Lifestyle Parenting

8 Creative Way to Get Your Family Active

Written by Kasey M. Fuqua

With beautiful spring and summer weather approaching, it’s time to get your family up and active. Thanks to the many outdoor activities, attractions and events in Hampton Roads, physical activity can be an adventure, not a chore. Get creative with your family’s free time by checking out one of these local fun activities:

Climb a Tree the Safe Way

Here in Hampton Roads, your family has two great options for hanging out up in the treetops: Go Ape in Williamsburg and the Adventure Park at the Virginia Aquarium in Virginia Beach. At both locations, your family can safely climb, zip line and swing through the trees. Each location has courses with different levels of difficulty so older kids can challenge themselves, but younger kids can still participate in an exhilarating adventure.

Go Fly a Kite

With the constant breeze on our many beaches, Hampton Roads is a great place for kids to learn how to fly a kite. Let children pick out a kite of their own and encourage them to run hard to get their kites in the sky. You can set up challenges to find out who can get their kite the highest or fly it the longest. 

Plant a Family Garden

Give your kids an excuse to play in the dirt by planting a family garden with vegetables, flowers or herbs. The garden can take up a large corner of your backyard or even just a few pots on the back porch. As a healthy bonus, a Cornell study showed that kids are more likely to eat vegetables if they helped grow them. 

Live Like a Tourist

When you live in Hampton Roads year round, sometimes you forget about the great places you can visit. Live like a tourist and enjoy a staycation with your family in Hampton Roads. Whether it’s one day of activities or an entire weekend complete with an oceanfront hotel room, you can adjust your staycation to fit your family. Walking around museums (like the family-friendly Nauticus or Children’s Museum of Virginia), historic settlements in Williamsburg and even putt-putt golf courses gets your family moving.

Talk a Walk in the (Zoological) Park

Though walking is great exercise, kids might find going on a walk around the neighborhood a little boring. At the Virginia Zoo, however, your family can go on a great walk that’s filled with more than 60 attractions, including lions, tigers and bears. If your summer fun budget allows, check out a behind-the-scenes tour to get closer to the animals and learn more about the zoo.

Take a Hike

Kids like to feel adventurous, so why not take a hike in one of the great state parks in our area? You can head to First Landing State Park for more than 20 miles of hiking through swamps and along the Chesapeake Bay, or visit False Cape State Park for the ocean and wildlife. Make a game out of the hike by having a contest to see who can spot animals first or take a guided hike to learn more about nature and the area’s history.

These eight ideas are just a few of the many ways your family can enjoy the great outdoors in Hampton Roads. By using a little creativity, you can help your family enjoy an active, fun adventure right in their own backyard.

Go On a Treasure Hunt

Set up a scavenger hunt for your family around your neighborhood or at a park. Pair up an adult with each child and let them scour the area for the items on the list. Once they’ve found all the items, give them a special hint about where they can find some treasure (small toys or other items). You can even make a treasure map if you’re artistically inclined.

Follow the Mermaids

Speaking of scavenger hunts, Norfolk has its own scavenger hunt built right into the city: the beautiful mermaid statues. You can easily make a day, weekend or even summer-long activity of following the mermaids around town, giving your family a chance for a nice long walk and a pleasant day out. You can even use a handy Google Map online to track them down, ensuring your kids can spot a new mermaid frequently.

About the author

Kasey M. Fuqua

Kasey Fuqua has been writing for hospitals and healthcare publications for over five years. Her writing often inspires her to explore new habits at home, from baking healthier to trying different workout routines. She’s a firm believer in lifting heavy weights, enjoying the food you eat and getting eight hours of sleep.