Out-of-the-Ordinary Winter Activities to Do Outside

Published on January 24, 2022 - Updated on January 31, 2022

It may feel like a chore to pull on winter gear and leave your cozy house, but time outside in the winter has many benefits for your health and wellbeing. Not to mention, it’s fun!

There are so many activities that you can do with your family and friends in the winter that you can’t do in the summer. While you’re probably already familiar with all the classic activities, from skiing to sledding, there are endless more reasons to get outside that you might not have thought of, like snow painting and making a wreath from foraged materials. 

So what are you waiting for? Grab your hat, scarf, and wool clogs, and let’s jump into some of the most unique activities the season has to offer. 

Exciting Benefits of Being Outside


Here are just a few benefits you’ll experience when you head outdoors:

  • Get a dose of Vitamin D from the sun
  • Lower your stress
  • Interact with others
  • Boost your creativity by being surrounded by new places and nature
  • Get a breath of fresh air 
  • Reduces blood pressure
  • Lowers heart rate

Unique Outdoor Activities to Try This Winter

Go Snowmobiling

You may have been skiing or snowboarding before, but have you ever ridden on a snowmobile? It is a really fun way to take in the natural beauty of the mountain or countryside covered in snow. Snowmobiling requires that you drive like you would a car, so be sure to bring your license with you and pay attention to any roads and other traffic where you might be driving. You’ll want to bundle up for your snowmobiling excursion because when you’re traveling at high speeds, the cold will definitely be nipping at your nose.

Build an Ice Sculpture

Tap into your creative side by designing and building an ice sculpture outside. It’s basically like building a snowman; only you can create any number of structures, from an igloo to a car to cartoons like Snoopy sleeping on top of his dog house. After building the sculpture, you can paint it by creating a mixture of food coloring and water and spraying it from a spray bottle. Just make sure it is cold water so that it doesn’t melt the sculpture.

Head to a Natural Hot Spring


If you’re an apres-ski kind of person and want to take the activity down a notch, then you’ll love this way of appreciating the outdoors in the winter. You may need to travel to find a natural hot spring, but there is nothing more relaxing than soaking in a naturally heated bath outside while the snow falls gently around you. We highly recommend a glass of wine or cup of cocoa while you are at it.

Do a Polar Bear Plunge

On the other hand, you might want to participate in a polar bear plunge in your community, i.e., diving into the freezing water of the ocean in the winter in nothing but a bathing suit. Polar bear plunges aren’t for the faint of heart, but they are often for a great cause. Most polar plunges raise money for charities and are a lot of fun. This is a great family activity as you tend to bond with the people doing the plunge with you.

Set Up a Snowy Photoshoot


When was the last time you had family pictures taken? A magical winter wonderland photoshoot is the perfect way to preserve the beauty of the season. Ask everyone in the family to dress up and then head outside for a quick photoshoot in the snow. You can set your camera on a tripod and do a self-timer if you want everyone in the shot. 

Make a Pine Cone Wreath

There’s no need to buy a wreath from the store when you can create your very own using the materials found in your background. It’s fun to forage for pine cones and a great way to get outside for an hour. To assemble your pine cone wreath, you’ll need a 14” wire wreath form, twine, hot glue, and around 60-75 pine cones. You can finish off your wreath by adding evergreen clippings and fairy lights.

Try Snowboarding


If you’re in the market for winter sports alternatives to skiing, it doesn’t get much more fun than snowboarding. You’ll need to swap your skate sneakers for a pair of snowboarding boots, but luckily they are far more comfortable than ski boots, which are hard and clunky. If you’re new to boarding, you should be prepared to spend a lot of time sitting in the snow. The sport requires balance and a lot of practice, but once you get the hang of it, it’s a great form of exercise that feels like you are flying down the mountain!

Check out our happyly blog for even more great ideas on how to get outside with the kids! If you are a newbie parent and wondering how that's possible, read up on Maintaining an Active Outdoor Lifestyle in Every Season or How to Hike with Kids and Stay Sane While Doing it. You will be one of the pros in no time!

Don't forget to tag us in your adventures on Instagram @gethappyly. We love seeing what all of our readers are up to with their families!

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