Need to get out of the house and let the kids burn off some pent up energy despite the winter chill? Bundle up and try some of these tips for outdoor activities in the winter season. All you really need is a little imagination and some childhood enthusiasm to make winter just as fun as the warmer seasons.

  1. Sledding. It's one of the more traditional winter activities, and a fun one at that. The kids will love the excitement of plummeting downhill through the snow and will get plenty of exercise trekking back to the top of the hill. Inexpensive sleds are available at most major retailers and just about any hill will suffice.
  2. Ice Skating. Big or small, your kids will love the thrill of strapping on skates and zooming around the rink. Skating can also be a precursor to future activities as your kids grow, too, such as hockey or competitive ice skating. Most ice rinks or arenas rent skates or you can pick up an inexpensive pair at sporting goods outlets.
  3. Go to the Playground. This may sound like an activity for the summer but the playground can be just as entertaining in the winter months. The children will enjoy revisiting their warm weather stomping grounds amidst the snow and take up the same activities all over again. For a little added intrigue take a camera and snap some pictures of your kids in their winter playground for comparison to images from the warmer months. Some hot chocolate or cider will help both you and the kids shake off the chill while you chat about their playground exploits.
  4. Look for Animal Footprints. Kids are all enthralled by critters, big and small, and the winter season provides an excellent opportunity to track their whereabouts and imagine what they're up to. It is also an excellent educational opportunity. Bring along a digital camera to document the footprints you find and look them up once you are back in the warmth of your home. Your kids can learn all about the animals you find evidence of all while burning off a little winter energy as they trek through the snow.
  5. Geocaching. A fun activity in any season, geocaching can be particularly diverting amidst the snow and frozen landscape of winter. Your kids' eyes will light up with intrigue as soon as you mention the idea of an outdoor treasure hunt. You can search out treasures hidden by others on the internet or place the hidden gems in the wild by yourself. Try searching the internet for "geocache" along with your location and you're bound to find numerous opportunities. Just be careful not to bite off more than you can chew as some internet-based treasure hunts can be quite exhaustive. A GPS device may be required or the use of a similar smartphone application.