19 Drinking Experiences You Absolutely Have to Have This Summer

Summer is upon us, so we’re filling our calendars with a ton of fun activities to make the most of the season. Things like barbecues and beach days are absolute musts—and are even better with thirst-quenching adult beverages. No matter if you live in the city, country or somewhere in-between, this is the ultimate summer drinking bucket list to have on hand at all times. Make sure you cross off at least five by Labor Day.

Take a Booze Cruise

Nothing says “summer’s here” like jumping aboard a boat and setting sail with a drink in hand. No matter where you live, there’s a booze cruise that’s perfect for your needs. Bonus points if you know someone who owns a yacht.

Booze at the Beach

Dust off the cooler, whip up a gallon-sized cocktail and head straight for the shore. Perhaps our favorite way to enjoy the summer months, a boozy beach day will make you feel like you’re on vacation, even if it’s only for a few hours. Impress all of your friends and stock your cooler with Margarita popsicles to cool down.

Sip Cocktails by the Campfire

For lovers of the great outdoors, a weekend spent sleeping under the stars is a no-brainer. You’ll get a chance to connect with nature and try out some nifty outdoor drinking gadgets. Remember to pack a few flaskable whiskey cocktails to wash down those s’mores shots.

Throw a Pool Party

Mix up a big batch of tiki drinks and blow up the unicorn floats—it’s time for a pool party! Play host for the day if you have a pool (lucky) or volunteer a fun-loving friend’s place—or just set up a kiddie pool, it’s still cold water. Encourage guests to don tropical gear to make the ‘grams extra memorable.

Host a Backyard Barbecue

When you catch the smell of delicious meat wafting through the air, you know that summer has finally arrived. Tell your friends to bring their favorite sausages and steaks while you provide the condiments, side dishes and punch. While you’re at it, throw some fruit on the grill and use it to make smoky cocktails.

Visit a Distillery

‘Tis the season for holiday weekends and summer Fridays. Use the time off to travel upstate, to the shore or simply book a hotel in a nearby city. If you want to make it an extra boozy mini vacay, stay overnight at a distillery and fill your weekend with tours and tastings.

Drink a Frozen Cocktail

If it’s 90 degrees and there’s no cooling body of water in sight, the next best thing to do is slip into an icy, frozen cocktail. Break out the blender and turn your kitchen into a tropical cocktail shack.

Share a Big Bowlful of Drink

Summer is all about gathering friends together and enjoying the longer days and radiant sunshine. To bond even more, mix up a Scorpion Bowl or a big fishbowl cocktail for everyone to share. Bonus: It makes for easy cleanup (only one glass).

Bury a Boozy Time Capsule

Throw together a boozy time capsule filled with your favorite spirits and recipes of the moment, and bury it in your backyard. Set the open date for five, 10, 20 or even 30 years in the future and promise yourself that you’ll mix a cocktail when you finally dig it up for a spirited trip down memory lane.

Spend an Afternoon Day Drinking

Sipping spritzes at 2 p.m. on a warm summer day is most people’s idea of a good time. Make sure you have the ingredients on hand to make a whole batch of sippable, low alcohol drinks and block off a Sunday afternoon.

Fill Some Fruit With Alcohol

There are many uses for summer fruit—pies, jams, salads—but the most fun way to take advantage of the season’s bounty is by spiking it. Carve a hole into a watermelon, tip a bottle of reasonably priced vodka or rum into it, let it sit for at least a few hours (or up to overnight). Then, start scooping and snacking.

Drink on a Roof

Great views, warm breezes and cold drinks—rooftop bars let you look down on all the little people below you and know that you are doing summer better than them. Almost all of them are only up for just a few summer months, so get in and enjoy them while you can.

Muddle Something

Summer cocktails abound with fresh fruit and fresh herbs so stock up and get the muddler ready. Strawberries, blackberries, blueberries—gotta smash them all.

Win a Drinking Game

It’s finally time to take that cornhole (or “baggo” if you’re a weirdo) set out of the closet. Outdoor drinking games are the best way to get your competitive juices flowing while continuing to day drink uninterrupted.

Go to a Beer Garden

You and a couple hundred of your closest friends enjoying liters of beer in the sunshine. Does it get any better? Yes, because you can also enjoy foot-long sausages and soft pretzels bigger than your head.

Stop Traffic with a Pedal Bar

You might get a few eye rolls from people who are not bold enough to climb aboard the self-powered drinking establishment, but that shouldn’t stop you from hopping onto a pedal bar. The 12-person mobile parties are a great way to see cities like Nashville and Buffalo.

Cut Out of Work Early to Get to Happy Hour

We hope you have summer Fridays, but even if you don’t, go ahead and take a half day and find a happy hour that starts at 3 p.m. This is your big chance to enjoy great deals and an empty bar at the same time.

Go one step beyond a simple frosty drink and turn your booze into an actual frozen treat. They’re super easy and are guaranteed to make you feel like a kid again.

Drink at a Professional Sports Game

Baseball, soccer or preseason football, anyone? Whatever your sport of choice, stadiums have been upping the quality of their drink offerings over the last several years. Now, it’s not just crummy beer and whatever you sneak into the bleachers in a flask. It’s more like going to a cocktail or beer bar, but one where you and 30,000 people get to boo the visiting team.