Mother's Day Ideas for Moms that Love the Outdoors

The Best Mother's Day Ideas for Moms that Love the Outdoors

Do you have an outdoorsy mom? The perfect way to give a thoughtful gift to your outdoor loving mother is spending quality family time in outdoor activities. Enjoy the fresh air and plan a fun adventure by stepping away from the usual routines, let's make this Mother's Day an unforgettable experience by going the extra mile to plan her special day with some outdoor adventures. The great outdoors offers endless possibilities to connect with Mom – a scenic walk, a picnic under the trees, or simply relaxing in the warm sunshine. Let's create memories as vibrant and beautiful as the woman we're celebrating.

Section 1: Nature-loving Activities for Moms that Love the Outdoors

Ready for a Mother's Day adventure? Skip the predictable brunch and treat your outdoorsy mom to a scenic hike! Finding the perfect spot for your family outing is easy with the help of AllTrails. This comprehensive resource lets you search for amazing hikes right in your own backyard or plan an exciting day trip to a new location.

Family Hike

  • Gift mom with quality time and enjoy a scenic hike together with the whole family. Not sure where some good hikes are that are close to you or want to surprise her with a new place?
  • Finding Hikes with AllTrails:
    1. Get the App or Visit the Website:

    2. Search by Location:

      • Type in your city, town, a specific park, or even a zip code. You can adjust the search radius to expand or narrow down your results.
    3. Utilize Filters:

      • Difficulty: Choose from easy, moderate, or hard to match your desired challenge.
      • Length: Select your ideal distance (short strolls to longer treks).
      • Elevation Gain: If you want a flat walk or a climb, this filter helps refine results.
      • Features: Look for hikes with waterfalls, views, dog-friendly trails, kid-friendly options, etc.
      • Trail Type: Choose loop hikes, out-and-back trails, or point-to-point.
    4. Read Reviews and Trail Descriptions:

      • Get insights from other hikers' experiences. Check hike descriptions for important details and recent trail conditions.
    5. Check the Photos: Visuals can help you gauge the terrain and scenery to ensure the hike aligns with your expectations.

    6. Additional Tips:

      • Save Your Favorites: Create lists of hikes that catch your eye for future expeditions.
      • Mapping Tools: On the app, use the map with layers for terrain and satellite views to get a better feel for the trails.
      • Pro Version: Upgrading to AllTrails Pro provides offline maps, turn-by-turn navigation, and other advanced features
Family hiking

National Park & Camping Together

Ready for a road trip?

National parks are a great way to enjoy the warmer months for your active mom and plan a special mother's day weekend together. The National Park Service (NPS) website has a searchable database to find parks by location, activity, interest, and accessibility: National Park Service:

  • Entrance Fees: Most National Parks charge an entrance fee per vehicle or per person.
  • Reservations: Some parks require reservations for camping, lodging, or even access during peak seasons. Be sure to book well in advance, especially for popular parks like Yosemite or Yellowstone. 

Planning a camping trip, whether it's your first time or you're a seasoned camper, is crucial for a successful outdoor adventure. From securing campground reservations to packing essentials, starting the planning process well in advance ensures you'll have the best experience possible. For a comprehensive guide and step-by-step recommendations on planning your National Park vacation, Curious Cub Club has you covered with our Complete Guide to Planning a Camping Trip .

Family camping

"To describe my mother would be to write about a hurricane in its perfect power. Or the climbing, falling colors of a rainbow."

- Maya Angelou

Picnic in the Park

Skip the formal mother's day brunch to enjoy the warmer weather and pack a picnic in the park to enjoy at her favorite spot. Here are 6 yummy options to fill your picnic basket with foods she will love!

Mediterranean Feast

  • Hummus and pita bread
  • Tabbouleh salad
  • Falafel or grilled chicken skewers
  • Olives and feta cheese
  • Baklava or other sweet treat

Build-Your-Own Sandwiches

  • Assortment of sliced bread and rolls (baguette, sourdough, ciabatta, etc.)
  • Deli meats and cheeses (turkey, ham, roast beef, Swiss, cheddar, etc.)
  • Upgrade the classic sandwich: Use crusty bread, gourmet fillings (think smoked salmon, brie, roast chicken with pesto), and add a side of vibrant green salad with a light vinaigrette.
  • Condiments like mustard, mayonnaise, lettuce, sliced tomato
  • Potato salad or pasta salad
  • Fresh fruit

The Classic Charcuterie

  • Selection of cured meats (salami, prosciutto, chorizo)
  • Variety of cheeses (Brie, Gouda, sharp cheddar)
  • Crackers and crusty bread
  • Olives, nuts, and dried fruits
  • Grapes, figs, or berries

