Summer is here (when the rain stops!). After months of cold, short days, the warm weather is a welcome reprieve and the longer evenings encourage us outdoors to socialise more with friends. 

Summer invites us to soak in the sun, explore our local towns and cities, and bring people together over cocktails and shared experiences. Your social calendar can easily fill up with festivals, gigs in the park, museum tours and more. 

The key is making the extra effort to maximise every second of the warmer season. So, here are a few suggestions on how to make the most of your summer.

Experiment with flavourful cocktails

Nothing complements a summer evening like a crisp, refreshing cocktail in hand. When the sun is out, make the most of it by crafting some summery cocktails to share with friends. From margaritas and Pimm’s to refreshing mojitos, there are so many cocktails to choose from to complement the warmer weather, along with a host of summer cocktails like mint juleps or a chilled highball.

A summer beverage is quintessential for bringing people together outdoors. Keep the drinks chilled and flowing as freely as the conversation, and you’ll craft memories of laughter and time well spent with friends and loved ones.

Be a tourist in your own city

As the days stretch longer, summer grants the perfect opportunity to rediscover your own hometown. Do as travellers do and explore local attractions, dine al fresco, people watch in parks and wander down streets you’ve never strolled. Play tourist for a day and see your city with fresh eyes. You could use the time to visit landmarks you’ve always meant to check out in beautiful parts of the UK you are keen to explore and plan hikes. Or you could pack a picnic and head to an outdoor event such as concerts, cinema screenings and plays, which make enjoying culture more accessible in summer.

Host your own event

Summer’s warmer weather motivates us to bring people together, so why not use this summer season as an opportunity to bring together all the people you love in one place? As the social calendar fills up, take matters into your own hands and organise a get-together. Hire a party marquee, set up a buffet table and create a summer soundtrack to the event, along with some games and activities for everyone to take part in. You could opt for a picnic in your local park, arrange a wine tasting or visit a vineyard, or go all out and hire a local band to play for your very own concert. Alternatively, get everyone over for a game of rounders or cricket, followed by a BBQ.

Spend time at the seaside

Nothing spells summer like time at the beach, and if you’re lucky enough to be within travelling distance of the coast, it makes for a great day out. Build a sandcastle to transport yourself back to childhood or grab an ice cream and enjoy the beautiful vistas of the lapping waves. If you’re feeling inspired, you could even visit at sunrise or sunset for spectacular views that you won’t regret. A trip to the seaside or a relaxing holiday in a cottage next to a sandy beach equals summer bliss for people of all ages. You’ll be able to capture amazing photographs to remember the moment long after the season is over.

Enjoy the great outdoors with a camping trip

Camping offers a chance to disconnect from routine and reconnect with loved ones over conversations uninterrupted by the demands of everyday life. Surrounded by nature, it’s a great way to immerse yourself in the outdoors, from hiking verdant trails and swimming in lakes to cooking over an open flame and eating al fresco, telling stories or playing card games around the campfire. If you’re looking to unplug for a while over the summer, while still enjoying everything this season has to offer, then a camping trip with friends and family is the perfect solution.

Learn a new skill or do more of what you love

Summer offers a gift of expanded daylight hours and relaxed schedules, granting us opportunities to explore new pursuits and expand our skills. When responsibilities lighten, dedicate time to discovering a hobby you connect with or developing talents useful for seasons to come.

Learn a sport or do a new activity that complements your chosen career path to get outside and active, such as tennis or golf. Or, if you know what you love, do more cycling and running and take part in team sports like football or volleyball. Or maybe you’ve always loved the idea of tending to a garden — summer is the perfect time to channel your green thumb and cultivate a garden.

Sign up for a challenge

Summer is filled with opportunities to get involved in community events that motivate and inspire you. So, why not sign up to participate in a local marathon, a fun run or a charity challenge that gives you the motivation to train, fundraise or volunteer your skills? Completing an event, whether athletic or community-driven, leaves you with an immense sense of achievement and connection to others.

Many charities and organisations host summer fundraisers, sporting events or obstacle courses. Select a cause close to your heart and join in to raise funds and awareness. Pushing your body and mind aids personal growth and confidence. The rush of accomplishing an athletic feat stays with you well beyond the summer season.

Summer’s nature makes the sunny months all the more precious, particularly in the UK where warmer days are few and far between. With a bit of forward planning, you can soak in each and every summer moment and make some lasting memories. Whether you choose to learn something new, visit new locations or simply spend more time with loved ones, make the most of this summer season.