The Ultimate Summer Bucket List for Teens

101 Awesome Ideas to Make Every Summer Day Count!

Summer is always wonderful as a kid, but it can be even better as a teenager!

More freedom, more opportunities, and more abilities mean that you can do and experience more than you did as a kid.

And in the grand scheme of life, there are only a few summers that you get to spend as a teenager – so why not make them count?!

So keep reading to get some great ideas for the best Summer Bucket List for Teens right here!

How to Create the Perfect Bucket List for You

Teens know how fast those summer months can go, and a summer bucket list can be the perfect way to make sure you really get the most out of those school-free days.

Here are our tips on creating the best Summer Bucket List:

  1. Start by setting your priorities. Do you want to work? Visit colleges? Complete your summer reading? Get some volunteer hours? Decide what things are most important and write those down.
  2. Choose fun things that you already love to do.
  3. Pick a few activities that will help you connect with others. While you may appreciate the break from all the people at school, summer is a great time to grow your most important relationships and make them stronger.
  4. Include some activities that will help you step out of your comfort zone! Part of being a teen is figuring out who you are and what you’re all about, and summer is a great time to experiment and try new things.

Remember, your Summer Bucket List should be a reflection of your likes and interests, and it should also help you stretch a little too.

Don’t be afraid to put a few things on your list that you’ve never done before!

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Free Printable Summer Bucket List for Teens

To download and print your copy of our Teens and Tweens Summer Bucket List Ideas, simply click right here or on the image below! 

teens summer bucket list printable

You’ll find two different versions available to you. One is brightly colored and festive and the other is mostly black and white if you need a more printer-friendly copy. 

Once you’ve got your free printable Summer Bucket List for Teens, keep reading to get more details on each of the activities we’ve listed. 

With over 100 ideas on the list, it’s highly unlikely you’ll be able to do all of them.

Plus, there will definitely be some ideas that may not appeal to you at all. That’s okay!

All you need to do for now is go through the list and choose 25-30 ideas that really resonate with you. These are the ones that’ll be on your Summer Bucket List!

summer bucket list for teens and tweens printable

We’ve organized our idea list into three separate categories for your convenience:

  • Summer indoor activities 
  • Outdoor activities ideas
  • Out and about summer activities

101 Great Ideas for Your Teenagers’ Summer Bucket List 

Let’s get started with our indoor ideas for the Summer Bucket List for teens!

Indoor ideas

1. Do an escape room

Escape rooms are awesome! There are escape room games you can play at home like this super fun Star Wars version, or if you live near a major city, there’s a good chance there will be an escape room immersive experience near you!

2. Learn some cool yo-yo tricks

Yo-yos are all the rage again!

Check out some great yo-yo videos on YouTube and grab this cool trick yo-yo! It’s perfect for beginners wanting to learn a few cool tricks.

3. Make a Tik-Tok video

Of course, you can always learn a dance that’s already out there, but why not make up your own? Who knows?! Maybe it’ll be the next viral sensation!

4. Do an art project

Whether you’re into origami or watercolors, pottery, or crochet, take some free time this summer and create something!

5. Celebrate National Days in June, July, and August

Whether you celebrate National Vanilla Milkshake Day on June 20th or National Water Balloon Day on August 5th, or any of the other awesome National Days in between, is totally up to you.

To stay up-to-date on the BEST National Days for Kids and Teens, join the Jen Bradley|MOMs Free Printable Library! Every month we upload a brand new National Days calendar with all of the most fun National Days!

June National Days calendar

6. Watch a whole series on Netflix

If you set a goal to watch an entire Netflix series, then the time you spend watching actually feels more productive, right?

7. Make homemade pizza

Yum! Make mini pizzas and let everyone DIY their toppings.

8. Try a new look

Maybe you want to dye your tips, rock a henna tattoo, or try a new clothing style. Summer is the perfect time to do it!

(P.S. It’s always a good idea to get your parent’s permission first.)

9. Make a summer playlist

What’s summer without a fun summer playlist?

