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Fun things to do outdoors this December

Last updated: 29/11/2023 

10 festive outdoor activities this winter


Christmas is a time for family, friends, and festivities. But it’s so simple to combine all of that with some fresh air and exercise. With a little planning, you can easily find plenty of fun and festive outdoor activities to enjoy this December. Here are a  few ideas to get you started:

1. Organise a Candy Cane Hunt

Forget the easter egg hunt, add another seasonal tradition this year with a candy cane hunt. Include devious hiding spots both inside and outside and, if you’re feeling creative, why not add clues and a backstory about why all the candy canes must be retrieved – to save Christmas?

2. Set off on a Winter Hike

Green spaces and wild places around us transform in December. Icy leaves crunch beneath our feet, the winter sun shines bright and clear and, if we’re lucky, we can be treated to snow.

It’s the perfect time to explore the forest – for all ages! Search for the beautiful places around you and even meet with friends halfway to spend some quality time together outside.

Hazy winter view of the mountains and forest

3. Experience A Go Ape Adventure!

Add some thrills to your break with an exciting Go Ape adventure. Go Ape has 36 locations across the UK filled with high-ropes, Axe Throwing and Nets Adventure experiences. Talk about a Winter Wonderland!

Unite your tribe for a pre-Christmas (or post-Christmas) treat for a day of unforgettable fun. Find your extreme treat and indulge in a big adventure in some of the most beautiful places across the UK.

Young boy in red jumper on Go Ape Treetop Adventure

4. Go for a Christmas light walk

Throughout December many neighbourhoods are lit up with beautiful decorations. And, inevitably, there’s always one street that takes the Christmas decoration challenge to the next level. Round up your group for a wander one evening and enjoy the simple joy of basking in the Christmassy glow.

5. Create Natural Decorations

Holly, berries and pinecones are often used in shop bought Christmas decorations but, why buy the things that we can often find in our own back gardens? Dig out some glue, tape, string, ribbon and try creating some of your own decorations this year! They may just become a treasured memory one day.

Try making a Christmas wreath, pinecone and saltdough ornaments, and advent calendars. Find more creative ideas here.

Christmas Wreath hung on a door

6. Make a Christmas cake bird feeder

December is a time of yummy food - for humans and pets alike - but why not share this tradition a little further this year. Treat the wildlife around you this year to a seasonal snack with this Christmas Cake bird feeder!

Collage of Elf Doors

7. Create a elf house

Remember when you used to believe that the tiny nooks at the bottom of trees were gateways to fairy worlds?

Share that magic with your kids this Christmas by designing your very own elf or fairy door. Elf houses can be created using materials from around the house and are a great crafty wintery activity.

Here are a couple of pictures to give you some inspiration!

8. Have an Ice Skating adventure

Ice skating is a classic outdoor winter activity that's sure to get you in the mood for Christmas.

In December, many towns and cities across the UK have outdoor skating rinks as well as indoor ice skating centres.

Wrap up warm, strap on your skates and embrace your inner Torvill and Dean (or Elsa from Frozen).

Couple in front of christmas outdoor ice rink

9. Go Stargazing

Crisp and clear winter nights are perfect for stargazing. Choose a night when there is little to no cloud cover and head to a park or open space to enjoy nature’s very own light show. Remember to bundle up and bring along thermos along to keep you feeling cosy – as well as a head torch!

Want to know more? Read National Geographic’s article to learn how to keep the kids entertained with a stargazing adventure.

Group of people camping and stargazing outside

10. Volunteer Your Time

With Christmas and presents on the horizon in December, it’s important to remind little ones (and ourselves) that Christmas is a time of giving as well as receiving. Why not find out if there are any ways that you can volunteer in your community?

Organisations like The National Trust and The Woodland Trust have loads of outdoor volunteering opportunities, including ones focused on protecting habitats and species.

There are endless fun and adventurous outdoor things to do in December so, get out there and explore! With a little planning, you can find plenty of festive ways to make the most of the winter wonderland waiting outside.

Find adventure at Go Ape this December

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Go Ape instructor in the forest at Sunset