10 Fun Water Games to Beat the Heat (No Pool Necessary!)

kids playing with water balloons

You don't need a pool to make a splash in your backyard this summer. Believe it or not, there are a ton of outdoor activities that will inspire your tech-addicted kids to ditch their beloved video games and actually have some fun in the sun. And pretty much all you need is a hose, a bucket and a bag of ice cubes. Here are the 10 best water games to help you have a blast -- and cool off too! -- with the entire family.

  1. Filler Up: Divide into pairs. Teammates stand six feet apart, one person gets a cup with a ping-pong ball in it and the other a water bottle. On "ready, set, go" players with the bottle race to squirt enough water into the cup to make the ball float. Be warned -- you have to dump the cup and start all over again if you move closer to each other. Keep a bucket of water nearby for easy refills.
  2. Wet n Wacky Catch: Create catchers mitts out of gallon milk jugs by cutting out the bottoms. Fill a bunch of water balloons and see how far you can throw without breaking them.
  3. Splash Hide and Seek: It's a wet and wild twist on a classic. The seeker goes in search of the hiders with a couple of water balloons in hand. Whomever gets pelted and drenched is it!
  4. Hot Balloon: It's just like hot potato, just a heck of a lot wetter. Stand in a circle and toss a balloon around until someone drops it. That person is now out and the game continues until there is just one person left. Add a second balloon for an even more fun and intense game.
  5. Water Gun War: Stock up on supersoakers and water pistols and go at it like the Hatfields and the McCoys. Get hit and your out of the game.
  6. Water Hose Limbo: Put on some dance music and try to shimmy under a straight and steady stream of water. After everyone takes a turn, lower the hose and repeat.
  7. Splashdown: You need a bucket of water and big car wash sponge for each person. Players stand eight feet apart and facing each other with their buckets directly in front of them. You then try to throw the wet sponge into the other's bucket. The goal is twofold - win a point and splash your opponent too!
  8. Beach Towel Toss Divide into teams of two, each person holding a towel at the corners. Standing six feet apart,  each team must use the towel to toss a balloon back and forth with another team. After a successful toss, have the teams move farther apart. Continue playing until the balloon breaks. 
  9. Feet Freeze: Fill a kiddie pool with water and ice cubes. Each person has just five minutes to remove as many cubes as they can with their feet. The person with the highest number wins.
  10. Water Balloon Dodgeball: Divide into equal groups, each with their own bucket of water balloons. Pelt your opponent and the last (dry) man standing wins.

What other summertime water games do you love?

 water games kids

Image ©iStock.com/Photolyric and Alexey Stiop/Shutterstock

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