It’s the most wonderful time of the year, and it’s the perfect time for some memory-making moments as a family. Here is a list of the best Christmas activities for families sorted by at-home, fun traditions, and out-of-the-house fun family activity ideas.
Get ready to spend some quality time together as a family this Christmas season! There’s nothing like making sure there’s some intentional fun during Christmas time. And we have you covered with list of fun holiday activities to do together this festive season! We have a bunch of fun activities that include each family member in our Christmas activities for families roundup.
So get ready to make some memories and either use this list of creative Christmas activities to help you plan some fun this holiday season!
Christmas Activities for Families
We’ll break them down into three categories:
- Fun at Home
- Out-of-the-House Fun Activity Ideas
- Family Traditions to Enjoy Together
Christmas Activities At Home
- Watch All the Christmas Movies.
Make your own Christmas checklist of movies you want to watch, and make it happen! Have a movie marathon, or choose a day every week and have a weekly family movie night! Try our Christmas popcorn or Christmas Puppy Chow to enjoy with your movie night!
- Have a themed holiday movie night.
Holiday movies often come with a twist or theme: create a food item from the movie, find a snack or meal option that pairs well, and enjoy a themed family movie night! For example, you may have spaghetti and watch Elf. Or maybe make green popcorn to eat while you watch How the Grinch Stole Christmas.
- Bake Christmas cookies.
Do you have a family recipe that just makes you feel like Christmas? Maybe gingersnap cookies or peppermint chocolate cookies do the trick! Make those or try a new recipe. There are so many to try, get creative and let excited kids help have a say in what you’ll create together!
- Decorate Sugar Cookies.
You can buy kits to make cookie decorating so easy and Christmas cookies extra fun! But by all means, you can make those sugar cookies together and frost them in every shape you can think of. There’s something so fun and magical about sugar cookies and Christmas, it’s often one of those favorite Christmas activities kids remember most!
- Have a hot chocolate night.
We love to look up recipes and try new hot chocolate options. I mean salted caramel or peppermint hot chocolate are just some of those good things everyone should try at least once! But this in no way needs to be fancy! Just plan a dedicated hot cocoa night and enjoy some time together! If you need some inspiration, be sure to check out our Hot Chocolate Date Night post!
- Make Gingerbread houses or Gingerbread structures out of Graham Crackers.
We love hosting a graham cracker gingerbread decorating party with our extended families. We grab some leftover Halloween candy and make a bunch of frosting. Everyone can make a gingerbread house, or get creative and build some kind of winter wonderland structure. It’s such a fun way to get creative and connect!
- Decorate a Gingerbread House Kit.
If you want to make your life easy, buy a gingerbread house kit. Set a timer and turn it into a competition who can create the cutest house in a set time. We love to divide up into teams and work together to get creative with a kit. It’s all kinds of fun!
- Try Pop Tart Gingerbread Houses.
This is one of those great ideas I’m wondering why we’ve never done it sooner! Grab Pop-Tart pouches and create tiny frosted houses with frosting and candy that match your Pop-Tart colors.
- Read a Christmas Story Together.
Find a great Christmas read-aloud book and take turns reading chapters together. A Christmas Carol, The Christmas Box, or The Christmasaurous are all great choices!
- Read a Pile of Favorite Christmas Stories.
There’s something magical about Christmas picture books for kids. Make a big day out of it and read a pile together!
- Make Paper Snowflakes.
This is one of those winter activities you can adapt to the age and skill set of your family members. If you have more advanced elementary or teenage kids, look up complex patterns and try your hand at creating some elaborate decorations.
- Have a family Ugly holiday sweater party.
If you want to include other families, it’s a great opportunity to have a holiday party! But if you want to keep it just your family, that works too! Have some festive fun with everyone dressing in their ugly Christmas sweater, and make a special meal or treat to enjoy for your Christmas party. We have a roundup of the best kids’ ugly Christmas sweaters if you need some help finding some great options!
- Have a Holiday Game Night.
Go ahead and grab some Christmas-themed board games, and turn a regular family game night into something festive and fun with a Christmas twist!
- Decorate Your Door.
You can either decorate your front door or have a competition to decorate each bedroom door. Provide some gift wrap, a few hanging items, and some ribbon, and let the creativity blossom with some fun festive creativity!
- Watch a Holiday Special.
So many networks and streaming services pull together holiday specials with performances by major entertainers. They’re worth your time, and a great way to enjoy some Christmas music!
- Do a Christmas Puzzle.
We love doing Christmas puzzles together every holiday season during winter break. It’s a great way to relax, talk, and enjoy a Christmas-themed activity together at home. We have a round of excellent Christmas Puzzles if you need some inspiration!
- Have a Christmas Minute to Win It Game Night.
There are so many people who have come up with about a million Christmas games you can play in a Minute-to-Win-It style event. Do a quick search and choose several that your family will enjoy.
- Build a Snowman.
Grab a carrot, some coal, and a scarf. That’s all you need to turn some now into a fun family activity!
