Searching for a Pandemic Hobby? 7 Niche Hobbies to Explore

After over a year locked inside, it’s no wonder that people are feeling restless. Humans are social creatures, and we’re more than a little prone to boredom. The effects of quarantine on mental health have made the pandemic particularly hard to cope with.

At the same time, there is a silver lining to the effects of self-quarantine. The world has seen a boom in adopting personal hobbies similar to that of the Great Depression.

While common hobbies like reading, playing musical instruments, gardening, and cooking have increased, some more unusual hobbies have also come to the forefront. If the typical boredom-killing fare isn’t doing it for you, here are seven niche hobbies you can try while you’re COVID-safe.

Model railroading

Many people developed an interest in building model railroads as children when they received a set for Christmas, only to put the practice aside in later years. Many people returned to this hobby during the pandemic out of nostalgia and rediscovered how fulfilling it can be. More customization options are out there than ever before, such as eye-catching lighting options from providers like Evan Designs. Whether you’re a toy train veteran or discovering models for the first time, there’s a kit out there for you.

Tarot reading

Metaphysical hobbies like astrology and fortune-telling have also seen a marked increase since March of 2020. Tarot has become especially popular. The traditional 78-card deck is full of symbolism and intriguing art, and there are a plethora of unique decks available online and in spiritual shops. Learning how to read the tarot and the individual meanings of each card can be a fulfilling hobby and make you popular at dinner parties when the pandemic ends.

Birdhouse building

Woodworking saw an increase in popularity during the pandemic. Many former Boy Scouts remember building birdhouses in their childhood, which lends this particular hobby a sense of nostalgia. It’s something you can do with your hands and see instant results as you watch birds make homes out of your handiwork.

Letter writing

In the age of emails, text messages, and FaceTime, letter writing has become a dead art. Yet, many are bringing the practice back as a delightful pastime. Writing by hand offers numerous cognitive benefits. With an enormous variety of stationary and writing implements available, you can customize your letters and brighten loved ones’ days with some snail mail.


All forms of art have seen a drastic increase during the pandemic. While painting and drawing have always been popular, sculpting offers a unique tactile experience. The intimate interaction between hands and clay can help you feel more connected to the art you create, and that connection is paramount during challenging times like these.


Another unusual hobby, bookbinding, is a time-consuming but highly satisfying pastime with tangible results. Rebind old family tomes, or give your book collection a gorgeous, personalized appearance to make every bookshelf a work of art.


Canning is a less common hobby that provides direct benefits in the kitchen. Learning to preserve fruit, vegetables, sauces, and other food items comes in handy down the road, providing you with a well-stocked pantry as you prepare every meal.

Wrap up

It may take some time to find the right hobby to fill your time during the pandemic. Try a few different activities until you land on the one that speaks to you. After all, you know what people say about idle hands.