Make Your Staycation Feel Like an Actual Getaway

No stringent schedule. Eating new, exotic foods. Getting lost in a page­ turning novel. Trying a new activity that takes you outside your comfort zone. These are the types of things that make for a memorable vacation. The problem is, you’re not traveling this year and instead are opting for the increasingly popular staycation.

Yes, you’re taking personal time out and staying put, but that doesn’t mean you can’t have an incredible time. In fact, many of the activities that make a traditional vacation so wonderful can be emulated while at home.

To help make your staycation feel like a real getaway, follow these five steps. You’ll have just as much fun as leaving town, but you’ll save tons of money, plus get to sleep in your own bed.

1. LIMIT TECHNOLOGY: When you travel to a faraway location, you probably have limited to no access to your cell phone and email. That disconnection helps you unwind. Mimic that feeling by limiting your technology use during your staycation.

Leave your phone upstairs, turn the com­puter off and resist grabbing the tablet. You should consider changing your email and phone message to say you’ll have limited access over the time you’re off, so people who contact you know it might be awhile until you get back to them.


2.ESCAPE WITH A DESTINATION-SPECIFIC BOOK: Want to feel like you’re leaving town without leaving the house? Historical fiction can transport you to a different time and place, no mat­ter how short or long your time off. For example, New York Times best-selling author Anita Shreve’s newest novel, “The Stars Are Fire,” vividly brings 1947 New
England to life. Based on a real event – “the year Maine. burned,” when more than 200 fires raged across the state – the book introduces us to Grace Holland, five months pregnant and the mother to two toddlers. As flames rip through the town, Grace must flee into the ocean to survive, spending the night in the frigid sea as the fire sends debris and smoke onto the beach. In the morning, she discovers her husband missing and her home com­pletely destroyed. Amid devastating loss, Grace must rebuild her family’s life, and find strength she didn’t know she had.


3. EAT EXOTIC AND AMAZING FARE: Every corner of the world offers cuisine that represents the culture of the people who live there. When you travel, eating these types of foods enhances the vacation experience. During your staycation, skip standard weekly meals and try new destination-inspired recipes and make a few at home.

Try your hand at a New England clam bake, t11e Midwest-famous Watergate Sal­ ad or chili rellenos from the southern U.S. Or, for a more exotic taste adven­ture, explore ethnic recipes from around the world. Whatever you choose, you’re sure to have fun making and .eating the unique dishes.


4. DRINK AND BE MERRY: While you’re expanding your staycation experience with new cuisine, why not drink that way too? Complement your meals with a traditional location-inspired libation, such as a Manhattan from New York. Mai Tai from Hawaii or Vieux Carre from New Orleans.


5.BREAK ROUTINE WITH A DAILY ADVENTURE: You may be home, but that doesn’t mean you can’t explore areas of your city that you rarely venture to. By doing new things, you’ll feel like you’re really on vacation! Visit that museum. Go to that quiet park. Take a hike down by the river. Go to a movie in the middle of the afternoon. Try something new, such as paddle boarding or rock climbing. Just because you’re “home” doesn’t mean you can’t have unique adven­tures that make for unforgettable memories.

Staycations continue to grow in popu­larity, and with these tips, it will truly feel like a getaway rather than just bland days off at home.