61 Fun Things to Do in the Winter With Friends

For a lot of us, when winter comes, we stop doing the things we love. It’s easy to get bored when you feel like you are stuck inside and can’t enjoy time outdoors.

If you live in a part of the world where cold weather likes to stick around, it’s important for you to find better ways to spend the winter months. Sitting at home alone is only fun for so long.

Make sure to continue penciling time with your loved ones when you’re bored. And try some of the following winter activities with friends to make memories that will last a lifetime and stave off the winter blues.


  1. Indoor winter activities for friends
  2. Outdoor
  3. Low-cost alternatives
  4. Winter travel ideas
  5. Christmas-themed activities

Indoor winter activities to do with friends

These suggestions are for those days that you don’t feel compelled to leave the house. Whether it’s due to cold weather or laziness, these ideas are perfect for spending a cozy day at home with your friends.

Learn how to bake bread

Knowing how to bake a loaf of bread at home is definitely a skill. If you’ve been meaning to learn how then being stuck inside during the winter months is the perfect excuse for you to do so. Here is a super simple recipe for you to use to test your baking skills.

Try making candles

Are you a candle lover? If so, why not try making them from home? They’re a fun craft that you and your friends can spend an afternoon making together, and soak in the smell of it.

Test your balance

Taking yoga classes with your friends is a pleasant way to do something good for your body. If you’ve been nervous to try a class having a pal to do them with can be the push you need to step outside of your comfort zone. You can either do a class at a local studio or try this yoga class for beginners from home.

Have a paint night

It doesn’t really matter whether or not you and your friends have a knack for painting. Following a step-by-step tutorial can ensure that you all end up with a beautiful piece of artwork.

Host a board game night

Tired of sitting around with nothing to do? Try breaking out some of your favorite board games to play with your friends. The interactivity of board games helps big groups laugh together and form deeper bonds with one another.

Take an online course

Friends that learn together, stay together. If there is an online course you’re thinking about taking, why not get your friends to join you? Doing courses alongside your friends can help you continue to feel inspired during the cold winter months.

Workout from home

It’s easy to let your fitness habits slide when the weather takes a turn for the worse. Try working out from home with your friends to help keep you consistent with your healthy habits.

Learn how to knit

Finding a way to stay entertained when you’re stuck inside doesn’t always feel easy. Repetitive tasks like knitting can help the hours pass, and keep you and your friends extra entertained.

Do a DIY home-improvement project

Is there a part of your house that could use some love? Invite your friends to assist you in sprucing it up, either with a new paint job or by giving one of these other DIY home projects a try.

Make mulled wine

Mulled wine is a classic Christmas beverage that is often served hot to keep patrons at European Christmas markets warm. It is a simple wine with added garnishes like cinnamon and orange that give it a fuller and more cozy taste. Recreate this winter classic from home during your next wine night with friends.

Lay a puzzle

Sitting down to work on a puzzle is a fantastic way to unwind at the end of a long day, and is even better when you do it with friends. Cure the winter blues by staying busy building puzzles during the cold winter months.

Perfect homemade hot chocolate

Sipping on hot chocolate is the perfect way to warm up after a chilly outdoor adventure. The following recipe has flavor variations that will help you make a batch to match everyone’s mood. Whether you and your friends are looking for a refreshing mint or a boozy touch, it has something for everyone.

Online shop

Want to find some cozy new winter outfits without having to leave the comfort of your home? Try spending an afternoon online shopping with your friends. Shopping with friends, even online, has the added benefit of getting their thoughts on your purchases, and might even lead to a few matching outfits.

Have a spa day

Three friends with cucumbers over their eyes. Their heads seen from above are touching in a circle.

A weekend with friends doesn’t have to be spent at a bar buying overpriced drinks. Give you and your friends the chance to relax and unwind by hosting a spa day at your home. Here is a guide full of tips on how to make this day of peaceful relaxation a reality.

Host a craft party

Whether or not you and your friends have a natural knack for crafts, getting your creative juices flowing with a craft party is something everyone can enjoy. Here are some tips to help you plan a successful evening.

Make apple cider

Next time you’re planning on having guests over, try whipping up a pot of apple cider for everyone to enjoy beforehand. Not only will it give you all something delicious to sip on throughout the evening, but it will make your house smell extra cozy and inviting. You can drink it sans alcohol or spike it with some brandy for an extra kick.

Put together next year’s bucket list

The winter months can sometimes feel cold and depressing. When the winter starts to wear on you, compiling your bucket list for the summer months can help. Focusing on all the fun adventures in store for you and your best friends can help to cure the winter blues.

Have a bake-off

Take a day spent baking at home with friends to another level by adding in some friendly competition. Hosting a bake-off party for you and your friends can lead to a memorable day filled with delicious treats.

If you’re looking for ideas for any season or setting, check out this article on fun things to do with friends.

Outdoor winter activities to do with friends

You might be looking for something to do over winter break, or maybe you want some new ideas for when you’re bored. Either way, these activities will help you keep the winter season exciting.

With snow

When there’s snow on the ground, there are tons of exciting activities for you to do with your best friends.

