5 Free Activities to do with the Family this Summer

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This post, 5 Free Activities to do with the Family this Summer, is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Banana Boat® and OFF!®. The opinions and text are all mine.

Summer has arrived in full force here in central Texas.  That means the sun is hot, hot hot and thanks to all the rain this spring- it’s super buggy outside!  I still want to get outside with the kids, so that means we either have to get up super early in the morning to avoid the sun, (and I’m not one who likes to get out early, lol) or we have to stay diligent with our sunblock application and insect repellent.

One of our favorite warm weather activities of late is Geocaching.  (# 5 on the list below. )  It’s such a great activity to get us outside as a family.  We have to work together, plus many of the geocaches are in parks or natural areas, so there is often a bit of hiking involved which adds to the thrill of the “hunt” and makes it that much more exciting for everyone.

Since we are often in the sun while Geocaching, it’s important to keep everyone’s skin protected.  For sunblock, I especially like the Banana Boat® SunComfort™ Spray with SPF of 50+.  (You can find it at Walmart, like I did.)  The SunComfort™ Spray provides broad spectrum UVA and UVA protection, has a water resistant formula (up to 80 minutes) and even helps moisturize dry skin.

To help protect us from the overabundance of mosquitos and “no-see-ums,” we like the OFF!® Active since since it’s sweat resistant.  (Be sure to follow the instructions on the label for proper application.)  Tip:  You’ll find the OFF!® in both the Garden center and Sporting Goods department at Walmart.

Now that everyone is protected, let’s have some fun this summer!

  5 Free Activities to do With the Family this Summer

 1.  Fishing at a neighborhood pond or local lake or river.


Many neighborhoods have small lakes or ponds as a community feature and you’ll often find they are stocked with fish.  (In Texas, fishing licenses are not required if the pond or lake is privately owned or for children under 17.)  Just check the rules for your area and pond.  (As an example, our little lake is catch and release.)

2.  Movies at the park. (Or in your backyard.)

Check with your local parks and recreation department.  You’ll be surprised how many host an evening “movies in the park” event.  No local outdoor movie event?  Google “smart phone movie projector” and learn how to have your own outdoor theater.

3.  Hiking local trails or Nature Preserves.

Hiking is great exercise for everyone and will help foster a love of nature in the little ones.  Start with short hikes and work your way up to longer trips.  Be sure to bring along enough water and yummy snacks to keep everyone hydrated and energized!

4.  Camping in the Backyard

A campout in the back yard can be almost as much fun as camping at a camp ground.  All you need is a tent, flashlights and a few pillows and blankets.  For the ultimate backyard campout, don’t forget about roasting hotdog and maybe a spot to make s’mores!  The best part about camping in the backyard is that it’s free and the packing is super easy.

5.  Geocaching.


Geocaching is a fun outdoor treasure hunting game using a GPS-enabled device and compass. To find the treasures, you will navigate to a specific set of GPS coordinates and then attempt to find the hidden geocache.  (The map shown above is just a snapshot of the locations around north Austin.)

Now it’s your turn!  What’s your favorite free (or low cost) outdoor activity?