Light & Refreshing Salads

  • Caprese salad with fresh mozzarella, tomatoes, and basil
  • Quinoa salad with chickpeas, cucumbers, and lemon dressing
  • Watermelon and feta salad
  • Crusty bread for dipping
  • Sparkling lemonade or iced tea

Classic Finger Foods 

  • Veggie sticks with hummus or ranch dip
  • Pinwheels (tortillas with cream cheese, spinach, and other fillings)
  • Mini quiches or savory tarts
  • Fruit skewers
  • Brownies or bite-sized cookies
  • Fried chicken or chicken tenders: Opt for a baked or air-fried version for a healthier option

 Build-Your-Own Salad Bar:

  • Large salad base: Think a hearty mix of greens or a pre-made pasta salad.
  • Protein options: Grilled chicken, hard-boiled eggs, tofu, beans.
  • Plenty of toppings: Shredded cheese, croutons, dried fruit, nuts, a variety of dressings.

Bonus Tip: Don't forget a cozy blanket, napkins, plates, and a refreshing beverage to complete your Mother's Day picnic!

Family Picnic in the Park

Botanical garden visit

Cheekwood Estate & Garden in Nashville holds a special place in this mother's heart as an unforgettable lunch with my mother quickly turned into a rush to the hospital to delivery my first born son. There are sweet memories there as I relaxed on a blanket under winding branches as my two young sons played and climbed. Another visit surprised us with an abundance of caterpillars that captured the wonder of my sons. .

Enjoy botanical gardens close to you to find the perfect spot for nature lovers to explore beautiful landscapes spending time in a quiet place.

  • Visit their website or call to see if there are workshops & classes on gardening, art, or photography.that your mother may enjoy.
  • Special Events: Check their calendar for concerts, art exhibitions, or seasonal festivals.
  • Guided Tours: Check if the garden offers guided tours for deeper insight into the plant collections.
  • Purchase tickets in advance: Some gardens offer online ticketing to avoid lines at the entrance.
Botanical garden
Beth Dunlap, Author with her son at Cheekwood in Nashville, TN

Section 2: Active Adventures for Moms that Love the Outdoors

Family Bike Ride

Explore local trails or a scenic neighborhood.

  • How to find bike trails? Enjoy bike trails in your neighborhood or close to your home. Explore new bike trails by going to All Trails or TrailLink. A fantastic website dedicated to all things trails. Search by location and filter for difficulty, surface type (paved is ideal for families), and length. TrailLink often includes photos, reviews, and descriptions.
  • Local Parks & Recreation Websites: Check your city or county's parks and recreation department website. They often have trail maps and information about bike-friendly paths.
  • Bike Forums & Groups: Search for local cycling forums or Facebook groups in your area. Members often share recommendations for family rides
  • Remember to prioritize safety while playing these games and pay attention to your surroundings and traffic conditions. Enjoy your bike ride!

Botanical garden
Author Beth with her 2 boys

"Nothing compares to the simple pleasure of a bike ride."

- John F. Kennedy

Destination Bike Trails

For Moms that Love the Outdoors, plan a destination bike ride along some beautiful trails.

  • Katy Trail State Park (Missouri): A long, mostly flat rail-trail spanning across Missouri. Great for multi-day trips or shorter family rides on specific sections.
  • Virginia Creeper Trail (Virginia): Scenic rail-trail with a gentle downhill slope through the Appalachian Mountains.
  • Swamp Rabbit Trail (South Carolina): Paved trail system winding through Greenville, offering a mix of urban and natural scenery.
  • Little Miami Scenic Trail (Ohio): Part of a much larger trail network, offering family-friendly sections with various access points.
  • Burke-Gilman Trail (Washington): Popular urban trail in Seattle with lake views and connections to other park trails
Family bike ride

"Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance you must keep moving."

- Albert Einstein

Games to Play on the Bike Ride

Add some more fun to your family bike ride by mixing it up and picking a game to play on bike ride.

  • Active Games
    • Follow the Leader: One person leads the group, making interesting turns, speeding up slightly, weaving around obstacles, etc. Everyone else follows their moves.
    • Scavenger Hunt: Create a list of items to find along the ride: a red flower, a smooth rock, a bird, etc.
    • Red Light, Green Light: Play a bicycle version of this game, with one person as the caller at designated points along the trail.
    • Tag, Bike Edition: Choose one person to be "it." They try to tag others in the group as everyone rides. Switch roles for more fun.
  • Imaginative Games