Here are some of our favorite throwback summertime hits:

  • “Summertime” by DJ Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince
  • “Cruel Summer” by Bananarama
  • “Summer of ’69” by Bryan Adams
  • “School’s Out” by Alice Cooper
  • “Surfin’ USA” by the Beach Boys (or any of their songs!)
  • “Walking on Sunshine” by Katrina and the Waves
  • “Happy” by Pharrell Williams
  • “The Lazy Song” by Bruno Mars
  • “The Boys of Summer” by Don Henley
  • “Wipeout” by The Surfaris

10. Make homemade lemonade

Nothing says summer like a tall glass of cold, homemade lemonade!

Check out this easy 5-ingredient homemade lemonade recipe right here (that even includes the ice!) made from stuff you most likely already have at home.

lemonade

11. Have a bake-off competition

Challenge your inner chef and have a bake-off competition with your friends one afternoon!

Think Great British Baking Show or Sugar Rush and get to work creating your best cake, cookie, or pie.

12. Redecorate your room

Summer is the perfect time to paint a wall or two or put up some new artwork or posters.

(Again, this is one to clear with your parents first (especially if it involves painting!).

13. Eat breakfast at midnight

Doing things that are out of the ordinary makes them fun, right?

Stay up late with your friends and eat breakfast at midnight. Maybe it’s just cold cereal, but you could always jazz it up and make pancakes or waffles instead! (If you do, try putting peanut butter and syrup together as toppings. You will not regret it!)

14. Do a 1,000-piece puzzle

Challenge yourself and do a big puzzle with at least 1,000 pieces.

If puzzles are already your thing, choose one with even more pieces!

Related post: The Step-by-Step Guide to Having an Unforgettable Screen-Free Week

15. Have a movie marathon

Now we’re all about the screen-free time during the summer.

But why not take one day and have a movie marathon?!

Choose whatever movie series you love the most, stay in your PJs, pop some popcorn, and bring all the pillows to the living room for a movie-watching day.

(Our choice? It’s a toss-up between Harry Potter and the old High School Musicals!)

16. Leave a note in a library book

Before you return your book to the library, write a little note and leave it inside for whoever checks it out next.

Write something fun or encouraging, or tell them why you liked the book. No spoiler alerts though!

17. Make homemade ice cream

Making homemade ice cream is a cinch with this awesome Cuisinart ice cream and frozen yogurt maker!

We’ve had ours for more than 2 years and it’s fantastic. The included recipe book is full of yummy recipes that are super easy to make. (S’mores ice cream, anyone?!)

homemade ice cream

18. Have a photoshoot

Maybe you have senior pictures to take over summer break, but even if you’re not there yet, grab a friend and head outside to the most picturesque spot you know and snap away.

(FYI: The best times to take photos are the hour right after sunrise and right before sunset!)

19. Paint kindness rocks

Choose some flat rocks and paint them with sweet messages such as “Have a great day!” or “Kindness rocks!”

Then anonymously leave them in your neighbor’s flowerbeds, at the local playground, or around your school.

kindness rocks

20. Do a crossword puzzle or Sudoku 

Flex your brainpower with a fun crossword or Soduku book!

Exercising your brain isn’t a bad thing to do over the summer months.

21. Home spa day

Soak in the tub with a bath bomb or try a new mask.

Give yourself a mani-pedi, too!

22. Create a vision board

A vision board is simply a collage of images that represents your dreams and goals.

Think about what you want your life to be like in a year or two and find images to support that vision.

Print them out, stick them on a poster or bulletin board, and put your board somewhere you’ll see it often to keep you motivated and inspired!

23. Make root beer floats

Yum! Get some big cups, root beer, and vanilla ice cream and make root beer floats!

24. Try a new summer fruit or vegetable

Head on out to the Farmer’s Market or grocery store and choose a fruit or vegetable you’ve never tried before!

This is a great way to branch out and expand your palette!

25. Tie-dye shirts

White cotton t-shirts are the best for tie-dye!

This inexpensive tie-dye kit was super easy to use and comes with simple instructions and 8 pre-filled tie-dye color bottles!

tie dye shirts

Outdoor ideas

26. Attend an outdoor concert

Whether you see a local act or an international superstar, enjoy an evening enjoying the sights and sounds of summer!

