21 Most Popular Hobbies of the World’s Richest People (May Not Be Cheap!)

21 Most Popular Hobbies of the World’s Richest People

Have you heard the phrase ‘not all hobbies are the same’? Rolling your eyes at us, aren’t you? Of course, you already know that. But we are talking about the importance and even the cost of pursuing the hobby. If fact, we can also talk about how the same activity would be taken up differently by different people. 

But we cannot deny that some hobbies are limited to the rich. Who’d want to spend millions of dollars on a hobby unless you have enough bank balance, right? While we already have a list of hobbies for the rich, we thought we’d see what the rich and ultra-rich actually like to do.

And boy, we did come across some interesting and even unexpected hobbies in the process. Apparently, even rich people like to pursue simple hobbies. They might look at them from another perspective, but they do enjoy doing what is considered ordinary. 

Moreover, they seem to be inclined towards giving and caring. Not all of them obviously, but a good portion of the ultra-rich take-up charity and donate for noble causes. They also make good investment choices as a side hobby. It’s not limited to the stock and crypto markets. We are talking about investing in teams and people (in millions). 

Let us not talk around in circles anymore. Scroll down the post to read about 21 popular hobbies of the world’s richest people. Do you think trying to practice some of them would make us rich? Or does it not work that way? Hmm… point to ponder. 

Good Qualities Matter

Good Qualities Matter

1. Philanthropy 

Wondering why we started our list with philanthropy? It’s because more than 50% of the famous and the ultra-rich believe in it. Yeah, that’s like we have a world where more than half the rich are good and kind-hearted. They don’t just donate money. They even promote the cause for which they give money. They are a part of trusts and foundations and NGOs that strive to help and provide for the less privileged. 

While we cannot really say what makes them inclined towards charity and giving away some of their money, we sure can see that one needs to be rich enough to give away substantial amounts to others without worrying about the budget. Warren Buffett and Bill (and Melinda) Gates are famous for extensively donating for social causes.

2. Reading 

Is that a surprise? Many wealthy and successful people like to read. They collect books and even read them. It’s not just us who wonder the correlation between reading and being rich. But we,  are very well aware, that it is an excellent hobby to pursue. Isn’t it funny how the creator of the biggest social media network spends as little as possible using it and wants his child to read books instead? 

That, our dear readers, is the power of books. It is not entirely an expensive hobby, is it? All you need a library card or a subscription. Not really. The rich like to build their own libraries. They have hardbound books, first editions, rare works of the great men from the past, and such other highly expensive books that all of us cannot afford. They also spend money on making sure that the older books are preserved with care. 

3. Running 

With so much workload, how do some of the rich people manage to stay in shape and take care of their health? Yeah, yeah, they have experts planning and monitoring their diet. They have fully equipped gyms to exercise. But do you know they also love to run? 

Be it actors and actresses, sportsmen and women, or the businessmen and women, they know the importance of having a healthy body to ensure a strong and healthy mind. They stick to the routine no matter how tight the schedule is. Some of them even call it the secret of their success. A number of the wealthy folk participate in marathons as well to encourage and inspire others to do the same. 

Sacred Collections

Sacred Collections hobbies

4. Art Collection 

This section shouldn’t surprise you, right? While the common folk collects stamps, shells, rocks, flowers, etc. the rich collection super-expensive stuff. The top-most favorite collections hobby is art. Nothing like a piece of antique painting to add beauty to the mansion, isn’t it? A single piece of art easily costs millions of dollars. Now imagine having a room or a house full of such art pieces. 

They don’t even need to go to a museum, right? It’s all there at home, whenever they want to admire art. Famous celebrities such as Oprah Winfrey, Madonna, David Geffen, Leonardo di Caprio Rainn Wilson, etc. are known for actively collecting art pieces and happily paying large amounts of money on them.

5. Car Collections 

What do we even say about this hobby? Car collection seems to be quite a popular hobby for the ultra-rich. Whether it is owning a fleet of luxury cars or filling the expansive garage with vintage cars, car collection reflects the wealth of a person. Cars are high on maintenance, aren’t they? The vintage models need more care, and that spells more money. 

The men from the Middle East seem to love this hobby just as the men from America, Europe, or Asia. Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah is said to own around 7000 cars! Yeah. Jay Leno loves to not just review cars but also buy them. Mukesh Ambani is yet another car collector who likes to buy them all. Let’s add Gerard Lopez and Ken Lingenfelter to the list as well.

6. Antique Watch Collections 

Collecting antique watches is another famous hobby. Of course, the collections are not limited to antiques alone. Ultra-luxury watches can cost more than a decent house in the city. Collecting watches serves a dual purpose. Watches are stylish and add value to the overall appearance. They also make good investment choices. 

Yep. The classic antique watches are as good investment as gold or other precious metals. Brands like Omega, Rolex, Patek Philippe are famous for catering to the rich crowd by releasing watches that cost thousands of dollars and even more than a million or two. Eric Clapton, Brad Pitt, Sylvester Stallone, and John Mayer are some celebrities famous for their love for collecting watches.