Hike with snowshoes

If you aren’t feeling adventurous enough for skiing or snowboarding, snowshoeing is a great alternative. It’s a good way to get into the winter spirit and doesn’t require any prior experience. Bringing snowshoes on your next hike can turn a regular walk with friends into a more memorable experience.

Have an outdoor photoshoot

Although it might be chilly outside, a photo shoot in the snow provides the opportunity to capture some beautiful shots. Head out with some of your friends for unique and one-of-a-kind shots.

Take a sleigh ride

Transport you and your friends back to a simpler time by treating yourselves to a ride in a horse-drawn carriage. Cozy up while you listen to the clip-clop of horse’s hooves and the jingle of sleigh bells.

Try your luck ice fishing

Feeling a little cabin feverish? It might be a good idea for you to get outside for some fresh air. Ice fishing with your friends is a good excuse to get out of the house, and your day on the ice could end with some fish filets to grill afterward. Here is a short YouTube video that will tell you everything you need to know about this unique kind of fishing.

Learn to ski or snowboard

One of the best ways to enjoy the colder months is to take up a winter sport. Contrary to what you might think, skiing and snowboarding aren’t overly difficult. Just one lesson is enough to get you set up for a day on the slopes with friends.

Make snow angels

This idea is really fun when you combine it with the next suggestion.

Soak in a hot tub

It’s not often that you get to sit outside when the temperature gets below zero. Make the most of a chilly evening outdoors by soaking in a hot tub with some of your closest friends.

Without snow

Figuring out what to do when the weather is cold and there isn’t snow on the ground isn’t always easy. Hopefully, these ideas can help to keep your outdoor adventures inspired, with or without snow.

Do a polar bear plunge

If the temperature is cool and your friends are adventurous enough, you could all do a polar plunge. This entails jumping into freezing cold water and staying in for as long as possible. Cold plunging is said to have many benefits including reducing inflammation and improving energy levels.

Have a bonfire with friends

Regardless of how cold it might be outside, staying warm around a campfire makes spending time outside more accessible. Get your friends together for a bonfire in your backyard, or head out into nature to enjoy your fire.

Go to the beach

Heading to a beach during the winter usually means you’ll have the beach all to yourself. You can do a polar plunge, have a bonfire, or just sit and take in the breathtaking views.

Visit a botanical garden

Botanical gardens are generally open all year. Although the scenery will look different than in the summer, there will still be gorgeous views for you to take in.

Enjoy some horseback riding

Horseback riding is a lot of fun on your own, but it’s even better with friends. Trail riding during winter when there is no snow is a good opportunity for you to get outside, and create winter memories in the great outdoors.

Have a winter picnic

A picnic might not be the first thing that comes to mind when you think of winter outdoor activities. The truth is, picnics during the winter are easier in the area of keeping your food cold and can be thoroughly enjoyed by you and your friends, as long as you dress accordingly.

Make bird feeders and hang them outside

Finding food becomes a lot harder for birds during the winter months. If you have a couple of friends that are animal lovers, you could spend an afternoon putting together some of these DIY bird feeders to help your feathered friends make it through the cold.

Take a nature walk

There’s something therapeutic about escaping our busy lives and taking time to get outdoors with friends. Going for a nature walk is a simple way for you to connect with the people you love, and do something good for your mental health.

Low-cost winter activities to do with friends

Even if money is tight, there are winter activities for you and your friends to entertain yourselves with on the cheap. These ideas are perfect for anyone living on a budget and looking for some free ways to stay busy when it’s cold.

Have a snowball fight

Feel like a kid again by challenging your friends to a snowball fight.

Shovel snow for your elderly neighbors

Friends shoveling snow together in a nice looking neighborhood.

Shoveling snow isn’t fun for everyone, and can be especially difficult for senior citizens to deal with. If you know you have some older neighbors, head to their place with a shovel and some friends and clear their sidewalks. They will definitely appreciate it.

Have a snowman-building contest

Curious to know which of your friends can build the best snowman? Enjoy an afternoon filled with laughter and time outdoors by having a friendly snowman-building competition with some of your pals.

Slide down a hill

Sledding is one of the most fun ways for you to spend a day in the snow. You can decide to use either a sled or an inner tube and enjoy a day full of laughter as you and your friends race down hills of snow.

Skate on a frozen pond

Skating on a pond instead of a rink might include a few more bumps, but it will also be full of scenic views. Take them all in with your friends as you glide across the ice.

Go for a winter hike

Dress in layers, pack some hot chocolate, and head outside for a beautiful hike through the crisp snow with your friends.

Winter travel ideas for friends

One of the best ways for you to enjoy the colder months could be to plan an excursion with your friends. Don’t let winter take away your wanderlust, and check out some places that are best seen in the snow.

Go camping in the snow

Camping in the winter is a great excuse for you to get into the great outdoors with your friends. Not only that, it sets you up for different kinds of explorations. You could try backcountry skiing, snowshoeing, and cross-country skiing.

Head to see the Northern lights

Northern lights are a beautiful natural wonder that can only be seen from some of the most Northern points in the world. Book a trip to one of these unique spots to see this amazing natural phenomenon.

