7 Best Outdoor Games for a Safe and Fun Camping Vacation

Enjoying the great outdoors on a camping trip is fun, but to bring the trip to life, you’ve gotta have some games to play. Running around in Ultimate Frisbee or enjoying a relaxed game of croquet brings your vacation to a whole new level of quality fun, whether it be a family RV trip or a group of friends. This article lists a few of the best outdoor games and explains the basic rules for each one.

For some of these games, there are official rules available. However, maximum fun often comes from ignoring the technicalities and playing using only the basic leisurely rules.

Games for Large Groups

Ultimate Frisbee

This game has grown in popularity extremely rapidly and appeals to both energetic and relaxed people of a large age range. The goal of the game is to make more points than other team by throwing and catching a Frisbee disk down a field until is is caught in the endzone. While it is sometimes equated with football, a number of major differences set it apart: First off, Ultimate Frisbee doesn’t pause like football does in-between plays – gameplay is perpetual until one team scores. Secondly, once you have caught the frisbee, you are not allowed to run; you may only run when you are not holding the disk. Therefore, the only way to advance up-field is to make passes until you reach the endzone. Thirdly, if the disk is not caught and it hits the ground, it is a turnover, and the other team gets to pick it up.

All you really need for this game is a Frisbee disk. To see how the game is played, watch this video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ObxkyJqTalM&list=PL01B4874DBBDCFC2E.

Capture the Flag

This is a popular game in which there are two teams, each with a flag or similar object that acts as a flag. The large playing area is divided into two parts, one for each team, with a boundary line running in-between. Each team puts their flag somewhere on their side of the line, and the goal is to capture the other team’s flag and bring it back to your side without getting tagged by other team. If you’re tagged before you get back to your side of the boundary, you go to “jail,” a spot designated before the game starts. You then stay in jail until someone from your team tags you or after a certain amount of time that everyone decides on.

Sardines

Sardines is really quite simple. This game takes the rules of traditional tag but spins it in an interesting way. Instead of one person being “it,” everyone is “it” except one person. If you’re “it” and you find the one person hiding, you join that person in hiding while the rest of the “its” continue searching.

Kickball

This game has gained popularity like Ultimate Frisbee has, even among adults. The game is practically baseball played with a four-square ball that is kicked instead of hit with a bat. There are four bases; a pitcher who rolls the ball over the home plate; and strikes, balls, and outs like baseball. Kickball does typically only allows two strikes and is less strict about the ball going over the plate directly, as it is harder to roll it with that accuracy.

Official rules are available here on kickball.com.

 

Games for Just the Family

The games listed above require a fair number of people in order to be successful, so these last three games are specifically listed for family vacation.

Croquet

Croquet has been around for quite some time, dating back to the 1800’s. This game requires a croquet set, but from there it is quite simple. Simply set up your hoops and take turns hitting your personal ball with your mallet through the hoops until you’ve gone through all of them and back in order.

Everything you need for this game is available at www.croquet.com.

Backyard Bowling

As the name implies, this game heavily mimics traditional bowling, but is played in a grassy area. You can make your own outdoor bowling set using 2-liter soda bottles and the ball of your choice. Simply fill the bottles with enough water to stand up on the grass, set them up like you would bowling, and roll the ball down the grass and knock ‘em down!

Bocce Ball

Pronounced “Bo-tchee” ball, this game is surprisingly fun for how simply it is, and is a portal to a good time. This game is played using a set up bocce balls, which includes a golf-ball sized white ball and sets of larger colored balls. The game is played by one person rolling the white ball across the grass, followed by each player taking turns rolling a colored ball toward the white ball. The object of the game is to see how close you can roll your ball to the white ball. Each player has their own color and gets to roll a ball toward the white ball twice.

eHow has published more in-depth rules for this game here.

Hopefully you can enjoy one of these games next time you go camping!

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