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THE ULTIMATE OUTDOOR GAMES LIST, FOR GUARANTEED SUMMER FUN 2024

This outdoor games list includes a bunch of brilliantly fun games perfect for kids’ parties, family and friends get-togethers, summer parties and for keeping kids entertained outdoors during the summer school break.

I’m a huge fan of playing outdoor games, I’d always much rather be up and having fun rather than just sitting around. So over the years, I have played many, many games and also hosted plenty of outdoor parties for kids and adults.

This list names all the outdoor games that I think stand out for being super fun to play. I’ve included classic games, lawn games, team games, games just for fun, and games with an element of competition. 

I’ve included links to the best outdoor garden games kit to buy where needed and simple how-to-play instructions for each game.

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THE BIG OUTDOOR GAMES LIST: 26 GAMES FOR GUARANTEED FUN

First, here are some great outdoor games that can be played with individual players or teams of no more than two.

1. CORNHOLE

Cornhole is a classic American game that’s increasingly popular in the UK. It is a great game for outdoor kids’ parties and family and friends get-togethers.

How to play

The game involves throwing beanbags at a raised angle board with a hole in one end. Points are scored based on whether a beanbag lands on the board or through the hole.

Number of players: From two players, divide into two teams beyond two players.

OBOVO Collapsible Cornhole Game

There are some lovely wooden sets, but this is great because it is easily portable, so great for fun in the park or at the beach.

Buy from Amazon

2. HORSESHOES

Horseshoes is a nostalgic outdoor game. It’s a brilliant way to bring back memories of summers past while creating new cherished moments.

How to play

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Players take turns tossing horseshoes at a stake. The aim is to get the horseshoes as close as possible to the stake. There are extra points for getting the horseshoe to land around the stake.

Number of players: 2 players.

3. QUOITS

Quoits is a traditional lawn game that involves scoring points by throwing rings across a pitch towards pegs. You can buy colourful, fun sets for kids or more fancy wooden sets for adults.

How to play

Set up a set of pegs at a suitable distance for the players (around 10-15 feet for teens and adults, but closer for younger kids).

Players take turns throwing their rings at the peg, with each ring around the peg scoring a point.

The first player to reach a predetermined number of points, usually 21, wins the game.

Number of players: From two players, divide into two teams beyond two players.

Quoits - Original Compact Quoits - Luxury Quoits Set
£29.99

This is a super stylish version of Quoits. (I love that all Jacques of London games come gift-wrapped!)

Buy from Amazon Buy from Jacques of London
03/05/2024 03:05 pm GMT
Quoits Garden Game for Kids

This version of Quoits is perfect for a kids' birthday party game.

Buy from Amazon

4. BOULES

Enjoy the sunshine by playing a friendly round of two of the French game of Boules. Also known as Petanque, boules is similar to the Italian game of boccie. 

How to play

Each player has two boules with a matching marking. Then, players take turns tossing their boules as close as possible to a smaller target ball.

You can play with any number of players if you have enough boules.

Number of players: Two teams of one, two or three players.

Toyrific Jeu de Boules
£9.30

This brightly coloured boules set is great for little kids to keep track as they play.

Buy from Amazon
02/29/2024 08:41 pm GMT
8 Boules Set | Big Game Hunters
£32.99

This lovely chrome set has 8 boules engraved in the classic French style.


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02/29/2024 09:05 pm GMT

5. MÖLKKY

Mölkky is a Finnish lawn game combining skill and strategy. The game is easy to learn and great for all ages. It’s a great outdoor party game.

How to play

You will need to buy a Mölkky set. Players throw a wooden pin at numbered blocks to knock them over and score points. The first to reach exactly 50 points wins.

Number of players: Two players or more.

Mölkky Set | Jaques of London

Wooden games always look so chic. This one comes in a handy bag, perfect for taking to the park.

Buy from Amazon Buy from Jacques of London

6. CROQUET

Croquet is a classic lawn game perfect for a relaxed afternoon in the sun. Though its name is French, it is believed that the game originated in Ireland.

The game involves hitting a ball with a mallet through a series of hoops. It is a genteel game, and in my experience, it is fitting to follow it with a lovely afternoon tea!

How to play

The game can be played with two to six players. The game’s objective is to hit the ball through a series of hoops in the correct order and direction and then hit the finishing stake.

