The best part about the holiday season is that everyone is together! The hardest part about the holiday season is… well, everyone’s together! That’s why Christmas activities are so important.
Good, clean, wholesome Christmas activities are irreplaceable during the holidays. After all, you can only watch so many Hallmark movies, eat so many cookies, or visit Santa so many times before the family starts to get a little bit twitchy.
So plan accordingly with some fun Christmas activities that just might become a yearly tradition!
We’ll start with the classics, then give you a carefully curated selection of our very favorite things to do. After that, you’ll find even more holiday activities for kids, for families, for couples, and (sadly!) for when you’re all by yourself. Plus we have board games, party games, crafts, and much more.
Traditional Christmas Activities
Decorate Christmas Cookies
You don’t even have to bake them from scratch. Honestly, the most fun part about Christmas cookies is the decorating part.
So, whether you pull out that Kitchenaid and Gramma’s snickerdoodle recipe, or you purchase a tray of pre-baked cookies, set out the frostings and sprinkles and get the family decorating.
You can even put the results online as a poll and have your friends vote for a winner!
Donate to Local Food Pantry or Angel Tree
Remember, it’s not just Thanksgiving Day that tells us to slow down and be grateful for what we have. It’s the whole holiday season that is a wonderful time to give back!
Donating to your local food pantry (time, money, or food — your choice) is a great family activity that everyone can join in. Or give gifts to an Angel Tree and know that your little offering made a foster child happy.
Go Christmas Caroling
It’s a classic holiday tradition for a reason: it makes the singers and the audience jolly! Get your family and friends together, print out some Christmas carols, bundle up, and deck the neighborhood’s halls!
Mail Christmas Cards
It seems like I don’t get as many in the mail these days and it’s likely because it’s easier and less expensive to just put a holiday greeting on your social media. But getting old fashioned mail is so much fun!
Pony up for a couple of books of Santa stamps, and send out some Christmas cards this year.
Have Fun Ice Skating
It doesn’t matter if you’re any good (just wear some padding!). Going ice skating as a family is such a fun activity.
And of course, just like with bowling, half the fun is the snacks. So, don’t forget the thermoses of hot cocoa and some cookies!
Count Down with an Advent Calendar
Little kids and big ones, too, love the fun of an Advent calendar! There are so many great ones to choose from, and they aren’t all the predictable chocolate ones.
Although who would turn up their nose at chocolate?
Visit Santa Claus!
Ask around for who has the best Santa (hint: it’s not always the mall) and go see the big elf together!
It doesn’t matter if your little ones are getting “too old” for Saint Nick — it’s always fun to pose for pictures and tell him what you want for Christmas!
This Icelandic practice definitely needs to be a new American tradition!
It basically translates to “Christmas book flood,” and it’s just as fun as it sounds: everyone gifts books to one another on Christmas Eve and the night is spent reading them.
Sounds heavenly to this bookworm!
Related: Meaningful Christmas Traditions
Make a Gingerbread House
You can go all from scratch or buy a kit. However you want to do it, the decorating is the fun part! Sure, they never turn out quite Pinterest worthy, but that’s part of the charm! For extra fun, have your family members and friends vote for a favorite.
Surely you don’t need a tutorial or ideas for this one, do you? Tear into those presents with all the care of a toddler hyped up on too many fruit snacks!
Click Here for some fun gift exchange game ideas!
Our Favorite Christmas Activities, Crafts, & Games
Saran Wrap Ball!
Part dice game, part silliness, this saran wrap ball game is a super fun way to spend time together! This is a great party game, or just a fun way to spend a snowy winter’s eve together.
Bound to be a new tradition that everyone will look forward to each and every holiday season!
Snow Village Paint by Numbers
Face it: Christmas — while lovely — comes with a certain amount of stress, doesn’t it? Soothe those frazzled holiday nerves and anxiety with fun and pretty snow village paint by numbers. The whole family can sit around the table and make some beautiful art together. And bonus: you’ll have homemade Christmas gifts to give at the end of the evening!
