Sometimes we just can’t get away. But that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t take a moment—a weekend or even a week—to take some time to ourselves.
Enter the “Staycation.” But what exactly is a staycation? My idea of a staycation is a mini getaway, either in your hometown or somewhere within a quick drive of home. The purpose: to have a vacation in your hometown and feel like you are getting away while kind of “staying” put.
So if you aim to get some rest and relaxation and rejuvenate yourself, check out these 5 tips that make for a successful staycation.
- Location, location, location.
Think about the location you want to explore. Perhaps stay in an area in town that you don’t frequent, so that you feel like you are in a different city. Or perhaps do a search of places that you can get within a two-hour drive of your city. For example, from Los Angeles, you can get to Santa Barbara (wine tasting), San Diego, Palm Springs, or Big Bear Lake, all within a two-hour drive. Or for an even closer excursion, if you live inland, head to near the ocean/beach/lake in your hometown. The whole key is to feel like you are getting away, even though you are just taking a quick jaunt.
A staycation is a perfect opportunity to splurge a bit on yourself. You are saving money on transportation by not buying an expensive plane ticket… so live it up a little bit! Stay a little bit more expensive hotel, or upgrade yourself. Rent a convertible to drive to your destination. Do something to make it feel like you are really getting away, even if you are a stone’s throw from home.
- Pamper yourself.
This ties in with tip #2. Because the purpose of a styacation is rest and rejuvenation, pamper yourself. Get a spa treatment. Order room service. Book a hotel with a pool and Jacuzzi, and get a cabana by the pool. Finally catch that play or musical that you have been dying to see. Take some “you” time, be it by yourself, with your family, or with friends.
- Be a tourist in your hometown.
Chances are, you live somewhere where tourists come (or should come) to visit. Every locale has something unique and interesting to offer, so be a tourist in your hometown. I recently wrote a post on being a tourist in Chicago, where I grew up, and it was such a fun day.
So partake in tourist activities. Do a hop-on-hop-off bus tour. Or partake in another type of tour: a walking tour, a foodie tour of the city, a photography tour, or even an architectural tour. If your locale is near any sort of body of water, take a mini cruise on a lake or up the river or along the coast. Take an authentic Southern cooking class if you are in the south, or go to a brewery or a winery if you are in wine country. Just think: If I was visiting this city from out of town (or if you were entertaining guests from out of town), what sites or activities would a tourist love? What would give them a glimpse of the city, the culture?
This is my favorite tip! You are driving somewhere for this staycation. So BYOB! Bring your favorite wine, beer, or liquor and ingredients for a cocktail. There is no reason not to enjoy your personal favorite bottle, and we all know hotels charge ridiculous upcharges for the same wine you have in your refrigerator. So stock up ahead of time to ensure a great time.
Sound off! What are some of your favorite staycation ideas and activities, and how do you ensure you have an amazing time close to home?
Staycation Photo: Shutterstock/Pincasso. Convertible Photo: Shutterstock/g_stockstudio