Circumstances not allowing you to travel as far as you’d like or enjoy excursions right now? Me too. I find myself uninspired and lackadaisical sometimes when I go ‘too long’ without an outing to get excited about. Encouraged to stay at home for an unspecified period, I realized those feelings were surfacing but now I had to scratch my travel itch differently and responsibly. Of course it’s not the same as venturing to a new destination, but recreating travel experiences at home definitely boosted both my mood and creativity! Just in case you find yourself in a similar situation, hopefully I can inspire you to bring some of the joys of traveling to your space as well with these vacation at home ideas.
9 Staycation Inspirations – Vacation at Home Ideas
Home Movie Night
With the ease of access to a wad of shows in the convenience of our homes, it’s no surprise that people patronize movie theatres less often these days. Many of us can probably agree that the cinema is mostly considered for the occasions of dates, group outings, and premieres of highly-anticipated blockbuster films. We’re now more accustomed to enjoying movies at home, but at the same time sitting on the couch or lying in bed while watching a show may become blasé. If you want to bring a theatre experience home it can be as simple as adding extra features that make movie night a bit more exciting.
Home Movie Night Ideas
- Grab some snacks and drinks from your personal concession stand
- Instead of the usual couch or bed, use pillows and blankets to build a fort or comfy lounge area
- Set up a projector (or make one like I did) to cast the show on a flat surface
- Watch in 3D
2. Outdoor Walk
You don’t have to venture to the mountains or an elaborate botanical garden to enjoy a nature walk. It’s funny how much you can ‘discover’ when you walk through your own community, or even just your yard! While on a leisurely stroll, take the time to observe resident plants and creatures, and maybe even nearby businesses and people you can support. I’ve lived in the same space for years, and only recently noticed multiple natural riches in my yard space thanks to a pandemic stay-at-home order. You may realize there are plants you walk pass daily but never really took notice of. In my case I discovered aloe vera (aka sinkle bible) growing at the back of my house after years of hiatus.
Community Nature Walk Ideas
- Go when it’s quieter and not too hot (eg. early morning and/or golden hour)
- Stop & smell the flowers… literally (try not to pick ‘em though)
- Unplug earphones; listen to nature and the surroundings
- Try a barefoot walk; it can be quite calming
- Stroll in a gentle drizzle if Mama Nature allows
Community Nature Walk
3. Pool Day
A pool can easily shift from tranquil to a blast of fun; a remedy for hot days, and possibly an enjoyable form of exercise. If you don’t have a built-in pool there is the option of an inflatable one (better than none, right?).
Pool Day Ideas
- Add floats and/or inflatable toys
- Make your own slip n slide with a hose + plastic sheeting
- Mix some cocktails and create a poolside bar
- Create your own floating dining experience (I tied a pool noodle to a serving tray)
Home Pool Day
4. Fruit Picking
My reason #3 to love being Jamaican is a wealth of fruit trees at just about every turn. Mother Nature thankfully provides an abundance of treats for us to sample. If you’re fortunate enough to have bearing plants in your yard, learn more about them and enjoy the fruits of nature’s labour. Take advantage of what your yard already offers! I sometimes make curative teas from plant leaves, or fresh juices from fruits flourishing around the yard.
Fruit Picking Ideas
- Brew remedial teas using suitable flowers and leaves
- Use fruits & plants to make drinks, spices, and desserts
- Incorporate fragrant products for aromatherapy
- Plant fruit seeds
- Share nature’s gifts in a personalized quarantine kit
5. Spa Day
Spa treatments can be costly, plus our skin + body care routines shouldn’t be limited to a fancy facility. At some point, you may have done some kind of DIY spa treatment with whatever resources you had. If not, you’re definitely missing out! You’ll be surprised how relaxing an at-home self-care regime can be; I typically do facials, body scrubs, manicures/pedicures, and hair wash + style at home. Picture how a typical spa day can be recreated in the comfort of your own space, at your own pace, then carve out some time to enjoy.
Home Spa Ideas
- Include soothing music
- Try moving your spa day outdoors, or before a scenic view
- Add aromatherapy – eg. scented candles /wax melts, incense
- Enjoy something sweet, like a small dessert or cocktail
- Wind down with self-care treatments, maybe in the evening
- If soaking body parts, add a bit of Epsom salt to water
Home Spa Day
6. Culinary Delight
You don’t have to be an expert in the kitchen to enjoy your own culinary creations. There’s a variety of recipes online, in cookbooks you probably have around the house, and possibly within your family’s traditions (like my grandma’s Ginger Beer). Try recreate your favourite restaurant menu items, find a new doable recipe that excites you, or even support an eatery by ordering take out.
Home Culinary Experience Ideas
- Themed meals – eg. Foreign cuisine spread
- Tasting a variety of a single food item – eg. coffee, biscuits, spirits
- Lay a blanket outside and have a picnic
- Try a series of ‘weird’ or unusual snacks
If you have a tent or are willing to create your own outdoor shelter you don’t need a lush forest or mountainous view to enjoy it in the great outdoors. Make yourself at home (outside) with additions like an inflatable bed, a comforter sheet, and a lounge chair. Choose if you’d rather camp or ‘glamp’ (ie. glam camping) thanks to the available conveniences such as WiFi, a nearby kitchen, and electrical outlets.
Backyard Camping Ideas
- Cook food outdoors (safely) with a grill or fire pit
- Decorate & illuminate your space with a string of lights or tiki torch path
- Add a bug net if one isn’t included with tent
I’ve found myself sitting outside, sometimes for over an hour, trying to capture a shot of resident birds. I never knew how interesting birdwatching could be until the COVID-19 pandemic when I got more and more acquainted with the feathered friends that frequented nearby trees. From cute flittering hummingbirds, to hammering woodpeckers, couples of wild parrots I’ve never seen around here before, and even an owl or 2! Bonus is, you’ll possibly later find out that some of the birds floating around your own backyard may be endemic or rare sights!
- Sit undistracted on a veranda / patio in early morning or late afternoon
- Actually listen to the birds
- Take pictures
- Set up a bird bath or feeder
9. Wellness Retreat
If you’re like me, outdoor activities act as notable forms of therapy. If you’re also like me, you’ve been “stuck” at home longer than desired and probably experienced cabin fever at some point. In these times, it’s important to consider both your mental and physical health. Take some time to create your very own wellness experience – whatever that may mean for you.
Home Wellness Retreat
- Host in a quiet space
- Find guided sessions which help to relax you, such as yoga and meditation
- Unplug. Don’t be distracted by digital screens
- Include at-home spa treatments
- Create (and use) a natural skin or body care product
- Indulge in a delicious, natural meal
Many of these are fairly easy recreations, and able to be enjoyed while social distancing.
Which idea excites you the most? Let me know in the comments.
If you have any other vacation at home ideas or tips please feel free to share!
I’m sure we all can appreciate as many ideas as possible.
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