Road trip activities for 11 year olds plus older and younger are an absolute must on any type of long or short travel.
A family road trip is a perfect recipe for making memories with people you love the most!
But, a long car ride with those people you love the most can quickly turn to a not so fun memory after you’ve heard “are we there yet” for the fifteenth time.
That’s exactly why I came up with some super fun road trip activities for 11 year old and older kids. Plus, younger kids and even some fun game ideas for the whole family.
You’ll also find a few more ideas on how you can create the best road trips activities and road trips snacks for your adventure.
Don’t snacks make everything better?!
I want you to have a lot of fun together on your long trip or short trip.
The goal is that the actual drive to your family vacation is just a launching point for amazing family memories you’ll make on your vacation!
Here is what you can expect in this post to set your family up for the best road trip ever!
In this post you will find:
- Road Trip Activities for 11 Year olds (aka Older Kids)
- Road Trip Activities for Younger Kids
- Road Trip Activities for the Whole Family
- Screen Time Road Trip Entertainment
- Bonus Points for Road Trip Snack
- How to Use these Ideas to Create Your Road Trip Activity Kit
Once you go through each list you can pick and choose what fun car games you want to include for your families great road trip activity kit!
There’s a printable at the end to help you keep everything organized!
Also, investing in a travel tray like this will help you a ton! It gives your kids a place to put their drawing, scavenger hunt printables and snacks.
So they don’t end up all over the floor board of the car!
Some affiliate links are included, meaning I get a small commission if you purchase through my link at no additional cost to you.
Road Trip Activities for for 11 Year olds (aka Older Kids)
Here is a list of the best road trip activities for 11 year olds and older or a little younger!
You are the best gage to know what your activities your child is ready for.
The activities for older children can also be done with younger children in the family if you would like to structure it that way. But, the little kids will most likely need help from the older kids.
License Plate Game
This game is perfect for long drives and you don’t need any materials, so that’s an added bonus!
The goal of the license plate game is to find each of the 50 states on license plates.
Before you start playing the License Plate Games it’s a good idea to determine how long you are going to play it. Is it for the whole car ride or just for an hour? You get to decide.
There are three different ways to play this game. It’s a good idea to look at the different options so each family member knows what to expect!
These are great travel games and can provide some laughs.
Especially one like this Goofy Mad Libs game.
It is a word game. The players write the missing word on each page to create your own funny story.
Then whoever is holding the game can read it out loud so the rest of the car can get a good laugh too!
It can be a good bonding experience for the whole family!
Magnetic fidget spinners like this one are great for focusing your attention to one place. They’re also great for relieving stress or anxiety.
It gives your child or you somewhere to focus and not think about any stressors that may be bothering them.
Or just simply entertain them on long car rides!
All you need for this game is an alphabet checklist and a pencil. But, you don’t have to use any materials if you don’t want to and trust the other players, haha!
The goal is to be the first one to find road signs for every letter of the alphabet in alphabetical order.
Once one player calls out a sign for a letter. Another player is not allowed to use that same sign.
For example, Letter A from the Cracker Barrel sign.
Then no one else can use that sign.
The first person to complete the alphabet wins!!
Writing in a travel journal is a great way for your older kids to write down things they want to do on their vacation.
Or, if you’re traveling home they can write down things they saw and did.
A journal is a great way for them to reflect and be entertained!
Doing a road trip scavenger hunt is a great way to get your kids interacting and observing their surroundings.
This specific scavenger hunt includes one for younger kids and older kids.
They can keep track of what they found by checking the boxes and then at the end of the trip you can see who wins!
This book, Card Games for Kids, offers 36 different card games they can play with just one deck of cards.
Instructions are simple and I love that all you need is this book and a deck of cards for so many game options.
This one would also be great to play in the hotel during your vacation!
Here are a few of the best road trip games that you should keep on hand
Most of the game pieces are magnetic so they are easy to keep up with.
This game is so thinking cute! And it’s so nostalgic. I remember playing this game on repeat when I was growing up. But, now it’s been upgraded with this cute magnetic board.
This is created by Melissa & Doug and anything they create is pure gold in my opinion.
Playing this memory game is another way that older and younger siblings could play together as well. Since a younger child could easily play this game as well.
All the best board games but miniature and magnetic
In this pack you’ll find Checkers, Space Venture, Auto Race, TicTacToe and so much more!
Road Trip Activities for Younger Kids
You can buy coloring books in bulk so you have a variety of options to offer your younger kids.
Coloring is a great road trip activity. Especially if your kids really love to color.
This could potentially keep them busy and happy for a while!
A simple game with the ability to entertain young children. Yes please!
This is the same one your older kids can play but you’ll need to most likely modify it for the older kids.
The goal is to look at signs as you drive and to find each letter of the alphabet. Starting with A and finishing at Z.
But, you could modify it from giving them this alphabet chart then having them identify any letters they find on road signs.
Another opportunity for the older kids to help and be the hero!
There are a good variety of sticker books that would be really fun to take on your road trip.
Although, I would have a talk beforehand and tell them that stickers are supposed to go in the book. Not on their car seat or brother or sister. haha
Here are a few that are very interactive, mess free and so fun:
- Make a Face – Reusable Stickers
- Animal Habitat Stickers
- On the Farm – Puffy Reusable Stickers
- Dot It – No Mess Sticker Art
Find Different Shapes
It might sound easy because it is.
