Some people have it in their heads that practicing minimalist means that you can’t have anything nice or do anything fun – this couldn’t be farther from the truth!
One of the reasons I love minimalism so much is because it encourages us to only focus on the activities that give our lives true meaning and joy.
With minimalist hobbies, we get to practice being mindful of what brings us happiness and fulfillment without getting overwhelmed by the endless options and distractions that life has to offer.
Now, some hobbies require lots of stuff and even more space. Let’s take collecting vintage cars for example. Of course, you can’t collect timeless roadsters without spending a pretty penny or needing a huge space to store them.
However, there are plenty of minimalist hobbies that don’t require any equipment at all.
If you’re just starting your minimalist journey and unsure how you can fill your leisure time and keep the joy of hobbies alive while still remaining true to a minimalist lifestyle, keep reading.
I’ve rounded up 30 of the best minimalist hobbies that can make your life more fun and fulfilling without breaking the bank or taking up too much space in your home.
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30 Minimalist hobbies that don’t require a bunch of stuff
Creative Minimalist Hobbies
Writing is the epitome of a great minimalist hobby because it requires nothing more than pen and paper, or a simple handheld device.
Just using these basic tools allows us to unlock an entire universe of creativity and self-expression.
And, unlike other hobbies that demand a collection of materials or equipment, writing thrives on the simplicity of its foundation.
It allows us to declutter our minds and pour our thoughts, dreams, and emotions onto a blank canvas.
These days, you don’t need to have an endless supply of camera accessories in order to capture a great shot. All you need is a camera or your trusty smartphone, and you’re all set to capture incredible moments without cluttering your space with physical items.
It’s not just about taking pictures; it’s about seeing the world in a new light and finding beauty in the little things. Getting into photography encourages you to stay present and mindful, appreciating what’s happening around you.
Whether you’re snapping stunning landscapes or candid shots of your friends, the real joy comes from creating lasting memories without accumulating too much stuff.
Photography shows us that in minimalism, there’s more room for great things.
Painting and Drawing
Painting or drawing is a wonderful minimalist hobby because it requires very little to get started yet offers boundless creative possibilities. All you need is a sketchbook, a few basic art supplies like pencils or watercolors, and your imagination.
Don’t want to have the physical supplies but still want to explore drawing? You can even use your tablet or iPad to start sketching right away without the fuss of setting up and cleaning.
Just like writing, painting or drawing is a great way to express yourself and explore your emotions. However, it also requires mindfulness, allowing us to stay in the moment as we create art from our imagination.
It can also be done from anywhere, so whether you’re on the go or at home, this minimalist hobby is always accessible.
Finally, you don’t have to be a professional artist to enjoy painting and drawing. It’s all about having fun and experimenting – that’s the joy of hobbies!
Sewing, Knitting, and Crocheting
Sure, some people who have these hobbies have rooms full of yarn and fabric, but that doesn’t mean that you have to.
As long as you’re creating one item at a time, all you’ll need is just a few simple materials like yarn, needles, fabric and possibly a sewing machine. Plus, you’ll have something to show for your effort – homemade clothes or accessories that are both beautiful and practical.
Once you’re finished with a particular project, you can move on to another. If you have extra yarn or fabric remaining from the previous project, you can pass it on to a friend or family member or keep it in a small ‘leftovers’ box – the key is to not let this box become unruly and expand into a full room of supplies.
Through sewing, knitting, and crocheting you can also learn valuable skills like patience and discipline, as well as the satisfaction of completing something from start to finish. All in all, a very fulfilling new hobby to take up that’s sure to make your life just a little bit brighter.
Skill enhancing minimalist hobbies
Reading can take you anywhere. To distant times, faraway lands, and deep within yourself. It’s a hobby that can be done anywhere – your living room couch, the comfort of your own bed, or the park bench outside.
Plus, it doesn’t require any fancy supplies either – the only thing you need is a physical book or a Kindle. It’s also not an expensive hobby – you can find books for free at your local library, or engage in book swaps with family or friends.
Through reading, you can improve your concentration and focus, as well as become a more knowledgeable individual overall. Reading is an incredibly fulfilling hobby that doesn’t require much but can have a great impact on your life.