    • I Spy: A classic! Choose objects along the trail ("I spy with my little eye, something green...")
    • Storytelling Chain: Start a story with one sentence, then each person adds a sentence, building onto the crazy narrative as you ride.
    • Animal Spotting: Pretend to look for certain animals along the trail. Kids can even make the animal sounds for added silliness.
    • Color Hunt: Call out a color and have everyone race to find an object of that color along the path.
    • Alphabet Search: Find something along the trail that starts with each letter of the alphabet in order.
    • What's That Sound?: Have someone describe a sound they hear (birdsong, a rustling wind, crunching leaves) and others guess what it is.
  • Skill-Based Games

    • Nature Bingo: Create bingo cards with different nature-related items or wildlife you might encounter during the bike ride. Players mark off items as they spot them, aiming to get bingo.
    • 20 Questions: One person thinks of an object, and others have 20 questions to guess what it is. Questions must be answerable with "yes" or "no."
    • Memory Game: One person starts by saying, "I'm going on a bike ride, and I'm bringing..." followed by an item. The next person repeats the phrase and adds another item. Players continue, trying to remember all the items in order.
    • Photography Challenge: Bring cameras or smartphones and challenge each other to take the most interesting or creative photos along the bike route. You can set themes for the photos or simply aim for the most visually appealing shots.
  • Creative Games

    • Nature Art: Collect small natural items like leaves, flowers, and sticks during breaks. Use them to create nature art on the ground.
    • Sing-along: Belt out favorite tunes or make up silly songs as you ride.
    • Create a Theme Ride: Dress up in a fun theme (superheroes, pirates, etc.) and incorporate it into your ride.
Games to play

Water-based Fun

If weather permits, plan a kayaking or canoeing outings.

Visit websites or contact local Outfitters to reserve a 1/2 day or whole day. Enjoy a relaxing trip down the river for a great time together. Choose a kayaking trip for a guided nature tour. ,

For a Mother's Day filled with laughter and splashes of fun, consider treating Mom to an awesome adventure at the water park! Moms can soak up some sun while the kids race down waterslides or create a splash in the wave pool. It's a fantastic way to ditch the ordinary, make memories, and show Mom just how much she's loved.

Games to play

Backyard Games

  • Bring out classic outdoor games like frisbee, cornhole, or badminton.Enjoy backyard barbecues with a mixture of backyard games for Mother's day.
    • Cornhole: A beanbag toss game that's a staple at backyard gatherings. Easy to learn and fun for all ages.
    • Giant Jenga: Supersized version of the block-stacking game, adding suspense and laughter as the tower grows taller.
    • Bocce Ball: A relaxed yet strategic game perfect for socializing. Plus, bocce sets are usually portable for beach or park play, too.
    • Ladder Toss: Toss bolo balls at a tiered ladder, trying to rack up points. Surprisingly addictive!
    • Spikeball: A bit like volleyball, but played around a small net on the ground. High-energy and competitive.
    • Kan Jam: Teams throw frisbees and try to deflect them into a target (think giant slotted cups).
    • Giant Connect Four: A huge version of the classic strategy game for all ages to enjoy.
    • Yard Dice: Oversized dice make games like Yahtzee a fun, oversized experience.
    • Badminton: Easy to set up with a portable net, offering active fun for everyone.
    • Ring Toss: Simple set-up, great for both accuracy practice or casual competition.
    • Unique Choices:
      • Twister on the grass: Get the spray paint and make your own giant Twister board on the lawn!
      • Life-Sized Board Games: Use chalk or tape to create a giant version of Checkers, Sorry!, or another favorite board game.
      • Potato Sack Races: Old-fashioned and absolutely hilarious with the right crew.
      • Water Limbo: Set up the garden hose to spray a stream of water for a refreshing limbo contest.
Backyard Games

Section 3: Relaxed and Rejuvenating Options for Moms that Love the Outdoors

Hammock Gift Ideas for Mom

Hammock hangout: A great gift for Mom is the chance to find a shady escape, unwind with a good book, and enjoy a precious quiet moment. An easy way to help her to relax in her own backyard is to gift her with a new hammock and some quiet time on her Mother's Day weekend. With several types of hammocks, below are the various options available to help you make the perfect selection.

  • Traditional Rope Hammocks : Enjoy a classic hammock made from rope or woven fabric to relax the day away.

  • Camping Hammocks : Camping hammocks are lightweight, portable hammocks designed for outdoor adventures such as hiking, backpacking, or camping.

  • Double Hammocks : Enough room for 2 to relax together.They are perfect for couples, families, or anyone who enjoys extra space while lounging.

  • Chair Hammocks : Chair hammocks are designed to be hung from a single anchor point, such as a tree branch or ceiling hook. Enjoy a comfy seat while you read or rest.

  • Quilted Hammocks : Quilted hammocks are plush and cozy, making them suitable for leisurely lounging in the backyard or on the porch.

