10 Outdoor Games for Super-Fun Park Hangs

updated Mar 22, 2021
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Credit: From Left to Right: Wayfair, Target, Anthropologie

Spring is always magical, but the first signs of the changing season are feeling even more glorious this year after being cooped up at home all winter. Warm weather means many people will be spending more time outdoors having socially distant hangs with close friends (following the latest CDC safety guidelines, of course), and there’s no better place to do so than the local park. To maximize the fun, why not have a few games on hand that you can easily pack up and bring along with you? Whether your squad prefers card games that get you talking or yard games that get you moving, we’ve rounded up a few of the best games to play at the park this spring and summer. Get your favorites now, so next time it’s sunny you’ll be ready to play. 

1 / 10

People absolutely love Kubb. Lisa Freedman, lifestyle director for our sister site, Kitchn, even went so far as to call it “so much better than cornhole” — a bold claim, to be sure, but you’ll never know if you agree unless you try it for yourself. The game — which rhymes with “tube” and involves throwing wooden blocks — is said to date back to the Viking era, although there’s no hard evidence to prove it. What’s definitely true, though, is that it’s super quick to learn, competitive and strategic, and highly addictive. Plus, it’s almost as fun to watch as it is to play, a huge plus for that one friend who’s not big on participating in games. 

2 / 10
Urban Outfitters
was $35.00

Chess or checkers? You won’t have to choose between the two classic games with this gorgeous two-in-one set from Pendleton. Featuring wooden pieces in a zippered canvas pouch and a roll-up canvas board in one of the brand’s signature Southwestern-style geometric prints, the set is not only perfect for packing up and taking with you anywhere, it's also totally beautiful to look at. 

3 / 10

Croquet in general has a very Instagrammable aesthetic (hello, “Heathers”), but it’s safe to say this gorgeous set takes things to another level. It’s part of Anthropologie’s exclusive line of outdoor essentials designed in collaboration with Vera (aka Vera Neumann, the late artist, designer, and overall icon whose bold color palettes and prints took the worlds of art, fashion, and home decor by storm back in the ‘60s). It’s perfect for park hangs with your most aesthetic-conscious friends. And happily, croquet not only looks good, it's super fun, too. 

4 / 10
was $20.00

Exploding Kittens is both the most-backed and the most-funded Kickstarter project in history, and it’s not hard to see why. The cheeky, strategic card game is a lot of fun. It’s particularly great for park hangs where people are always coming and going because it moves pretty quickly and is easy to learn, so you won’t get frustrated if you have to explain the rules a dozen times. 

5 / 10

Spikeball is so exhilarating, you and your squad will hardly notice you’re getting a killer cardio workout until you're done playing. The game is basically a more portable version of volleyball, except that teams collaborate to bounce a ball onto a horizontal net, rather than sending it over a net (the pace and horizontal net mean the game also feels pretty similar to foursquare). Best of all, the net’s trampoline-like base folds up for easy storage and transportation.

6 / 10
was $21.99

You’ve probably at least seen Taboo countless times by now, but if you’ve never actually played, consider this your reminder. The fast-paced, hilariously high-pressure game is all about getting your teammates to guess a word without using any of the corresponding “taboo” words to describe it. Sounds fairly easy — until you have 10 seconds left to describe "cactus" without using the words "plant," "green," "needle," "desert," or “water." While you can definitely bring good old-fashioned Taboo to the park, this electronic version is even more portable. 

7 / 10

Bocce has literally been around since the Roman Empire, and the classic Italian bowling game is still among the most widely enjoyed pastimes in the entire world — and when that many people love something, you know there’s a good reason. This timeless set is perfect for the park since its brightly colored hardwood bocce balls weigh less than those in a regulation set. It also comes with a sturdy canvas carrying case with a strap for easy toting. 

8 / 10

Cornhole will never get old, and this travel-friendly (and exceedingly cute) set is easy to pack up and bring along with you anywhere. The compact wooden base folds flat — flat enough to stash in your backpack or tote, at least. If you’re loving SunnyLife’s stylish take on this summer classic, it’s worth noting that the Australian brand also has a giant, vibrantly colored Jenga set that’d be equally perfect for park days.  

9 / 10
Urban Outfitters

If you want all the best parts of playing games with friends — entertainment, a shared experience, a way to break the ice — but don’t feel like getting competitive, this card game is perfect. It’s not exactly a game in the most traditional sense, but instead includes cards with questions meant to deepen connections and foster meaningful, intimate conversations. The cards are divided into three categories: Level one is Perceptions, two is Connection, and three is Reflection. Start with level one, and prepare to feel all the feelings.

10 / 10
was $31.99

This award-winning game involves using your insect-stamped tiles (each type of insect moves in a different way, like chess) to surround your opponent’s queen bee while simultaneously preventing your opponent from surrounding yours. It’s the perfect strategic game to play at the park since it doesn’t have a board, the tiles are unlikely to blow away, and it even comes with a handy cloth carrying bag. If you prefer to pack lightly for park adventures, you can also get a pocket-sized version of the game.