Playing an Instrument
If you’ve ever wanted to learn an instrument, then now is a great time to start. While this may not necessarily a minimalist hobby – instruments can be costly and take up space – the satisfaction and joy that comes with learning one far exceeds the cost of materials.
Plus you can also buy second hand and find creative ways to store instruments. My guitar hangs on the wall so takes up zero floor space in my apartment. This guitar has followed me across the world. It’s an old companion that I can always turn to for solace and inspiration.
Learning how to play an instrument will give you great joy, and it’s a new skill that will stay with you throughout your life.
Learn a new language
This minimalist hobby requires no physical materials, no special location – just your dedication and willingness to learn. Language learning can be done anywhere, anytime – you just need a learning resource and a bit of self-motivation.
And if you don’t want to take paid, in-person lessons, you can learn easily through your smart phone. There are plenty of apps and websites that offer language lessons which can be done from the comfort of your own home, such as DuoLingo, Memrise and Babbel.
Learning a new language offers so many benefits – you can use it to travel, communicate with people from around the world and even boost your career prospects. It also fosters cognitive development, improves memory, and enhances problem-solving abilities – all of which can positively impact other areas of your life!
Cooking and Baking
Unlike some hobbies that might require a plethora of equipment or supplies, all you truly need in the kitchen are some basic pots and pans, a trusty oven, and a few essential utensils.
Food is the great leveler – anyone can cook and bake, regardless of budget or space.
Cooking is also a wonderful opportunity to get creative in the kitchen. With some basic ingredients, you can rustle up a tasty, nutritious meal for yourself or others. Plus it’s an excellent way to learn about flavors and techniques from different cultures, cuisines and regions.
And if you really want to take your cooking skills up a notch, there are plenty of online tutorials that can help you refine your culinary prowess.
And the same goes for baking! Whether you’re a novice or an expert baker, there are always new things to learn in baking. From mastering the perfect batch of cupcakes to achieving that unbeatable sourdough crust – it’s all about challenging yourself and pushing your limits. And of course, reaping the rewards of your efforts in the form of delicious treats!
Mindful minimalist hobbies
With just a yoga mat and some comfortable clothing, you can easily dive into the world of yoga – a great form of mindfulness that involves mindful movement and breathing.
Yoga is accessible to all levels of fitness and ability – just make sure to look for classes or tutorials online that are tailored to your specific needs. Or head to your local gym and see if you can get a free trial for a yoga class. It’s a great excuse to get out of the house to enjoy a hobby.
In today’s world, it can be difficult to take a moment and just be. But with meditation, you can carve out space for yourself in your own head – a great way to reduce stress levels and connect with your inner self.
Meditation doesn’t have to involve sitting cross-legged on the floor for hours on end. You can try guided meditations or breathing exercises that only last a few minutes. The key is to just find something that works for you and stick to it!
Writing is a great way to clear your head and reflect on the highs and lows of life. It can be as creative or structured as you’d like it to be – ranging from writing daily gratitudes, drawing maps of your dreams, pasting in photos from travels, or simply jotting down your thoughts or challenges.
If you face a particular struggle, such as low self esteem or anxiety, journaling can be an incredibly helpful tool in identifying and working through the emotions. Journaling can also help you celebrate your successes and look back on them with pride.
Read also: 45 Journal Prompts for Self Love
Volunteering is an exceptional minimalist hobby that perfectly aligns with the principles of simplicity and purpose.
Unlike many hobbies that may require expensive equipment or clutter our living spaces with collections, volunteering demands nothing more than our time and willingness to give back to others. It allows us to engage in meaningful activities without the burden of material possessions.
This is a beneficial hobby for those who may feel overwhelmed with the clutter of their day-to-day, providing structure and purpose. And you can make some amazing connections and friendships in the process!
Check out your local charities or organisations to see what kind of volunteering opportunities are available near you.
DIY & home projects minimalist hobbies
A hobby my brother in law has recently taken up, homebrewing is a great way to get creative and craft something that you can enjoy with friends. It doesn’t have to be complicated, as there are plenty of starter kits available online and all you need is a few ingredients and some empty bottles (make sure you call on the family for some used drinks bottles!).
