summer activities to do without a phone in new zealand

7 Summer Activities To Do Without A Mobile Phone

I’m not sure about you, but one of the things I reflected on over my own holiday break was how connected our world has become. 

Sometimes I wonder: who is in charge, me or my phone? A stat I recently saw blew my mind:

On average, Americans check their phones 344 times per day. (That's once every 4 minutes!) Our cell phones are our constant companions. As many as 71% of us check our phones within 10 minutes of waking up.” Source:

Although those stats are from the United States I’m sure they’re pretty similar in New Zealand and Australia, too.

Building healthy boundaries with your mobile can have a cascading number of positive impacts. I won’t get into the minute details but they include things like: improved sleep, increased physical activity, more social interactions, reduced stress, reduced eye strain and headaches along with potentially increased cognitive function and creativity. 

I personally have found that chucking the phone aside for a wee bout of low to medium aerobic activity can have a drastic impact on my overall well being. 

So, if you’re looking for some inspiration for yourself or family to give a go without your phones. Here’s a quick list of ideas.

7 Summer Activities To Do Without A Mobile Phone

1. Walk or Tramp

Get outside and leave your phone at home or in the car. Try taking a walk away from city streets and get out to the beach or into the bush. Studies have shown that as little as an hour or two of walking in the woods can have a whole host of positive mental and physical benefits. So much so that last year Canadian Doctors start actually prescribing time in nature to patients to improve their quality of life. 

2. Swimming

Whether it’s at the beach or in a pool one of the easiest ways to truly put a barrier between you and technology is to jump into cold water! Whether it’s head-down front crawl, doggie paddling or simply having a float and soak - water is your friend when it comes to a mindful activity to turn into a new routine!

3. Gardening or Yard Work

Similar to getting into nature, developing a green thumb and building your own backyard paradise or yielding your own wee crop of veggies is showing to have dramatically positive impacts on people’s mental health and wellness. The satisfaction gained through these activities and the act of keeping your mind and hands busy is a great way to keep yourself away from screens, too.

4. Pick up a Paddle

Whether it’s a Stand Up Paddle (SUP) or kayak. Getting yourself out on the ocean or lake for a rip around is another great way to disconnect from a busy world. There are many reasonably priced rentals too; there’s no need to go all in on buying your own to start with.

stand up paddle boarding is a healthy way to disconnect from your cell phone

5. Yoga or Stretching

Grab a mat or even just a bit of grass and zen out with a stretching or yoga session. There are often free or cheap group sessions you could give near you as well. 

6. Unstructured Sport

No need for refs and umpires, just grab a racquet and go hit! Or, why not head down the domain and practice those old conversions of yours. Whatever you do, leave the phone at home!

7. Sauna + Ice Bath

Did you know that using a traditional sauna (temp +80C) carries the same cardiovascular benefits as low level aerobic activity. Why not give a couple of rounds of hot/cold a go down at your local pool or even just google to see if you’ve got any sauna businesses nearby. 

In Conclusion

There are a whole host of benefits you can realise from being more conscious about your mobile phone use.

We hope you’ve found some of these summer ideas helpful as ways to get outside, get your heart pumping and decreasing that screen time!


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About the Author: Will Stewart is a Cofounder of Cedar Spring Recreation. He has a strong background and appreciation for the scientific health and wellness outcomes associated with regular heat and cold exposure.


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Disclaimer: Neither the material shared in this article, nor any links to external resources are to be considered medical advice. Always check with medical professionals prior to engaging in new activities that carry potential health risks.

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