Couples thrive in shared activities, creating intimacy and lifelong memories in the process. Yet, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average American still spends to bulk of their leisure time watching T.V. at 2 hours and 47 minutes a day, compared with participating in sports, recreation or exercise (18 minutes), socializing and communicating (41 minutes) and reading (18 minutes).
Don’t let your relationship fall into a long detached and zoned-out Summer with Netflix on repeat. Instead, find a few hobbies that excite both of you, allowing you to enjoy one another’s company and reconnect in the midst of life’s breakneck speed.
Browse the activities below to find something that piques both of your interests. All of them are sure to keep you entertained and connected, while relishing each other’s company all season long.
Become Winery Explorers
Organize a few relaxing weekend getaways with your partner to meander hand-in-hand through scenic vineyards and discover a shared interest in wine tasting. Even if your knowledge of Merlot versus Moscato is based on nothing more than red versus white, you’ll both have a memorable time savoring the togetherness. At the end of the summer, you’ll both be wine experts, and will enjoy choosing new wines together all year long.
Explore an urban or natural setting with your partner through the lens of a camera. Whether you’re new with the camera or seasoned photographers, you’ll both have a blast tapping into your creative self, together. Have fun using digital and old school film—so you can enjoy the long-lost excitement of waiting to get photos developed. Better yet, find a local film developing class, where you can both spend time in the lab developing your work together.
The experience of digging your hands into the dirt and planting seeds is primal at its core. Not to mention it’s a stress-relieving hobby, allowing you and your S.O. to unwind from long days of work. The key to connecting while growing your first garden together is to be mindful of the moment:
“A garden offers a feast for the senses: verdant leaves, aromatic blossoms, chirping birds, squishy earth. Make a deliberate choice to soak it all up,” says Linda Wasmer Andrews of Psychology Today. Long story short: leave your phone inside, keep the music down, and let yourselves escape into the gardening.
Once the fruits of your labor start to grow, you throw summer cookouts with homegrown veggies and festive mojitos, impressing all of your friends.
Give your home decor a bright and vibrant face lift with your partner, just in time for the warmer weather. Re-paint the front door, update the patio, de-clutter the garage or remodel the interior with some trendy, unique DIY projects. If you’re not sure where to start, choose one of these DIY projects that are perfect for couples.
Breathing new life into the space you share will bring you closer together as a team, working side-by-side to create a finished product that reflects both of your personalities.
Make an impact on the local community, with your partner by your side, with summer volunteering. Pouring yourself into work with others will enrich your connection as a couple, whether you mentor children at a religious organization, serve meals at a homeless shelter, care for animals at a pet adoption center, or spend time with residents at a nursing home. No matter what, getting involved in a meaningful cause always feels gratifying.
Get some exercise and learn a new skill that will invigorate both your bodies and the relationship: rock climbing. Not only did a 2016 survey find that rock climbing was the second most popular hobby among 1,000 polled Americans, it’s a sport that’s ideal for active couples. If you’re new, join a wall climbing gym to master the basics, then challenge each other to a real expedition in the great outdoors.
Turn it into a camping trip to enjoy a few romantic nights under the stars too.
Channel that inner “om” with your partner and take a couple’s yoga class at a local studio. This healing practice uses gentle movements to restore a natural mind-body-spirit connection, so you both can escape the stress of a fast-paced schedule and explore one another on a deeper level. Performing a yoga sequence together will boost relationship satisfaction, improve intimacy, and boost communication and trust, according to Healthline.
Hiking or Biking
Inhale that fresh summer breeze and relish the beauty of nature with your partner, while adding some cardio into the daily routine. Hiking or biking are both excellent bonding activities because they release endorphins which are known to increase pleasure and satisfaction. Plus, sharing whatever is on your heart often feels more organic in a side-by-side conversation, rather than a face-to-face confrontation.
Sharing a hobby with your significant other is a fun way to spend time together while learning something new. Boost your relationship satisfaction and decrease stress while rock climbing, gardening, winery exploring and much more.