambitious backyard plans. Kids love playing in the dirt, planting seeds, watering them and watching plants grow.
For an easy option, purchase a herb starter kit. Plant, water and grow.
Make a Lemonade Stand
Making a lemonade stand invites your kids to learn entrepreneurial skills, and inspires creativity. Make the stand and signage, and turn lemons into lemonade.
If you live somewhere you can visit a lemon farm, combine it with trip to pick the lemons first.
Read recipes together and experiment with lemonade stand recipes.
Let’s Go Fly A Kite
“Let’s go fly a kite, up to the heighest height. ” Bonus points if you know what movie that’s from.
Find a windy spot, pull out a colourful kite, and learn to fly.
This popular rainbow kite is sure to send your kids soaring to new heights.
Go on a Family Bike Ride
Find a destination your kids want to bike to and keep them peddling along. I prefer multi-purpose trails for a family bike ride, if that is the option. The Stowe Recreation Path in Vermont is a wonderful family friendly multipurpose trail.
Pick a New Picnic Spot
Picnicking is such a great way to spend an afternoon. Dust off your picnic basket, add some delicious snacks then head on out to the mountains, lake, or beach.
Don’t forget your all-in-one portable family picnic basket.
Wake up early to watch the sunrise
Experience the beauty of the sun as it rises. Even better if you combine it with a trip to the beach, or a camping trip.
Pull out the family’s camping gear and spend some time in nature. Nothing says bonding like setting up tents, fishing, telling campfire stories and of course roasting marshmallows and eating s’mores together.
Get your kids ready for your family camping trip with some awesome camping gifts for kids.
A family tent big enough for all the kids and gear is also a must.
Whether it’s tied to a camping trip at a national park, or a backyard campout, S’mores are a sweet addition. This campfire treat of roasted marshmallows, melted chocolate sandwiched between two graham crackers will be a hit with all family members.
Try some unique s’mores recipes or go for the traditional.
Play Card Games
Card games are a favourite thing on take on camping trips, road trips, airplane rides, and quiet days at home. Teach kids your favourites, or learn a few new ones. Add some snacks or cookies and Game On!
Bring your family favourites or try out a new card game:
- Best for Large Families / Groups (up to 10 people can play): Apples to Apples or Apples to Apples Junior
- Best for Kids Who Love to Argue: Superfight
Sleep in a Hammock
Sleep out under the stars in a hammock, and experience the magic of the night sky.
A strong, lightweight Hammock that folds down small, is perfect for camping and bringing on all your family adventures.
Angle your way to Family Fishing Hall of Fame
Fishing trips great way to make family memories. Try a local lake, or head out on nearby waters with a guide.
Up here in the Northwest Territories, Canada giant fish are awaiting, and there are many affordable options for a day tour on Great Slave lake.
Bring along a your kids fishing pole kit for hours of angling fun.
Some more Fun Outdoor Bucket List Ideas:
- Go ziplining
- Run under a sprinkler
- Make newspaper boats and sail them
- Go horseback riding
- Look for rainbows once the sun comes out
- Jump in puddles on a rainy day
- Hold an outdoor movie night & invite your neighbours
- Go on a hayride
- Bore through lake ice and go ice fishing
- Play basketball, mini golf, badminton or other fav sport
- Run an obstacle course
- Pool Noodle fight
- Learn how to swim, surf, boogie board
- Learn to skip rocks
- Find a four leaf clover
- Explore caves, go spelunking
- Walk to a waterfall (even if it’s tiny)
Family Travel Bucket List Ideas
When you can’t travel, or can’t travel far, there are still loads of options to experience family travel. Here is a list of easy family travel bucket list ideas that you can do at home, or take on the road / plane / train.
Learn a Language
You are never too young or old to expand your mind and learn a new language. Learn the language of your next family vacation destination.
Rosetta Stone offers language courses of all kinds, at all levels. The Duolingo app also offers kid friendly on the go language games.
Make learning a new language your family’s New Years or summer vacation goal.
Learn about another Country
So many opportunities await to learn about other countries, their cultures, food, art, and music. Pick a different country as a focus each month. Or choose your next family travel destination. Do some research with your kids, pick some recipes to try, listen to music, research places you’d like to visit.
Little Passports is a wonderful subscription box that introduces your kids to a different country each month at home.
We also love the Atlas Box from KiwiCo which combines hands on STEAM activities with learning about other cultures from around the world.
Take a Factory Tour
Take an educational factory tour of products you love; icecream, jelly beans, automobiles, or if you can find a sitter, for adults only a Beer or wine tour. These are available whether close to home, on a road trip or a vacation.
The Ben and Jerry factory tour is high on our list. If you are heading to Stowe, Vermont, it’s on our list of top things to do in the area.
Try New Foods
There are so many flavours out there in the world to try. Pick a recipe together as a family, or go to an Asian market to get some inspiration. Has your family tried Thai food (my favourite), or seaweed snacks (salty goodness like chips)? You may just find some new family favourites.