It’s an incredibly satisfying process to watch the beer turn from raw ingredients to liquid gold. Plus, there are no limits on the flavours and combinations you can try, allowing for lots of experimentation and crafty creations.
It’s also a great way to get together with friends, sharing your beer and stories at a weekend barbeque!
With just a few basic tools like a trowel, watering can, and some seeds or seedlings, you can create a beautiful garden space. Gardening allows you to slow down, be present in the moment, and witness the wonders of growth and life firsthand.
It’s a fantastic way to nurture a deeper appreciation for the natural world while fostering a sense of responsibility and care for the environment.
If you’re particularly leaning towards eco-minimalism, you can even look into growing your own food sustainably.
With hydroponics, you can cultivate plants without the need for traditional soil, which reduces the clutter associated with gardening tools and large outdoor spaces.
By adopting a hydroponic system, you can grow your favorite herbs, vegetables, or flowers indoors, even in limited spaces like apartments or small homes. All you require are a few basic components such as a reservoir, a nutrient solution, and a well-designed growing container.
This minimalist approach not only saves space but also minimises water usage compared to traditional gardening methods.
Hydroponics allows you to focus on the essentials of plant care and nurturing, making it one of the most rewarding and low-maintenance great hobbies for both seasoned gardeners and newbies.
Upcycling involves taking discarded or used materials and transforming them into something new and creative.
This is an incredibly versatile activity that allows you to save money as well as become more resourceful in your daily life. You can upcycle anything from furniture pieces, clothes, and even electronics.
Everyone has access to some form of junk lying around the house which they can repurpose into something more useful. Take an old suitcase, it’s possible to upcycle this into a small coffee table!
Upcycling is not only the best way to reduce the amount of waste sent to landfills but it also encourages a sustainable lifestyle that encourages creativity and minimalism.
Minimalist hobbies for small spaces
Chess, Sudoku, and Jigsaw Puzzles
When you live in a small space, it’s important to find activities that don’t require a lot of room. Thankfully, there are many board games and puzzle-based hobbies which take up minimal space.
Chess, Sudoku, and Jigsaw puzzles can be enjoyed in a small living area without sacrificing much floor space (or finances). These activities not only help you stay entertained but also sharpen your mind and keep boredom at bay.
They also keep us from spending hours scrolling on social media, making them ideal minimalist hobbies.
This is one of my favourite minimalist hobbies, especially when I travel. Card games are a great way to stay entertained and boost your mental acuity without having to take up too much space.
The best thing about card games is that you can play solo or in groups. Plus, they don’t require fancy equipment – just a pack of cards!
From classic card games such as Go Fish and Solitaire to popular ones like Lives or even Poker, there’s something here for everyone.
If you’ve got a natural talent and an ear for music and fancy yourself the next rising pop star, singing is the perfect minimalist hobby for you.
It’s incredibly easy to learn and doesn’t require any special equipment (unless you want to record your performances). Singing not only improves your vocal skills but also relaxes your mind, body, and soul. Even if you don’t have the best voice, singing always helps to up your mood!
You can practice at home or join a choir or singing group and make some new friends in the process.
Colouring isn’t just for kids! It’s an incredibly relaxing hobby for adults and one of the best minimalist hobbies you can take up.
All you need is a few colouring books and some pencils, markers, or crayons – these are really inexpensive items that won’t take up too much room in your home.
Colouring is said to have many mental health benefits too. It reduces stress and anxiety, helps to improve focus, and stimulates creative thinking.
Outdoor and active minimalist hobbies
This is one of my all-time favourite minimalist hobbies. Hiking is an awesome way to get out in the fresh air while getting some exercise in the process. All you need is a good pair of hiking boots, a few supplies (water, first aid kit, snacks), and you’re ready to go!
Hiking is incredibly rewarding, as it allows you to explore some of the most beautiful landscapes and get away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. It allows you to push your physical and mental limits, while also connecting you with nature.