27. Watch fireworks

Does watching fireworks ever get old? We don’t think so!

Set out a blanket or camp chairs and take along some playing cards or fun activities to pass the time while you wait for it to get dark.

28. Water balloon fight

These rapid-fill, self-sealing water balloons are just what you need for your next water balloon fight!

water balloon fight

29. Walk the neighbor’s dog

Do a good deed and get some exercise at the same time by volunteering to walk your neighbor’s dog!

30. Watch a sunrise

Make yourself a quick smoothie, and head outside to watch the sunrise on a warm summer morning.

It’ll be well worth it, we promise.

31. Jump in a pool fully clothed

Do something crazy and jump in a pool with all your clothes on!

Go ahead, live a little!

32. Relax in a hammock

Grab your favorite summer read and let yourself sway in the summer breeze as you relax in a hammock.

33. Wash the car

Not only will this be a fun activity, but you’ll also get a chore done at the same time. Win-win!

Don’t be afraid to splash everyone else too!

car wash teen summer bucket list

34. Watch a sunset

Spend a relaxing evening with the people you love best in the world and watch the sunset together.

35. Have a watermelon eating contest

Chop a watermelon into slices and have a contest to see who can eat the most!

36. Go swimming

It doesn’t matter if it’s a pool, a lake, or the ocean. But get out there and get in the water!

37. Take selfies with strangers

This is another one of those fun and silly ideas that keep life interesting!

When you’re on vacation (or see tourists where you live), offer to take selfies with random people. They might get a kick out of it!

selfies with strangers

38. Dine al fresco

This is only a fancy way to say: eat outside.

Put up an outdoor umbrella for some shade and stick real cloves into slices of lemon to keep flies away!

39. Play croquet

Croquet is a great summer game because it doesn’t require much set-up OR much skill!

This highly-rated six-player croquet set comes with a handy carrying bag too.

40. Watch a movie in the backyard

Watching movies is fun.

But watching a movie in the backyard?

That’s even more fun!

Check out this 5G WiFi projector that comes with a screen too! (While it might seem like a lot of money, a few trips to the movie theater would quickly cost as much!)

Related article: How to Have an Amazing Outdoor Movie Night

outdoor movie night

41. Play at the park

You’re never too old to swing on the swings, right?

Just be sure to be respectful of any young kids and families who are at the park too!

42. Play frisbee golf

Check to see if your town has a frisbee or disc golf course set up somewhere in town.

43. Check out a waterfall

Do you have any waterfalls nearby? Spend a late morning going on a hike to find it from a new viewpoint.

44. Play miniature golf

Choose a warm summer evening and head out to the local miniature golf place for a night of fun with your friends!

45. Roast marshmallows for s’mores

What would summer be without s’mores?

We love these fantastic, telescoping roasting sticks because they’re also color-coded so everyone knows whose marshmallow is whose!

smores for teen summer bucket list

46. Have a BBQ

Invite some friends over and have a classic BBQ together. Ask your friends to chip in and bring sides or desserts.

47. Play flashlight tag

Get out a bunch of flashlights (one per person), and wait until it’s dark outside.

Then play flashlight tag in a big, open field.

48. Skip rocks

The next time you’re near a pond, search for some flat rocks and practice skipping them across the water.

49. Have a fancy picnic

Check out this awesome picnic backpack that includes a blanket and service for four.

Doesn’t it make you want to pack a delicious picnic dinner and head out to the park to eat?

Related post: How to Have the Best Movie Night at Home

50. Go on a hike

Pull on those hiking boots or tennis shoes and get out into nature with your family or friends.

51. Sidewalk chalk

Here’s a true fact about life: You’re never too old for sidewalk chalk.

Spend an afternoon creating chalk pictures on your driveway and sidewalk for the neighbors to enjoy!

sidewalk chalk art

52. Fly a kite

On a windy day, head to an open field, and fly kites!

53. Cloud gaze

Spread out a big blanket on the grass and lay down on your back with your friends, looking up at the clouds slowly drifting by.

Enjoy sharing ideas about the different shapes and pictures you see in the clouds.

