At a time when there’s always something on TV, or a new digital device to play with, sometimes it’s nice to enjoy the quiet beauty of the outdoors. No matter how old your kids are, you can plan outdoor activities and family adventures that fit their age and level of activity. From hiking to canoeing, here are a few suggestions for spending time outside with your family.
Nature hikes: Local, state and national parks are the perfect place to enjoy an outdoor activity with the family. If you have toddlers, find an easy trail to meander down while taking in the scenery. Older kids might enjoy the following educational nature activities that will familiarize them with the forests in your area:
- Tree identification – A simple tree guide can help you and your kids spot the various species of trees in your area. Take a few varieties of leaves home. Press and dry them between book pages and practice identifying each tree type before your next hike.
- Bird watching – Similar to tree identification, you can teach your kids how to identify birds based on calls and markings. Young children might not have the attention span for bird watching, but older kids might get a kick out of spotting birds through binoculars.
- Animal track identification – Even if you don’t see them, most forests are full of animals. Practice finding animal tracks in soft soil and matching them to different species. Eventually your kids may be able to distinguish deer, raccoon, squirrel, coyote, and, depending on where you are, even bear tracks.
Canoeing: If you live near a river or large stream, look for canoe liveries in the area. Canoeing or kayaking can be a relaxing outdoor activity for the whole family, just make sure you don’t venture into rapids that are beyond your skill level. White water rapids are graded by class, and your local livery will be able to advise which level is safe for your family adventure.
Camping: Pitching a tent and sitting around a fire is a great way to spend time with family. Local camp grounds, KOAs, state and national parks, or even your own back yard, are a few places where you can sleep under the stars. If you’re looking for a more ‘modern’ camping experience, you can take a camper or RV so the kids are comfortable and you can sleep in a real bed.
Camping, hiking and other outdoor activities are memorable ways to spend quality time together, but make sure to guard against bumps in the road if you can. For example, if you’re traveling a long distance to camp, have your car inspected to make sure it’s road-trip-ready. And make sure your car insurance coverage is up-to-date in case of a fender bender along the way. You may want to compare car insurance quotes online for services like roadside assistance, which could get you out of a jam if you and your family get stranded due to low fuel, dead battery or engine trouble.
Note: Sponsored content was created and provided by Nationwide Insurance.