40 Inexpensive Hobbies To Try

Recently, I mentioned on Instagram that two of my favorite hobbies – reading and jigsaw puzzles – are both pretty inexpensive.

I asked for other suggestions for inexpensive hobbies and I loved all the ideas that came rolling in!

Of course, any hobby you can make expensive (reading, for instance, can go from a cheap or free hobby to pretty pricey if you buy every book you read or buy expensive editions) and probably you could make ANY of the hobbies on the below list expensive if you went all out, but they can all be inexpensive hobbies if you choose to make them so.

If you’re looking for some cheap hobbies to add to your rotation, check out this list of more than 40 options!

cheap hobbies

Cheap Hobbies

Running/Walking Outside – This was the top suggestion for cheap hobbies and I can see why. All you really need is some comfortable shoes and to walk out the door. I haven’t always found joy in running, but this year I’ve really started to like it. More details here about how I started running!

Hiking – This answer was a close second. There is just something special about getting out for some fresh air and enjoying your beautiful surroundings and it usually costs nothing!

Embroidery/Cross Stitch – This is such a great year-round hobby. It’s the perfect way to keep yourself entertained during the the long cold days or this summer when you’re home more with more free time to fill!

Sleeping/Napping – If you’ve been around here for any time at all, you know I take my sleep very seriously and it sounds like some of you do to!

Friendship bracelet making – Friendship bracelet making sounds like a lot of fun and how fun would it be to be the recipient of said friendship bracelet?!

Adding things to an online shopping cart and not buying them – This one had me laughing. I guess it’s like modern day window shopping.

Painting – I’m not a very artistic person, but my girls have done an online watercoloring class and they loved every minute of it! And the supplies for it were very affordable!

Journaling – All you really need is a journal or notebook and something to write with. I also love that you can do this hobby anywhere – at home, on vacation, during a daily commute!

Frisbee Golf – Frisbee golf is an easy sport to learn and pretty much any age can play! Plus, I love that it’s another outdoor activity.

Baking – I really love this suggestion! I love to try out a new recipe or use a recipe I’ve loved for years – and it’s a bonus to get something yummy to eat at the end of it all.

Tennis – Almost every city has a public tennis court to play on, making that portion of it free! You can spend A LOT of money on tennis rackets, or get some really great starter ones for less than $30 each (or check a thrift store for them!).

Board Games – We are a huge game family and spending $30 on a great game that we will play 50+ times, feels like a great investment! Even better, lots of libraries lend out games or you can swap them with friends. See all of our favorite family board games here or our favorite games to play with just two people here!

Singing – In the car, in the shower, to your children, in front of an audience, this one can be done anywhere. And the nice thing is, you can sing along to music or go acapella.

Dancing – This hobby is as simple as turning on some music and moving your body (and at home, there is no judging if your dancing is not that great).

Gardening – Something I really miss about our old house is the big garden we had going there. I found it very relaxing to tend to the garden and it’s so gratifying to grow actual food! In this house, I have a few zucchini plants in the backyard and some herbs on my back porch, which are fun.

Writing – This blog started 100% as a hobby and cost me $0 to start. A lot of my first posts were just writing down my thoughts on random topics and I loved it since the day I started it!

Biking  Everyone in our family can now ride a bike and it’s such a delight when the weather is nice to go for a post-dinner bike ride around the neighborhood. We don’t have anything fancy – we bought almost all our bikes at a second-hand bike shop – but they’re perfect for a little 20 minute ride.

Hand lettering – A few summers ago, my girls got REALLY into hand lettering. It’s such a fabulous quiet time activity or something to do while you are listening to an audiobook. Here are some of our favorite hand lettering workbooks we’ve enjoyed!

Pickleball – Pickleball is SO popular right now and I 100% understand why. The paddles and balls are inexpensive, there are free courts popping up everywhere and it’s a really easy game to learn – we play it as a couple or with our girls all the time.

Crocheting/Knitting – Aside from the hooks/needles and a skein or more of yarn, crocheting and knitting is a pretty inexpensive investment. Plus, when it’s all said and done you end up with something to wrap yourself up in.

Geocaching – I was 100% surprised this hobby showed up more than once in the suggestions. If you’re new to it like I am, geocaching is an outdoor treasure hunt using GPS devices to find a geocache (usually a container or marker of some sort).

