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Fun fall bucket list activities to do with kids

While waiting for cooler weather, look over the ultimate fall bucket list every child will want to complete

A family enjoying lying in the leaves.
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Fall is here, and we are bursting to tell you about some amazingly fun things to do with your kids during what we think is the most wonderful time of the year. Sorry, Christmas. From the gorgeous colors that make every picture Insta-worthy to the fact that everything doesn’t turn into a sweaty mess — it’s all fabulous.

Planning fall activities kids want to do is one of our favorite things to do! While we wait for the weather to get just right, check out this fall bucket list of awesome activities that kids and parents will both love to do.

A family having fun in a pumpkin patch
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The classics that never go out of style

The usual suspects of the orchard and the patch

It’s pretty tough to get through fall without visiting the good old tried-and-true combo of an apple orchard and pumpkin patch. How can you let a fall season pass and not take the kids to these trusted spots?

There’s always apple cider and plenty for the kids to see and do at an orchard. With corn mazes, hayrides, and games for kiddos, you can’t go wrong with a pumpkin patch. Plus, you’ll get all the sweet pictures of the family. The photo opportunities alone are reason enough to go back year after year.

Fall festivals forever

We know — festivals get crowded and expensive if you have a lot of kids, but they are meant to be enjoyed most in the fall. With the cooler weather, you don’t have to chase your kid down every 30 minutes to wipe their sweaty faces or reapply sunscreen. Plus, there’s usually mulled wine or pumpkin beer for the adults. No matter the age, kids are a ball of excitement when you tell them you are going to a festival.

If you’re on a budget, check out all the local ones and pick the one you think everyone will enjoy. Go get that elephant ear and let your kids go crazy without having to tell them to quiet down.

A family enjoying decorating for fall.
Evgeny Atamanenko / Shutterstock

When the weather is perfect for outside time, these are your go-to’s

Drive-in movie night

Drive-ins have made a comeback in our lives, and we are here for it. Local libraries, churches, and parks host drive-in movies left and right these days. Autumn weather means you won’t have to worry about picking between keeping the windows up and sweating or rolling the windows down and leaving with 200 bug bites. Bring snacks and blankets, kick off your shoes, and have a great time.

Spooky city

Does your city have historical sites? Spooky history? Look it up and see if there’s an old graveyard by you or a trail that could get a little creepy. Take your kids on a haunted tour of the area. Swing by your local coffee shop and grab some hot cocoa for your walk. Your neighborhood historical society would be a great place to find those spots!

The zoo and museum

The way the zoo and museum decorate for fall is hauntingly beautiful. There’s always a Halloween-themed event at both, and you need to get your money’s worth out of those costumes, anyway. Another perk of going to the zoo in the fall versus over summer break is you won’t have to worry about the kids overheating, making the walk around much more enjoyable.

Haunted house

If your kids are old enough, or if there is a child-friendly one by you, take your kids to a haunted house. Nothing brings a family closer together than screaming at something other than each other. Grab hands, squeeze them tight, and have fun learning which kid is braver than the parents.

Backyard fun

  • Campout
  • Bonfire
  • S’mores factory

Use your backyard to every advantage, because that’s why you have one! Create a whole adventure and not even leave your home. Who doesn’t like the sound of that? Set up a tent, get a fire going, and get those s’mores ingredients ready for a night that is sure to tucker the kids (and you) out.

See the stars

When was the last time you looked up at the sky and really saw the stars? We have had more chances to see unique star combinations, planetary sightings, and other sky-related awesomeness this year than in a lot of previous years. You don’t even need a telescope on a clear, crisp fall evening. But you could always check your local library to see if they have star gazing nights or a telescope to check out.

A family dressed in Halloween hats.
Evgeny Atamanenko / Shutterstock

When the weather keeps you inside

Let the kids decorate

We know this one might be asking a lot if you have a tough time giving up creative control. But get out all of your fall decor and let your kids put the stuff where they want. Not only will they love being the ones to pick where the autumn leaf stickers go, but they will love telling their friends and family that they got to decorate this year.

Hot cocoa station

Make a hot cocoa station and let your kids go crazy. You could even do adult versions for the parents if it’s been a long day. Grab marshmallows, chocolate syrup, peppermints, and whatever other toppings the kids love, and let them make their own creations.

You could do hot apple cider if cocoa isn’t as popular in your house. Grab cinnamon sticks, cinnamon sugar, and whipped cream for a tasty treat for the kids.

Movie night in

Between Netflix, Hulu, and Disney+, you have all the season’s best movies at your fingertips. Make a list of age-appropriate movies and plan out which ones are being watched on what days. Freeform’s 31 Nights of Halloween is also a great option. They play all the oldies but goodies from your childhood, so you’ll relive the magic with your kiddos.

Apple mania

If you did make it to an apple orchard but still don’t know what to do with the apples, create an apple station for the kids. Slice up those apples and have toppings like peanut butter, chocolate chips, sprinkles, caramel, and whatever else your ghouls like, and let them decorate their apple slices. Sort of like letting them make their own candy apples, but with less mess.

If you get through this fall bucket list, then you’re guaranteed to have an autumn everyone will enjoy. Most of these fall activities for kids won’t cost too much either, so the parents won’t have to worry about sticking to a tight budget. Mark up the calendar and let your kids know they are going to have a fall full of memories and good times.

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Dannielle Beardsley
Dannielle has written for various websites, online magazines, and blogs. She loves everything celebrity and her favorite…
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