10 Portable Outdoor Games for Your Family Vacation
Go offline and have fun this summer with our favorite outdoor games and activities that are easy to tote to the park, beach and more.
Life is not all fun and games, but we think summer should be. Consider this your sign to close your laptop, stow away your cell and stretch those legs. It’s time to step into the past with classic outdoor sports and rec games.
We scoured the market for the best outdoor games for every setting or scenario: games you can play solo, as a pair or with a group. From bocce ball to badminton, we have you covered with games suited for all ages and activity levels. The best part? All our game picks are travel-friendly, so you can take some old-fashioned fun wherever the wind blows you this summer.
Brush up on your croquet skills at the park with this six-player travel set. The lively set includes six solid wood mallets with cushioned caps, six multi-colored balls, weather-resistant wire wickets and two wooden stakes. Bonus: Each croquet set comes with a carrying case and a game rulebook that keeps your more— ahem—creative competitors in line.
You need this ladder toss game in your summer arsenal ASAP. The handsome set looks far more expensive than it is and provides hours of friendly (read: fierce) competition for players of all ages. Each game includes six bolas and two New Zealand pine ladders with red, navy and forest green-striped rungs. A built-in score tracker makes keeping track of who’s in the lead a breeze. Set up the fun in your backyard or tote it to your park picnic with the included canvas carrying case.
Part backgammon table, part checkers board and part beach towel? The future is now. This adorable, absorbent Sunnylife towel is divided into two printed pastel game tables to keep you entertained between swims. Plus, the towel comes with 32 wooden game pieces that work for both activities.
Bocce ball dates to Ancient Rome (2776 years, give or take) and remains a crowd-pleasing activity today. If a game can withstand that test of time, it’s well worth your investment. This summery blue-and-green bocce set is our pick; each game set includes eight bocce balls and one small ball. Each bocce ball is hand-painted in one of four fresh stripe or cross motifs. Take the game to your next outdoor dinner party or toss them in your beach bag for some old-fashioned (er, ancient) fun in the sun.
Can we all agree that lawn bowling is superior to indoor bowling because it does not require shoes donned by hundreds of strangers? Live your best, most-hygienic life with this wood bowling set. Each game includes 10 New Zealand pine pins, two bowling balls and a handy mesh carrying case for gaming on the go.
Whether heading to the coast, packing a picnic or hanging in your backyard— this giant jumbling tower is guaranteed to be a hit. The game comes with 45 oversized wooden blocks, each hand-painted blue, green or white on the edges for a beachy ombre effect.
You only need two things to turn your wholesome Saturday at the park into a fierce, family competition riddled with smack-talk and rematches: a picnic table and this checkered table tennis set from Anthropologie. The trendy mint-green set comes with two paddles, two balls and a space-savvy net that expands and attaches to most standard tables.
If you can’t make it to the golf course, bring the golf course wherever you go. The battleship golf game set from Mark & Graham is a must-have for any golfer who wants to practice their chipping (without chipping up their lawn), test out a new club or engage in some healthy competition with friends. Each set includes two target greens, 16 foam balls, two hitting mats (monogram optional!), a score card and a carrying case for golf on the go.