Each player takes turns hitting their ball through the wickets and advancing towards the finishing stake.

The player who completes the course first wins the game.

Number of players: From two players

Sussex Croquet set - 4 x Adult

This is a well-priced beginner to intermediate-level croquet set in a sturdy canvas bag.

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Urban Lawn Croquet 4 Junior Players
£74.95

This is a much-cheaper croquet set with shorter mallets suitable for kids.

Buy from Amazon
03/02/2024 01:50 am GMT

7. LAWN DARTS

Lawn Darts was invented in the 1950s. It is a great game for bringing light-hearted competitive fun to an outdoor party. It is a particularly good party game for younger kids.

How to play

You will need a Lawn Darts set like this Flarts set, with targets and inflatable darts. Points are scored based on where each dart lands on the target.

Number of players: From two players.

Original Flarts
£18.39

This is a great lawn darts game for young kids to play.

Buy from Amazon
03/02/2024 01:10 pm GMT

8. SWINGBALL

Bring out your competitive side with a game of Swingball. It’s a great game for kids to play in your back garden on weekends and during school breaks.

It’s also a good game to include if you’re hosting a sports-themed kids’ party.

How to play

You can play Swingball solo or against an opponent. The aim is to hit the ball until it reaches the top or bottom of the Swingball spiral. The first one there wins the game.

Number of players: Solo or two players.

Classic All Surface Swingball
£35.00

I've had this set for several years, and the whole family enjoys it, either playing against each other or having a hit-up solo.

Buy from Amazon Buy from John Lewis
03/02/2024 02:30 pm GMT

9. BADMINTON

Badminton is a racket sport that can be played indoors and outdoors. People of all skill levels can enjoy it. You can set up a game in your back garden or at a nearby park with just a net, rackets, and a shuttlecock. 

How to play

Badminton is played with two or four players. The game’s objective is to hit the shuttlecock over the net and onto the opponent’s court while preventing the opponent from doing the same.

The game begins with a serve, and each rally continues until the shuttlecock lands out of bounds or a player commits a fault.

Points are scored when the shuttlecock lands on the opponent’s court, and the game is played to 21 points. 

Number of players: Two or four players (singles or doubles).

Badminton Volleyball Combo Set
£114.31

Make use of the net for both volleyball and badminton with this set. Everything you need for both games is included.

Buy from Amazon
03/02/2024 02:25 pm GMT

10. TABLE TENNIS

Table tennis, or ping pong, is a fast-paced tabletop game that people of all ages and skill levels can play. 

How to play

Table tennis is played with two or four players. Players use paddles to hit a lightweight ball back and forth over a net.

The objective of the game is to hit the ball over the net and onto the opponent’s side of the table while preventing the opponent from doing the same. 

The game begins with a serve, and each rally continues until the ball lands out of bounds or a player misses a shot.

Points are scored when the opponent fails to return the ball, and the game is played to 11 points. 

Number of players: Two or four players (singles or doubles).

Cornilleau 100X Outdoor Tennis Table
£475.00

Good quality tennis tables don't come cheap. But this is a really well-made, reasonably-priced table from a well-respected sports equipment brand, Cornilleau. This table is great for family gardens. It's compact, easy to move, and has storage for balls and rackets.

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03/02/2024 03:25 pm GMT

11. GIANT JENGA

Add a fun twist to the traditional Jenga game by playing with Giant Jenga on your lawn or at the park. It is a super engaging game of strategy for players of all ages.

Having played it many times, I think it is one of the best outdoor games for teens; it is mildly competitive and often induces much laughter.

How to play

Players take turns removing and stacking large wooden blocks, careful not to topple the tower.

Number of players: One or more.

Jaques of London Giant Tumble Tower
£44.99

The official Giant Jenga kit is super expensive, so this is a great option if you want the fun of Jenga without the hefty price tag.

Buy from Amazon
03/02/2024 04:06 pm GMT

12. BALLOON STOMP

Balloon Stomp is a brilliantly raucous birthday party game that kids and teens love.

How to play

Players tie a balloon to their ankles with a short piece of string and stand at the edges of a designated play area.

The objective is to stomp on other players’ balloons while protecting your own.

Once a player’s balloon is popped, they are eliminated from the game. The last player with an intact balloon wins.

Number of players: Three or more.

