Nostalgic Recall: 21 Iconic Experiences Only 1960s Kids Can Relate To

Growing up in the 1960s was a truly unique experience. Free from the restrictions of technology and safety concerns, kids had free reign to explore their imaginations and hang out with friends. Nowadays, kids will never experience the same freedoms as those who grew up during this iconic cultural decade.  

Only true ’60s kids will be able to relate to some of these memorable experiences from back in the day. 

Complete Freedom

Portrait little cute adorable caucasian toddler boy in safety helmet enjoy having fun riding exercise bike in city park road yard garden forest. Child first bike. Kid outdoors sport summer activities
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Back in the 1960s, there weren’t the same parental concerns or safety restrictions as there are now. With less emphasis on ‘stranger danger,’ kids had complete freedom to run amuck, making for some truly memorable experiences.

The Mini Skirt

stylish woman wearing yellow hoodie and purple skirt
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The mini skirt may be a modern-day staple now but back in the 60s, it was a revolutionary moment for fashion and women’s liberation. Wearing one of these controversial skirts was the epitome of cool and a truly iconic look from the decade.

Staycations

a family doing a staycation in a minivan
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Staycations were all the rage. Carting the family around in a beat-up caravan to stay by the beach or visit family was the best part of the summer. There was no need and no means to fly abroad, so you made the most of what was at your doorstep.

The Best Hobbies

little girl carefully learning to sew kids
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Kids in the 60s had the most incredible imaginations. Not to mention all the best hobbies were practically free! Kids back then were far more creative, getting into sewing and crocheting, sticker books, arts and crafts, or even marbles. Not to mention, kids read, played sports, and socialized face to face. 

Playtime

Kids making a bird feeder
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Spending hours in your bedroom or having constant sleepovers was never a major concern for parents. Without technology, kids used their imaginations and got creative. From playing Cluedo indoors to skipping in the garden to playing hide-and-seek at the local park, childhood was full of fun and games without the stresses of the modern online world.

Smoking In Public Places

Photo of smoking man on pink background.
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Any kid who grew up in the 60s will have a strong memory of the smell of cigarette smoke wafting around wherever they went. Back then, there were no smoking regulations. Many boomers will remember having to take a slip note to the local shop to pick up a pack of cigarettes for a parent or visiting family member. 

Zero Screen Time

Group of kids having fun in the field
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Nowadays, kids couldn’t possibly fathom a world without screens. For boomer kids in the 1960s, screens just didn’t exist. This meant they would live in the moment, form deeper connections, and build a real community. 

Roller Skating

young people listening to music while on roller skates
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Roller skating was an iconic part of growing up in the 60s. Going for a skate around town was the best way to hang out with your friends and catch up on all the local gossip, especially during the summer months. 

Cheap Concerts

Crowd at concert
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Live music was so much more accessible back then. Not to mention, meeting your heroes was actually possible. Back in the 60s, it was commonplace for fans or groupies to wait outside the venues for the chance to meet their favorite artists. 

Summer Jobs

young woman doing mail delivery service
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Most boomers had summer or after-school jobs. Whether it was working at the local cinema or delivering the mail, these jobs were invaluable ways of making pocket money. This is undoubtedly the reason boomers have cultivated such a strong work ethic. 

Etch-a-Sketch

etch a sketch toy
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The Etch-a-Sketch was the most sought-after Christmas gift from the 1960s. Today’s kids will never understand the highs and lows of crafting the perfect masterpiece with those impossibly fiddly dials on one of these iconic toys. 

The Dreaded Hairwashing Night

a young woman with unkempt hair
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It was a universal fact that Saturday nights were reserved for the painful ordeal of hair-washing night. Having to endure the endless combing of unruly tangles before being forced to go to be with wet hair was the worst. One good thing about the modern world was the invention of the handheld hair dryer.

Fire Hydrants

kids playing with fire hydrant
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Back in the 60s, playing with the local fire hydrants was the best way to hang out and cool off in the hot summer months. Kids would use the hydrants to transform the streets into a makeshift water park and the perfect summer hangout spot.

Fizz Wiz

Fizz wiz candy
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The candy back in the 1960s was on a whole other level. Fizz Wiz popping candy was in a league of its own. Letting the candy snap, pop, and crackle on your tongue was a whole new experience, and well worth the stress it gave your parents about rotting teeth. 

Hitchhiking

Hitchhiking travel man at the route
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Hitchhiking was a relatively common mode of transport. The whole “stranger danger” ordeal wasn’t really on people’s minds back then, so taking a ride with a kind stranger seemed a perfectly reasonable way to travel.

PB&J Sandwiches Galore

peanut butter and jelly sandwich
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Apparently, peanut allergies weren’t a thing back in the 60s because every kid came equipped for their day with their trusty PB&J. 

Star Trek

Man holding Star Trek magazine
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Getting to experience firsthand the original release of Star Trek at the same time as the first moon landing was a truly mind-blowing experience. One of the most memorable TV series of the decade, it genuinely felt like a glimpse into the future!

The Beatles

1967-1970 The Beatles album cover
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Forget Taylor Swift, in the 60s Beatlemania was all the rage. Modern music could never compete with the pure musical genius of the decade. 

Birthday Parties

mother kissing one son as the other stands looking on birthday celebration
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Back in the ’60s, birthday parties were legendary. Without the pressures of social media, kids were allowed to be kids. Parties used to be intimate affairs that you’d share with all your closest besties, featuring birthday tea, cake, the coolest new music, and the best party games. 

The Cinema

A crowd of happy spectators are in the movie
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The cinema was the ultimate luxury. Kids would wait patiently for the release of the newest blockbusters at their local theatres. Cinema provided a magical new world for kids, bringing to life their favorite colorful characters and exciting new adventures like never before.

The Good Ol’ Days

Peaceful older woman resting alone at home, having nostalgic mood looking serene, recollect memories sits on couch, smile staring out window feels satisfied, enjoy carefree life on retirement concept
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Nostalgia always helps us view the past through rose-tinted glasses. However, growing up in the 1960s was an iconic experience, one that kids these days will never get to experience. The 1960s were a time of simplicity and freedom that fostered a wild sense of imagination for kids. It’s no surprise we can look back so fondly on the decade. 

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