For those of you who love to be outside, birdwatching is an excellent hobby. All you need is a pair of binoculars and a good spot in nature where you can observe the birds.
Birdwatching is really addicting and often leads to some great discoveries! It’s also said to improve focus, concentration, and relaxation while decreasing stress levels.
It’s one of those hobbies that isn’t as popular as it used to be, but is still a great option for those looking for an outdoor-related minimalist hobby.
If you’ve never heard of geocaching, it’s essentially a real-world treasure hunt where you use GPS coordinates to search for hidden caches in certain locations.
The caches can often contain items such as coins, trinkets, or notes from other geocachers that have visited before. This is an awesome way to explore new places and it requires minimal supplies, as all you need is a GPS device and something to put any treasures you find into.
Geocaching is one of the most fun and adventurous outdoor hobbies out there, and it’s certainly worth giving it a try if you’re looking for a unique hobby!
While not something I’ve ever got involved in (creaky joints and all!), jogging is a great hobby to take up if you’re looking for something that requires minimal material items. All you need is some good running shoes and comfortable clothes, then you can hit your local park and start running!
Jogging is a great way to keep fit and healthy in a minimalist way as it costs nothing but your own effort and time. It’s also a great way to clear your head and relieve stress, perfect for those days when you’re feeling overwhelmed.
While jogging isn’t for everyone (did I mention my creaky joints?), if you’re not ready to take up full on jogging, power walking is just as effective and puts less stress on your joints.
Whether you plan to dance around the kitchen or take some classes, dancing is a great way to express yourself and have fun at the same time. You can learn all sorts of different dance styles and take classes to improve your technique.
Dancing is a great form of exercise that doesn’t feel like a chore, and you don’t need any special equipment or supplies to get started. Just turn up the music, put on some comfy clothes, and start moving!
If you want to take a class but can’t find any near you, find some YouTube videos that teach dance or check out your local gym for Zumba classes.
Cycling is a great way to get outdoors and experience nature. And while you need to have the initial gear to get started – a bike, helmet, etc. – once you have the gear, it’s a great way to get around and explore without needing much else.
Cycling is also great exercise for your body and mind, giving you both physical and mental benefits. Plus, cycling can be done solo or with a group of friends, if you’re looking for some company on your journeys.
Online and digital minimalist hobbies
Blogging, YouTube, and Podcasting
This blog is my baby. And if I can do it, anyone can.
While there is a learning curve to all these online pastimes, once you figure out the basics of creating a website, recording audio and video content, or any other digital media skills necessary for your hobby, why not start blogging, podcasting or making YouTube videos?
These hobbies are great because they give you an outlet to express yourself and get creative, while also giving you the potential to make some money on the side.
If you need any help getting started with digital hobbies, I’ve started another blog that teaches just this! You can check out the blog itself or sign up to my free email course which takes you through each and every step in starting a blog.
Take an online course
In this digital age, there are so many online courses that you can take. Whether it’s to learn a new language, learn how to code or learn how to start a new business, taking an online class is a great way to expand your knowledge and pass the time.
Chess is a classic game that’s been around since the 6th century, but you don’t need to find another person to play with in order to enjoy this hobby! Nowadays, there are plenty of online chess sites where you can play against other people or even against a computer program.
You can also join tournaments and compete with others for a fun challenge.
While I don’t recommending spending hours and hours online playing chess, it’s still a great way to break up your day and keep yourself entertained. Just remember to step away from the computer every once in awhile.
Web design is an interesting and rewarding hobby that you can do when you find yourself with some extra time. You don’t need to be a professional web developer, but having some basic coding knowledge will help you get started.
You can create beautiful websites from scratch or customise existing templates with unique features. This hobby also has potential for side income too if you manage to develop websites for clients.
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Hobbies for Minimalists: The Key Takeaway
As you can see, hobbies don’t necessarily have to take up a lot of space and time in your life. There are plenty of minimalist hobbies that you can choose from to make your life more fun and fulfilling.
The key is to find something that inspires you and gives you joy while still allowing you to live a simple life.
Don’t be afraid to try out new things and explore different hobbies. You might find a new minimalist hobby that you truly cherish!