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8 Summer Bucket List Ideas for Intentional Living

8 Summer Bucket List Ideas for Intentional Living

People make instinctive decisions every day. It happens when you automatically get in the shower after waking up or eat when you’re hungry. Putting your brain on autopilot allows you to focus your attention elsewhere, but unless we stay aware of our habits and routines, it could also create a routine that feels unfulfilling over the long-term as our life and needs change.

Use your free time this summer to live more purposefully. Creating a summer bucket list with these ideas for intentional living will help you get started. Once you feel inspired, maybe you can continue adding activities to your bucket list that stretch well through the rest of the year.


Intentional living is spending every day according to your values and priorities, not what busy life says is valuable and a priority. It helps people feel more present in everything they do because they’re consciously choosing to do things that are meaningful to them.

That might mean drinking an extra glass of water each day to stay hydrated or volunteering your time to give back in a way that’s meaningful for you. The best part about intentional living is that everyone gets to make their own definition which can be adapted over time if needed, including if they want to shift their priorities according to the season.

Summer Bucket List Ideas


Summer months are the perfect time to start living more intentionally. Whether you want to enjoy nature while it’s warm outside or travel the world, here are a few summer bucket list ideas that will kickstart your journey to a more intentional lifestyle that also make the most of the hotter weather.

1. Pick Your Own Fruit

Explore if there are any farms around your area offering baskets to anyone who wants to pick their own fruit. Strawberries, blackberries, blueberries and raspberries are just a few fruits ready for harvesting once summer arrives. Revel in the sunshine on your face as you fill your basket and savour the warm juices in every bite!

While you’re intentionally enjoying your fruit-picking, you might also bring home food that helps your overall health. Fruits are high in antioxidants that reduce your risk of developing cancer by stopping free radicals from causing cellular damage.

As you pick fruits and enjoy summer’s harvests, you may even form a healthier diet that doesn’t feel like a chore. You’ll naturally find ways to add your fresh fruit to each meal or snack, creating a well-rounded diet that you’re encouraged to continue with throughout the year.

2. Try a New Sport

People rarely want to do any outdoor sports when it’s chilly and the sun sets too early but Summer is a great opportunity to join a community sports team. See if you’re interested in local pickleball games or swimming laps with a swim club.

This is a summer bucket list idea for anyone who wants to be more intentional about their fitness abilities without going to the gym. The extra physical activity reduces depression symptoms within just 15 minutes of activity, so no matter what you do, you’ll fortify your mental health while getting more in shape.

If you’re not used to playing sports beyond what you played in school, look up local adult community sports. People create social media pages and websites for things like adult basketball teams that don’t require working toward championship games. People gather just because they love the same sport. You could also ask your friends if they’d want to meet you at a public park where you can use a court or field to get moving.

And, remember, sports don’t have to be energetic so if you struggle with physical limitations, is there something more gentle you might enjoy such as a local group of chair yoga?

3. Take a Slow Vacation

Everyone’s taken a vacation that felt like it passed by way too quickly. It happens when you’re having a great time without being mindful about how you’re spending each minute. Slow vacations are an answer to that.

Enjoy a slow vacation this summer by scheduling a staycation, weekend getaway or a longer adventure. Arrive with little to no plans. You’ll be more in touch with your interests and spend time doing what feels most engaging and aligned with what your body and mind needs. You might even learn more about the world by chatting with the locals instead of rushing to the next thing on your vacation schedule.

4. Improve Your Flexibility

Physical aches and pains might affect you from time to time. One of the best summer bucket list ideas for intentional living might include stretching more often. Stretching routines reduce musculoskeletal discomfort by alleviating tension. If you stretch daily, you’ll gain more flexibility and intentionally gain more daily peace.

Start with simple movements, like cat-cow variations that stretch the spine along its entire length. Stretch whenever you start feeling discomfort but pay attention to your body not to overdo it. You’ll teach yourself to stay in tune with your body’s needs and care for yourself better throughout the day.

Summer Bucket List Ideas

6. Enjoy Nature Walks

Daily outdoor walks are an excellent summer bucket list idea for intentional living. You’ll remove yourself from stressors at home or during your lunch break at work to help your mind focus on the present. Breathing fresh air and walking around the area at a leisurely pace will also help improve your mental and physical health.

Research shows that being outside amongst nature and trees alleviates depression symptoms by triggering happier moods. The calming and inspiring surroundings passively influence your mindset so it’s easier to hone your thoughts, be mindful in the here and now and intentionally experience every moment of your walk including the sights, scents and noises around you.

7. Visit Festivals and Events

Seasonal festivals happen throughout the year, but especially during summer. The warm weather makes summer days the perfect time to celebrate with friends and neighbours. Look up your town’s event calendar to see what’s happening during the next few weeks that you might enjoy.

While you attend strawberry festivals or holiday parades with friends, the extra socialisation will minimize feelings of isolation that would otherwise influence your thoughts as you try to practice intentional happiness and joy. It’s another way to make mindful experiences easier as your daily routine becomes more deliberate.

8. Read More Books

Intentional learning is another way to spend the summer so this summer bucket list idea is to read more books and come away from the screens. Think of a goal you’d like to accomplish and use books to develop that skill. Or, even if you prefer to exclusively read fictional stories, research shows you’ll develop more empathy by experiencing other people’s lives through the written word.

Reading is also a way to make social connections easier. Fiction and nonfiction stories make people practice taking on new perspectives. When you meet potential friends, you can practice intentional social connections because getting to know new people will feel easier.

Summer Bucket List Ideas


Intentional living is another way to create a mindful daily routine. You’ll feel every moment of joy, learning and peace because summer bucket list ideas like these encourage you to pay attention to the current moment.

Life becomes much more fulfilling when you can stay grounded in every experience without even trying. Even if it takes practice and thought to block out the noise and demands of the outside world and focus more on your inner world inside you!


I love these ideas from Mia for an intentional summer bucket list. For my own summer I also have a few more suggestions to add to the list:

  • Grounding – Walk barefoot in the grass, or just sit on your lawn and connect yourself to the earth.
  • Experiment with seasonal salads – Explore the flavours of summer and try out some simple, healthy salads to add to your meal-plan menu.
  • Prioritise yourself – Try this list of summer self-care ideas to nourish body, mind and soul.
  • Embrace the holidays with your kids – Don’t let summer holiday stress get in your way. Try these tips for happier holidays!
  • Mark the end of summer – Don’t let summer go by without knocking a few of these ideas off your list!

Is there anything else you plan to do this summer? If you have any tips or ideas to share, please leave a comment below as I’d love to hear from you.


Mia Barnes is a freelance writer and researcher with a passion for mental wellness and healthy living. Mia Barnes is also the Founder and Editor-in-Chief of the online health publication, Body+Mind magazine.