13. WATER BALLOON PIÑATA

Water balloon piñata is a brilliant game for outdoor hot summer birthday parties.

How to play

Fill several water balloons and hang them from a tree branch, pole or washing line.

Blindfold players and give them a stick to hit the balloons.

The player who pops the most balloons wins.

Number of players: Two or more.

14. HUMAN KNOT

Human Knot is a quirky game that kids of any age or adults can play. However, it is a particularly fun game for older kids and teens.

How to play

Players stand in a circle and grab hands with two people across from them. The group must then untangle themselves without letting go of each other’s hands.

Number of players: At least six players.

TEAM GAMES 

Now let’s move on to some of the best outdoor team games. Super fun games that are great for summer gatherings of family and friends or kids’ parties.

15. FRISBEE

Frisbee is great for playing as a casual game or as a more organised sport, like Ultimate Frisbee. It’s great for impromptu summer gatherings in the park or for summer picnic parties.

How to play

Divide players into two teams. The game’s objective is to score points by catching the frisbee in the opposing team’s end zone. Each time a player catches the frisbee in the end zone, their team scores one point.

The opposing team tries to intercept the frisbee or knock it down. The team with the most points at the end of the game wins.

Number of players: Two teams of six players (though you can play with just two people for fun!).

Discraft Usso Frisbee, 175G
£17.02

This is the Official disc of the USA Ultimate Championship Series!


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03/02/2024 04:51 pm GMT

16. KAN JAM

Kan Jam is a next-level frisbee game. It was invented in New York State in the mid-90s and has grown in popularity ever since.

It is the perfect choice if you’re looking for a more fast-paced and interactive game. Easy to set up and quick to play, Kan Jam adds excitement and energy to your summer parties.

How to play

Teams of two players work together to score points by throwing a Frisbee and trying to deflect it into a can. Find out more about Kan Jam and how to play on the main Kan Jam website.

Number of players: Two teams of two players.

KanJam 102863 Game Set - Black, One Size
£41.68 £39.95
Buy Now
03/02/2024 04:36 pm GMT

17. VOLLEYBALL

Volleyball is a great team game at the beach or park for hot summer days. Many beaches have volleyball courts, but you can also buy your own volleyball net to set up anywhere. It is a great game for energetic teens.

How to play

You need two teams of six players each. The aim of the game is to score points by hitting the ball over the net and onto the opponent’s court while preventing the opponent from doing the same. 

The ball is served over the net to start the game, and each rally begins with a serve. 

The team that wins the rally scores a point and serves again. The game is played to 25 points, and the team that wins three sets first wins the match.

Players cannot touch the ball more than three times in a row and cannot handle the net during play. 

Number of players: Two teams of six players.

Volleyball Badminton Combo Set
£114.31

Make use of the net for both volleyball and badminton with this set. Everything you need for both games is included.

Buy from Amazon
03/02/2024 02:25 pm GMT

18. CAPTURE THE FLAG

Capture the Flag is a super fun outdoor game suitable for all ages. The excitement never ends with two teams trying to capture each other’s Flag.

This game encourages strategy and teamwork, making it an excellent choice for large groups, families, and even school summer break entertainment..

How to play

Capture the Flag is played with two teams. The game’s objective is to capture the opponent’s Flag and bring it back to your own base without getting tagged by an opponent. The game is played in a large field or outdoor space, with each team having a territory or base. 

The Flag is placed in the centre of each team’s territory, and players must cross into the opponent’s territory to capture the Flag. 

If a player is tagged by an opponent in the opponent’s territory, they must go to jail. They can only be released if a teammate tags them while touching the opponent’s jail. 

The game is won when one team successfully captures the opponent’s Flag and brings it back to their base. Players must also follow specific rules regarding tagging, crossing into the opponent’s territory, and releasing jailed teammates.

Number of players: Any number of four players, though two teams of six is ideal.

19. DODGEBALL

Dodgeball is an exhilarating game that will have everyone ducking, diving, and dodging with glee. 

How to play

Divide your group into two equal teams and assign each section a side of the court. Set up a line of rubber balls in the centre of the court.

When the whistle blows, or the game begins, players rush to grab a ball from the centre line.

The aim is to eliminate players on the opposing team by hitting them with the balls. If a player catches a thrown ball, the thrower is out instead.

