How to Find a Hobby

If you choose to spend some of your free time being actively engaged in something that interests you, congrats—you have a hobby! And if you don’t have a hobby picked out quite yet, don’t worry. This article lists lots of very popular hobbies, including collecting, crafting, gardening, baking, gaming, and traveling, to name just a few. So, if you’re looking for a new hobby, read on to see if any of the options listed here spark your curiosity.


[Edit]DIY projects

  1. Get creative, spruce up your home, and save money with this hobby. No matter your skill or experience level, there’s a do-it-yourself (DIY) project that suits you. Try fixing a squeaky door, painting a room, re-tiling your bathroom, reconfiguring your garage, or building the kitchen of your dreams. You can learn a lot from DIY shows and websites, but also seek out hands-on experience in a classroom setting or alongside a more experienced DIYer.[1]
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    • You can save a good deal of money by doing simple DIY projects yourself instead of calling a repair person each time. For instance, a quick fix of a leaky sink or running toilet can save you from paying a large bill for a few minutes of a plumber’s time.
    • Don’t be afraid to try something new, but also accept your limitations. For instance, don’t mess around with electrical wiring or structural framing if you’re not sure what you’re doing. A good DIYer knows that some things are best left to the pros!


  1. Gardening offers outdoors time, light exercise, and beauty to enjoy. Whether you’re growing a few potted flowers and vegetables on your balcony or beautifying a large backyard, gardening is a great hobby. It’s suited to any budget, climate, or amount of available space—an indoor garden is a good option if you have limited room outdoors. And it’s hard to beat the satisfaction of putting your own fresh-cut flowers in a vase or your own homegrown lettuce and tomatoes in your salad.[2]
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    • Tasks like planting, watering, weeding, trimming, and harvesting do take some amount of time and commitment, but most gardeners find them to be manageable and even enjoyable.
    • If you have physical limitations that make on-the-ground gardening difficult, look into getting raised garden beds or easily-accessible planters.
    • Gardening doesn’t need to be limited to your own home! Join a garden club or other local organization that works to beautify your community.

[Edit]Cooking or baking

  1. You have to eat anyway, so why not make food prep into a hobby? Like many other hobbies, cooking and baking are really easy to get into, but you can spend a lifetime trying to master them. And here’s a nice perk as you work your way toward mastering this hobby: you get to eat your “mistakes”—which are usually still pretty tasty![3]
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    • So what separates food prep as a necessity from food prep as a hobby? Ask yourself this question: Would you still enjoy your cooking or baking task if you didn’t have to do it to feed yourself or your family?
    • If you’re new to cooking or (especially) baking, follow recipes closely to get the best results. As you gain experience, don’t be afraid to get more creative.

[Edit]Board or card games

  1. These hobbies are great for connecting with friends and family. Board games and card games may seem like outdated relics compared to all the tech options available to you. However, they’re more hands-on and interactive, and are perfectly suited to spending quality time in person with others. You can schedule game nights to play Monopoly, Candyland, or Trivial Pursuit with your kids, or hold poker nights with your buddies.[4]
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    • Role playing board games like Dungeons & Dragons really let you immerse yourself in the world of the game while connecting with friends. To get even more immersed, try cosplaying games that truly get you into character!

[Edit]Brain games

  1. Options like crossword puzzles and Sudoku challenge your mind. Similar to board games and card games, classic low-tech brain games like jigsaw puzzles are affordable activities you can do in the comfort of your home. It’s also really easy to get brain games like Sudoku on your smartphone so you can pursue your hobby while you’re out and about.[5]
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    • As an added bonus, keeping your mind active with challenges like brain games may help to slow down certain types of mental decline as you age.


  1. Photography is easy to get started with and consistently rewarding. If you carry around a cell phone, you already have a camera that’s plenty good enough to get you started in the world of photography. Over time, if you choose, you can invest in more advanced cameras and equipment. In any case, this hobby encourages you to explore and experience the world around you in new ways, as well as build connections with other photo enthusiasts.[6]
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    • Start out by just snapping pictures of whatever interests you. To advance your skills, use photography books and online tutorials, or sign up for a photography class at a community college.