Out-of-the-House Christmas Activities for Families
- Go for a drive and look at Christmas decorations.
Sometimes a stroll around your neighborhood is the best way to find some easy and free Christmas fun!
- Do Our Christmas Lights Scavenger Hunt.
We created this free printable Christmas Lights Scavenger Hunt with a professional designer to help you have all kinds of fun searching for specific Christmas lights and Christmas decorations. It has pictures for smaller kids, and it’s one of those fun Christmas activities you can do completely free!
- Visit Destination Neighborhoods with Famous Light Displays.
These people go all out to spread some holiday cheer- so go enjoy their creativity and their power bill! But seriously, it’s so much fun to see destination Christmas lights. In Arizona, we sure love hitting up Christmas on Comstock every year!
- Go Ice Skating.
Get out, get active, and enjoy some ice skating together. It’s a great way to burn off some extra energy on Christmas Eve or even Christmas day!
- Visit a Christmas Tree Farm.
You don’t need to be in the market to buy a tree to enjoy this activity! Head to a local Christmas tree farm and enjoy the sites and smells and Christmas cheer of others picking the perfect tree. Many have mini holiday markets with food and crafts for purchase. It’s a fun outing for families!
- Sing Christmas Carols to the Elderly in Your Area.
Even if you aren’t that musical, you’ll never know how much a few Christmas songs and effort to spread some holiday spirit mean to those who could use some cheer at this special time of year!
- Do a Drive Through Holiday Lights Show.
Typically you pay per car, and you get to have a holiday light show set to Christmas music. We did the World of Illumination last year and had the best time driving through the lights with our boys!
- Attend city/town Holiday Events.
Does your area to a Christmas tree lighting ceremony? Do they do a charity Breakfast with Santa? Is there a cultural holiday festival? From big cities to small towns, most have really fun Christmas events to attend. And best of all, most of them are free!
- See the Nutcracker Ballet.
Sign up for a time at a soup kitchen, collect toys for toy drives, or see if your local Boys and Girls Club could use some service.
- Go see Santa Claus at the mall and get a picture.
Let me tell you, this is even more fun when you have teens and want a little holiday fun. It’s also a wonderful way to laugh and experience some holiday magic with the entire family.
- Do a Christmas-themed Random Act of Kindness (RAOK).
Try leaving kind notes in unexpected places. Hand out candy canes to kids. Leave a few dollars with a kind note near a holiday bakery, or buy some cups of hot cocoa for the people behind you at a Christmas event. There’s no better way to get in the Christmas spirit than to give the gift of some glad tidings to strangers.
- Attend a Christmas concert.
You can go big and buy tickets to a special event, or just support your local high school band or choir. This is a great way to enjoy Christmas music and get in the holiday spirit!
Christmas Family Traditions To Enjoy Together
Here are some fun annual traditions families love doing together! It may be a great reminder of something you already do and love, or help inspire some new Christmas traditions to try together!
- Advent Calendars.
There’s nothing quite like spending a few minutes every day with an advent calendar to build anticipation to count down to the big day. We love Lego advent calendars, but have a whole roundup of Christmas Advent Calendar ideas in case you need some!
- Do some Christmas crafts.
I love to head to Michael’s, Joanne, or the Target Bullseye spot to find some easy Christmas craft kits all ready to go. My kids love creating these little projects and love it when I set aside a special time to help them and be together.
- Pick out new Christmas ornaments.
So many families love to buy a new ornament every year. Some even let each kid pick out a new ornament. Also, many love to make an ornament together. However you do it, it’s a fun tradition to add to your tree or your kid’s future tree putting some dedicated time and effort into ornaments,
- Buy a Gift for an Angel Tree.
There’s something special about spending some time and money to pick out new toys for kids in need. It’s the perfect time to help teach kids about the joy of giving to others. We’ve had some special moments with our kids earning money and using it to select a gift for someone less fortunate. It’s one of those special activities that truly create core memories for children.
- Do a Family Secret Santa.
Choose names, find fun ways to serve each other, give small gifts, and make an intentional effort to make another family member feel loved this holiday season!
- Send Christmas Cards.
If you took the time to take pictures or create a newsletter to send in holiday cards, you can make an event out of stuffing, addressing, and sending them as a family. I’d pump the Christmas music and provide Christmas treats for a fun card-stuffing family party.
- Read the Christmas Story on Christmas morning.
My husband’s family reads the classic story from the Bible before they open gifts on Christmas morning, My family always read it on Christmas Eve after dinner. It’s a simple thing, but it’s something that reminded us of the true meaning of Christmas. And it’s an easy tradition many families enjoy doing together.
- Make a huge breakfast to enjoy together on Christmas morning.
This is maybe the most basic holiday tradition, but it’s one kids will remember their entire life! It’s also a great way to make sure everyone is well-fed and the whole family gets some time together to decompress before or after the Christmas morning fun.
Christmas Family Memories
We hope these help inspire some fun Christmas activities for families you’re excited to do this holiday season! May they give you the gift of being together, creating some memories, and having some holiday fun! Merry Christmas!
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