18 Cool Snow Activities for Kids That Will Brrr-ing the Fun

Get out in the cold and keep the whole family active with these exciting things to do in the snow!

Updated December 13, 2023
Mother holding daughter in falling snow

It's time to dig out the snow pants, winter boots, puffy coats, mittens, and hats! These snow activities are worth the excavation. Get outdoors, enjoy the fresh air, stay active, and make some new family memories with these frosty and fun things to do in the snow! 

Bundle Up and Head Outdoors to Enjoy These Snow Activities

Many people associate the warmer months with outdoor activities, but for families living in the north, the colder months are the perfect time to get outdoors and explore the world around them. Snow and ice completely transform your natural setting, and these weather changes bring a whole different set of pastimes to try. Here are some incredibly fun snow activities for kids and adults!

Go for a Sleigh Ride

Every year, we hear Christmas songs highlighting the joy of a sleigh ride, but have you ever been on one? In most big cities, you can find folks who will take you on a good old-fashioned sleigh ride through the snow. Talk about a wonderful way to start this chilly season!

Build an Epic Snow Fort

Boy Building Snow Fort

Once the snow falls, (or maybe a snow day rolls around) it's high time to get outdoors and build a snow fort. You can create this snowy structure by rolling snowballs or by using a brick mold and stacking the snow bricks on top of one another. If you want your fort to last for as long as possible, try out these helpful tips:

  • First, build a base of snowballs or bricks, stacking them as you construct the walls.
  • Fill in all gaps with plenty of snow, leaving no holes in your fort.
  • Create durability by adding more snow to the outer wall, helping to stabilize your fort.
  • Dump water on the structure, starting at the bottom of the fort. This ice covering will give your fort one last element of sturdiness.

Create a Winter Games Obstacle Course

kids playing in snow

If you have enough snow and people to play, a fantastically fun snow activity is to create your very own winter games! In this competition, see who can complete a handful of winter activities the fastest.

Have competitors make a snow angel, slide down a hill, find their way through a snow maze, and throw snowballs through different targets (like hula hoops). This can be a great way to stay warm, release some energy, and make the most of a heavy snowfall!

Ice Bowling

This is an easy and fun snow activity that does require a tiny bit of prep. First, get a few balloons and fill them with water. Place them in your freezer and then head outside. Next, make a few clusters of mini snowmen to serve as your bowling pins. The more clusters, the more you can play! Once your ice balls are frozen, let the bowling begin.

Quick Tip

For those with a limited window of play, any type of ball will do! The ice balls just provide a bit of a challenge that regular balls do not!

Try Your Hand at Ice Skating

Ice skating is fun for people of all ages, and it's great exercise. While you can certainly take your family to the nearest indoor skating rink, there is something simply magical about gliding about in nature. You can lace up your skates at a local lake or pond, just make sure to check that the ice is thick enough to support people, or you can make your own skating rink in your backyard! 

Have a Backyard Bonfire

Mother And Son In Snow During Winter With Bonfire

Bonfires are commonplace activities when you are camping in the summer, but families can also enjoy them in colder winter months as well. For this to work, you must have dry wood that has been stored away from the snow and ice.

Start your fire using these helpful tips to get the flames dancing. Then, bundle your family up and bring plenty of blankets outside, as well as a mug of something warm. Gather around the bonfire, sharing stories and memories.

Go Stargazing

Did you know that the winter months are the best time to look at the stars? While you are enjoying some quality time by the fire, take a moment or two to enjoy the gorgeous night sky and see if you can spot any constellations!

Better, yet, if you live in the Northern latitudes, see if you can spot the aurora borealis. The nights are darker for longer, making nature's light show easier to see.

Head to the Nearest Snowy Hill

Black family sledding in snow

If you have a hill and snow, you will always have something fun to do in the winter. Take the gang sledding, try skiing or snowboarding, or even tubing. See who can get down the hill the fastest, or who can stay up on the snowboard the longest.

