Staycations have become a common vacation trend. No bags to pack, no planes to catch. No passport needed.
Whether it’s families looking for an affordable vacation alternative, or folks taking a mini-staycation weekend to recharge, staying home and playing tourist in your own town is hot. Staycations are also a green way to have a great vacation since you don’t have to travel to get there.
The risk of a staycation (and the main fear of those who say they don’t like the idea) is that it’s too easy to fall into your normal routine and not really get out and about on the vacation part. The trick is to treat a staycation in much the same way you would a regular destination-based trip. Treat your town as your destination – get out and explore!
Your biggest savings on a staycation are travel and accommodations, so carve out some budget for dining out. You’ll be glad you did and the holiday from shopping, cooking and dishes will be a welcome and relaxing break. Next, throw out everything you know about your hometown and start thinking like a tourist. Forget your usual haunts and start searching the internet for travel tips for your town. If you could write the book on things to do, pretend you’re telling an out of state friend where to go and what to do and then follow your own advice. Whatever you do, break your usual mold!
Live near the water
It doesn’t matter if it’s a lake, a river or the ocean – check out what’s available for some water fun. Finding a short, day-long, or even just a dinner-long, river or harbor excursion is one great way to enjoy the sights of home. If you’re more outdoorsy, look into kayak or canoe rentals and start exploring the waterways under your own power.
Are there interesting museums or art galleries in your area? How long has it been since you’ve been on a tour? Plan a day of wandering your city’s cultural center – go on a guided tour of the museum. And if your city has multiple museums – go see them all!
Almost every area has something a little quirky. Take a walk on the quirky side of your hometown for some fun and laughs. Whether it’s something a pinball museum or a roadside attraction, fun day trips will let you see your town in a whole new way and bring out the kid in you.
Get some eats
Unless you happen to know all the best and secret places to eat, skip your usual and find something different. Try out that restaurant you’ve heard about. Do some web surfing to find a place you’ve never heard of, but that has great reviews. Take a walk on the wild side and find the places that cater to tourist and give them a try.
Don’t forget the camera
Yes, it’s your own town. Yes, you live there. So? It’s your vacation! Take pictures! You’ll be out and about in places and ways that go outside your norm. Snap away and make sure to get all those vacation pictures the same as you would normally.
For advanced staycationers only
Why not have a real adventure and leave your car at home? Try taking public transportation or ride a bike as much as possible on your staycation. You’ll have just as much fun, and think of all the gas (and emissions) you’ll save!