Sleep in an igloo

Have you always wanted to sleep in an igloo? There are hotels that offer their guests igloos to spend the night in. Staying in one of these amazing frozen wonderlands is the definition of a winter travel destination.

Escape the snow

Sometimes the best way to fall in love with winter is to escape it altogether. Skip out on the snow and instead book a flight somewhere warm. Spend your days relaxing on the beach with your friends instead of trekking through the snow. In this case, you might need some ideas of fun things to do in the summer with your friends.

Go on a ski trip

Your ski trip doesn’t necessarily have to involve skiing. Getting out of town to head to a ski lodge for the weekend could be a great chance to get some exercise. If not, hanging out in the hot tubs and taking in the beautiful scenery isn’t half bad either.

Ride a sled pulled by dogs

Dog sledding will more than likely be a lot different than a horse-drawn carriage ride. Though equally beautiful, a ride on a sled pulled by dogs is bound to be much more thrilling. Check out this article all about why you and your friends should try this unique suggestion for yourselves.

Visit natural hot springs

Two little monkeys in a hot spring surrounded by rocks.

Depending on where you are in the world, you might have to travel some distance to make this happen, but you won’t be disappointed. There are often natural hot springs that are simply pools of naturally-heated spring water sitting in the middle of nowhere. Spend the day soaking in beautiful natural springs while you take in the views with some of the people you love.

Go on a hut-trip

A lot of people choose to do hut trips in order to go cross-country skiing. Hut trips involve hiking out to a ‘hut’ which is sometimes just a secluded, log cabin-style accommodation. Regardless of whether or not you and your friends are avid skiers, going on this trip can be a ton of fun.

Take a road trip to the mountains

During the winter, chances are you will be skipping a trip to the beach. Head instead to the mountains where you will be able to take in breathtaking views, which are extra beautiful thanks to the snow. A road trip to the mountains is the perfect opportunity to disconnect from the hustle and bustle and connect with your friends instead.

You might also like this list of low-cost things to do with friends on any occasion.

Christmas-themed activities to do with friends

The holidays are all about friendship and family. You might be surrounded by family, or friends that feel like family. Either way, these winter activities are perfect for adults and teens to do with the people they love.

Host a secret Santa party

If you have a large group of friends, getting presents for everyone might be outside of your budget. Instead, you could try hosting a secret Santa party for everyone. These parties mean bringing all your friends together for a celebration without having to buy a ton of gifts.

Binge Christmas movies

The holidays can be a stressful time of the year for a lot of people and can leave those of us without close family ties feeling lonely. Find time for you and your friends to connect without the stress of the Christmas hustle and bustle by watching some of these Christmas movies.

Go to the Nutcracker ballet

The Nutcracker is a classic Christmas ballet that is sure to put you in the holiday spirit.

Design your own wreath

Christmas wreaths are the perfect decoration to get your house ready for the holidays. Designing one from scratch can make for a creative afternoon spent crafting with your friends.

Make gingerbread houses

Friends making a gingerbread house together and having some hot drinks.

Gingerbread houses are a delicious holiday treat. You can enjoy creating them and snacking on them afterward with your friends. Maybe while catching up on some classic Christmas movies. Blast some Christmas music and have fun making your gingerbread house entirely from scratch.

Make homemade Christmas presents

Giving and receiving homemade Christmas presents is always extra special. You might have some extra time on your hands, or be getting Christmas-ready on a budget. Either way, dedicating a craft day to making homemade Christmas presents will help get you ready for the holidays.

Create a Christmas playlist

Whatever you might be doing during the holidays, listening to Christmas music while you do it is never a bad idea. Take some time to swap songs with some of your best friends to put together the perfect playlist for the holidays.

Check out a Christmas market

Christmas markets are a great place for you to get Christmas presents for your friends, and support local businesses while doing so. Pay attention to any markets coming to your town, and head there for a festive shopping trip with friends.

Hand-make Christmas ornaments

Ready for a Christmas craft night with friends? Here are 60 DIY ornament ideas for you all to try making.

Bake Christmas cookies

Baking alone is a soothing way to spend your time, but making treats with friends is much more entertaining. Even if you’re not great in the kitchen, you could try baking and decorating this simple Christmas cookie recipe.

Check out local light-displays

Christmas light displays are beautiful to look at and they can also trigger the release of dopamine, making us feel happy as we gaze at them. This means you should take advantage of any excuse to get together with your friends to check out your Christmas light displays in your area.

Host an ugly Christmas sweater party

If you want to host a Christmas party that you and your friends won’t forget, try having an ugly Christmas sweater party. Having parties with a theme helps to make the event more memorable, and you could even give out a prize to whoever wears the ugliest sweater.

Hang up Christmas decorations

Christmas trees are one of the hallmarks of the season. Pick one up to decorate with your friends, or simply string some lights and add some Christmas decorations throughout your home. Either way, it will help your home feel more full of holiday cheer.

Viktor is a Counselor specialized in interpersonal communication and relationships. He manages SocialSelf’s scientific review board. Follow on Twitter or read more.

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