Woman relaxing in hammocks



Birdwatching offers a peaceful and unique way to celebrate Mother's Day. Take Mom on a leisurely walk through a local park or nature center and see how many different feathered friends you can spot. Bring binoculars to enhance the experience and a field guide to help identify the birds. For gifts, consider a new pair of binoculars, a beautiful birdfeeder to attract visitors to her yard, or a subscription to a birdwatching magazine. You could even make a homemade birdhouse together for a special touch!



Stargazing is a magical way to make Mother's Day an unforgettable experience for Moms that Love the Outdoors. Find a spot away from city lights, spread out blankets or cozy chairs, and marvel at the twinkling wonders of the night sky. Download a stargazing app for help identifying constellations, or simply make up your own stories about the patterns you see. Fun ways to spend time together before it gets dark is by pulling out favorite photos of the past years or past Mother's Day to reminisce.

Gift ideas could include a telescope for closer views, a constellation guidebook, or a cozy blanket perfect for outdoor stargazing adventures. For a hands-on activity, create a custom star map marking the night sky from a special date or location meaningful to your mom.



  • Gardening tools or plants: Whether your mom has a green thumb or not, you can help your mother turn your backyard into the perfect place to relax and enjoy the garden. Help Mom enhance her garden space. The entire family can lean a helping hand to work in mom's garden. Plan the project with mom or you can surprise her! For larger projects, consider putting in a fire pit to enjoy at the end of the Mother's Day celebration.
    • Create a family garden with each family member designing and planning what to plant in their section. Feel flower pots with some of mom's favorite flowers to beautify the front porch.
  • For a crafty mom, create a fun project with round garden stones that can have family member's hand prints to add to the garden. Schedule a time for the family to paint pottery at a local pottery shop together. Look up classes at a local craft store or community college that your mom may enjoy by herself or with a friend or one that the whole family can participate together.
Gardening with Mom

Give the Gift of an Event

for Moms that Love the Outdoors, skip the trinkets and treat your mom to a memory she'll cherish! Experience gifts offer something truly special. Consider tickets to a fun concert in the park where you can spread a blanket and enjoy the music. If she loves a good stretch, surprise her with outdoor yoga classes. For something truly unforgettable, plan a breathtaking hot air balloon ride, giving her a unique perspective on the world—it's a Mother's Day gift she'll never forget! If there are not events like these close to the Mother's Day Weekend, give a small gift with the tickets to the event.

Hot Air Balloon

Mother's Day Gift Ideas for Moms that Love the Outdoors

  • Outdoor Blanket: A waterproof and packable blanket for picnics, campfires, or enjoying a scenic view.
  • Personalized Water bottle
  • Comfy hat
  • High-Quality Hiking Backpack: A comfortable, well-designed backpack makes her adventures even more enjoyable. Look for features like good back support, ample pockets, and a hydration bladder sleeve.
  • Hiking Socks: A good pair of moisture-wicking, cushioned hiking socks go a long way in preventing blisters (truly a thoughtful gift!)
  • National Parks Pass: Inspire her to explore with a pass giving her access to America's beautiful national parks.
  • Nature-Inspired Jewelry: A necklace with a leaf pendant, earrings with a mountain motif – a subtle way to carry her love for the outdoors everywhere.
  • Gourmet Trail Snacks: Upgrade her trail mix with premium dried fruits, nuts, and even some fancy chocolate.
  • Wildflower Identification Book: Help her learn about the plants she encounters during her explorations.
  • Custom Trail Map: Frame a map of her favorite trail or hiking area, marking special spots with a heartfelt message.
  • Engraved Compass: With a sweet inscription, it becomes a beautiful keepsake symbolizing adventure. 

Often, the most meaningful Mother's Day gifts aren't purchased but experienced. This year, let's set aside the search for the perfect gift and instead focus on creating the perfect moment with our outdoor-loving moms. The vibrant colors of a wildflower meadow, the soothing rhythm of waves against the shore, or the crisp, clean air on a mountain path – these become the backdrop for unforgettable memories.

The great outdoors offers a unique opportunity to disconnect from daily routines and reconnect with the people we love. Whether you plan a full day of adventure or simply a quiet afternoon shared outdoors doing her favorite things, you're giving your mom the gift of presence. It's time to chat without screens, laugh without distractions, and truly enjoy each other's company.

This Mother's Day, inspire your mom with the spirit of exploration. Help her plan a long-awaited hike, discover a new kayaking spot together, or just encourage her to step outside and find a cozy spot for some solo relaxation. The outdoorsy mom appreciates the boundless potential for adventure.

So, let's make this Mother's Day unforgettable. Pack a picnic basket, lace up those hiking boots, and venture out hand-in-hand. Celebrate your incredible mom not just with words, but with shared experiences that nurture her soul as much as they create lasting memories for the whole family.

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