X

Article updated on May 11, 2024 at 6:00 AM PDT

Best Outdoor Games for 2024

Take a break from the screens and head outdoors to play some of our recommended games.

Our Experts

Written by 
Giselle Castro-Sloboda
Our expert, award-winning staff selects the products we cover and rigorously researches and tests our top picks. If you buy through our links, we may get a commission. Reviews ethics statement
Giselle Castro-Sloboda Fitness and Nutrition Writer
I'm a Fitness & Nutrition writer for CNET who enjoys reviewing the latest fitness gadgets, testing out activewear and sneakers, as well as debunking wellness myths. On my spare time I enjoy cooking new recipes, going for a scenic run, hitting the weight room, or binge-watching many TV shows at once. I am a former personal trainer and still enjoy learning and brushing up on my training knowledge from time to time. I've had my wellness and lifestyle content published in various online publications such as: Women's Health, Shape, Healthline, Popsugar and more.
Expertise Fitness and Wellness
Why You Can Trust CNET
16171819202122232425+
Years of Experience
14151617181920212223
Hands-on Product Reviewers
6,0007,0008,0009,00010,00011,00012,00013,00014,00015,000
Sq. Feet of Lab Space

CNET’s expert staff reviews and rates dozens of new products and services each month, building on more than a quarter century of expertise.

Our Picks

$163 at Amazon
franklin sports pickleball set
Best pickleball set
Franklin Sports pickleball nets
View details
View details
$19 at Amazon
soppycid reusable water bomb balloons
Best sustainable water balloons
Reusable water bomb balloons
View details
View details
$150 at Amazon
backyard games basketpong set
Best outdoor game fusion
BasketPong
View details
View details
$90 at Bass Pro Shops
Wild Sports axe throwing kit
Best game for ax throwing
Wild Sports ax throwing set
View details
$40 at Amazon
B3 bean bag bucketz set
Best bean bag kit
B3 Bean Bag Bucketz
View details
View details
$29 at Amazon
Eastpoint sports god gater corn hole outdoor game
Best corn hole game set
EastPoint Sports Go Gater corn hole set
View details
View details

Now that the weather is getting warmer, it's a good time to get outdoors, enjoy the fresh air and even play some outdoor games. Reconnect with friends and family by having an outdoor game day accompanied by a backyard barbecue. It's a great way to disconnect from your smartphones and laptops and get some movement in.

Engage in the popular game of pickleball or classic games like hacky sack or corn hole. No matter what your preference, there are various games you can play outdoors. Many outdoor games are easily available to fit your needs. Below are some of our top picks to try out.

$163 at Amazon

Best pickleball set

Franklin Sports pickleball nets

Pickleball started to gain attention during the COVID-19 pandemic when people discovered it was a sport that could be played outdoors. Pickleball is a mix of tennis, ping-pong and badminton and is played using a tennis net, wooden paddles and a small ball. It can be played with two people (similar to tennis) or four people with two players making up one team. It's the ideal game to play if you have enough people at your get-together and the best part is it often comes in portable kits. 

The Franklin Sports Pickleball Net comes with a travel bag that fits up to 12 balls and has a net that's 22 inches long. You can prop it up in your yard, the park, driveway, tennis court or any other space with plenty of room to serve and strike the ball. If you're looking to learn how to play pickleball or are already a pro, this is a solid set to have on hand.

$19 at Amazon

Best sustainable water balloons

Reusable water bomb balloons

Nothing screams summer quite like a good water balloon fight. The standard water balloons you grew up with aren't great for the environment since they leave remnants behind. That's where reusable water balloons come in. This eco-friendly option allows you to enjoy the same perks of a water balloon, the exception being it won't leave rubbish and you can use it over and over again. 

These water balloons come in a multicolored set. They are made up of high-quality silicone and seal up using very thin magnets (which makes them slightly harder than regular balloons -- these hurt more if they hit you in the face). These water balloons can be enjoyed by adults and children alike, especially during the hot summer months when you're looking for a fun and refreshing way to cool down.

$150 at Amazon

Best outdoor game fusion

BasketPong

If you like playing basketball and also enjoy a good game of beer pong, BasketPong may be up your alley. This game is a larger-than-life version of basketball and beer pong (minus the beer). It comes with six large 19-ounce buckets and two basketballs for dunking. This is a family-friendly game that's portable and can be played in the park, backyard or the beach. The buckets can be filled with water and set up in a diamond shape -- typically used during beer pong -- on each opposing side for the two teams playing.

Unlike the drinking game which uses Solo cups, the bigger buckets make for easier targets. You can turn this game as family or adult-friendly as you'd like, but most importantly it's about having fun.

$90 at Bass Pro Shops

Best game for ax throwing

Wild Sports ax throwing set

Practice your aim with a fun game of ax throwing with this set. Ax throwing is a popular pastime with studios across the country, but you can also do it in the comfort of your own home. It's ideal for the whole family and can be set up outside during get-togethers in your yard or the park. The target stand is 5 feet tall and comes with eight red and blue axes so you can play with a friend. The props are made of plastic, so you don't have to worry about using discretion around young children.

Users highly rate this set and say it's sturdy, safe and fun enough that adults and kids alike can enjoy it. This is a good way to practice hand-eye coordination if you enjoy playing sports where good aim is required. 

$40 at Amazon

Best bean bag kit

B3 Bean Bag Bucketz

If you've ever played hacky sack, you're familiar with bean bags. This upgraded backyard game is a good way to socialize with loved ones and challenge yourself. The kit comes with 16 bean bags and a tower with seven buckets. It's portable and not too big so you can play indoors, take it to the park, outdoor family get-togethers or even if you're tailgating before a game. Each plastic bucket represents different points ranging from 1 through 4 and can be played with two or more players. 

Once you're done using it, you can store it in the carrying case. It's a nice alternative to corn hole if that isn't your thing and more challenging, since the buckets on the tower are spread out. 

$29 at Amazon

Best corn hole game set

EastPoint Sports Go Gater corn hole set

If you're a fan of corn hole you'll want this outdoor game set. It consists of waterproof plastic corn hole boards, so you can leave them out and not worry about the rain ruining them. It folds flat and packs away easily so you can keep it in the trunk of your car and break it out at get-togethers or when you're at the local park. It's appropriate for kids of all ages and adults to play with so you can get in on some friendly competition with everyone in the family. 

Some reviews say the bean bags are not the most durable, so if you plan on using this set regularly it may be a good idea to purchase extra bean bags. 

Factors to consider

  • If you want a portable or permanent outdoor game.
  • If the game is waterproof or has some protections against inclement weather.
  • How many players you'll want as part of the game.
  • Age restrictions or if it's appropriate for all ages.
Show more

Outdoor games FAQs

What are the benefits of playing outdoor games?

Outdoor games are a good way to socialize, exercise, practice teamwork and strategizing and get a break from screen time. 

Show more

How do outdoor games improve our mental health?

Because you're exposed to nature when playing an outdoor game, you're reducing your chances of stress. Forest bathing, or the Japanese practice of nature therapy, has been found to help stress levels, cardiovascular health, fatigue, depression and more.  

Show more
The information contained in this article is for educational and informational purposes only and is not intended as health or medical advice. Always consult a physician or other qualified health provider regarding any questions you may have about a medical condition or health objectives.