It’s been over a year since the pandemic spread across the globe and those of us accustomed to traveling for leisure are starting to feel cabin fever.
Trip to Cuba? Canceled. Road tripping for a week? Not this year.
It’s been a hard time for many families but that doesn’t mean you have to resolve yourself to not having a vacation – it just has to look a little different for a while.
Consider having a staycation! You and your family can have a fun and unique experience while staying within local guidelines as well as safe and healthy.
Can’t travel during the pandemic? Here’s what you can do instead:
10 Pandemic Staycation Ideas:
1. Take a Virtual Tour
You don’t even need to leave the comfort of your living room to enjoy touring some of the world’s most popular landmarks!
Many institutions and locations have designed virtual tours that you can take on your computer.
Check some of these ones out:
If you Google virtual tours, you’ll find hundreds more!
2. Check Out Some Live Cams
Instead of taking a virtual tour, you can check out some really neat live cams. These feeds happen live so you can see what’s going on in the world as it happens!
Here are some you’ll definitely want to see:
International Space Station: You can catch live streams of the crew and stunning views of Earth!
Animal Cams: This site compiles a huge collection of animal-related live cams from all over the world! Check out the panda cam, naked mole-rat cam and even Winter the dolphin from Florida.
Live Beaches: Can’t get to a sunny destination? Bring the beach to your home with this collection of live beach cams.
Just because you can’t travel the world doesn’t mean you can’t keep in touch with what’s going on.
3. Cook Up Some Ethnic Dishes
Maybe you can’t hop on a plane and take that dream vacation to Italy – but you can bring Italy to your home!
Look up some international dishes and start cooking up some ethnic cuisine!
Not sure where your tastebuds should travel? Here are some ideas:
Afghanistan – Kabuli Pulao: A dish made of out long-grained Basmati rice steamed in a meat broth and cooked with lentils, raisins, carrots, lamp and chopped nuts.
Cuba – Ropa Vieja: Shredded flank steak is cooked in tomato sauce and served with rice and sweet plantain fritters.
France – Crepe: Crepes are thin wheat or buckwheat flour batter pancakes that you can fill with chocolate sauce, jelly, spreads or whipped cream. You can make them a meal as well by filling them with ham, sausage, cheese and mushroom.
Monaco – Barbagiuan: These deep-fried pastries are stuffed with chard leaves, onions, ham and parmesan/ricotta cheese.
New Zealand – Pavlova: This meringue-like dessert is made with a crisp cornstarch-based outer crust and filled with whipped cream and fruit.
For these, and more recipes, click here!
4. Take a Day Trip
Just because you can’t fly anywhere doesn’t mean you can’t jump in the car and drive!
While it’s probably best that you don’t travel too far, there are certainly ways you can plan an exciting day trip while keeping you and your family safe.
Be sure to plot your course to avoid any restricted or hot-spot areas. For instance, many provinces in Canada are discouraging individuals from crossing the provincial borders.
Bring along your face masks and hand sanitizer for when you make your stops.
You can also pack up your meals, snacks and drinks to reduce the number of stops you’ll have to make along the way.
5. Explore Local Businesses
Small businesses are struggling during this pandemic and you can certainly give them a boost by visiting them whenever you can.
Exploring local businesses may not be as exotic and exciting as a cruise but it will allow you to get out and about while creating a connection with your community.
Check out sites like Yelp or TripAdvisor to find local businesses or take a day to randomly wander your town or city’s popular areas.
6. Check Out a Nature Park
From simple trails to national parks, there’s always a little piece of nature you can check out during the pandemic.
Walking in parks are great because there is plenty of space to avoid close contact with others. Plus, you get fresh air and some exercise too!
Take the kiddos along and play a game of nature scavenger hunt or be on the lookout for interesting animals and their tracks.
7. Go to a Drive-In Theater
While open movie theatres are a hit-and-a-miss across the country, you can always rely on the drive-in theaters to deliver safe and socially distanced entertainment!
Load up the car with snacks, drinks, pillows and blankets and enjoy a movie night with your family.
Most drive-in theaters will play a kid-friendly flick first and a more action-packed feature for the grown-ups – in the hopes that the little ones will fall asleep.
8. Have a Backyard Campout
Because outdoor spaces are perfect for socially distancing, many campsites have remained open during the pandemic.
You can avoid the travel and packing, however, by pitching a tent in your own backyard!
That way, you don’t have to worry about running out of supplies and making stops at random shops and stores.
9. Host a Film Festival
Many online streaming services, such as Netflix, offer a “watch-party” option that allows you and other viewers to watch movies together – without counting down from 3 and pushing the play button at the same time!
You can organize a movie-a-week event with your friends and family.
Have everyone pop some popcorn and snuggle down for a fun movie night – socially distanced!
10. Make a Travel Bucket List
The pandemic won’t last forever, so why not get started on the things you want to do once it’s over?
The post-COVID world is going to be one where people start doing what they keep saying they are going to do.
Start a list of the things you want to experience and the places you want to see and, when the pandemic is finished once and for all, do them all!
Paradise is a State of Mind!
If you had to cancel exciting travel plans, or had to break away from adventurous yearly traditions due to the COVID-19 pandemic, there’s no denying the disappointment.
We’ve all head to rearrange our lives one way or another to accommodate the pandemic.
But that doesn’t mean we have to stop living! We just have to learn how to do things a little differently.
When it comes to a family vacation, this is the time to try something new and start new traditions.
Someday we’re going to get through to the other end of this – and imagine how exciting that will be!
Until then, enjoy your staycation and the time that you have with your family.
Have you found a new way to have an enjoyable vacation without traveling? Share your ideas with us!