Nothing brings families together like a good old-fashioned game of Monopoly! *Cue someone throwing the board in frustration* For the naturally competitive, this fun Christmas-opoly will be the most fun way to spend a snowy afternoon!
Christmas Tree Macrame
A little bit boho and a whole lot of pretty, this fun Christmas tree macrame kit is a far cry from the usual jigsaw puzzle or board game! Get crafty together with your family and make these sweet ornaments on a blustery winter’s day. You’ll end up with charming gifts at the end of your day — how sweet!
Ticket to Ride: Nordic Countries
You’ll feel like you’re at the North Pole with this fun edition of the favorite family game, Ticket to Ride! Kids and adults of all ages will love playing this game together. Set out some snacks and hot cocoa and let the fun begin.
Sew Your Own Holiday Gnome
What’s cuter than a gnome? A Christmas gnome, that’s what! These adorable, felt holiday gnomes come with everything you need (minus a glue gun) to DIY three sweet creations. Everything’s better when it’s homemade, especially during Christmas. Give your gnomes as gifts, or hang them from your own tree when finished!
An arts and crafts afternoon with the kiddos is just what you need! Dig into this fun snowflake suncatcher kit with them, or have them do it solo while you catch up on holiday baking or wrapping. These sweet suncatchers will bring some holiday cheer into your living room for sure!
Ready to download and print, this holiday version of classic trivia is totally fun for parties or just when you really need to lay off the screen time. The answers are sure to stump you, make you laugh, and teach you some awesome Christmas trivia!
Needle Felt Ornaments
Needle felting is a great way to relieve stress and anxiety! This needle felt ornament kit comes with everything you need (including instructions) to make three of the most gorgeous felt ornaments. And by the end, you’ll have a new skill up your sleeves!
Make Snow Globes
There’s something magical about snow globes, no matter your age, don’t you think? These fun snow globes will bring some delightful Christmas cheer to your house. And they make great presents for Gramma and Grampa, too!
Christmas Activities for Kids
Christmas Reading Guide for Jesus Storybook Bible
Share the Christmas story as a family using this free, printable holiday reading plan for Sally Lloyd-Jones’ contemporary classic, The Jesus Storybook Bible. Remember Who is the reason for the season, and get the presents and treats off their little minds for a bit!
Nature Scavenger Hunt Outdoors Christmas Activity
Wondering how to keep the children busy during the holiday break from school? This free printable for a nature scavenger hunt offers a brilliant way to get kids outside to burn off some of that excited energy! Bundle up and get some natural vitamin D as well (not to mention, burning off those Christmas cookies, moms and dads!)
Printable Holiday Games & Christmas Activities
This free download includes printable versions of Christmas-themed I-Spy, Memory, crossword puzzles, Bingo, coloring pages, and lots more. Keep their energy managed and minds busy with fun things to do when it’s too cold to play outside!
Easy Homemade Christmas Ornaments
These easy homemade Christmas ornaments are fun crafts to do with your kids. They even teach them fine motor skills and the art of sewing! They’ll love learning how to make them and will be so proud of their end results. They make fun gifts to give away, but keep at least a couple for your own tree — it’s always so fun to unpack them each year and reminisce.
Printable Christmas Activity Garland
Plenty of holiday activity ideas are listed in this ready-to-print garland. Use the activities provided or make up your own with the included blank sheets — it’s up to you! Never let a dull moment into your house, and you’ll never hear, “Mommy, I’m bored!”
Christmas Lights Scavenger Hunt
This Christmas lights scavenger hunt is such a fun activity for kids (and, really, the whole family). Use it while driving or walking around the neighborhood, looking at each house’s lights and decorations. Can you find all of the items listed here?
