Like many of you, I spent the last year-plus of quarantine dying to hang out with friends. However, when it finally came time to socialize again, I quickly realized I was a little out of practice. Simply “hanging out” didn’t come quite as easily as it used to! Although there are those times where you’re full of fun ideas for things to do with friends and the challenge is that there simply aren’t enough hours in the day, sometimes, it’s the opposite. It can be easy to end up sitting around, scrolling through social media “together” without being present, or just resorting to the same old coffee shop or watering hole that you always do. So, to help inspire my own creative hang-outs, I put together a list of things to do with friends when bored.
After a year of not being able to spend quality time with my friends, my goal is to be more intentional in every minute that I get to be in their presence.
If you’re gathering with friends again and need some ideas, I’ve rounded up a list of 25 things to do with friends so that precious time together won’t be wasted. Use this list as inspiration or a bucket list—just remember to never accept boredom, because boredom is basic.
Things to Do With Friends When Bored:
1. Create a spa experience. It can be as simple as propping your feet up and throwing on a face mask, or as involved as foot soaks or massage trains, and hair masks.
2. Go for a walk. Get some exercise in a pretty park or neighborhood while talking and staring at houses (my favorite part).
3. Play a game. Whether it’s cards, a board game, beer pong, or old-fashioned hide and seek, games are a great boredom buster for friends.
4. Have a movie marathon. It’s okay if you don’t have the energy to be active. Watch every Harry Potter movie in order with a hot bag of popcorn and a glass of wine. Or use this best 90s movies list as inspiration.
5. Do a cardio-dance workout video. Because dance parties are always better with friends.
6. Make seasonal cocktails. Get fancy with this one and use your nicest glasses and most fresh ingredients. Then toast to your friendship.
7. Find the nearest beach or pool. You’re never too old to splash around in the water with your best friends. Just don’t forget to pack everything you need—this list of things to pack for the beach will help!
8. Try a new restaurant in town. Get out of your comfort zone and experience something new together. Everyone orders something different on the menu.
9. Do an at-home wine tasting. Buy three bottles of wine: one over $20, one around $15, and one less than $10. Cover the bottles in foil, pour each person a sip, and guess which wine is which. Or try a natural wine like a pèt nat and open up your palette!
10. Make something creative. Go to the art supply store and pick out a fun project or go to town on old jeans or t-shirts with some scissors and an embroidery kit.
11. Start a book club. Plans always seem to come together better in person, so take advantage of your time and finally start that book club. Plan the order of the books you want to read (everyone adds one to the list). Get inspired by the most talked-about books on TikTok.
12. Make a mood board. Create a communal mood board or make one individually. Compare afterward.
13. Have an international dinner party. Create and enjoy a menu with delicious food items from different around the world. My ideal international dinner: a spicy tuna crispy rice appetizer, pizza for the table, tacos for dinner, and a side of truffle fries. Oh, and gelato for dessert.
15. Set a pretty table and order takeout. Make setting the table the involved part of the dinner, not the cooking. Use those plates that sit in the back of your pantry collecting dust and the linen napkins you’ve been too lazy to use.
16. Try a new recipe. Because trial and error is more fun to laugh at with a friend.
17. Bake something. I prefer baking with friends mostly so I don’t eat the entire dozen cookies alone.
19. Practice your yoga. Watch a video or walk each other through some of your favorite flows.
20. Do a puzzle. Call me crazy, but puzzles are thrilling. Does anyone else get competitive about putting in the last puzzle piece?
21. Build a new playlist together. Add songs that remind you of your memories together and listen to them when you’re apart.
22. Purge your closet with a style show. You know that scene from Sex & The City when Carrie Bradshaw moves out of her apartment and tries on all of her outfits for her friends to vote on? Yeah, do that. Productive and fun.
23. Have your own CS taste-off. Go to the grocery store and buy every kind of vanilla ice cream and rank them, or get creative and test out something else.
24. Give each other a makeover. Don’t let the other person look in the mirror and do their makeup and/or hair for them. If the results are good, go out and show it off!
25. Go shopping for each other. Online or in-person, pick out an outfit for each other that the other person has to wear out. Be nice on this one, girls.
26. Write each other letters. Sure we send each other heartfelt texts, but texts are temporary. Hand-written letters are a dying art I’m determined to keep alive.
27. Create and compare bucket lists. Give each other time to individually write down things they want to do/accomplish, then compare and make a “master list” of similar things. Then go do them together.
28. Give each other compliments. Go around a circle and tell everyone what you love about them. Take the time to build your friends up and remind them how great they are.
29. Make gourmet coffee. Add a new ingredient, froth your milk, or simply enjoy it as an afternoon pick-me-up. Tip: make note of how your friend takes his/her coffee so you can surprise them with a cup of joe another time.
30. Sing karaoke. Traditional karaoke is fun enough, but if you’re looking for a good laugh, try Cowboy Karaoke. The person singing has headphones on with the song on a high volume, is blindfolded, and can’t hear themselves sing. For everyone else, you get an awkwardly hilarious A Cappella performance.
Save this post for the next time you need things to do when bored with friends and drop your ideas below!