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Article: 15 Outdoor Activities for Families This Winter

15 Outdoor Activities for Families This Winter

Need some winter inspiration? Look no further, here at Grass & Air HQ we’ve pulled together a complete list of family winter activities. Although we originally made this list last year, we’ve updated it and added more family fun for winter 2021! As we’ve been cherishing our time exploring the outdoors, this cold weather approved guide will get the family outside even on a crisp winter day. We like to call it an ‘Al Fresco Winter’ with so many things to do outside, think spending in nature, at your local park, exploring the local town or city, even just being in your garden. There are so many family activities right on your doorstep, use this helpful guide for things to do in winter. This list gives 15 fantastic outdoor activities to help the whole family beat the boredom during winter.


1. Go Ice Skating As A Family

Nothing says winter quite like a bit of ice! This year many ice rinks have reopened, whether it be your local leisure centre or an outdoor ice rink that’s just here seasonally, ice skating is a great family activity. Making it family friendly is easy as the ice skating rinks have ice penguins or polar bears that guide kids and toddlers around the ice to ensure they can skate safely. Bonus Activity: snow sledding, we’ve added this as a bonus activity because we know snow isn’t always guaranteed. But if we’re lucky enough to have some snowfall this winter, grab your sleds and get down to the local park.

ice skating winter family activity

2. Visit The Christmas Markets

Yes, that’s right the Christmas Markets are back this year! Spend a day getting into the holiday spirit with the kids. Have hot chocolate and warm mini pancakes. Or even visit Santa’s grotto at your local Christmas fair. This outdoor activity doesn’t have to be a costly one, it can be a simple as getting the family together, strolling around the stalls and soaking up the surroundings. Top Tip: If you’re out with the kids be sure to wrap up warm with our new collection of Wonder Waffles Leggings and Long Sleeve Tops. Our first clothing collection made from recycled plastic bottles. The warm honeycomb fabric hugs little bodies for the ultimate warm winter base-layer.

Christmas markets winter family activity

3. Set Up A Backyard Cinema

Bring the cinema home by creating one in the garden. Set up comfy chairs with cosy cushions and blankets, get all the family's favourite movie snacks and take the cinema al fresco. A backyard cinema is a great option if you’d prefer to stay at home and make use of your garden.

winter backyard cinema

4. Visit a Magical Woodland

Magical Woodlands are a spectacular winter activity for kids. Watch them marvel at the lights as you wander through the woods. There are magical woodlands across the country putting on Christmas themed light displays in December. Grab tickets to our favourite Magical Woodland in Manchester. Alternatively, find a torch and take a walk in one of your local green spaces after dark. The humble walk is reinvented. Ta-dah!

5. The Winter Solstice

It’s known as both the shortest day of the year and the longest night of the year. The winter solstice is a long-standing tradition in the northern hemisphere. It marks the 24-hour period with the fewest hours of daylight in the year. Daylight may be limited but the winter solstice is the perfect time to celebrate the wonders of nature and have gratitude for the seasons. This year it falls on Tuesday 21st December 2021. Learn more about this year’s Winter Solstice Traditions from the experts.

6. Garden Camping

As cold weather draws in, enjoy the last bit of winter sun by building a den in your garden. Build the den between trees and create a cosy set up, perfect for outside play activities. You could take it one step further and camp out in your garden. Think wild camping but just at home! Have a good old-fashioned camping trip in your back garden, brave the cold and set up the tents for an outdoor sleepover.

7. Explore Your City Like a Tourist

Yes, you might have lived there for years but have you ever really explored your city like a tourist? Or if you have recently taken the plunge and moved to a new area, this is a great way to explore your surroundings. We’re talking sightseeing, visiting historic landmarks, or discovering a new urban outdoor space. We especially love taking a moment to appreciate graffiti and artistic walls. They provide perfect photo opportunities for style-loving families.