7. Jewelry Collection 

If the world of car collections is dominated by men, the land of jewelry is ruled by women. None other than Queen Elizabeth II is famous for the sparkling collections of jewels. Yeah, she inherited some of the most exquisite pieces of jewelry, among which is the Imperial State Crown, belonging to her father. 

We also know about the love Elizabeth Taylor expressed for diamonds. She loves her jewelry so much that she wrote a book about the collection. The collection auctioned after her death in 2011 turned out to be one of the most valuable sales in the history of jewelry auction. Jackie Kennedy and María Félix were two other famous ladies with jewelry collections worth hundreds of millions. 

Land, Water, & Air

Land, Water, & Air

8. Car Racing 

The term fast and furious is famous for a reason, and we aren’t talking only about the movie series. The rich have a thing racing and winning. We wonder if it is this competitive spirit that makes them successful in life. They thrive and crave competitions and love to win. 

The adrenaline that comes from zooming past on the race ground in a high-speed racer car with a powerful engine cannot be compared to anything else. It’s pure exhilaration and danger at every stage. Even a fraction of miscalculation can cost them their life. Yet, the wealthy folk spends thousands of dollars on the race court. Tim Allen and Patrick Dempsey are two famous rich racers we can name immediately.

9. Yachting/ Boating 

Sigh! What’s it with the ultra-rich and private yachts? Not just that, many of them own private islands in the middle of the large seas and oceans. With an exclusive guest list, they organize parties and getaways for their friends. They own yachts that cost 1-3 million (and more) along with luxury sailboats. 

The cost of maintaining a yacht could be equal to (or more than) the cost of renting one for a day ($5000). They love to party in the ships, on private islands and sail on the vast blue water bodies as they wish. George Clooney and Morgan Freeman are known for their love of the sea. They are mostly found sailing during their free time.

10. Flying Planes 

How many of us wanted to fly as a child? While the dream would come true for a lot of us, it doesn’t always work the way we want. Some of us have become pilots, while others take pleasure in flying to different places. But what about really flying? We mean, what about getting a PPL (Private Pilot License), owning a private jet, and flying your own plane? 

Definitely not for everyone, right? The amount runs into hundreds of millions, including the purchase and maintenance. You can still get a license without too much investment, though. 

Morgan Freeman belongs to this list as well due to his love for flying. John Travolta, Bruce Dickinson, Hilary Swank, etc. are some celebrities who are also pilots.

11. Traveling 

Touring the world is no small hobby. Unlike some of us, the rich don’t save money for travel or research about travel agencies that offer the best travel packages. They sometimes don’t even pack their bags. Why? They can always buy new clothes when they land, don’t they? 

With private jets and suites that can be booked in seconds, even in the top-most luxury hotels, travel for the rich has an all-new meaning. They enjoy holidaying as much as they enjoy making money. After all, one needs the other to maintain the same luxury style through life, isn’t it? 

Activities Worth Trying

Activities Worth Trying

12. Hunting 

For the rich, hunting is not a job or a means to earn their daily livelihood. They don’t need to hunt for food. They hunt for fun. On the basis of the country they reside in, the permits and regulations, buying a gun, getting a license and permission alone could cost thousands. 

Then, they have to arrange for the safari tours, pay the fees, set up camps, etc. during the trip. Some people fly to other countries and continents such as Africa just to indulge in the hobby. While we don’t want to talk about the demerits of it, we do know that some of the wealthy crowd love to use the gun.

13. Golfing 

The game has almost always been associated with the wealthy and the famous folk. Some find it fascinating, some call it boring, and some term it inspiring. Either way, golf gets a lot of attention. There are various golf clubs (in different countries). But, not all are open for everyone. The elite clubs do not give membership to the non-elite. Not that we can all afford it anyway. How many of us can pay tens of thousands of dollars just to get a membership? 

Add to it the money required to buy the kit, maintain it, and play the game. Let’s leave it to Donald Trump and Clint Eastwood, shall we? We could check out the affordable clubs, though.

14. Soccer 

Thinking of Beckman and Messi? Well, they are players. Soccer is their profession, not just a hobby. It is their life. The affluent people we are talking about here don’t exactly play the game for their country. They own the teams. Yep. They invest their money in the players hoping they’d win and bring more money. That’s some hobby. 

For example, Will Ferrell and Tony Robbins are the co-owners of the famous LAFC. LeBron James invested in Liverpool Football Club in 2011, which is now one of the popular clubs in the English Premier League. Steve Nash, Drew Carey, and Diplo are a few other celebrities whose love for the game turned them into investors.

15. Fly Fishing 

Fishing and fly fishing are some hobbies the rich like to indulge in once in a while. While fishing is relaxing, fly fishing is exciting. It is harder than ordinary fishing and needs proper training. Fly fishing needs a special rod with a fly as bait at the other end. The fly resembles fish food and attracts fishes to the bait. 

The high-end equipment for fly fishing could cost quite a bit of money. Though we can get the basic ones for a few hundred dollars, we can’t sail out in our personal boats to go on fishing trips like the rich do, right? But we can rent a boat and have fun. Let’s say it’s one of those hobbies that we can afford in our own way.

