With its warm temperatures and long days, summer is ideal for going on exciting adventures and creating incredible memories to last a lifetime. To help you make the most of this magical season, we’ve put together a list of 2023 bucket list ideas of fun experiences and activities that will benefit your physical and mental health.
Live your best life this summer with our 2023 bucket list ideas
1. Enjoy nature’s bounty with an active picnic
If you’re looking for a relaxing and active day of savouring tasty food while connecting with nature and friends or family, add a park picnic day to your catalog of summer 2023 bucket list ideas. Pack a picnic basket or cooler bag filled with nutritious and hydrating foods and beverages, a blanket to sit on and gear for activities such as:
- Hiking, walking, wheeling or jogging on a nearby nature trail, where you can observe fascinating flora and fauna while getting your heart pumping.
- Yoga or stretching sessions: Sitting on the ground can be hard on your legs and back, meaning regular stretch breaks are especially important during a picnic. So, make time to flow through gentle yoga poses or stretches on your picnic blanket or a yoga mat to improve your flexibility and balance.
- Outdoor games and sports like frisbee, catch, badminton, soccer, bocce ball or cornhole for some friendly competition and bonding.
2. Stay cool with an active pool day
The summer heat can make outdoor activities challenging, but an excellent way to keep active and cool at the same time is in an outdoor pool. Community pools are often free or inexpensive to use, and some extend their hours when there are heat warnings in effect. So, instead of staying indoors, head to an outdoor pool and try these activities:
- Pool games: Feel like a kid again by playing fun games like Marco Polo, Sharks and Minnows or having an underwater treasure hunt where you throw objects like pool rings, goggles or diving sticks into the pool and take turns finding them. Many community pools have these pieces of equipment available to borrow.
- Pool relay races: Gather friends or family members, split into teams and face-off in swimming challenges like freestyle sprints and underwater races.
- Water aerobics: Join a class or create your own high-energy routine. Many water exercises can be performed in the deep end while wearing a water belt or life jacket or straddling a pool noodle, or in the shallow end with the water level at mid-chest level. Here are some exercises you can try:
- Water jogging with biceps curls: Leaning slightly forward with your head level and shoulders stationary, simulate running on land while pumping your arms from your hips to just below the water’s surface. Spread your hands to increase the surface area, holding your palms down to work your biceps and make the exercise more challenging.
- Cross-country ski exercise: Leaning slightly forward with your head level, and shoulders stationary, simulate cross-country skiing on freshly fallen snow! Pump your arms and legs in opposite directions while keeping your arms below the surface of the water, switching as quickly as possible.
- Frog Jumps: Keeping your body in the water, quickly pull your knees up toward your chest (with your knees wide) while pushing your hands towards your feet as they come up to about hip level. Return to the starting position and repeat as quickly as is comfortable.
Regardless of which activities you choose to do, make sure to follow these pool safety tips:
- Never swim alone.
- Wear a life jacket if you’re new to swimming.
- Apply waterproof sunscreen 30 minutes before swimming and dry off to reapply every two hours.
For more water safety information, click here.
3. Embark on a cycling daytrip
Cycling is a low-impact physical activity that can strengthen your lower body muscles as you discover and explore new places and hidden gems while connecting with nature. Across our beautiful country, we’re blessed with many popular scenic cycling routes, including picturesque coastal routes with sparkling lakes or ocean waters as your backdrop, peaceful country roads and nature trails. Before embarking on a cycling trip, keep these tips in mind:
- Look up bike paths or trails near you or at a destination you want to visit.
- Consider distance, terrain and difficulty level.
- Map out points of interest, landmarks or other attractions where you want to stop along the way.
- Ensure your bike is in good condition with inflated tires, working brakes and well-adjusted gears.
- Make sure there are lights and reflectors on your bike for night-time cycling.
- Apply sunscreen and bug repellant before your ride and bring them with you to re-apply.
- Wear a properly fitting helmet and brightly coloured or reflective clothes that won’t get caught in the bike’s chains, such as bike shorts or bike pants.
- Follow the rules of the road, signal to motorists and other cyclists when making turns or stopping and always remain alert.
- Bring water and safety gear like a first aid kit, repair tools, a tire pump and a spare tube or patch kit.
- Read this article for more safety tips.
4. Embrace the sun, sand and waves with an active beach day
With sparkling water, crashing waves and the feeling of soft sand between your toes, beaches are perfect for unwinding and getting active. So, rather than spending your whole day lying on the beach, try:
- Paddling along the coastline: Rent a canoe, kayak or stand-up paddleboard and take it for a spin. No matter which one you pick, paddling is a great upper body strengthening activity that allows you to explore the shore at your own pace. Ensure the water conditions are safe and calm, wear a life jacket and take lessons if you’re new to paddling.
- Snorkeling to explore the underwater world: Grab a mask, snorkel, fins and maybe a wetsuit to keep warm, and see what lies beneath the waves. Before going in the water, apply sunscreen and make sure the E. coli levels and currents are safe for swimming.
- Beach volleyball or frisbee: Gather friends or family members for some friendly competition. Some beaches have volleyball nets set up or poles you can attach your own net to.
Don’t forget to wear a hat and sunglasses and to put on waterproof sunscreen, being sure to reapply it at least every two hours.
5. Explore a street festival
Common in many cities across the country during the summer months, street festivals celebrate diverse cultures and traditions, music, art and food. They’re a great way to get some physical activity in without even realizing it from dancing to live music performances and wandering from one booth or stall to another to shop, admire artwork, and refuel and hydrate with nutritious foods and refreshing drinks. So, look up upcoming festivals near you that match your interests or ones at a destination you want to visit this summer.