54. Try geocaching

Geocaching is using GPS coordinates to find treasures and surprises left by others in specific spots all over the world.

For more info on how to get started, check out this article here.

geocache

55. Blow bubbles

Just like sidewalk chalk, bubbles are cool no matter how old you get!

check out this unique  Giant Bubble Making Kit that won a Mom’s Choice Award and is made in the USA!

56. Pick up trash 

Do a good deed this summer and spend an afternoon picking up litter.

Look around your neighborhood, along the road, or head to a local public park.

57. Birdwatch

While bird watching may not sound like a barrel of laughs, it can actually be a lot of fun.

Set out a bird feeder (or make your own!) and spend a summer morning watching the different types of birds come and go.

58. Play badminton

Badminton is a fun backyard racquet game that doesn’t require a ton of skill to play.

Give this inexpensive badminton set a try!

59. Stargaze

Let the kids stay up late on a weekend evening and watch the night sky.

If you really want to see some cool things, we’ve had a great experience with this Celestron refractor telescope.

Additionally, download the StarChart app on your phone to make sense of what you’re seeing in the sky!

60. Climb a tree

Because you’re still a kid in there somewhere, right?!

61. Grow something

Try your hand at gardening herbs, such as basil and rosemary, or tend some summer flowers in pots around your porch.

potted herbs

62. Go on a bike ride

Map your route, grab your bike, helmet, and water bottle, and get out there for some fun summer exercise!

63. Play Capture the Flag

Get a group of friends together and play Capture the Flag one night at the local practice field or in big, open area.

64. Find wildflowers

When you’re out on a walk or hike, be sure to look for summer wildflowers.

Depending on local laws (ie: no picking bluebonnets in Texas!), pick some to take home for your mom and put them in a vase.

wildflowers

65. Jump off a pier

Why? Because it’s fun!

Out and About Ideas

66. Go to a parade

Attend a Memorial Day or 4th of July parade together.

Or see if your town has some local heritage days during the summer and support their parades too!

67. Spend a day at an amusement park

Look for coupons or great deals and spend a day at an amusement park near you!

Maybe rollercoasters aren’t your thing. That’s okay, you can still ride tons of other rides!

(Lots of large amusement parks are looking to rebound after the pandemic, so they’re majorly discounting season passes!)

68. Participate in or work for a summer camp

Going to or working at a summer camp is a great way to make new friends and have new experiences.

69. Volunteer

Consider volunteering at your local food pantry or animal shelter.

Don’t forget to record your hours and put them on your college resume too.

70. Go to a drive-in movie

Drive-in movies are making a comeback, so check to see if you have one near you for some good old-fashioned fun!

drive in

71. Go out for ice cream 

If you can, support a local ice cream or frozen yogurt shop during the warm summer months.

72. Airsoft battle

Start by Googling “Airsoft near me” to find the closest place you can play airsoft (aka paintball).

Take a bunch of your buddies and be prepared to get messy and have a great time!

73. Visit a farm

Visit a local farm to get farm-fresh eggs, pet some farm animals, and support your local farmers.

74. Visit the Farmer’s Market

If you can’t make it to a farm, do the next best thing and go to the Farmer’s Market.

Look for delicious, fresh produce and be sure to sample a home-baked treat if you can!

farmer's market

75. Play pickleball

Many YMCA’s and large local gyms will have a pickleball court. Try it out with your friends for an active event!

76. Go to a botanical garden

You may think that a botanical garden would be super boring, but there’s often so much to see and do, that it can be a great day out!

77. Try a new local restaurant

Eat at a restaurant you’ve never tried before.

On your way home, have each of your friends give it a full food-critic-worthy critique.

78. Go to a carnival or fair

Funnel cakes, fun rides, and crazy games?! Yes, please!

Stay up-to-date on your local fairs, carnivals, and festivals by checking the website of your local Chamber of Commerce.

amusement park

79. Go camping

Depending on the weather where you live, head outside for an overnight campout!

Even if it is just your backyard, pull out your sleeping bags and enjoy the opportunity to sleep under the stars.

80. Shop at a thrift store

There are all kinds of great treasures to be found at a thrift store!