Simply call out the name of a shape and have your young child look out the window or in the car to find that shape.
For example, you yell out, CIRCLE! They might say tire, steering wheel, sun…you get the gist.
A great way to connect learning with the world around them.
Dollar Store Activities
One of my favorite things to do before a family road trip is to take a visit to the Dollar Store. Go down the toy aisle, the craft aisle and even the cooking aisle. You are looking for toys or things that could look interesting to your kids.
I then pack them all in a bag and hand them out to my children for good behavior or when I can just tell we need a switch up in car activities.
Making a visit to your local library to check out books for each age group of your kids is a great idea!
It’s free and new books always have the potential of keeping a child’s attention for a while.
You could have siblings read to each other or just look at pictures if they are not reading yet.
I made some printable road trip games just for you to use on your car trip!
The scavenger hunt one was also mentioned for the older kids games because I give you two modified version.
One for younger kids and one for older kids.
Players need to find items in or out of the car and then check it off their list. The first one to check off all the things or the most, depending on how you want to play the game, wins!
Then I also made a car color scavenger hunt for you!
The goal is to find all the different colors and types of cars. Again, the one with the most checked off their list wins!
These scavenger hunts are great for kids of all ages and a fun way to get older and younger siblings interacting.
If you haven’t noticed I’ve included several activities where siblings have the chance to interact constructively.
I have 3 kids so I know how quickly things can go south if they don’t have direction.
Oh, how I love Wikki Stix!!
They are made of bendable materials so your children can easily mold them into different creations.
You may want to join in on this one, so keep a few in the front seat for you!
Kids can simply use the Wikki Stix to create whatever their imagination comes up with.
Or, they have come up with this kit that gives cards they can lay the Wikki Stix on and make the designs and there are also some games they can play with them.
For this activity all you need is pipe cleaners and cheerios or fruit loops.
Have your child string the cereal onto the pipe cleaners to make a snack bracelet!
This is so much fun for the kids and also a great way to work on fine motor skills!
Then they have a snack ready and around their wrist. They can eat it whenever they want then make another one when they need a refill!
Plus, pipe cleaners are also great for molding and creating. Along the same line of the Wikki Stix!
Road Trip Activities for the Whole Family
I Spy with My Little Eye
This is a classic game you can simply play with the objects in your car. I suggest making it a rule that you can only use objects in the car because outside objects pass by too quickly.
The spy says, “I spy with my little eye something (insert the color of their choice).
The first person to answer correctly becomes the next spy!
In this game the first player gets to decided what the person, place or thing is and then they don’t tell anyone.
They tell the group what they chose…person, place or thing. But, that’s it!
Then the rest of the players ask yes or no questions to figure out what the object is that the first player is thinking of.
The first person to figure out the object wins and gets to pick the object the next round.
Bring back the classic games!
Here is a list of family friendly audible audio books you can all listen to together.
Reading together is so good at creating conversation and that family bond that we all want!
Count the Stop Signs
Literally…it is as it sounds.
See who can count the most stop signs.
This is a good one once you get off the exit and you are desperate for last minute entertaintment.
Especially good for competitive families!
Screen Time Road Trip Entertainment
Screen time is not my first choice but on long road trips it can be a great tool! If it makes you feel better you can set a time limit to ensure that you or your children don’t lean on screen time too heavily.
We bought a portable DVD player for our son on our first road trip to Florida.
It was Paw Patrol but this Baby Shark one is the only one I could find similar to it. We liked it because it came with headphones and it’s own carrying case.
Our son loved it and felt so special that he had his own DVD Player. He still has it years later!
There are some nicer version that our dual screen if you are wanting mutliple children to be able to view the screens.
Screen time is a great tool that can be helpful to kids and parents!
There are also some pretty inexpensive portable video games that have 182 classic retro video games already on them!
I don’t know a ton about video games but I need to start learning because my 7 year old is ready to play them!
We do love FREE Apps on my phone like PBS Kids and Starfall!
Bonus Points for Road Trip Snacks
Make sure you have a flat surface so food doesn’t end up everywhere. Using travel trays is a great way to give your children a place to put their snacks and games!
I mentioned this travel tray already! It’s especially awesome because the actual tray is a dry erase board.
But, if you’re looking for something smaller. This one is a great choice as well!
You already know that snacks are essential for any car trip.
Wether it be a trip to the grocery our a trip across the United States.
Having a stash of your kids favorite snacks will always be a life saver.
This is my favorite bundle of road trip snacks that are already pre-packaged!
How to Use these Ideas to Create Your Road Trip Activity Kit
The best way to use these road trip activity ideas is to go through them and decide what would be the best options for your your family.
I’ve made this printable for you so you can easily keep up with what the older kids need, younger kids, snack ideas, and screen time options.
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Anything to make things less chaotic is yes for me!
I sincerely hope these road trip activities help you and your family have the happiest of travels!
And just in case no one has told you today…thank you!
Thank you for going to the trouble of looking up ways to entertain your kids while you take them on an awesome vacation you planned!
Thank you for packing all the clothes and coming up with all the activities!
You are doing a really great job! Way better than you realize!
Solidarity sister! Go get ’em!