06/20/2014 11:10 EDT | Updated 07/02/2014 04:59 EDT

Summer Solstice 2014: 21 Ways To Observe The Longest Day Of The Year

Severin Schweiger via Getty Images

Not only is it the summer solstice in the Northern Hemisphere on June 21, 2014, it also happens to be the first day of summer and the first time the longest day of the year has been on a Saturday since 2003.

The day, which marks the time at which the sun is at its northernmost point in the sky, according to, will offer up approximately 16 hours of sunlight.

And while the summer solstice is known for its extraordinary celebrations at places like Stonehenge, we think this elongated weekend day calls for some personal merriment as well. Whatever you do, take the opportunity to make your June 21 special — after all, it is the official kick-off to summer!

  • Get A Picnic Together
    Get A Picnic Together
    Flickr:Wicker Paradise
    Even if it's just you eating a hot dog solo in a park, it's so worth it.
  • Throw Something Around
    Throw Something Around
    Balls, Frisbees, what have you — use those muscles you haven't exercised in a year.
  • Walk Barefoot In The Grass
    Walk Barefoot In The Grass
    Flickr:Terence S. Jones
    Romantic comedy cliche? Yes. Still totally worth it? Absolutely.
  • Eat Ice Cream
    Eat Ice Cream
    Or gelato. Or Popsicles. Or ice cream sandwiches. And don't fuss about the drips.
  • Go For A Swim
    Go For A Swim
    Flickr:Adrea Young
    Or at least, get your feet wet.
  • Meditate
    Even if all that means is five minutes of complete, utter, delicious silence.
  • Binge-Watch TV
    Binge-Watch TV
    We're really not advocating for spending the whole day inside, but just in case it's raining, here's an amazing list of options.
  • Drink Sangria On A Patio
    Drink Sangria On A Patio
    There's really no reason not to.
  • Get On A Swing
    Get On A Swing
    Flickr:Snow Pants
    Stop just looking at the kids (even if they're your kids) and join in. Alternatively, hammocks. Hammocks swing really nicely.
  • Dance
    You know, like nobody's watching.
  • Look At Art
    Look At Art
    You can find it anywhere — galleries, shops, outdoors.
  • Plant Something
    Plant Something
    If you don't have a yard, pots work just as well (and frankly, are easier to manage).
  • Cook A Meal
    Cook A Meal
    Preferably outdoors.
  • Get On A Bike
    Get On A Bike
    And ride the way you did when you were a kid. Except, none of that "no hands" business.
  • Wash Your Car
    Wash Your Car
    But totally turn it into a scene out of a movie, with sponge throwing and everything.
  • Go Fishing
    Go Fishing
    If only for the relaxing feeling.
  • Read A Book Outside
    Read A Book Outside
    And lookee here — we have a list for that too!
  • Make Out
    Make Out
    At sunset, if possible.
  • Go To A Concert
    Go To A Concert
    That dive bar down the street has open mike tonight, doesn't it?
  • Watch An Outdoor Movie
    Watch An Outdoor Movie
    There's plenty of drive-ins and outdoor screens, but you can also just take your iPad outside once the sun goes down.
  • Look At The Sky
    Look At The Sky
    Once that sun sets, take a moment to marvel at what's up there.