You can’t continue doing all of your regular outdoor activities when the temperature drops.
Freezing weather, snow, and drizzling rain can change all of your plans.
Whether you prefer to spend time outside in the snow or snuggle up indoors under a blanket, you need a fun list of things to do on a cold day.
Being prepared for cold weather with plenty of entertaining activities will make you, your friends, and your family happy regardless of the temperature outside.
61 Fun Things to Do When it is Cold Outside
The best things to do during winter are the things that make you happy. They fulfill a need while letting you enjoy the cold weather.
Some people love to go outside when it’s cold. Others prefer indoor activities. The following lists offer both. Why not try them all?
Things to Do On a Cold Day Outside
You can enjoy numerous winter activities outside even when it’s freezing cold.
They don’t all require heavy equipment or trips to a snow-covered mountain. Outdoor activities can take place right in your front yard.
1. Shovel a Neighbor’s Driveway
Your neighbors are almost certain to appreciate it if you shovel their sidewalks and driveways, but be sure to ask first! If they offer payment, charge them one smile.
2. Do a Random Act of Kindness
Kindness is in short supply, especially in the winter months. Look around you to find ways to show kindness to the world. The more you look, the more opportunities you are likely to find.
3. Go Sledding
You don’t have to have access to a huge hill to have a fun time sledding. Any sloped area will work if the snow is thick enough!
4. Attend a Seasonal Activity
The winter season is jam-packed with seasonal activities that you won’t find other times of the year. Look for special events, festivals, and performances that only occur around the holidays.
5. Take a Winter Walk
Walking in a winter wonderland is a joy you can only experience when it’s cold outside. Take advantage of the smell of the crisp air while you get some much-needed exercise.
6. Make a Snow Angel
Time travel to your childhood when the first thing you did with newly fallen snow was to lie down, spread your arms and legs, and create a lovely snow angel. Then step back and admire your creation.
7. Have a Snowball Fight
Naturally, as soon as you’ve made your snow angel, it’s time to start a snowball fight. Have a good-natured battle with your partner, kids, or best friend.
8. Practice Winter Photography
Photography practice is always a good idea. Capture the beauty of winter birds, snowflakes or newly bare trees.
9. Train for a 5k
It’s difficult to stay in shape in the winter. Having a goal will help encourage you to exercise each day. Pick a 5k and start training toward it right now!
10. Have a Winter Picnic
Who says picnics are just for warm weather? Bundle up and fill a thermos with your favorite soup. Enjoy dining outdoors when bugs don’t ruin your picnic!
11. Build an Igloo
Building an igloo isn’t easy, but it is a lot of fun! This only works when you have significant snowfall, but you can make miniature versions for practice when there is less snow to work with.
12. Try Frozen Paper Art
Soak a piece of paper in water, take it outside to freeze, and then make your designs with watercolor paints atop the frozen paper. Once it melts, you will have a beautiful and unique creation.
13. Look for Christmas Lights
The winter season is the time of year when homeowners light up the night with decorated homes. Take a walk after dark to ooh and aah at the lights. You can also take a nice, long drive to see as many decorated homes as you can.
14. Go Snow Tubing
Snow tubing is sledding’s more exciting cousin. A snow tube moves fast, so even an average-size hill gives enough momentum for an exciting day.
15. Make Frozen Ice Globes
Fill a balloon with water, add food coloring, and head outside. Once the balloon is fully frozen, cut the balloon away. You will have unique outdoor decorations as long as the weather stays below freezing.
16. Collect Snow for Snow Ice Cream
Snow ice cream is easy to make and delicious! Collect fresh snow for an even faster treat for an all-natural snow cone.
17. Check Up on Little Free Libraries
Little Free Libraries are everywhere. Take a look at those in your neighborhood and make sure they are stocked up. If not, add some books you no longer need.
18. Go Ice Bowling
Fill ten plastic bottles with water to make pins and set up your own bowling alley once they have frozen. This works best in icy conditions when your driveway or sidewalk is at its slickest. Just be careful not to fall!