You can also connect your tubes together and see if your whole family can make it to the bottom of the hill. By the day's end, you will be tuckered out, a little sore (skiing is hard work), and aching from the countless smiles and laughs you all had on the hill.

Go Picasso in the Snow

Snowman and other figures found in the field

Painting the snow is such a fun winter activity to get the creative juices flowing. Snow paint is easy to make and fun to explore with. Best of all, you don't have to worry about the mess, since your canvas is the white blanket of fluffy stuff sitting outside your back door.

Helpful Hack

For families who love a good competition, turn your snow painting into a family challenge by dividing your clan into two teams and seeing who can create the most magnificent masterpiece.

Show Some Kindness by Clearing Snow

Sometimes the best activities have nothing to do with play, but rather, helping others. Another great snow activity for kids is to shovel some driveways to make other's lives just a little bit easier. Think about your neighbors and who could benefit most from this act of kindness and take a moment to teach your kids about the importance of giving! 

Have a Winter Scavenger Hunt

Kids observing animal tracks on snow in winter forest

Scavenger hunts in nature keep everyone busy, and there's no reason you can't create a scavenger hunt in the winter months. Search for items like animal tracks, icicles, a fallen feather, a pinecone, an acorn, a cardinal, or a squirrel.

Because it will be near impossible (and probably unsafe) to bring living animals and large icicles back to base, take a camera or cell phone along with you, and snap pictures of the items on the list.

Have a Snowball Fight

Father, mother and son throwing snow balls

Calling all neighbors! Bundle the kids up in warm clothes and embark on a snowball war. Don't just run outside and start flinging snow all over the place, instead spend an hour paying attention to the prep work.

Separate into teams (this winter game works best with several participants). Each team meets to strategize, build small walls to duck behind, and create an arsenal of snowballs. Then, when it comes time ... FIRE! 

Go On an Animal Print Trek

Kids tracking animal prints in winter forest

If you live in an area with nature trails, see how different they look in the winter months. When heading into a field or woodsy area covered in snow, you are likely to see plenty of different animal tracks. Take pictures of them or sketch them in a notebook.

What animal might have left them? Extend this activity by heading home and researching the animals who left those tracks in the snow.

Try Birdwatching

Birdwatching of father and children

Birdwatching is a peaceful outdoor activity families can enjoy in both the summer and winter months. Birds seen in the wintertime are extra striking, as their feathers create a stark contrast to the white backdrop of the snowscape.

Get out your camera and try your hand at some photography skills, later creating a book of the beautiful birds you spotted. Come springtime, pair your new birdwatching hobby with birdhouse building, constructing new homes for your feathered friends.

Spend the Day Ice Fishing

Boy ice fishing

If you live near an inland lake, try ice fishing this winter! By creating an opening in the thick lake ice, you can enjoy the fun of fishing even in the coldest temperatures. Make sure you bundle up well and bring along your favorite foods and beverages to help fuel you and keep you nice and warm.

Do You Want to Build a Snowman?

Making snowman with friends and family

Who doesn't love building snowmen in the wintertime? After a huge dumping of snow, head out and create your very own Frosty the Snowman. If several people are getting in on the fun, make an entire family of snowmen in the front yard.

Snowshoe Through the Snow

Family snowshoeing

If skiing or snowboarding are too extreme for your family, try snowshoeing on for size! It provides plenty of physical exercise for all involved and it is a fantastic new way to see the wintry world. Look into renting or purchasing snowshoes, and know how to pick snowshoes that will both suit your needs and fit your family's feet. 

Check Out Holiday Decorations

You don't need a forest to go for a fun snow-filled hike! Just head out for a walk in your neighborhood after dark to take in your neighborhood's gorgeous, and free, light displays! This can be an exciting family tradition that is enjoyable for all ages and requires absolutely no planning. 

Wintertime Is a Wonderful Time for Fun and Family

Don't think that wintertime means you have to keep the family cooped up indoors. There are plenty of snow activities to do that allow you to see outside your frost-covered windows. Use the winter months to get outdoors and explore nature with your family.

18 Cool Snow Activities for Kids That Will Brrr-ing the Fun