A snacks around the world box is a fun way to introduce your children to trying different foods from around the world. Kids love snacks.
Or try a family cooking kit that explores the world and it’s cuisine through your kitchen. A family culinary adventure, one country at a time.
Be A Tourist in your Hometown
Being a tourist in your hometown can help you discover more fun and beautiful things you may take for granted being from a place.
Check out a guidebook, a brainstorm ideas of places you’d like to see together.
Often there are options to get deals on visiting more than one attraction, or discounts for locals. Go City Pass is a great option for discounted attractions if you are heading to many major cities in the US and around the world.
Visit a Museum
Museums don’t have to be boring. Art, science, history, so many to choose from. There is even a Potato Museum in PEI Canada, that I had to go on my way through there.
The best for families are interactive museums with hands on activities. Take a day trip to a nearby destination, look out for local options you may have missed out on so far. Play + learning = Parent Win.
Try a virtual visit if you can’t travel far, or there are restrictions in place(list)
These museums offer Free Virtual Tours:
- The Louvre
- Digital Museums (Canada)
- Metropolitan Museum of Art #Metkids
- National Air & Space Museum – Smithsonian
- The Museum of the World
- Natural History Museum
- Musée d’Orsay
- Museo Frida Kahlo
- Tate Modern: Andy Warhol Exhibit
- The Van Gogh Museum
- National Museum of Anthropology, Mexico City
Go for a swim and snorkel
Take a swim in the ocean, jump over the waves or pretend you are a dolphin riding the surf. A day at the beach is not complete without a dip in the sea. If you are somewhere warmer, snorkelling is always a hit with kids.
Spend the day at the Beach
Spending the day at the beach can help you check off other family activities on your bucket list. Build a sandcastle, collect beach treasures, explore tidepools, go on a picnic and swim in the ocean.
Don’t forget to pack all the essentials for a day at the beach.
Explore a Tidepool
Take a wander along the sand until you reach tidepools. See if you can identify the sea creatures inside. Bring a long a tidepool identification guide if you need a little help.
Rent a Kayak or Canoe
Don’t have a kayak or canoe? Don’t let that stop you from having an epic family adventure. Rent a canoe or kayak and go for a casual paddle on a local lake, or a weekend trip.
If you aren’t a confident paddler, taking a kayak or canoe course together can be an awesome way to get those basic skills down before hitting the lake.
Go for a Hike
Get your family out in nature, with a hike. Spend the day hiking at a local park, mountain or a nearby national park.
Acadia National Park has some great family friendly options. Take along some hiking essentials; a backpack, snacks, and don’t forget a family first aid kit.
Summer Hike in the Snow
Take your hiking up a notch, and find snow in the summer. The Rocky Mountains often have snow on some hikes until June/July. Or try Crater Lake or Glacier National Parks in the USA.
Watch a Favourite Sports Team Live
Get tickets to your family’s favourite sports team and watch a game live. “Take me out to the ballgame, take me out to the fair. Buy me some peanuts and cracker jacks.“
On The Road Again – Take a Family Road Trip
Road trips don’t have to be long or expensive. Be spontaneous, take out a map, close your eyes and pick a spot. Jump in the car and go.
Here are some tips for a frugal family road trip if you are looking for an inexpensive way to travel.
Visit a National Park
National Parks offer something for everyone; fishing, swimming in lakes, hiking, picnicking, cross country skiing or snowshoeiing. See beautiful landscapes, and lakes and experience nature at its finest. Help your kids learn to appreciate and respect the earth.
Travel Somewhere New
Travelling somewhere new can be enriching, whether it’s in your own hometown, a road trip to the next province/state or somewhere abroad.
It can be a new park, hike, restaurant or even a stroll in a part of town you don’t usually go to.
Some more Fantastic Easy Family Travel Bucket List Ideas:
- Ride a train
- Spend the day at an amusement park
- Watch fireworks
- Visit a hotsprings
- Watch a play
- Visit an aquarium
- Attend a Festival or Carnival
- Take a selfie at a famous attraction
- See the Northern Lights
- Spend a weekend (or week) at a dude ranch
- Build rockets at a family Space camp
- Go Dog sledding
Looking for some family friendly travel inspiration a little further from home? Check out these articles:
- Thailand – What you need to know to travel safely with family
- Visit Parksville, BC Canada for beaches, hikes and more
- Havana and Varadero, Cuba: fun sun vacation destinations
There you have it, 100+ Fun Bucket List Ideas to get you started on making amazing family memories. Let us know if we missed any of your favourite family ideas. How are you doing on your bucket list? Let us know in the comments below, or connect with us on social media. We’d love to hear from you!
Bucket List Ideas: 100+Fun Family Activities
Featured photo by: “adrian825 via canva.com”
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