Image of Hector wearing our Little Kids Navy Colour-Revealing Wellies, Little Boys Navy Rainster, and Little Kids Colour-Revealing Umbrella.

8. Winter Trails

Whether it is your local walking route, or you head somewhere new, there are so many winter trails to explore. You could even create your own in a local park or green space. Kids love hunting for clues in nature. Go on your own self-guided adventure with a Treasure Trails map, available to download for villages, towns and cities across the UK. We love the Wizards Spellbook Trail in Manchester which takes in our fav city centre haunts. There are loads to choose from. Remember to pack your Grass & Air Wellies in case it’s muddy.

winter walksImage of Elba wearing our Little Kids Grey Colour-Revealing Wellies.

9. Have fun At A Carpark Panto

Going to the panto is a winter tradition, and this year Horrible Histories have put a great spin on the event with their Car Park Panto. Get the family into the car and prepare for a hilarious time-travelling panto like you’ve never seen before. Tickets are available nationwide and are fully refundable in the event of COVID-19 disruption.

10. Winter Mazes

If we are lucky enough to get some snow this year, we suggest making a snow maze. You can do this in your garden by carving out various routes in the snow to create fun mazes. Set the kids a challenge to reach the middle of the maze and you’ve got hours’ worth of fun. Alternatively, if the snow does not fall, you can use washable chalk to paint the driveway or different objects from your garden to make a maze. If DIY is not your forte, then seek out a Maize Maze in your area, our top tip for Northern folk is Seven Sisters Ice-Cream Farm in Cheshire. Not that we are influenced by the thought of a massive scoop of double-chocolate at the end. Not at ALL!

11. Visit An Outdoor Cinema

Outdoor cinemas experienced a serious revival last year. Grab your popcorn and a couple of blankets, get the kids in the car and drive to an outdoor cinema. From the warmth of the car tune in and watch one of the family favourites playing on the big screen.

12. Drive-Thru Dinner

2020 saw the humble takeaway get a drive-thru makeover and it's not going anywhere for 2021. Whether on foot or in the car, be sure to make a beeline for one of your local independent eateries who are sure to be offering new and unique ways to enjoy their menu this winter. We can’t get enough of Nell’s Pizza 22inch monster pies in Manchester’s Northern Quarter, enough to feed all those hungry mouths after a day of exploring.

13. Cook on Fire With A Winter BBQ

It may be cold outside but if you have a fire pit, why not brave the winter chill and spend an evening al fresco. Cooking on fire might be as simple as toasting marshmallows. Or if you’re feeling handy, why not make your own popcorn over the flames. Eating hotdogs in the crisp winter air always revives dull dinnertimes. And who says sparklers should be reserved for bonfire night, an easy simple way to bring wow-factor to a weekend night at home with these fun outdoor activities.

winter activities campfire

14. Go to a Christmas Lights Switch On

Watching the Christmas lights switch on is one of the most magical moments of winter. The festivals might not be the same this year as most cities are broadcasting the switch on across social media instead of hosting it in person. Once the lights are on, why not explore your local neighbourhood to find the best Christmas light displays. Get the kids to spot their favourites and make it a festive evening.

15. Visit The Parklands Of A Castle or Historic House

Due to lockdown many castles and historic houses have been closed to the public. But we have good news, the grounds are still open for winter events. You can go for a nice family walk and see the historic sites from a distance. It’s a great way to get the kids out for the day. Visit English Heritage and The Nation Trust to find grounds and parks that are open near you, many will require you to pre-book tickets so plan ahead to avoid disappointment. So, there you have it 15 things to do with the family this winter. We hope you liked our handy guide to our fav winter activities.

If you go on any adventures be sure to tag us in your family photos on Instagram and follow @grassandair.

Remember to get all the right gear for your family activities, check out our new Wonder Waffle Recycled Long Sleeve Tops and Leggings.

Discover our range of stylish and practical kids’ outerwear including raincoats and wellies for any season.

To find out more about Grass & Air, get in touch with one of our friendly team members today.

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