All too often we spend the workweek looking forward to the weekend, then eventually end up idling away our days off once they arrive. And while it's encouraged to use your weekend for some well-deserved rest and relaxation, it's also nice to go into it with a plan—or at least have activities in your arsenal that you can rely on if ever you find yourself at a loss for things to do.
To serve up some weekend inspiration, we've rounded up a long list of activities to try for a variety of energy levels and end goals. Whether you're looking to spend time outdoors or cozy up in the comfort of your home, we have ideas for things to do this weekend that we guarantee will be right up your alley. Trying to use your two days off to better yourself? We have some action items to add to your to-do list. Would you rather treat yourself to some pampering over Saturday and Sunday? We have a handful of ways to indulge.
So instead of wasting the weekend sitting around scrolling through your phone, make Saturday and Sunday count with one, two, or 10 of the activities below. Keep scrolling for 34 ideas for things to do this weekend.
Sleep in. For one weekend morning, turn off all alarms and make a plan to sleep in sans guilt. If you wake up before getting a full sleep-in sesh, add some lavender to your essential oil diffuser or put on some soothing music so you can relax in peace as you sneak in a few more hours of shut-eye.
Do a puzzle. This activity is addictive no matter your age. Start on a puzzle Saturday morning and work on it whenever you need a break from another activity throughout the weekend.
Start a new podcast. Choose a new podcast to binge (or catch up on one you've fallen behind on) over the weekend. You can let it play while you clean, cook, or do other chores.
Play a board game. Gathering around a board game is an activity that can be enjoyed by all ages.
Cook dinner for a loved one. While the weekend is an easy time to dine out or order in, make a point to cook up a nice dinner for yourself or a loved one this weekend.
Journal. In the nonstop whirlwind that is life, we don't often take enough time for self-reflection. Try journaling this weekend to take some time for yourself and tap into your thoughts.
Go for a walk. Even in chilly weather, it can be healthful and invigorating to just get out of the house and go for a walk. Take a stroll around your block or head to a nearby destination. The fresh air will give you energy and uplift your mood.
Visit a local farmers market. Farmers markets are a perfect destination if you're looking to get out of the house. Pick up some fresh produce for dinner, graze on the variety of samples and snacks that are offered, or simply sit back and people watch.
Go hiking. Get back out into the great outdoors with a day hike. Hikes are a terrific way to get active without feeling like you're working, and you can take in the sights while breaking just a bit of a sweat.
Explore a new neighborhood. If you're looking for something novel, commit a few hours to exploring a new neighborhood. Try coffee from a café you've never visited, browse bookstores you've never stepped into, and simply see what another zip code offers.
Go to the beach. Beach days need not be limited to summer months. The beach in the winter can be just as beautiful, so pack a picnic, bring some blankets, and head to the coast for some scenic views and a walk along the sand.
Binge-watch a new show on Netflix. This might be the easiest way to pass the time over the weekend. Use your free hours to watch back-to-back episodes of a show you've been meaning to see before all your co-workers spill the spoilers.
Have a movie marathon of the classics. You know those films that are always referenced in pop culture and conversation but you've still not made the time to see? Pick a handful to tackle over the weekend and check the must-see classics off your list.
Get lost on Pinterest. During the workweek, Pinterest can be a dangerous black hole that pushes your reasonable bedtime back to 2 a.m. Take advantage of the weekend to fully indulge in all that Pinterest has to offer without losing sleep or feeling like you should be doing something else.<br/>Treat yourself to an at-home spa day. There's nothing that a face mask, a hot bath, and a complicated skin care regimen can't cure. Take a few hours to indulge in a head-to-toe spa session and finally make use of all those beauty products you've been meaning to open.
Make a vision board. If you ever want to spark some change in your life, creating a vision board can be a good first step.
Update your résumé. Keeping your résumé in tip-top shape is always a good idea. You never know when a dream opportunity might pop up, so take a moment to make sure everything is up to date.
Read a book. Crack open the book you're working through—or start a new one—for some serious undisturbed reading over the weekend.
Reorganize one room of your home. It may be a bore to spend the whole weekend overhauling your home, but tackling the organization of just one room can be an effective—and extremely satisfying—way to get your place going in the right direction.<br/>Meditate. Take a time-out and meditate. Even just a few minutes can have profound effects. If you're new to meditation, download the Headspace app to walk you through the practice.
Go to the gym. If you have a gym membership but have been skipping more often than going, commit to making it in this weekend.
Try a new workout class. Sometimes all we need to get out of a workout rut is to try something new. Sign up for a workout class you haven't tried before, and bring a buddy along for twice the fun.<br/>Volunteer. Look for local volunteer projects that help causes you're interested in and commit to a couple hours this weekend.
Create an emergency plan for yourself. Is your home equipped with everything you need if a natural disaster should strike? Take the weekend to gather necessary supplies and draw up a plan of action should anything serious happen—and make sure your insurance is up to date.
Call a loved one you haven't spoken to in a while. Catching up with long-lost friends or relatives you don't call enough is completely free but adds so much value to your life. Put aside some time this weekend to reconnect with a loved one.
Plan your next big trip. It doesn't cost a penny to plan for something big. Put some positive energy into a dream trip you hope to take next year and begin looking for flight deals, cozy Airbnb's, and highly rated restaurants you'll want to add to your itinerary.<br/>Create Spotify playlists for specific moods or an upcoming event. If you're in the mood for music, spend some time crafting Spotify playlists for specific occasions. It could be an invigorating, confidence-boosting mix for when you're getting ready in the morning, a serene mix for when you're winding down at night, or an eclectic collaborative mix for that future road trip you're planning with your best friend.
Reenact Iron Chef and whip up a dinner with ingredients you already have in your kitchen. Want to skip ordering in without making a run to the grocery store? Challenge yourself to cook up a dinner with whatever you already have on hand.
Get lost in YouTube videos. Rather than wait until you're in bed trying to fall asleep, allow yourself to get sucked into the black hole of YouTube videos early without putting off your bedtime.
Treat yourself to a massage. Your body will thank you.
Book a reservation at a new restaurant you've been wanting to try. Take yourself out for a sampling of the most raved-about dishes.
Online shop for the best deals for things you've been putting off buying. If you've been meaning to replace the living room rug or buy new linens for your bed, use the weekend to do some research and finally find what you want for the big purchase.
Take a quick weekend trip to a nearby town. Get out of town for the weekend to a nearby escape. The mini road trip will feel like a mini vacation, and you'll get to explore somewhere new without dealing with the costs or planning flying entails.
Book a hotel in your own city and play tourist for the day. Sometimes a staycation can be better than the real thing. Book a local hotel or Airbnb to see your city through a tourist's eyes.
Looking for even more things to do this weekend? Head here for 96 things to do when you're bored.
This post was originally published on December 22, 2017, and has since been updated.