Decorate Christmas Cookies
Get the kids baking and decorating with these delicious sour cream sugar cookies. Not only is it a great way to teach the children how to bake, but it will provide hours of fun as they decorate each cookie with colorful frosting and all types of special sprinkles.
Christmas Bingo (Free Printable)
This holiday-themed Bingo game is easy to print and will provide plenty of fun to keep your kids busy this holiday season. Gramma and Grandpa will love joining in, too! Check your dollar store for the fun, oversized Bingo markers.
25 Christmas Activities Printable Calendar
Use this free, printable calendar to plan 25 fun days of Christmas activities to do with your family! Celebrate each and every day with these fun ideas. It will eliminate the age-old question of, “What do you want to do today?”
Scavenger Hunt Inspired by Christmas Songs
Set up a scavenger hunt! This one features clues inspired by all your favorite holiday classic tunes. Okay, you may have a hard time finding eight maids a milking, but mistletoe, stockings, and snow should be easy enough.
Christmas Activities for Families
Take Holiday Photos (Don’t Forget the Pet!)
Matching pjs or your best holidays frocks — the point is getting the whole family (plus Fido and Midnight) together for a great photo! I know I’ve gotten too busy with the cooking and the cleaning and holiday shenanigans to remember to actually snap some photos, so don’t be like me.
Host a Christmas Feast
If you’re a foodie who loves to host and cook, a Christmas feast is the way to go! Your guests will be delighted (and stuffed) with all of your favorite recipes and treats. You can go potluck style with paper plates, or get out the best China and have it catered. Or somewhere in between! The point is, great food and great friends.
Whatever you do, our Christmas Planning Checklist will be there to help you!
Pick Out a Real Christmas Tree
Hunting a Christmas tree is a family tradition that everyone will love! Bundle up and make a whole day of finding that epic, perfect Spruce. Don’t forget to pack hot cocoa and a picnic or go out for lunch afterwards.
Play Christmas Trivia
Everyone loves trivia, but Christmas trivia is even more delightful! This ‘Tis the Season version is totally fun for everyone. Pair up because two is always better than one.
Give Santa a Call!
Did you know Santa has a direct hotline? Kids will love dialing up their favorite, jolly old elf and telling him what they want for Christmas. And it’s free!
Pick Out or Make New Ornaments for the Tree
Head to a thrift store and find new favorites for the tree! Or find some fun online tutorials for how to make your own ornaments. Whichever way you go, decking the tree in all its glory is always so fun and so full of memories.
Bundle up and take the whole family sledding! Don’t forget to take some videos because this is one tradition that will make some epic memories. And maybe some epic bruises along the way.
The family who roasts together, stays together! Isn’t that the expression? No? Well, no matter. If your family is fluent in sarcasm, they’ll have a blast playing Merry Dissmas. No holds barred and much laughter will ensue.
Set Up a Christmas Train Around the Tree
Choo-choo! This fun tradition is a must for a lot of families, and it’s not too late to incorporate it into yours, too. It brings some cheer and old-fashioned vintage vibes to a modern Christmas aesthetic.
Christmas Activities for Couples
Go Christmas Lights Sight-Seeing
Whether walking or driving, fill up a thermos with a hot beverage and hold hands while looking at all the Christmas lights! Find new favorites and get inspired to decorate your own lawn and house next year.
Visit a Christmas Town
Find out where the nearest one to you is and plan a little road trip. It will be a magical time and get-away for you and your honey during a sometimes stressful time of year. Make sure to purchase some souvenirs while you’re there!
Sip & Paint at Home: Christmas Painting Follow Along
Host a Sip and Paint at your house with your couple friends! Or just keep it just to the two of you. This is a romantic and fun way to spend an evening, and at the end you’ll have the prettiest painting to hang on your wall.
Have a Holiday Taste Test!
Head to your favorite store that sells holiday themed snacks (like Trader Joe’s) and rank your favorites together! Did you know that you can have a whole dinner out of snacks? There’s no law against it — trust me, we checked.
