Travel may be picking up again this spring, but you don’t have to venture very far to have the perfect vacation. If you’re not ready or able to travel just yet, consider creating the perfect staycation. Here’s how.
The desire to visit faraway places and have new experiences isn’t going anywhere anytime soon. But if you’re stuck at home for the time being, you can still create that perfect getaway, right inside your own four walls (or just outside of them). And if you’re one of those people who feel like work and school have taken over every corner of your house, now is the perfect time to shake up those routines and turn your home into a haven for fun and relaxation.
Just as important: A staycation is much more friendly to your wallet, and you even get to sleep in your own bed (unless backyard tent camping is your family’s staycation sleeping quarters of choice!).
Let’s Get This Staycation StartedFirst, get everyone onboard and make sure all are involved with the planning. Ask the kids what they want to do, and brainstorm a list that includes all ideas. At this stage, nothing should be off limits. Later you can refine your list to include the things that are doable according to time and budget.
Next, block off time on your calendar. Doing a staycation right means no work, and if you want to take it that far, no cell phones or other technology to get in the way of your downtime and family-focused activities.
Set Up Your SpaceGet into the spirit of adventure by making your home feel like you’ve just stepped off the plane and into the destination of your dreams. Turn your backyard or outdoor patio into a recreation and relaxation station with the right furnishings.
Be sure to bring the vacay vibes indoors, as well. For example, your own kitchen, dining room or sunroom becomes an escape with an island-leaning dining set. Opting for beach-inspired designs in materials like classic rattan will make you feel less stressed just by looking at them.
Our Top 20 Staycation Ideas for Indoors & Out
#1 Set up a drinks station
Anyone of any age likes a fun drink. Let family members combine fizzy flavored waters with their choice of tropical or other fruit juices, and add fresh fruit chunks or slices for extra color and punch. (Of course, grownups can add a little alcohol if it suits them.) Don’t forget the cocktail umbrellas and the bistro table set!
#2 Have a staycation fashion show
Little kids love a family fashion show. Put together your best island-hopping outfits, and show each other your style. Be sure to top it off with a safari hat or fedora that’s every bit as functional as it is stylish.
#3 Set up camp in the yard
Backyard camping is the best for making memories. Rent or borrow a tent if you don’t have one, grab plenty of s’mores supplies, and be ready to regale your family with your best ghost stories.
#4 Go for a family bike ride
Scope out safe bike paths or routes in your area and get set for some two-wheeled fun. A little outdoor exercise is always good for a vacation-starved soul.
#5 Transform your backyard into a water park
This one would be a great way to cool off after a bike ride. Fill up a kiddie pool and some water balloons or other water toys, and designate areas for splashing, sliding, and soaking. Give everyone their own fluffy towel in their most-loved color as a souvenir (and a way to keep wet feet out of the house).
#6 Have an indoor picnic
If your staycation happens to fall during a rainy day or some other unwelcome weather, turn it into an excuse to eat lunch on the floor. Go all out with a giant blanket beach towel, picnic basket, cute napkins, bottled drinks, and everyone’s favorite finger foods.
#7 Have a family game day
That’s right: Play games all day long. Lawn games, board games, card games, party games, even made-up-on-the-spot games. Everyone gets a say and everyone gets to play.
#8 Make (or order) fancy food
If your family enjoys cooking together, take it up a notch and plan and prepare a meal of exotic foods you don’t typically cook. Or order in from one of your favorite restaurants that reminds you of a past vacation destination.
#9 Make a craft
Kids always love making crafts when they go to a kids’ camp or kids’ club at a resort or vacation spot. Why not do it at home? Turn a corner into a craft station for the weekend, and weave bracelets, color pictures of beachy spots, or make mosaics with broken shells or beads.
#10 Relax with a book
Quiet time is a must while on a vacation. Set up a cozy space with a comfy chair or two, and set aside some time just for reading. Bonus points for seating that looks great in your place or on your patio, but makes you feel like you’ve been whisked away to your favorite resort.
#11 Schedule time for nostalgia
Get out photo albums featuring pictures from favorite family vacations, or log in to your Google Photos or other cloud-based photo account and spend some time remembering and talking about all the fun you had. Dig out and display old souvenirs, like collected seashells or other items that remind you of a special place.
#12 Make a spa day
Manicures, pedicures, neck and foot massages: It’s all on the table at your own at-home spa. Light some aromatherapy candles, wrap up in fluffy robes, set Spotify to a relaxing playlist, and enjoy pampering each other.
#13 Stay up late
If there’s any privilege that makes kids excited, it’s getting to stay up past their bedtimes. If your kids are used to sticking to a rigid bedtime schedule, let things lax a bit and let them plan some fun late night activities, like stargazing, movie watching, or cookie baking.
#14 Have a dance party
There’s nothing like a family dance party to bring out the goof in everybody, even the parents. Let the kids create their own dance playlists, set up a makeshift dance floor and decorations (yes, you can buy disco balls online), and let loose.
#15 Go on a scavenger hunt
A scavenger hunt is a fun way to explore your surroundings, whether at home or in your neighborhood. You can even use a hunt to learn more about your city’s history or important landmarks.
#16 Have a themed movie marathon
Pick a favorite vacation destination and watch movies set in that location. Plan and prep movie snacks and drinks that also go with the theme. Even better: Set up your movie night outside under the stars.
#17 Turn your home into a hotel
Make a check-in desk, lounge area, and even put mints on the pillows. Let your kids name the hotel, choose the location, and staff it. Refresh your bedding, clear the clutter, and even pack your suitcase.
#18 Make popsicles, snowcones, or other chilled treats
You might need some special supplies or equipment, but learning to make frozen treats at home is fun and satisfying.
#19 Have a friendly, family competition
Depending on your family members’ talents and hobbies, you could make a family olympics or other sports tournament, or host a cooking or art competition. Get creative with everything from the type of competition to the prizes.
#20 Plan your next getaway
Research your next real family vacation online or using books or magazines. Have each family member who is old enough pitch their idea with a slideshow or PowerPoint they can make and share with the family.
Ready to turn your home into the perfect destination? Get inspired with Panama Jack indoor and outdoor home furnishings for every room in your house and beyond.