50 things to do for my 50th

50 things to do for my 50th birthday

In case it’s not apparent from the title I’m 50 this year!

I’m not one for parties but I do want to celebrate my half century. I’ve decided on a self indulgent year, doing more of those things I always meant to do, from outdoor activities to attending talks and shows.

It’s not a bucket list but a list of 50 things to do this year. Some exciting, some relaxing, some easy to achieve, others more challenging. But all things I want to do, rather than feel obliged to do.

I’ve split my list into categories and over the course of 2020 will do five of each of the following: 

  • Journeys. By rail, foot and bicycle. Maybe a long distance walk, definitely a cross country cycle ride.
  • Things that scare me. Water scares me the most, but I’m aiming for enjoyable experiences so I won’t be windsurfing or scuba diving. Instead I’ll head high (abseiling) and low (caving). Just the right level of scariness.
  • Sleeps away. Probably in a tent or holiday cottage. A wild camp would be perfect but it’s tricky to find the right place.
  • Theatre trips. I have low brow theatrical tastes and am proud of it. Give me an uplifting musical any day over a harrowing play.
  • Food experiences. Cookery classes, food tours and a once in a lifetime restaurant. All veggie of course.
  • Lectures, talks or tours. I’m interested in travel tales, wildlife and outdoor adventures. If you can recommend any let me know.
  • Active days out. I’m slowly getting through my UK bucket list. This is a great motivator to visit a few more places on the list; one will definitely be Up at the O2, as I have a Christmas present voucher to use.
  • Cinema visits. This should be an easy thing to do at any time but I always manage to miss films in the cinema. Must make an effort to go this year.
  • Read books people recommend to me. I read a lot but am stuck in a rut. If it wasn’t for my book group I’d end up only reading crime novels. Please recommend your favourite books to me!
  • Outdoor/wildlife experiences. In case you don’t know I love the countryside. This year I hope to see purple emperor butterflies, a bittern and an otter somewhere local. And maybe even the sea eagle that has taken up residence in Oxfordshire! Probably the hardest of my challenges to achieve.

2021 update

In hindsight, perhaps 2020 wasn’t the best year to attempt these challenges but it wasn’t all bad!

Read my blog post to find out how I got on with my 50 challenges.

6 thoughts on “50 things to do for my 50th birthday”

  1. Oooh! Fun idea. I like that’s it’s not a bucket list as such, just a cool things list. I may steal it. And I shall have to think of recommendations, but if you want to see birds, the Wetlands Centres (there are a few of them) are great. I saw a bittern in the London one the very first time I went! They have otters, but they are captive not wild. I’ll have a think about book recommendations…

    1. I’m very envious you’ve seen a bittern – they frequent our local RSPB nature reserve but have I ever seen one? Nope!

  2. Hi Christine, I turned 50 at Christmas and it was a rather quiet affair by choice. I do like your idea of 50 things to do to mark your half a century. 50 outdoor or wildlife experience would suit me. I hope you get to see the sea eagle, they are amazing birds!… I’ve read some great books and some not so great books. I can recommend the Secret Life Of Bees by Sue Monk Kid and The Kite Runner by Khalid Hosseini, bot good books that stayed with me for a long time after closing them for the last time.


    1. Thanks Debbie, and happy belated birthday. I hope I see the sea eagle too but (for good reasons) it’s exact location is secret although I have a rough idea. Thank you for the book recommendations – I have read both of them but you’ll be glad to hear I loved them too!

  3. I’m 50 in 2022 so might steal some of your ideas. Books to read that you may not have already read: A Prayer for Owen Meany; The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay; A Wizard of Earthsea; Precious Bane; The Children’s Book; A Secret History; North and South; The Moonstone; Hard Times.

    1. Thanks very much for the book recommendations! A prayer for Owen Meany is one of my top 10 books, love it. I have heard of some of your recommendations so will be off to look them up in a moment.

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