19. Play Flashlight Tag
Take advantage of the early nights with a flashlight tag. Each person gets a flashlight and goes hunting for the others. It’s a fun family game or a great game among friends.
20. Have a Winter Luau
Forget about the cold weather and host a winter luau. Invite your friends for an outdoor barbecue. Offer leis and island drinks. Encourage everyone to dance. It will be an unforgettable time.
21. Go Snow Painting
Fill an assortment of water guns with water tinted with food coloring. Use them to create patterns and designs in the snow.
Things to Do on a Cold Day Inside
Some people would rather do anything than be outside when the weather turns colder. You may prefer to find things to do on a cold day inside with friends, family, or on your own.
This list gives you enough to keep yourself busy throughout the winter months!
22. Train Your Pet
A cold day is a great day to train your pet. You can teach a dog a new trick in about a day if you have enough patience and treats!
23. Make a Gift by Hand
Handmade gifts show you care. Look over your guest list and think about what each person might like. Craft some pottery, sew a special item, or use woodworking for something meaningful and unique.
24. Do Color by Numbers
Painting, coloring, or jewels by numbers are beautiful, easy, and relaxing choices. You can do a little at a time as the cold weather gets you down or do it all at once. In the end, you’ll have a lovely piece you can frame and enjoy.
Volunteerism numbers drastically decrease in the winter months. Use the cold weather as an opportunity to seek out volunteer opportunities in your area.
26. Make Bath Bombs
Making bath bombs is easy. Just find your favorite recipe online and get to work! You don’t need a bath bomb mold if you don’t have one. Use a cupcake pan or a muffin tin instead.
27. Decorate an Ugly Holiday Sweater
The best part of an ugly holiday sweater is that you don’t have to have any creative skills to make it look perfect. In fact, the worse you are at crafting, the better it will look!
28. Create a Bird Feeder
Make a bird feeder using simple, natural ingredients like peanut butter, sunflower seeds, and dried fruit so you can continue watching birds even when the weather turns south.
29. Build a Bathhouse
Look for bathhouse blueprints online, or buy a kit and put it together yourself. A bathhouse encourages these beneficial animals to stay with you, eating insects and protecting you from mosquito bites when summer rolls around.
30. Make Seed Bomb Ornaments
Seed bomb ornaments are easy and fun to make, and they make fantastic gifts. When you’re done, pass them out in the neighborhood to brighten someone’s day.
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31. Read a Novel
One of the most obvious choices for winter activities is reading. Pick a novel, cozy up next to a fire, and get lost in the story.
32. Donate Books and Clothing
Go through your closets and find all those clothing pieces you will never wear again. Donate them to a charity that provides free clothing to the needy. While you’re at it, clear out any old toys, board games, and books and donate those as well.
33. Host a Secret Santa Party
Winter is a fun time for a Secret Santa party, but why limit yourself? You can have a Secret Santa or a White Elephant party any time of the year.
If it’s cold, gather your friends and have fun gifting each other with meaningful or silly items.
34. Have a Movie Marathon
Your favorite movie series is ready to be watched again. Whether it’s the Lord of the Rings films, the Harry Potter franchise, or the MCU, have a movie binge that can last for days.
35. Learn to Crochet
Crochet is one of the fastest handicrafts to master. With a crochet hook and some yarn, you can start making gifts for your friends and yourself the first day you learn this skill!
36. Make Your New Year’s Resolutions
Plan your New Year’s Resolutions any time of the year. There is nothing magic about January 1. Get started on the thing you always wanted to do right now!
37. Drink Hot Cocoa
What feels better than drinking a steaming cup of hot cocoa when it’s cold outside? Make it extra special by adding whipped cream or homemade marshmallows.
38. Decorate a Tree
It doesn’t have to be the holiday season for you to decorate a tree. Trim your tree with decorations that focus on the nearest holiday or your favorite pastimes.
