Are you staying home during spring break this year? No worries! Even if you aren’t heading to the beach or Disney, you can still create a brag-worthy staycation. Check out these tips for playing tourist in your hometown:
1. See your town like a tourist.
Visit hotels near you that attract families and check out the tourist brochures they offer (usually near the entrance). Bring home brochures for all the activities that interest you. Like an adventurous traveler, keep an open mind and try not to make assumptions. Your favorite activity may be a big surprise!
2. Research like a tourist.
- Trip Advisor (tripadvisor.com/attractions)
- Travel books (check your library!)
- Travel blogs
- Yelp (yelp.com)
3. Google like a tourist. Use keywords like:
- Attractions near me
- Fun things to do in …
- Family fun in …
- Kids activities in …
- Best restaurants in …
- Walking tours in …
- Train trips in …
- Nightlife in …
4. Splurge like a tourist.
Give yourself a chance to spend a little more cash on treats and activities than you’d normally spend during your daily life. Enjoy dessert after lunch, get the candy at the movies or buy the special pictures sold at the zoo. These little perks are part of what makes a vacation feel like a vacation. (And chances are you saved a ton of money by staying home this spring break, so hopefully you have a little extra fun money.)
5. Sleep like a tourist.
Lighten up on bedtime and nap routines just a little to add another important vacation feel to your week – spontaneity. (Of course, too little sleep will just create grumpy kids, a part of vacationing you probably want to avoid!) Perhaps skip bath time a couple of days or go crazy and eat breakfast for dinner and dessert for lunch!
In a nutshell, think about the parts of vacationing you love the best and try to simulate these things at home. For example, our 7-year-old wants she her sisters to sleep in our room one night during spring break for a slumber party. (Not sure if her teenage sisters are going to go for this, but it’s worth a try!)
What do you think makes a fantastic vacation? Do you love not knowing what you are going to do all day? Do you love learning new things or trying new foods? Do you love exploring new neighborhoods or meeting new people? Most of these things can happen where we live. And it will be so much fun to get to see our own hometown in a whole new way!
Elizabeth Billups is the content manager at MOPS International. She’s also the author and illustrator of The Puddle Jumper’s Guide to Kicking Cancer and other books. With three kids of her own, she’s got a heart for supporting moms and families.