  1. You can collect stamps, coins, or pretty much anything you wish. That’s the great thing about collecting as a hobby—you can personalize what you collect so it suits you perfectly. Some people choose to collect things like baseball cards, dolls, or magazines in the hopes that they’ll increase in value over time. But it’s also fine to collect something just because you really like to![7]
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    • When you collect things as a hobby, you usually want to show them off—and that can create space issues in your home. You may only have so much room to display cat figurines, for instance. In this case, define a space for your hobby display and sell, donate, or at least box up some of your collection when you run low on room.


  1. You can collect music or instruments, or make music as a hobby. Your music hobby might involve building up a great collection of vinyl records, for example. But also consider picking up an instrument and making music as your hobby. Play your favorite songs or try your hand at creating your own tunes. Play solo at home, get together with friends for jam sessions, or even share your love of music with the public.[8]
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    • Learning to play the guitar, piano, saxophone, or any other musical instrument is a great hobby idea. It offers mental stimulation, hand-eye coordination training, and lots of opportunities for creativity.


  1. Reading is a great way to both relax and broaden your horizons. Reading as a hobby? You better believe it! Try curling up with a good biography, inspirational work, whodunit, or romance novel. Reading encourages you to experience, explore, and think about the world from the comfort of your own home. And, especially if you have a library card, it’s one of the most affordable hobbies out there.[9]
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    • If you prefer a hobby with a more social component, try joining a book club.


  1. This creative hobby ranges from journaling to writing books. Whether you’re a poet, a blogger, a novelist, or a diarist, writing is one of the most creatively rewarding and intellectually stimulating hobbies out there. Sometimes the words flow effortlessly, and sometimes it’s a slog to get a single sentence done, but writing is always a great mental workout.[10]
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    • It’s okay to just start writing, or you can check out writing classes at a nearby community center or community college.
    • You can write for the whole world to see on the web or in published works, write strictly for yourself, or go somewhere in between. It’s all about what brings you happiness.
    • Calligraphy is another variation on writing as a hobby.


  1. Any exercise that you enjoy doing can definitely be a hobby. For some people, exercise might be a chore that they only do for the health benefits—kind of like going to the dentist. But if you find an exercise activity like running, biking, or yoga that you truly enjoy, there’s no reason it can’t become your hobby. Think of it this way—if you look forward to your next spin class as soon as the last one ends, it’s a hobby![11]
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    • Solo exercise can definitely be a hobby, but many types of exercise are great social activities to share with friends. Instead of biking alone, for example, you might join a biking club that goes on regular trail rides.


  1. Try making something yourself that’s beautiful and/or functional. It’s hard to top the satisfaction you get from standing back and admiring your handiwork after weaving a basket or making a necklace. But how do you go about figuring out which crafts are right for you? Try out lots of options that you think might interest you until you find that just-right crafting hobby.[12]
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    • You might enjoy making and decorating birdhouses, adding some “bling” to boring picture frames, creating photo collages, or assembling cute but simple wind chimes, to name just a few options.
    • Check local craft stores, community centers, libraries, social clubs, or religious organizations for crafting classes or groups in your area.
    • Browse the internet for crafting ideas and inspiration. The options are endless!

[Edit]Knitting or sewing

  1. Needlework hobbies can be fun, challenging, and practical. Needlework activities like sewing and knitting may have an old-fashioned reputation to some people, but they’re still great hobbies for modern times. They’re affordable and easy to get into, and yet are difficult to ever truly master. You get to create beautiful designs that can also be very practical as blankets, scarves, skirts, and so on.[13]
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    • Crocheting and quilting are other varieties of needlework that make great hobbies.
    • Needlework is fun as a solo activity or a social activity. Look around for knitting clubs in your area, for example, or start one up with your friends.
    • For help getting started, look for needlework classes in your community.