It can be just as fun to decorate a tree during an unseasonably cold day in June as it is to decorate one in December.
39. Spend a Day Without Social Media
Challenge yourself to avoid all social media platforms for a full day. You might find there is a much bigger world for you out there. Just be sure to tell everyone your plans, or they might think you are in danger!
40. Have a Lazy Day
Cold weather, especially when it is snowing or raining, can make you feel lazy. Embrace it! Sleep in, lounge in your jammies, and generally have an idle day that will help you relax and unwind.
41. Take a Family Photo
When it’s cold and no one in your family wants to face the weather, take advantage by getting everyone together for a family photo.
You can book a session with a photographer or do it yourself with a timer and a camera remote. Even cell phones take great family photos if you have the right camera stand.
42. Create a Playlist
Sit down and get to work on creating the perfect playlist. You can even make multiple playlists for your different moods and activities.
43. Learn to Make Candles
Making candles is much easier than it looks! Start with a kit that gives you the necessities, and then expand your candle creations any time you feel like being crafty.
44. Visit an Online Museum
Most museums offer virtual tours. You can go to some of the world’s most famous museums without leaving your bed.
Get up and get moving. Try different exercises when the weather is cold. Eventually, you will find one you love.
46. Make Elaborate Paper Snowflakes
Everyone made paper snowflakes when they were young. Take that to the next level by making jaw-dropping snowflakes with complicated designs, moving components, or cut-outs of characters from your favorite fandoms.
47. Clean Your House
It may not be entertaining, but it needs to be done. When the weather is uncooperative with outside activities, stay inside and clean. You’ll be glad to have the task completed even if it’s not much fun to do.
48. Sew a T-Shirt Quilt
You have too many t-shirts, but you can’t bring yourself to part with them. Luckily, you don’t have to.
Making a t-shirt quilt is as easy as finding a pattern online, selecting the t-shirts you want, and getting to work. This can be an ongoing project your return to every cold day.
49. Plan Your Summer Vacation
There is no time like cold weather to plan a summer getaway! Start dreaming about your vacation now!
50. Make Marshmallows
Homemade marshmallows are delicious and much easier to make than it seems. As an added bonus, you can make vegetarian marshmallows in multiple flavors.
51. Try World Foods
The internet is rife with recipes. Start making cuisines from places around the world.
52. Do Some Rock Painting
Rock painting is fun and easy. You can then hide the rocks for others to find or add them to your outdoor landscape.
53. Make S’mores by the Fire
Use those homemade marshmallows to make smores. An outside bonfire or an indoor fireplace is perfect for making these yummy treats.
54. Make a Birdseed Wreath
Make a beautiful wreath using materials that feed the birds. It’s a win-win for everyone!
55. Make an Advent or Countdown Calendar
Start counting down the end of the year or another big event with a countdown calendar. Give yourself a task to complete each day until the calendar ends.
56. Learn a Magic Trick
Magic isn’t as mystical as it seems. Watch a video showing a simple magic trick, and then master it!
57. Make a Tie-Dye Design
Tie-dye an old sheet, a faded t-shirt, or some linens. Every time you tie-dye, you create a new and fun design!
58. Start a Movie Club
Book clubs are everywhere. What about a movie club! Have your friends all watch the same movie, and then discuss it online or in person.
59. Make Mulled Wine
Cold days equal hot wine. Mulled wine gives you a homey feeling that can’t be replicated. Try different recipes each day that it’s too cold to go outside.
60. Try Out a Virtual Escape Room
If you like puzzles, you’ll love a virtual escape room! You can play alone or with friends and family.
61. Make Syrup Snow Candy
Mix maple syrup and freshly fallen snow for a treat you won’t believe. Make sure the snow is clean and fluffy. Otherwise, make your own snow with ice cubes and a blender.
After reading this list, you don’t have to worry about what to do when it’s cold outside. Pick your favorites, or do them all!