Up the ante for hot summer days by replacing the dodgeball with a water balloon and turning the game into Water Dodge Ball!

Number of players: Two teams of six players.

Official British Dodgeball - Single (Red)
£14.97

This is the official British Dodgeball Association ball; you can't buy better!

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03/02/2024 06:02 pm GMT

20. ROUNDERS

Rounders is a traditional British game with roots in baseball; it has been played in England since the 1700s! Many of us first learn how to play rounders at school, but it is a brilliant game for a summer party at the park.

How to play

Set up cones or markers to form a diamond-shaped pitch with a batting rectangle at one corner.

Divide players into batter and fielder teams, with the batting team taking turns to hit the ball.

After hitting the ball, the batter runs around the bases in order, attempting to reach the fourth base to score a point.

Fielders can get batters out by catching the ball, reaching the base before the batter, or hitting the batter with the ball while they’re between bases.

Number of players: Two teams of nine players.

Complete Rounders Set

Everything you need for game after game of rounders.

Buy from Amazon

21. TUG OF WAR

Tug of war, the ultimate party game of strategy, strength and teamwork!!

How to play

Use a long, sturdy rope and mark the centre with a flag or tape.

Divide participants into two evenly matched teams.

Each team lines up on either side of the rope, holding onto it with both hands.

The objective is to pull the rope so that the opposing team is forced to cross a designated line or marker.

Number of players: Two teams of six to eight players (But any number can work for fun!).

Tug of War Set | Traditional Garden Games
£34.96

This 10-metre rope comes with a marker flag, marking line, and carry bag.

Buy from Amazon
03/02/2024 08:17 pm GMT

22. FREEZE TAG

One of the most beloved outdoor games for kids is Freeze Tag. This simple yet fun game keeps younger children entertained and active.

How to play

One child is chosen as the ‘It’ player, and their job is to tag the other players. 

Once a player is tagged, they must freeze in place until another player comes along to unfreeze them by touching them. 

The game continues until all players are frozen, or the ‘It’ player decides to call an end to the game.

Number of players: At least four players.

23. RED ROVER

Red Rover is a classic school playground game that promotes teamwork and strategy. It is great for kids of all ages and makes a fun party game for large groups of kids or teens.

How to play

Players are divided into two teams and stand at opposing ends of the playing area.

Each team holds hands, forming a human chain. One team starts by calling out, ‘Red Rover, Red Rover, send [player’s name] right over!’ 

The chosen player from the other team must then run towards the chain, attempting to break through the linked hands of two players and reach the opposing team’s end.

If successful, they return to their team. If not, they must join the opposing team. The game continues until one team has all the players.

Number of players: Two teams of at least six players per team.

24. HIDE AND SEEK 

Hide and Seek is a classic party game for kids that is particularly popular with preschoolers and younger kids.

How to play

One player is a seeker and covers their eyes and counts slowly to a pre-agreed number while the other players hide. 

Once the counting is finished, the seeker must find the hidden players. The game ends when all the players have been found.

The first player to be found becomes the next seeker.

Number of players: Three or more players.

25. RED LIGHT, GREEN LIGHT

Red Light, Green Light is another excellent game for younger kids. It works well as a party game.

How to play

One player stands far from the other players and acts as the traffic light.

When the traffic light says ‘Green Light,’ the other players advance towards them while their backs are turned. When they turn around and say ‘Red Light,’ everyone must freeze.

If a player is caught moving, they must return to the starting line. The goal is to be the first one to reach the traffic light.

Number of players: At least four players.

26. HOPSCOTCH

Hopscotch is a classic children’s game. It is a perfect outdoor game for preschoolers because it helps them develop balance, coordination, and gross motor skills, alongside having fun.

It can be played with just a few players or a larger group.

How to play

Draw a hopscotch grid on a patio, footpath or playground or buy a hopscotch set.

Players take turns tossing a small object, like a stone or beanbag, onto one of the numbered squares and then hop through the grid on one or two feet, skipping the square with the object.

The game ends when a player completes the entire grid without stepping on a line or losing their balance.

Number of players: From one to many.

CRAYOLA Washable Sidewalk Chalk (Pack of 48)
£7.49 (£0.16 / count)

Use washable sidewalk chalk to draw hopscotch grid after hopscotch grid.

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03/02/2024 09:51 pm GMT

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