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12 Best Hobbies for History Buffs

History buffs are often curious about what others do in their free time, and many history buff’s hobbies can seem surprisingly unrelated. For example, some people who enjoy reading the histories of battles might also enjoy playing a video game that is set in a historical context. The list below includes ten different hobbies that span a variety of interests and abilities, but all have one thing in common: they’re perfect for history buffs! Read on to learn more about these 10 popular hobbies for history buffs.

Best Hobbies for History Buffs

Reading Historical Fiction Books

Reading books set during periods of history you find interesting is an excellent way to get more out of your hobby. Many novels contain historically accurate details which can provide valuable insight into the world at that time or help you better understand how an event developed.

Aside from learning about history, many people enjoy reading historical fiction because it’s a great way to escape the stresses of modern life. Books that are set in the past allow you to explore different countries and eras without having to deal with preparing travel arrangements or visas.

You can also learn more about other cultures by experiencing them through the eyes of fictional characters who have much different perspectives than your own. Reading historical books can be especially effective when paired with watching documentaries, as they help reinforce each other’s points so you can remember details easier.

Watching Documentaries

One of the best ways to learn more about history is by watching documentaries. There are tons of informative films available, and many of them can be streamed online.

While it’s often better to watch documentaries that are specifically related to your interests (e.g. ancient Rome for you ancient history buffs), some people find that it can be interesting to mix things up a bit. Watching documentaries which focus on topics like animals, cultures, politics, etc., can give you an added perspective when you return to studying the histories associated with your hobby.

Performing Historical Reenactments

If you love learning more about history but don’t want to read or watch films/documentaries, then reenacting might be for you! Historically accurate reenactments often include playing the roles of soldiers, peasants, and other common people who lived during a certain time period.

Re-enacting can be especially fun for history buffs who tend to take an interest in experiencing everything possible about their hobbies. For example: many medieval reenactors enjoy cooking or sewing as much as they enjoy taking part in battles. Even if you aren’t interested in dressing up and participating day-to-day like these fans, there are still plenty of events such as themed parties where you can get your historical fix!

Cooking Historical Recipes

If you love learning more about history but don’t want to read or watch films/documentaries, then trying out historical recipes might be for you! Many cultures have kept detailed records of what they ate over the years, so there are plenty of cook books available for almost any time period you can imagine.

Try doing some research by looking at old cookbooks or asking fellow historians for advice on which ones to try. If you enjoy cooking, then learning how to make food from different places and eras is a great way to get more out of your hobby!

Sewing Historical Clothing

If you love learning more about history but don’t want to read or watch films/documentaries, then sewing historical clothing might be for you! Most people spend their free time wearing modern clothes, but sewing outfits that are inspired by certain eras can help bring your hobbies more into the present day.

For example, if you’re a fan of the American Civil War then you can sew your own reproduction uniform. Or, if you love ancient Greece’ consider sewing yourself a fun toga! Even if your sewing skills aren’t perfect yet, making garments from history is a great way to increase your historical knowledge while having fun.


Geonology is the study of historical locations, and history buffs can often find plenty to learn by visiting different places. They don’t even have to travel far; the next US state over might be home to a historic battlefield or museum which you’ve never visited before.

Many people like trying this hobby because it also gets them outdoors in beautiful areas away from big cities and busy intersections. There are countless other benefits as well, such as having more opportunities for taking pictures or writing journal entries!

Traveling to New Places

Another way history buffs can increase their knowledge is by traveling to new places, and doing it for free! There are many websites which list ways to travel cheaply or for free.

For example: some travelers like using Couchsurfing as a way to meet new people and save money on the trip of a lifetime. Or, you might even find people who will let you sleep at their house in exchange for watching their pets or babysitting their children – just ask around!

Watching Sports Matches

Some history buffs actually enjoy watching sports matches as means of increasing their historical knowledge. Watching athletes compete in different types of sports from all over the world can help give you a better appreciation of your hobbies and how they’ve evolved over time.

Sports matches can be a great way to learn more about historical events too, such as World War II since many teams and athletes were used for propaganda purposes. Doing research like this can add extra depth to your favorite pastimes while also getting you out of the house on weekends!

Medieval Martial Arts

Some history buffs actually enjoy practicing medieval martial arts as means of increasing their historical knowledge. These sports include moves that were made popular by knights, footmen, and other warriors from different periods in history.

Practicing these methods is a fun alternative to going to a gym or playing a sport, so try finding a local training club to see if it’s the right hobby for you.

Writing Historical Fiction

Many people like writing historical fiction as a way of increasing their historical knowledge, and countless famous historians started out doing this. George R.R Martin is probably the most well-known example of a history lover who became an author in order to share his love with others.

Since many novels are based on real life events or have been inspired by real people from history, they can be a great starting point when learning about new times and places. Plus, you might even create your own characters! Seeing how much research you can put into a book can also help you gain deeper understanding of whatever subject matter you’re exploring at the time.

Reading Novels

Many history buffs also enjoy reading novels as a means of increasing their historical knowledge. For example, you might want to pick up a book set in Ancient Rome and learn more about the daily lives of the time period.

You can also read books that are based on real events or people from history, which can be another good starting point when learning about new subjects. Plus, there’s nothing like relaxing with a good book in your spare time! It doesn’t matter if you’re not much of a fiction fan either; historical non-fiction is full of interesting facts and stories too.

Playing Historical Games

Some history buffs actually enjoy playing historical games as means of increasing their historical knowledge. Whether it’s taking part in reenactments of the Battle of Gettysburg or playing a round of Risk, there are plenty of games out there which can be used to learn more about historical places and events.

For example, you could play any one of countless World War II board games in order to prepare for upcoming conflicts during this period. For extra educational value, try looking up the history behind each game before trying it out for yourself! You might even find your new favorite pastime in the process.


Hopefully, these ten hobbies will help you learn more about history while also having fun. Whether you enjoy making music or sports, there’s something for everyone!

However, if none of these ideas sound like your cup of tea don’t worry; countless other hobbies are out there which could be used to improve your understanding. You just need to find the right one!

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