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Picture this: it’s day one of your summer holidays and you’re already five episodes deep in a trashy daytime TV marathon and whining about being bored. Or you’ve just lost hours to your phone, scrolling from meme to meme. Sound familiar? We know the struggle is real. With the holidays nearly here, how can we have fun without breaking the bank? To help inspire you, here are 12 things you can do these hols to beat boredom on a budget.

1. Hold a garage sale

Grab a bunch of friends, dust off your old electronics, books and clothes you no longer need, set up the garage and get selling! Not only will you get to spend a fun day with your mates, but you can boost your holiday budget at the same time.

2. Take a hike

Get a crew together and seek out a hiking trail nearby where you can unplug, get some fresh air while working up a sweat, and check out what natural beauty your home has to offer.

hows the serenity

3. Hold an at-home life drawing class

Unleash your inner Picasso and have a portrait drawing session. All you need is an A3 sheet of paper, some coloured crayons and a muse (friend, sibling, pet or parent) to get your creative juices flowing. Hint: the sillier the portrait, the better.

mr bean thumbs up painting

4. Visit a free exhibition

Check out the free exhibitions at your city’s museums and art galleries, or wander through your local library. Take a stroll and soak up all the culture your city has to offer. Especially good for a rainy day.

5. Go backyard camping

Everyone knows there’s nothing like sleeping under the stars. The good news is you don’t need to travel far to do it. Pitch a tent in your backyard, toast some marshmallows on a camp stove, and trade spooky stories for the ultimate at-home adventure. (Added benefit: wifi access and an indoor bathroom.)

parks and rec tom check out my tent

6. Host your own bake-off

Find a recipe for a sweet treat (a slice, dessert or cake) and challenge a mate to a bake-off. Have someone be a judge and pick the winner, without knowing who made which. The winning entry could be the weirdest-shaped one. Share the results with family and friends.

gbbo theyre all so hideously deformed

7. Go op-shopping

Op-shopping has you covered for Christmas pressies on a budget. From Vinnies to your local car boot sale, opportunities for pre-loved thrifting are everywhere. It doesn’t get much better than finding the perfect gift for a mate for just a few bucks, and you’ll have fun looking.

8. Start a vlog

Whip out your phone or video camera, and record some of the awesome things you’re doing during the holidays. It’ll be a cool memory to look back on, and can be a great creative outlet, too.

obama selfie stick

9. Host a potluck feast

Get a group together and host your own potluck feast and dance party by the beach or in a local park. Pick a dress-up theme, get your mates to bring food to share, and set up music for dancing.

10. Make a slip ’n’ slide

Maybe the most makeshift fun on this list is the dish-soap slip ‘n’ slide. Grab a hose and a large sheet of plastic, slick it up with some soap suds and head to your local grassy hill for an epic home-made adrenaline rush.

slip n slide

11. Take a biking tour

Be a tourist for the day in your own city or town and have your own bike tour. Use your own bike, borrow one from a friend, or rent one of the affordable city bikes and start exploring. You never know what hidden gems you might find…

12. When in doubt, indulge in a Netflix marathon

Fine, we admit it… there’s actually nothing better than a day cosied-up in bed with Netflix and some homemade sweet ‘n’ salty popcorn. Pick your fave series to binge-watch and go for it.

gilmore girls its a lifestyle