Learning languages – Different languages are very hard for my brain so I’ve never thought to pick this up as a hobby, but I do know others that use Duolingo or something similar to learn a new language and absolutely LOVE it!

Photography – Everyone has a camera phone these days, that continue to improve in the photography department each and every day. There are tons of free or affordable ways online to learn how to get better at taking great pictures, editing those pictures or getting great video.

Adult coloring – Adult coloring has become much more popular in the recent years and there are so many options! One of my personal favorites are the color by number Querkles – so unique and fun for kids and adults alike!

Diamond painting – This craft is such an inexpensive hobby and such a delight! You can get a a diamond painting kit for under $10 and they last for hours. My girls love diamond painting and I love that they are mess free. See our favorite diamond painting kits here!

Drawing – If there is something you should know about me, it is that I cannot draw to save my life. But, if you are artistic or want to improve your drawing skills, all you need to start is a pencil. Draw things around your house, outside, or if you are feeling adventurous check out a drawing book from the library or watch some YouTube drawing tutorials.

Homemade cards – This one can be as inexpensive or as expensive as you make it. To keep costs down, think of using scrap paper/fabric, or even cut out pieces from old cards. And if you are artistic, use your own drawings and hand lettering. (I love Hand Lettered Designs hand lettering classes and workbooks – she even has a course just for lettering cards.)

Collecting seashells – If you live close to a beach, all you need to do is get those toes in the sand and start looking. If not, take advantage of a family trip to the beach and spend as little or as much time as you want scanning the sand while breathing in the salty air.

Playing an instrument – If you already know how to play an instrument, the initial investment of instrument playing is definitely where the expense lies. However, once you have that instrument in hand, it can give you hours of hobby time.

Yoga – There are THOUSANDS of free Yoga videos on YouTube and it’s such a great way to get your body moving and get those endorphins flowing. A huge perk to this hobby, is all you really need is a mat or some carpet!

Digital art creation – This is another one that can get really expensive if you are buying tablets, software, and tech accessories. If you use what you already have (laptop, iPad, etc) and a free or inexpensive digital art program (think Canva, Procreate, or Adobe’s creative products) the possibilities are endless.

Listening to podcasts – There are so many podcasts available now. You can basically find a podcast for any topic you want to know more about and the greatest part about them is the price – FREE!

Bird watching – If you want to get really into it, you could invest in a pair of binoculars, but if not, all you need is a place where birds like to frequent and a sharp eye.

Roller skating/blading – This last Christmas we got all of the girls roller blades (this K2 brand came highly recommended). And aside from the initial cost of purchasing skates/blades, there is nothing else you need besides a smooth surface to get going. My favorite thing about roller skating is that you can really get your heart rate up while having a blast!

Paddle boarding – When we went to Boise for a weekend away we rented a massive paddle board to enjoy for the day. We were all able to fit on it, go to the middle of the lake and jump off and enjoy the entire lake without wearing ourselves out. We used our rental 100% for recreation, but I can see how going paddle boarding could be incredibly relaxing and therapeutic.

Swimming – If you have a pool available to you, or even an open body of water, this is a great way to relax, have fun, or burn off some energy.

Daydreaming on Pinterest – I definitely could do this with house decor – planning my dream house like I had all the money in the world. Luckily daydreaming doesn’t actually drain my bank account.

Making home videos – A few years ago I started making family videos and it’s one of my favorite things to do when we come back from vacation. This truly is such an affordable hobby. I learned everything I know from taking Family Films with Sam’s course and now I really enjoy compiling a family video for my girls to watch over and over.

Crossword puzzles – Whether you are working on an online crossword, or filling in one from a crossword puzzle book, this one is such a fun way to keep your brain sharp.

Thrifting – My favorite kind of thrifting is from my couch – hello ThredUp! Thrifting is a fantastic way to buy higher quality items for a fraction of the cost. Plus, it’s kind of like a treasure hunt!

Any other suggestions for cheap hobbies? I’d love to hear!

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One Comment

  1. I love this list. This is awesome. I also think it is a “good list to hand to my kids and tell them to pick something off it in the summer”. Especially when they tell me they are “so bored, and there is nothing to do.”

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