Have a Romantic Holiday Dinner
Cook your favorite meal together and set a pretty table! Include candles and some sweet background music, too. You don’t have to go out and spend a fortune to have a lovely and magical meal.
Buy/Make Each Other Ugly Christmas Sweaters
Once they’re completed, wear those ugly Christmas sweaters with pride! They’ll be totally unique and one-of-a-kind and get lots of compliments… Or maybe just side-eyes and laughter, but whatever!
Watch Hallmark Christmas Movies
Snuggle under a blanket and have a Hallmark Christmas movie marathon! Sure, they’re predictable and have the same plot, but that’s why we love them. Don’t forget the popcorn and wine for a romantic night in.
Go Christmas Karaoking
If karaoke is your love language, you’ll adore a Christmas version! Wear your holiday best and try to outdo one another on the carols. Such fun!
Find a Mistletoe & Kiss!
Let the smooches abound! Your kids will groan in disgust, but you will love reigniting the flame of your love under the magical mistletoe.
Watch the Trans-Siberian Orchestra Live
It truly is the sound of Christmas, don’t you think? The Trans-Siberian Orchestra will really usher in the holidays. Watch it live with someone you love!
What to Do When You’re Alone Christmas Activities
Go to Your Favorite Restaurants
Spend local and get out in your community! Your favorite restaurants would love to serve you during the holidays. Plus, you’ll be bringing some cheer to those hard working business owners and waitstaff.
Spend Time Volunteering
Don’t get down in the dumps during Christmas because you’re alone! Spend some time volunteering and keep your spirits up. You’ll be a new person at the end, guaranteed!
Keep Up with Your Favorite Traditions
Play your favorite christmas songs, put up the tree, and follow through with your favorite christmas activities! It doesn’t even really matter what they are as long as you do them faithfully each year! The kids will be mad if you don’t after all!
Binge Watch Christmas Movies
There are so many to choose from — where to start? Whether you pull up Netflix, or crack open those old VHS cases, spend a whole evening fitting in your favorites.
Here are some we love:
- A Christmas Story (1983)
- The Holiday (2006)
- Dr. Seuss’ How The Grinch Stole Christmas (2000)
- Click Here for More Christmas Movies
Give Yourself Gifts
Treat yo-self! Place gifts for yourself in your stockings, get the cookies and coffee prepared for the morning, or have something wrapped under the tree. You’ve earned some pampering!
Go on a Winter Walk
It’s been proven that moving around increases your jolly hormones! So add some holly-jolly to your Christmas day with a good winter walk or run. Don’t forget the dog, or offer to walk your neighbor’s!
Video Chat with Family/Friends
Sometimes technology is just the bee’s knees, right? They’ll love seeing your face and you’ll love reconnecting via video chat with your family and/or friends. It’s the next best thing to seeing them in real life!
Enjoy a New Experience
Go spend the day in a cabin in the woods, a house on the beach, or jumping out of an airplane! What’s something you’ve always wanted to do? Do that! Rock climbing, building a treehouse, adopting a cat…dream away! Check out this service for some great ideas!
Finish a Christmas Puzzle
You’ll feel so accomplished once that last piece is in place! And the end result will be so pretty. You may just want to buy some puzzle glue so you can hang it on the wall and admire it whenever you like.
Go to a Local Christmas Parade or Festival
It’s a great way to meet new people and get involved in your community! Going to a local parade or festival is such a fun way to get out of your house and experience some Christmas cheer.
Christmas Activity Board Games
If Christmas songs are your jam and Mariah Carey doesn’t make her appearance in December only in your house, you’ll love Happy Holidays! Play with your family and friends and see who is crowned the King or Queen of the Christmas carol.
The Santa Claus Game
All ages can play this fun Santa Claus game! The littles to the great-grandparents will have a memorable time with this cute game that will have everyone bonding and laughing together in no time at all.
