We have some good news and some bad news about the holiday season this year. The bad news is that the current travel restrictions make it a little harder to get away for some end-of-year vacationing.
The good news is that rest, relaxation, and fun are not location-specific!
It’s easier than you might think to create the perfect staycation experience. Whether you’ll be exploring the Garden State, visiting the most exciting (nearby) places in Florida, or embracing the staycation in every sense of the word, here are four ideas that the whole family can enjoy.
#1 Stay at a Luxury Home-tel
Spend the afternoon transforming your space into an oasis of relaxation. Turn the living room into a “lobby” with fresh cucumber water and relaxing music, put fresh sheets on the beds, and maybe try your hand at a towel animal (it’s okay, they’re harder than they look).
Put on your fluffiest bathrobe and enjoy a full-on spa day:
- Massages – If you’re looking for something to splurge on, consider hiring an in-house masseuse for the day! Otherwise, purchase a portable mini massager to use on each other.
- Mani-pedis – Have some fun painting each other’s nails, even if they aren’t professional quality.
- Facials – Buy a few moisturizing sheet masks or clay facials, put on your favorite soothing tunes, and unwind—don’t forget the cucumbers for good measure!
Be sure to order room service before the kitchen closes (okay, it’s just your Postmates driver and he won’t actually bring it up to your bedroom, but there’s no harm pretending)!
#2 Embrace the Great Outdoors
Get out of the house for a while and stretch your legs with a family hike, trip to the beach, or scenic bike ride around the city. Try to go somewhere new, or revisit an old family favorite—anything to make the day seem extra special.
Just be sure to bring sunscreen, reusable water bottles, and ample snacks (although your kids complaining about being tired, hungry, and thirsty might actually make it feel more like a regular vacation—something to consider).
#3 Around the World in 1,500 Square Feet
If you can’t go see the world, why not bring the world to you? Turn your house or apartment into a world fair and plan a festive day of cultural activities, including:
- Food samples from your favourite cuisines
- A virtual walking or museum tour
- A movie marathon with films from your dream destinations—Midnight in Paris, Mamma Mia! and Ratatouille (for the kids)
#4 Play Tourist for the Day
Explore what’s right in front of you with fresh eyes by pretending to be tourists in your own town. We don’t often think of our home cities as “tourist destinations” because (duh) we live there, but lots of other people probably flock to your little corner of the world to experience something new—time to see what that’s like!
Here are just a few ways to embrace what’s right in your backyard:
- Walking tour – Download a digital audio guide that takes you through the most famous attractions and landmarks. You’ll probably even learn a thing or two about the history of your city.
- Explore a new area – Take a train or bus to a district you’ve never been to before. Spend the day trying everything it has to offer—enjoy the cuisine, visit the museums, and stroll through the streets.
- Local festival – If you can, find a fair or festival happening nearby. It could be anything from a simple farmer’s market, to a cultural parade, to a county fair.
Capture the memories as if this were a real vacation (because, for the time being, it is!).
#5 Day Trip
Okay, so this one depends on how strictly you’re adhering to the “stay” in staycation, but a quick day trip to a nearby beach, mountain, or city is still a safe but fun way to spend your holidays.
The mountains are a great day trip destination if you live nearby. Even if you or your family doesn’t ski or snowboard, there are plenty of fun activities to take part in:
- Snowshoeing, snowmobiling, a snowball fight—basically anything snow-related
- Enjoy hot cider as you take in the beautiful view
- Partake in any cultural or educational opportunities the mountain has to offer
Vacation is a Feeling, Not a Destination
Some people say it’s about the journey, not the destination. But really, it’s about what you make of the destination (wherever that may be). Enjoying a relaxing, fun-filled day at home is just as valuable as some luxurious jet-setting vacay when you’re with the people you love.