If you live in Florida, you can stop reading here. For the rest of us who lives somewhere it gets cold during winter and who want to spend more time outside – how do you pry you and your kids away from the indoor comforts and warmth and get some quality outside time together? Read below for some ideas to keep your outside time up even in the dead of winter!

Get cold weather gear and layer up

If you or your kids are cold when you go outside, maybe you don’t have the right outdoor clothing. Layers are key. What you get exactly depends largely on where you live and how cold it gets. But if you don’t know where to get started, REI has a great guide on how to dress in cold weather. If you’re trying to save some money, you can buy used clothing on your local Facebook marketplace or on used kids clothing sites like Kidizen. Remember, there’s no such thing as bad weather, just bad clothing!

Purple Lands’ End Kids Squall Fleece-Lined Waterproof Insulated Jacket
The Lands’ End Kids Squall Fleece-Lined Waterproof Insulated Jacket that Chris uses to get his kids outside in winter

Play in the backyard

I know it may sound obvious, but if you have a backyard – get out and play in it! You can just get out for 30 minutes to 1 hour stretches if your kiddos get too cold, but gear up in your cold weather clothing and get out there. You can always run inside and make some hot chocolate to warm you up to extend your time outside. Or you can start a fire and make some s’mores. Not everyone has a back yard, and that’s ok – there are other options, so keep reading.’

Backyard with grass and fence
It’s right there, waiting for you

Go to a local playground / park

Believe it or not, going to your local playground or park is a great option in the winter. The best part is that, because of the cold, the playground will likely not be packed. So you and your kids are free to make it yours to enjoy. I just took my daughters to the playground the other day with a balmy high of 39 degrees. We spent about 2 hours there and had a great time. I bundled them up and brought extra options with me (hats, gloves, extra layers) in case they got cold so I could warm them up as needed. And they were fine! No one even whined about the cold. You can do it too!

That playground is still there, just waiting to be played on

Go for a walk

Layer your family up and walk out your front door and go for a walk. Don’t overthink this. The walk can be long or short depending on how everyone is feeling. But it’s a simple way to get some quality outdoor time together. Reflect with your kids how the trees and plants look different in the winter. Point out how the birds and other animals act different at this time of year. Just go!

Man walking in snow with dog
Winter has it’s own beauty that can be discovered on a good, old-fashioned walk

Visit your local zoo

This may not be true everywhere, but in many cities your local zoo will still be open in the winter. Layer up and take the kids for a walk through your local zoo. If you feel your zoo is too pricey for a single visit that might get cut short because of the cold, consider a membership. Our local zoo membership basically pays for itself after two visits. If you think you’ll go just one more time that year, then get a membership. It might inspire you to go more often and there’s no pressure to stay at the zoo any longer than you or your kids want to. Just want to walk around for 45 minutes and go home because of the cold? No problem!

Lions in winter at zoo
Your zoo is probably still open and the animals are still there, so go!

Just get out there!

In reading this article, you should realize by now that many activities you might enjoy in warm weather can still be enjoyed in winter with the right clothing. Your clothing choices are key. You might decide to spend less time doing these activities because of the cold, but it doesn’t mean you have to avoid them altogether. So if you don’t already have the right clothing to spend time outside in the cold, shop around – new or used – and get out there!

Do you have other ideas your or your family use to get more outside time in the winter? Please share in the comments below! The more the merrier!