Sponsor a fun challenge where all of your friends can spend no more than $5 to put together the best outfit!

81. Run a 5K

Summer is a wonderful time to get (or stay!) in shape.

Sign up for a local 5K and run with a family member or friend.

82. Try paddleboarding

Paddleboarding is super great because it gives you a good core workout while you stay cool on the water.

83. Go bowling

Find you local bowling alley and have a bowling tournament with your friends. It’s a great way to beat the summer heat!

Don’t forget to take a pair of socks!

teens going bowling

84. Go to a play

Support the local arts by going to a summer play.

Look for the extra-cool experience of a dinner theater if you can find one!

85. Go to the zoo

The zoo just never gets old.

Spend a day checking out the exotic animals with your family and friends.

If you can, get there early while the animals are most active.

86. Visit a city

If you live near a big city, spend a day checking out the sights with your friends or family.

Visit a museum you’ve never gone to before, rent motorized scooters, or window shop in a new section of the city.

87. Food truck/hot dog stand

Have a food truck or hot dog stand dinner at least once during the summer.

88. Hang out at the skate park

Even if you’re not a seasoned skateboarder, that’s okay.

You could give it a try or just encourage the others who are there.

89. Visit a science museum

Why not get a little bit of learning in by visiting a science museum?

There are so many cool displays, hands-on activities, and films to watch that you might even forget how educational it all is!

Related post: 5 Things You Need to Do to Prevent Summer Learning Loss

90. Waterski/wakeboard

If you own a boat or have the opportunity to waterski or wakeboard, definitely take it!

There’s no way to know if you’ll enjoy it or not if you don’t try, right?

91. Play at an arcade

Visit your local arcade and spend an afternoon playing your favorite throwback video games.

92. Feed the ducks at the pond

Take some bread along to a nearby park and feed the ducks.

Be ready to feel some nostalgia for your childhood days!

93. Go to a baseball game

Enjoy watching America’s pasttime by going to a baseball game.

It doesn’t have to be a Major League game, either! Look for Triple A teams near you to find more affordable tickets!

94. Visit an aquarium

Spend a day indoors at an aquarium checking out the wonders of the sea.

It’ll be a good time for sure!

95. Go to a water park

Slather on the sunscreen early and hit up the water park for a day of summertime fun.

teen at water park

96. Make a few college visits

Start narrowing down your college search by making a few college visits.

You can usually schedule an official college visit through the Admissions Office.

97. Have a night swim

Sure, swimming is fun.

But a night swim is even better!

Turn on a few twinkling lights or just enjoy swimming under the stars.

98. Visit a comic book shop

Head on over to your local comic book shop to see if you can find any great vintage titles.

And if you’re into board games, check to see if they have any cool tournaments coming up soon.

99. Race go-karts

Your local family fun center will likely have go-karts to race.

For a more intense experience, look for a dedicated go-kart “speedway” near you.

go-karts

100. Play laser tag

Similiar to airsoft, but way less messy!

101. Try an extreme sport

For a great summer rush, try an extreme summer sport, such as ziplining, kite-surfing, or rappeling.

You might as well make the most of your summer, after all!

teen summer bucket list idea: ziplining

Final thoughts about this Summer Bucket List for teens

Remember, your Teenage Summer Bucket List should be reflective of your interests, but should also challenge you to have some new experiences this summer!

There are no wrong answers to creating your Summer Bucket List for Teens. Just write down what feels good to you and get out there and enjoy your summer!

Related articles about Summer Fun activities:

101 Awesome Screen-Free Activities to Do With Your Kids This Summer

50 Awesome Boredom Busters for Kids You Need in Your Back Pocket

Pin the image below to your Pinterest to easily return to this article in the future!

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Which things on this Summer Bucket List for Teens do you think you’ll be most excited to do?

The Ultimate Summer Bucket List for TeensThe Ultimate Summer Bucket List for TeensThe Ultimate Summer Bucket List for TeensThe Ultimate Summer Bucket List for Teens

Jen Bradley, the founder of Jen Bradley|MOMs

Hi there! I’m so glad you’re here. I am a mom who believes that meaningful connections with our kids can happen in small and simple ways. Read More …

 

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