16. Skiing 

Skiing has been here for a long, long time. Maybe not as a sport or a hobby, but as a means of transportation. Today, it is one of the well-known recreational activities around the globe. Many of us dream of sliding down the snow-covered mountains, navigating on the ice with just two thin poles. While we tend to rent the gear and equipment, pay the charges, and ski for a day or two, the rich own or at least have partial investments in ski resorts. 

The pristine mountains are too beautiful to resist, even by the millionaires. In fact, they don’t have to resist the lure, thanks to the heavy bank balance they have and the high-quality skiing gear they already own. So what if some of them can’t ski? They sure can hire expert trainers to teach them, that too in their own resorts.

17. Extreme Mountaineering 

This is also called as high-altitude mountain climbing. It’s not ordinary trekking. It is something even riskier, like scaling the Alps or the Himalayas. The hobby was started by the ultra-rich to set them apart from the rest. No point in being rich if they have to climb a regular hill along with other the common folk, right? But over time, the hobby started to gain a lot of exposure and attracted adventurists and explorers. 

Even as trekking and climbing have become regular activities, extreme mountaineering still remains out of reach. So, if you can spend around $35,000 and have the physical and mental stamina to endure the sport, you can also join the league. Just remember that you’ll have to spend extended periods on it and will need have to manage your finances in advance and be prepared to take long leave at work.

18. Polo

Polo has been a game of the royals for generations. They like to keep things exclusive and flaunt their status. It is a classic game and undoubtedly a costly one. It took a long time for polo to be extended to other wealthy families who do not belong to the royal families. 

Still, polo clubs continue to belong to the wealthy crowd. Getting a membership in one such club could seriously affect the bank balance. Also, how are we even going to learn and practice the game? We would need horses, trainers, staff, and a large open land for it. Better watch them play and try something more affordable, right?

19. Horse Riding/ Racing 

Both hobbies belong to the rich. While some of you like to bet in horse races, the amount would be a fraction of what the wealthy people spend on the sport. Buying horses, hiring specialist trainers and riders, spending thousands of dollars on the animal, and registering for the races, everything that involves these magnificent beasts is expensive. 

While some of them like to focus on horse racing, others prefer to ride the horses in the open countryside and organize parties for their friends. Reminds us of the Regency and Victorian Era, doesn’t it? Nothing has changed much if we talk about hobbies.

20. Tennis 

The expensive part of this sport is more about the memberships to exclusive high-end clubs rather than the actual game. Of course, tennis is costly. One needs years of training, quality equipment, and has to pay the court fees for each game (to play on well-maintained courts). That said, it isn’t a sport that’s out of reach for the common crowd. 

Tennis has got the attention of the rich men (not just watching) during the last few years. Though it is not clear why or how we sure can see that the rich are learning and trying a game or two in their spare time. Is it because they wish to revive the tradition of tennis as a royal hobby or because they want to find a way to stay fit? It could be both, or maybe some other reason we couldn’t think of.

21. Wine Making/ Collecting 

Collecting wine is an expensive hobby when one bottle could cost thousands of dollars. And it doesn’t end with collecting wines. The bottles have to be carefully stored in temperature-sensitive conditions. 

Wine-making is an art. It requires investment, dedication, and expertise. Owning a vineyard and setting up the entire equipment, collecting the wine, aging it, branding, and selling it is a full-time job. For the rich, collecting and making special wine to suit their taste is just another hobby they like. The wine cellars in the mansions of the rich are sure to make us stare in amazement. 


Oh, well, that sure was some list, wasn’t it? It’s such an interesting mix of money, mind, and heart, we cannot help but wonder. Of course, they don’t even have to think if they can afford something. When money flows, extravagance is easy. But we also see how some of them are humble, down to earth, and loved by many. Because, ultimately, it’s our character that speaks! Let them enjoy their pastimes while we enjoy ours and strive to become better individuals in more ways than one. Someday, we would also be added to the list of the rich. Who knows? 

The first thing to do is to see if you can rent the equipment instead of buying it. If it’s just for the trail, why spend as much money? Pay for the period you use the equipment and tick it off the list. 

Now, what if the equipment cannot be rented? The next step is to look for deals and discounts. You can even buy secondhand equipment, right? Also, there is no need to buy additional gear for extra money. Buy only what you need the most. If a friend has the equipment, borrow it from them. Payback some other way, if you don’t like borrowing! Maybe you can have an exchange system where you borrow something and lend something else. 

Either way, having expensive hobbies can be fun and exciting if you know how to manage your finances. The same goes for almost every hobby, of course. Just don’t be afraid to take up a hobby because it seems to be expensive. Try and find to way to reduce the investment. We are sure you’ll be able to do it. 

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Lisa Hayden-Matthews

Lisa Hayden-Matthews

An avid Skier, bike rider, triathlon enthusiast, amateurish beach volleyball player and nature lover who has never lost a dare! I manage the overall Editorial section for the magazine here and occasionally chip in with my own nature photographs, when required.

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