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School holidays don’t have to be expensive; in fact, if you use our imagination you’ll find plenty of activities that won’t break the bank.  Try some  of these if you run out of inspiration:



1. Go for a bushwalk.

The Visitors Information Centre in town can give you details of local walks or check out this website: or the DOC website:


Full length of teacher and boy reading book by bookshelf in library


2. Visit the library.

Take your children to the library and get your children their very own library card. Find their holiday opening hours here.




3. Make a mobile

Make  a mobile for the garden using shells, driftwood, leaves, pine cones and any other natural treasures you can find. Here are some instructions for a shell mobile.



Happy family having fun outdoors in spring park against natural green background

4. Blow bubbles.

If you don’t have a bubble wand already, you can make one by cutting out the inside of an icecream container lid, and leaving just the frame. Dip the frame into a mixture of dishwashing liquid and water, and then wave it gently from side to side to release the bubble. You can also make bubble wands from the rings around milk bottle tops, or wire coat hangers. Here is a recipe and a few more ideas.


Colorful rainbow wax crayons pencils on a white background

5. Make Crayons

Make a new set of crayons for your child by putting all their short broken ones into muffin tins, and melting them down in the oven. Once the wax is melted, remove them from the tin and let the wax go cold. Tip out the giant, multi-coloured crayons and they are ready to use.   See how this is done here



hs-leaf-hunt-86. Make up a scavenger hunt

Make a scavenger hunt for your children, with a list of things they need to find in your garden. Make it hard enough to last more than 5 minutes, but don’t make it so hard it’s impossible for them to complete. Here are some ideas about scavenger hunts to help you get started.


outdoor minigolf


7. Make a mini golf course

Make your own mini golf course in the backyard using tin cans for holes, and all sorts of buckets, rocks and pot plants for obstacles.  Here are some inside mini golf ideas to inspire you.




8.  Make a junk sculpture

Recycling pile getting high? Give it to your kids to make a sculpture. Make sure they have plenty  string, tape and space and see what they come up with. And if you’re feeling arty, here are 22 things you can do with paper rolls.  And here are some more junk art ideas.



Sand Castle on Beach Closeup Kite flying in a blue sky

9. Build a sandcastle. Fly a kite.

Make the most of our beaches and build some sandcastles.  Make your own kites and see which ones fly the best. Here are some instructions for an easy to make kite.



Two kids cooking at home.

10. Do some Baking

Cakes, muffins, biscuits…it doesn’t really matter. Your children will love getting involved, and you won’t have to buy baking at the supermarket.  Here is a website with some tips and recipes for baking with kids.