camping,  Outdoor recreation

The 20 best outdoor games for kids and adults to play in 2021 – Business Insider

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PutterBall is a travel-friendly version of mini golf that you can easily set up in someone’s backyard or in a park.

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  • Outdoor games are a great way to gather in your backyard for some fun.
  • We rounded up the best outdoor games for all ages to play.
  • From spikeball to flag football, there are tons of outdoor games to play with friends and family.

Although summer is officially over, there is still plenty of time to enjoy the outdoors. Barbecues and family gatherings are great opportunities to bond over a variety of outdoor activities to play with each other.

Whether you’re in your own backyard or on a day trip to the beach, we’ve rounded up 25 of the best outdoor games, from badminton and bocce to mini-golf and giant Jenga.

Here are the best outdoor games of 2021:



DICK’S Sporting Goods

When you tire of volleyball, give Spikeball a try, especially on beach trips. Instead of hitting a ball over a net, this game revolves around a miniature netted trampoline that you bounce a ball into.




Cornhole is a classic outdoor game that only requires a board and bean bags to toss as you test your aim and try to get them on the board. It makes for a perfect activity to bring to the beach or to a tailgate.

Tossing games

Tossing games -- outdoor games and activities to enjoy this spring and summer


Tossing games seem basic, but they’re fun and usually small and travel-friendly to store in a reusable bag or backpack.

Mini golf

A group of people playing outdoor golf in a backyard

Yard Games

If you want the mini-golf experience in the comfort of your own home, PutterBall is the way to go. The felt-lined mat, along with two putters, four golf balls, and six turf hole covers, make it a game that’s also portable to bring to a friend’s backyard or a nearby park.

If you’d rather go to a driving range, check out our guides to the best golf clubs for all skill levels, golf balls, and golf gloves.


Image of a croquet mallet hitting a ball to a wicket, best outdoor games 2021


Croquet is one of the best ways to pass time at a barbecue. There are endless ways to arrange wickets and end posts to make a game easier or challenging.


Image of four people throwing horseshoes onto a post, best outdoor games 2021


A horseshoe set is always a fan-favorite game to play in a grassy area or on the beach. Plus, a set of horseshoes is easy to carry around in a case and portable for traveling.



Bocce Ronnie Kaufman/Getty Images

Bocce is one of the more engaging and team-focused outdoor games. It’s not as commonly played as some others in this guide, but once you get started, you’ll want to play all day.

Net games, like volleyball and badminton

Lily Li 3

Grass volleyball at Golden Gate Park.
Lily Li

When you have a wide grass field or yards of sand for an outdoor game, put up a portable net for an impromptu game of volleyball. If you don’t like to bump and serve with your hands, badminton offers a similar experience with a lightweight racket and birdie.


kan jam

Kan Jam

KanJam is a great game to bring to the beach and play on the sand. Simply gather a team outside and try to get the frisbee into the cans. You’ll soon have many people wanting to join in on the fun.




This game immediately brings back memories of cruise ship days, except this one is played on a driveway. All you need are the two cue sticks, pucks, and sidewalk chalk. Think of it as outdoor hockey, but with a twist.

Capture the flag

A group of people in a grassy field playing capture the flag


Capture the flag is a game you probably haven’t played since middle school, but it’s a low-impact, football-like activity you can play with kids and adults.

Flying disc or frisbee

Best outdoor games_woman throwing flying disc

Christopher Kimmel/Alpine Edge Photography/Getty Images

Better known as a frisbee, this is a great toy for playing catch with your dog or tossing around with your friends. If throwing a disc around seems tame, challenge them to a competitive game of Ultimate.

Jump rope

jump rope


I used to jump for hours on my driveway when I was young, and it’s a great way to double-dutch and hop along — all while getting some exercise in. I love beaded ones because they are typically longer and the beads make you know when to jump as they hit the pavement, but braided wired ones work just as well. 




Fun to play with kids, this hopscotch ring set lets you set up a game anywhere — no chalk needed.

Yard pong

Yard pong


Also known as bucket ball, the game comes with three balls of different weights for beginners and pros alike. It’s like beer pong, except more family-appropriate. Plus: The buckets can also be used to build sandcastles.


A blue bowling ball and wooden bowling pins with a red stripe

Bed Bath & Beyond

Strikes, spares, and turkeys aren’t limited to bowling alleys. Outdoor bowling sets are available for your next backyard get-together and are typically built from weather-resistant materials, too, so they’ll last for spring and summertime.

Potato sacks



Yes, you can order potato sacks for racing outdoors, just like back in summer camp. Expect endless laughs — and some stumbles — with this simple family activity.

Water guns

Nerf Fortnite Super Soaker


On days where the sun is out and on full blast, water gun battles are a fun way to cool down. However, if there are kids around, be very mindful as some water guns can be strong enough to cause pain or injury.

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