Printable Santa’s Little Helpers Board Game
Great for ages 6 and up, this printable Santa’s Little Helpers board game will delight everyone with its winter theme and fun Santa adventures. You can make up your own rules and stops along the way, too.
Elf Card Scramble Board Game
Who doesn’t want to play with Buddy the Elf? This super cute board game will have everyone scrambling and laughing as they follow Buddy to victory.
Help Santa get ready for his big night with this fun Santa’s Workshop game! The kids won’t even miss their screen time when they have a fun board game like this one to play all afternoon.
Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer Christmas Journey
Yukon Cornelious, Hermey the elf, and Rudolph need some help with their Christmas journey in this cute, vintage inspired game! The kids will love racing to the end while they find all the missing Misfit Toys.
Personalized Christmas Adventure Board Game
How unique and fun is this personalized Christmas adventure board game? Your family will be so delighted with seeing their names and descriptions printed right on the game itself! A great gift idea for a family, too, especially if they love their family game nights!
Santa’s Sleigh Ride
Race across the world but make it back to the North Pole! This fun game will be a new favorite at the kitchen table. Easy to play and super fun to win!
Christmas Activities & Party Games
Create a New Year’s Prediction List
Make a list of predictions you think will happen in the upcoming year. Be sure to write your names down so you know who was right! This one is so fun while it’s happening, but even more fun next year when you read them all aloud!
Play Christmas “I Spy”
A fun way to pass the time with toddlers and littles, a Christmas version of I Spy is the way to go! They’ll love spying things like something with glitter on it, a Santa hat, or candy canes.
Host a Polar Express Party
Punch some train tickets in this fun Polar Express party! Lots of hot chocolate, pajamas, and adventures will be par for the course on your ride to the North Pole.
Never Have I Ever Gift Exchange
Super fun during a dinner party or to play with your teens, this Christmas version of the classic game Never Have I Ever is sure to please.
Related: Printable Christmas Games
Christmas Friendly Feud
Family Feud is always so fun! This Christmas version kicks it up a notch! The whole family will love laughing their way to victory with this clever game.
Bring the neighbors in for this classic game! Charades are always a hoot, and keeping it Christmas themed makes it even more fun and funnier.
Antler Toss Game
Here’s one game that isn’t so complicated you’ll be hitting the eggnog station early! This cute antler toss game is easy enough for even the toddlers to play. Have a prize for the winner!
Christmas Rush Card Game
A bit like the classic game of Spoons, this Christmas Rush card game is such a hoot! Kids and adults alike will love this fun game. Be prepared for lots of shouts, singing, and general rowdiness!
Christmas Activities at Home
Read Christmas Scripture
Settle everyone down with some Christmas scripture! Snuggle together under your fluffiest blanket, sip on cocoa, watch the snow fall, and listen to Mom or Dad read the Christmas story.
Decorate Your Mailbox or Front Door
Don’t stop at just the tree! Decorate your mailbox or front door for some extra holiday jubilation! It will bring a smile to everyone who walks by.
Enjoy a Winter Bonfire
S’Mores and maybe some caroling around a winter bonfire? Yes, please! Warm your toes and noses with the gentle roar of a nice fire. It’s a great way to get your neighbors over, too!
Build a Snowman
Carrot noses, top hats, mittens, and buttons? We love a good snowman! If you’re lucky enough to live somewhere where the snowflakes fly, then do yourself a favor and build an old-fashioned snowman! Or woman. Or dinosaur.
Create Your Own Stovetop Potpourri
Make your house smell like Christmas cookies, a wintery pine tree, or a fresh candy cane by creating your own stovetop potpourri. It’s aromatherapy for your soul!
String a Popcorn Garland for the Tree
They add such a charming and vintage look to your tree, don’t you think? Stringing popcorn while watching a movie or listening to a Christmas book on tape is a lovely way to spend an evening.
