6+ Free Family Activities for Summer Fun

6 Free Family Activities for Summer | Things to do with Kids | Children's Activities | Frugal Entertainment | Free Things to Do

Mr. And Mrs. Beatles blog about their frugal life at Stacking Pennies. They recently began their journey towards frugality and write about different things they learn on their way to a debt free lifestyle.

In the Beatles household, family activities are what we look most forward to in the Summer. We believe that frugal families tend to be closer and stronger than their counterparts because rather than paying someone else to entertain them, they find entertainment together and within each other. This creates special bonding moments!

While entertainment costs have gotten out of control (have you seen the price of a movie ticket and popcorn lately?), there are plenty of other ways of having fun without paying a dime; these are cost-free activities that anyone can do with their families.

Let’s look at some family activities that don’t require you to open your purse or wallet:

  1. Visit the beach (or water near you)

Beaches are a ton of fun and make no impact on the budget!  You can collect shells, swim, build sand castles, feed the seagulls, fly a kite without getting it caught in a power line, etc.  Jazz it up with a pitcher of homemade lemonade and sandwiches. If there’s no beach in your area, you can search for a camp on the shores of a lake or the banks of a river or find the closest pool.

  1. Go picnicking

Again, this is a cost-free activity (or nearly cost free if you have absolutely no extra food on hand) that absolutely everyone can do.  You prepare some food at home, put it in the picnic basket and you’re ready to go. Find a spot with a nice view or that holds some memories.  What could you want more than sun, gentle breezes and some good laughs with your family?

  1. Go on a bike ride

A bike ride doesn’t necessarily mean strolling through the neighborhood: you can make an entire adventure out of it by going through the woods and even on long-term travels. A backpack with food and potable water along with family and bikes – everything they need to have fun. Even better, biking combines entertainment with working out – so it’s time for you to ditch that gym membership that takes your money and head to the trail. Many people who subscribe to a frugal life even use their bike for all of their transportation needs!

  1. Take a tour of the fire station  6 free summer activities | Family Fun | Kid Friendly Activities | Cheap Things to Do

Fire station tours are typically free. If you ever wondered what the world of the firefighters looks like, check it out!

How many of us dreamed of becoming firefighters when we were children? Now you can have the chance of embarking yourself on a fire truck and feel a rush of adrenaline going right through you. Firefighters for a day! A dream long overdue, but you know the saying “Better late than never.” It is also a good chance to see how much effort and thoroughness goes into saving people’s lives, as well as how much training one requires to be able to even keep that hose in place.

  1. Stargaze

Whether you do it in an observatory or just by laying on the grass at nighttime, stargazing is extremely rewarding. The night sky never ceases to amaze us – it has done so since our inception on our Earth. If you want to splurge a little, you can even find guides for making your own telescope on the Internet! All you need is some cardboard, paint, some lenses, glue, and tape. Make one for each member of your family and revitalize the lost art of glancing at the stars by laying down on the meadow or even in your backyard.

  1. Start a garden

Again, zero funds needed to do it.  If you don’t already own any gardening tools, ask to borrow a few from friends, family, or ask neighbors through your community connections, website, or Nextdoor.com.  Then rise with the sun (or at least try to avoid the worst of it midday) and go in the backyard and start working. You can plant cucumbers, peppers, tomatoes, lettuce, radishes, onions, garlic and pretty much every vegetable you had to buy prior to making your own garden.


These are just a few of the free activities you can do with your family. There are many others which you have yet to discover for yourself. Activities like these fortify the foundation of a family; they teach people how to respect each other, how to use their imagination and they’re certainly healthier than crashing a restaurant and calling it “having fun.”

Open-air activities are perfect for both the psyche and the body. Playing tennis, soccer, biking, hiking, swimming, etc. – all of these are cost-free activities. You can see for yourself that everything we’ve mentioned above is designed to enhance family communication through genuine shared experiences based on collaboration and harmony.

Print the attached infographic and checkmark each activity as you do them. Fun for the whole family!

Frugal and Free Family Activites Infographic


4 thoughts on “6+ Free Family Activities for Summer Fun”

  1. Jeff | VTX Capital

    Living next to the beach would totally be worth it. An affordable weekend day trip to the beach would always be fun. Just grab some food and enjoy the scenery.

  2. Carol

    We live next to state and national parks and found that people over 65 can buy a national park pass for $10 that is good for the entire family.
    Biking is not totally free, but is very enjoyable within national parks, along water (the beach), and even through your neighborhood and neighborhood parks. Make sure to follow traffic laws and wear bright clothing. We have enjoyed biking so much this year we keep asking store managers to put out bike racks so we can try to make the small runs on our bikes instead of wasting time in a car.
    By the way, if you bike or go to a beach, most times you have to deal with more wind, sun, insects, and the corrosive nature of the environment. Just saying, nothing is perfect, but any activity can become enjoyable with the correct perspective. We caught photos of a Great Horned owl on a telephone line at dusk while walking around our neighborhood. We keep looking to see it again, so now that’s the challenge.
    If you garden, try to plant just a few things at first and work your way up to a full garden. We plant carrot seeds as tree and flower garden edges because it grows well during our winter and feeds our lizards quite well. We get very few actual carrots due to our soil, but having greens for our lizards which saves a bunch and there is none of the interference with calcium absorption that you find in spinach, chard, and beet greens. Squash seeds (butternut, acorn, and spaghetti) from food you bought at the store have worked well for us, but most other seeds you have to buy in seed packets due to the fact that most grocery veggies are hybrids (their seeds do not reproduce very well due to their genetics). Buy heirloom seeds and you can use the seeds from your crop to start more for free. Heirloom tomatoes in areas with nematodes and other viruses and plant diseases may not be a great choice if you wish to be successful though. Depending on your soil, you can build it up with compost, worms, and soil conditioners. To have a successful “free” garden takes a bit of persistence, so check out You Tubes and gardening blogs for your area for tips and tricks. We walk the neighborhood at night and look at the stars when it is not cloudy in our local park
    . Best star gazing is away from lights.
    Best all-weather free activity we have found will seem odd to most. We go over our photos (even the ones on our phones) and try to make sure we have backed them up in separate dated and labeled folders. Like Google, we then make slideshows or short “videos” and place them in each folder also. You can even watch your collect videos on your TV rather easily. Like organizing anything else in your life, it makes it easier to enjoy if you can find and access what your are looking for easily. Shopping for healthy meals is not free, but can be entertaining also. Try to plan an entire meal worth eating without any white or yellow carbs or try out some other challenging “diet”, like eating raw for a couple of meals. It opens your eyes to possibilities and proves you could survive on any diet with a little information.
    Most of us start projects and never finish some. Go find an unfinished project and try to finish it as a family. Not only is it a free activity if you already have all the supplies, but it will clear out needed storage space.

  3. Benjamin Davis @ From cents to retirement

    Living next to the beach would be awesome..

  4. Crystal Stemberger

    I feel like y’all took away “beaches” from this post, lol. I totally get it. Beaches are fun. But don’t y’all have cheap or free access to some sort of natural water around you too? 🙂 We’re 1.5 hours from Galveston, but only 5 minutes from two man made lake/ponds with fish and ducks and turtles… 🙂 What’s around you?

Comments are closed.