by Rachel Wells
Summertime means vacations, road trips, and lots of time hearing “are we there yet?” from the backseat. Technology is great, and can definitely take up some drive time – but part of the fun of a road trip is the adventure that comes along with getting there. Treat your time in the car as a journey filled with learning new things, bonding together, and playing some super fun road trip games together – after all, that’s where some of the best memories are made.
Be prepared for your next vacation with these awesome road trip games and activities.
- Cookie sheets and magnets make for a fun back seat activity.
- Silly putty is so much fun, and it doesn’t make a mess like Play Doh or Slime.
- Pipe cleaners are another no mess activity for the backseat. Challenge your kids to make different shapes or items by bending them.
- Coloring or sticker books are a classic backseat activity that keeps kids busy for a long time.
- Post-it note art gallery. If coloring books don’t interest your child, why not let them draw on Post-It notes that they can stick all over the car to create their own art gallery.
- Window clings are a fun way to decorate and play on the car windows.
- Maps on paper aren’t something we regularly keep in the car anymore, but printing out some paper ones can be a lot of fun. Your child can trace your route, and mark any fun landmarks you see along the way.
- Take pictures. Grab a child friendly digital camera, or pick up some disposables for the trip. How fun will it be to see the trip through your child’s eyes.
- Hidden picture hide and seek. Before the trip print out small pictures and hang them around the car, but don’t tell your kids about it. When your child starts to get bored in the car, give them clues about the hidden images and see how many they can find.
- Surprise bags are a great way to keep the excitement going throughout the trip. Grab some brown paper lunch bags – 1 for each hour of the trip works great. At each hour mark, give your child a surprise bag filled with a new activity, small toy, or treat.
- Would you rather is simple and easy game. Take turns asking ‘would you rather’ questions where everyone has to choose between 2 silly things.
Would you rather…have one eye or two noses?
Would you rather…ride an elephant or a dolphin?
Would you rather…eat a dead bug or a live worm?
Would you rather…be super strong or super fast?
- Story starters is a game sure to end in laughs! One person starts a story, but doesn’t finish the sentence. The next person finishes that sentence and starts a new one to continue the story. This one can go on for a while!
- License plate game is a classic road trip activity where you try to find license plates from all 50 states before you get to your destination – and everyone can play together. You can up the engagement level by printing out a black and white map of the country so your child can color the states as they find the license plates.
- I Spy is another classic game that even the youngest travelers can enjoy. One person finds an item they can see and says “I spy with my little eye, something…”, and the other players must try guess the item. You can search for colors, things that start with a certain letter, shapes, etc.
- Travel BINGO is another fun road trip activity. You can print premade ones at home, or fill up your own blank boards with different road signs, shapes, animals, or any other things that you might find along the way.
- The Alphabet game is a great classic game good for anyone who enjoys a fun competition. Someone chooses a category such as animals, food, or TV characters. The first person has 10 seconds to name something in that category that starts with the letter A. The next person has the same amount of time to think of something that starts with the letter B, and so on until you get to the end of the alphabet. If a person is unable to come up with a word in the category they are out of the game.
- Guess the song is another super easy game to play. Simply turn on the radio and play a few seconds from a song. The first person to name the song gets a point. The first player to get to 10 points wins. You can also play this game by having players sing the next line of the song after you play a few seconds of it.
- 20 questions is a classic. All you have to do is have one player choose a person, place, or thing. Everyone else takes turns asking up to 20 yes-or-no questions in an attempt to figure out what the person is thinking of.
- Don’t say it will definitely keep a car ride interesting! Before the trip begins, come up with 3 words that are forbidden for the rest of the trip. Anytime a person is caught saying one of the forbidden words they get one point. The person with the least amount of points at the end of the trip wins.
- I packed my bag is a great way to practice listening, memorization, and keep everyone focused. Basically you tell your kids that they are going on a trip and will have to pack their own bag with anything they want. Players will take turns saying “I packed my bag and in it is…” Each time the player will have to repeat all the previous items in order, before adding a new one. The game ends when someone forgets all the items in order.
Payer 1: “I packed my bag, and in it is a toothbrush.”
Player 2: “I packed my bag, and in it is a toothbrush, and a stuffed toy”
Player 3: “I packed my bag, and in it is a toothbrush, a stuffed toy, and a blanket.”
There’s no time to be bored in the car when you have a good set of road trip games and activities ready – which ones do you plan to use on your next trip?