Fun day off ideas

Good morning!

I am not sure if there is already a thread like this, but we are having a bit of a blank on "fun" things to do on a day off. I'm currently on maternity leave so don't actually have days off haha and my days at home mainly consist of doing washing. But my partner has been struggling this week so arranged his work so he can have a day off today, and we were struggling to come up with free/cheap things to do that are a bit different to him just doing house jobs with me. He's decided to go fishing at a local lake where if the guy doesn't come round he won't have to pay! Haha 

I thought it might be nice to collate some ideas for free or cheap fun things to do on a day off. Here's all I can think of. (Ideally it would be things to get us out of the house but I'm stumped!) 

Long dog walk somewhere different
Charity shop crawl (look for new board games to play that evening - cheap date night too!) 
Bike ride (okay if you have a bike already, I don't, so have to hire one which is not cheap!)
Baking/batch cooking day

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  • MSE_Laura_F
    MSE_Laura_F Posts: 1,569 MSE Staff
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    edited 11 November 2022 at 11:30AM
    Thanks for this @Pauper1. I hope your maternity leave is going well.

    • Join seat filler memberships like Showfilmfirst and Central Tickets and see cheap (around a fiver) theatre shows and plays. Lots are available on weekdays.

    • Make a stop motion animation film using objects from your home. There's a free Stop Motion app that's easy to use and so fun.
  • linz
    linz Posts: 1,915 Forumite
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    Not too long ago I downloaded the geocaching app. That'd be great to combine with a local walk or a day trip to somewhere nearby. Take a flask & some sandwiches and it's a nice, cheap day exploring a new area.
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  • theoretica
    theoretica Posts: 12,301 Forumite
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    Depending on your area, which museums, galleries etc are free?  Any events at local libraries?  Churches are often open for visitors.
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  • Lots of towns have cheap treasure trails where you find out the history of  your town and follow clues. 
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  • RAS
    RAS Posts: 32,650 Forumite
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    Start looking above first floor level in your local area or town to identify interesting buildings. And visit the local history library to pull out early maps of your area.

    I was stunned when the local conservation officer pulled out early maps. Our area was built on fields owned by local big houses, and in their gardens. The field walls, garden walls and many gateways still survive. As does a lot of the earliest housing built in the "suburb". Although a lot have been clad in other materials or are now gable end on to new roads. 

    One road runs along the track way that led from the nearest monastery to granges in the hills.

    It's given me a different understanding of my area.
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  • kimwp
    kimwp Posts: 1,774 Forumite
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    Borrow a how to book from the library and learn a new skill together.

    Take pencils and paper and draw the things you see on a walk.

    Go litter picking - surprisingly entertaining and makes the area nicer.

    See who is the fastest to assemble a pile of things that start with every letter of the alphabet.

    Try to get a smile from every person you see

    Go blackberry picking (time of year dependent!)

    Talk about happy memories
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  • Elisheba
    Elisheba Posts: 1,532 Forumite
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    Jigsaws (cheap from charity shops) with the radio or podcasts on

    For the crafty, knitting/crochet/embroidery/patchwork/sewing etc. 

    IDing the wildflowers and trees around you and on walks - Plantnet is a free app, and you can get books from the library.

    Foraging - books from the library of what you can collect and eat. 

    Astronomy - you can use binoculars (old ones often found cheap in charity and junk shops) and library books to start with.

    Reading - books from library, and books and magazines free online from library. 

    Decluttering and clearing things out - amazing how fun and rewarding this can be.

    Mind games like crosswords/suduko/logic puzzles. Loads available free on apps. 

    Set yourself a topic that interests you to learn about and do some research and studying - eg. local history, how to fix watches, climate change, politics, all about Ukraine, Christmas, whatever you like. 

    Mess around with your budget, change the figures, find out what's possible - you can easily lose an afternoon to that! 

    Make art from things you picked up from nature. 

    Live the good life where you have been planted.
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  • RobM99
    RobM99 Posts: 2,519 Forumite
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    Learn a few words of Norwegian - I'll start you off -  Har du det bra? (Hi, how are you?)  Godt nytt aar!  (Happy new year!)  Femti (50)  That's all I know. 
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  • Frith
    Frith Posts: 8,151 Forumite
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    Local steam trains (I'm happy just sitting on the platform, watching them come and go)
    Walking in local nature reserves or on specific footpaths after doing a bit of research
    Walking along canals
    Use Strava to record your walks for the mileage and also attach your own photos
    Churches and cathedrals for an explore or go to a coffee morning within. I can say, after 3 decades, no one has spotted that I'm not a Christian!
    Local history groups have zoom talks
    Wandering around architectural salvage yards
    Learning languages on Duo Lingo
    Do all finances over the course of a few days - cheaper phones, better rate of interest bank accounts etc. Or at least get all the information about what you have collated neatly in a folder
    Cook a new recipe
    Make preserves. It is still crab apple jelly time but you can do lemon curd anytime. Or sloe gin
    Catch up on a box set that everyone else watched at the time
    Write letters to people, especially children, as they hardly ever receive post
    Have a good clear out

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