Visiting the library remains the most common cultural activity Americans engage in, by far. The average 10.5 trips to the library U.S. adults report taking in 2019 exceeds their participation in eight other common leisure activities. Americans attend live music or theatrical events and visit national or historic parks roughly four times a year on average and visit museums and gambling casinos 2.5 times annually. Trips to amusement or theme parks (1.5) and zoos (.9) are the least common activities among this list.
These data — collected in a Dec. 2-15, 2019 Gallup poll — are an update from a December 2001 survey. Though the overall rankings at the beginning of the millennium remain the same today, a small decrease has occurred in reported trips to the movie theater (down 1.3 average visits). Meanwhile, small increases have taken place in average reports of visiting a museum (up 0.7 average visits), attending a live music or theatrical event (up 1.1 average visits) and visits to a national or historical park (up 1.3 average visits).
Women Visit Libraries Nearly Twice as Frequently as Men
Men and woman report doing most activities at about the same rate, but there are a few key differences:
- Women report visiting the library nearly twice as frequently as men do, 13.4 to 7.5 visits.
- Men are more likely than women to visit casinos, attend sporting events and visit national or historical parks
- Reports of Leisure and Activities, by Gender
- Reports of Leisure and Activities, by Age Group
- Reports of Leisure and Activities, by Income Group
- Reports of Leisure and Activities, by Children Under 18 in Household
- Reports of Leisure and Activities, by Region