  1. Take up drawing, painting, sculpting, or another art activity. Making art is a great creative outlet that’s also good for your hand-eye coordination. Just make sure you don’t put pressure on yourself to create the next great artistic masterpiece. Instead, focus on having fun and letting your creativity flow.[14]
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    • Art hobbies suit a wide range of hobby budgets. If you’re looking for an ultra-affordable option, for instance, you can take up painting with little more than a watercolor set, a brush, and some paper.
    • Your local community college may offer a wide range of art classes in areas like painting, sculpture, pottery, and so on.

[Edit]Foreign Languages

  1. This is a practical hobby that can also be enjoyable and eye-opening. Learning a new language is always a good skill to add to your repertoire. Even if you don’t really “need” to learn another language, however, doing so helps open your eyes to other cultures in ways you might not expect. It’ll also probably inspire you to travel, which is another great hobby.[15]
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    • You can certainly go the traditional route and take in-person language courses at, for instance, your local community college. But there are also a huge number of language-learning apps and online resources as well. Try out some free or low-cost options before deciding if it’s worth the investment to spend on a higher-price program.


  1. Whether you venture near or far, travel is a very rewarding hobby. Travel introduces you to new places, new people, and new cultures, all of which are great for personal growth. Even if travelling internationally doesn’t fit your current budget or preferences, venturing beyond your home region in your own country can be both surprising and fulfilling.[16]
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    • There’s no one “right” way to travel. If going on cruises and making quick stops at various ports makes you happy, go for it. Or, if really immersing yourself in the cultures of the countries you visit suits you best, that’s great as well.


  1. Share a hobby with your dog or other animal pal. If you love spending time with your pet, and are also looking for a hobby to love, go ahead and combine them! You and your dog, for example, could get involved in “performance dog sports”—competitions that test your canine companion’s speed, agility, intelligence, and more.[17]
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    • Or, as another option, you might get involved in taking your dog, cat, bird, or other animal companion to pet shows. The goal here is to find a hobby that both you and your pet really enjoy.

[Edit]Good causes

  1. Get active supporting a cause that benefits society. If it gives you joy to get involved as a volunteer supporting a cause like cancer research or childhood literacy, then embrace it as your hobby. Find something that’s meaningful to you and that you know can help make a difference in your community, then pour your passion into advancing that cause.[18]
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    • If, for example, you have a family member who received a new kidney or who is waiting for a new liver, you might choose to get involved as a volunteer promoting organ donation.


  1. Try bird watching, rock climbing, or another outdoor interest. Getting out into nature is good for your body and soul. Whether it’s an easy nature walk or an arduous hike, a fishing trip or a canoeing expedition, or camping in the woods or gazing at the stars from your backyard, experiencing nature is a great hobby![19]
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    • Nature hobbies are excellent for quiet contemplation on your own, and also for hanging out with friends and family.


  1. Activities like coding and robotics are fun and challenging. Building your own robot doesn’t have to be just a sci-fi dream anymore! Robotics kits are easy to find for hobbyists of all ages, skill levels, and budgets. Similarly, computer activities like coding are widely accessible and rewarding. If you’re not sure where to start, look for introductory classes at your local library, community center, or community college.[20]
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    • Keep in mind that aimlessly browsing the internet or checking your social media don’t make for such great tech hobbies. Look for tech-related activities that offer greater mental stimulation—for instance, maybe you’d like to learn how to build your own website.


  • Turn what you already love into a hobby! Think about the enjoyable things you gravitate toward doing when you have some spare time. Do you enjoy reading books? Maybe you want to try your hand at writing them. Do you like a cold beer at the end of the day? Maybe your hobby could be trying to brew beer at home.[21]
  • Did you like to race bikes with your friends as a kid? Were you really into painting, drawing, or collecting comic books? If you loved doing something as a kid, there’s probably a variation of it that would make an enjoyable hobby for you now.[22]
  • Pick a free or inexpensive hobby if you don't have much wiggle room in your budget. For instance, you could read or write, take up running, or try gardening or camping.

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