Have a Gift Wrap Race
See who can wrap gifts the fastest (and cleanest!). It’s a sneaky way to ensure that Mom doesn’t get stuck doing all the wrapping again this year!
Open One Gift on Christmas Eve
At our house, it’s always new Christmas pjs, but it can be anything you like! It’s your house and your traditions! Just make sure the little ones know we are stopping at one gift!
Have Fun with Elf on the Shelf
This modern tradition became an instant classic! That silly and sometimes naughty Elf on the Shelf has been delighting kiddos every December.
Related: Elf on the Shelf Alternatives
Follow Santa Claus on Christmas Eve
“You kiddin’ me, Clark?” ~ Cousin Eddie.
Follow Santa Claus on Christmas Eve and watch the magic of the season reflect in your kid’s eyes. They’ll love this new tradition and will eagerly tell their friends!
DIY Christmas Crackers
Make a set of your own Christmas crackers with this easy to follow tutorial! Kids will love first creating them and then “popping” them!
Christmas Coloring Pages
Break out the crayons and markers! Christmas coloring pages are a fun and easy way to come down from a holiday sugar high! And the finished results bring some Christmas fun to your fridge door.
Christmas Table Centerpieces
Make your own Christmas centerpiece with this easy to follow tutorial! Your dining room table will be the star of the show (well, at least until the turkey comes out!)
Diamond Magnets Christmas Activity Crafts
This fun kit is great for the arts and crafts fans! Kids and adults will love putting together these diamond magnet holiday crafts. A fun way for grandparents and kids to spend an afternoon together.
DIY Holiday Mason Jar Candle Holder
These holiday mason jar candle holders are so beautiful! You’re going to want to make quite a few because they make perfect gifts for friends and family (and you’ll want to keep some too).
DIY No-Sew Coffee Sleeve
Dress up any cup of coffee with a DIY new-sew coffee sleeve! These are so cute and easy to make. They make great gifts for coworkers or even your favorite barista!
Related: Coffee Lover Gift Guide
Beaded Ornaments Kit
Make some beaded ornaments with this fun kit! Do it yourself or involve the kiddos: however you choose, you’ll end up with beautiful ornaments to give away or decorate your tree with!
Create a Key for Santa
Not everyone has a chimney for Santa to shimmy down! Enter in this cute key for him to come and go and leave his presents behind with. Such a cute and fun idea!
Cross Stitch Patterns Christmas Activities
If you love cross stitch, this is the Christmas craft for you! These fun patterns come with everything you need, minus the embroidery hoop (check your dollar store or craft store).
DIY Affordable Christmas Wreath
Everything you need for this pretty wreath comes from the Dollar Tree! So easy and affordable, no one will ever guess it didn’t come from a high end store.
DIY Paper Mache Christmas Village
Nothing says “It’s Christmas!” like a fun little village. This one is paper mache and is DIY! How unique and special. You’ll definitely want to carefully pack it up for next year to enjoy again.
Quick & Easy Christmas Garland
It will hardly take any time at all to put together this enchanting Christmas garland! With a little help from Youtube, you’ll have some holiday cheer and “swag” to light up your home.
DIY Hanging Christmas Card Holder
Putting all those Christmas cards up for display is always a daunting task! This cute DIY hanging card holder puts every card in the spotlight and you can add to it with each mail delivery.
DIY Rustic Wood Pallet Advent Calendar
Make your own DIY rustic wood pallet Advent calendar with this handy tutorial! Your guests will comment on it year after year. So unique and one-of-a-kind!
Make a Non-Tree Christmas Tree
Got toddlers? Got cats? Then maybe the traditional Christmas tree with its breakable baubles isn’t for you! Make a non-tree tree this year!
3D Popup Christmas Card Craft
Your friends will be enchanted and impressed with this 3D popup Christmas card craft! You’ll love learning a new skill and having fun new cards to pass out to your lucky pals.
Read Next: Christmas Planning Checklist