2020 has been an unreasonably crazy year, all around, and it’s been difficult for everyone, including us travelers. With people losing their jobs or loved ones due to this virus, it seems shallow to also mourn cancelled trips, but a lot of people’s mental health tends to be hinged on their ability to travel. This being said, it’s okay to be sad about cancelled plans and it’s even more okay if you’ve been able to pivot and find safe ways to get in your wanderlust fix, especially as there is no real “post-Covid” in sight. Personally, I’ve resorted to local travel and staycations and want to share a way to both travel safely and make the most of staycations! Keep reading for staycations gems & check HERE for tips on Covid-safety while traveling.
What is a staycation? According to dictionary.com “A vacation spent in one’s home country rather than abroad, or one spent at home and involving day trips to local attractions.”
The below tips are assuming that you are traveling within 4-5 hours of home!
- Do Your Research- A quick Google search of “Covid Cases” in X Destination will give you the most up to date information on covid statistics, from daily change, total cases & other useful information. Stay aware of the standing of both your home and destination location. It’s critical to know if things like a negative covid test or mandatory 14 day quarantine will be necessary for your trip. Also, wear a mask!
- Have your accommodation squared away-Preparation is always key with traveling! Peruse blogs, social media sites, travel groups, Airbnb or other booking sites for recommendations on accommodation, if lodging is necessary. If this is just a day-trip, no accommodation needed.
- Look up activities to do. You’d be surprised how much there is in your own backyard. Personally, I was so excited to experience a new culture, I didn’t really consider what my own city had to offer, but with covid grounding me in the US, this is the perfect time to explore. From museums, national parks, beaches, cooking classes, vineyards & wine tastings, lavender fields and more, you’d be surprised what hidden gems you can uncover.
- Have a loose agenda. Are you a planner or more spontaneous? I’d consider myself “splontaenous” with a good mix of planning but also going with the flow. Being that staycations or local getaways tend to be shorter, it’s good to have a loose agenda with all of your must-get-to activities mapped out (times open, location, proximity to other activities/lodging, price, etc.)
- Be flexible & adventurous. Now is the time to try new things and step outside of our comfort zones. Like going hiking, kayaking or fishing. Activities also don’t have to cost a lot of money- some, like hiking, can be free!
Examples of a few staycations & local getaways I’ve done over the past few months:
Blue Hill’s Reservation: Located in Norfolk County, MA, Blue Hill’s is a state park spread across 6 MA cities offering a variety of outdoor activities from skiing, hiking, swimming, and even fishing. Parking is free.
Newport Vineyards– Founded in 1977, this historic vineyard, eatery & marketplace brings that Napa Valley experience to the east coast, located in Middletown, RI. They are currently running at a reduced capacity due to Covid- but are still open for tastings & food!
Cape Cod Lavender Farm– Located in Harwich, MA, explore the enchanted garden of lavender fields during peak season.
Visiting The Beach- There are tons of beaches on the along the northeast, it’s been fun to pack up my bag, throw on my swimsuit and hit the beach with friends.
Stay open minded, try something new & have fun! Happy Planning.