Fun Staycation Ideas to Embrace This Summer

By Kaitlin Hurtado on August 8, 2020

Regardless of how badly we want to partake in our usual summer vacation endeavors, the coronavirus pandemic has many of us canceling our typical summer plans in favor of keeping ourselves, and each other, safe. While we can mourn and wallow for what would have been an amazing trip to a beach-side hotel or a cross-country road trip with plenty of exciting pitstops, we can choose to celebrate the summer season in new ways. Enter, the staycation.

Prior to the pandemic, staycations were often viewed as ways to save money or the time and stress of planning a vacation, whether it be a short weekend getaway or a two-week vacation. Staycations either meant not leaving your house or not straying too far from home. With the pandemic in mind, staycations are the perfect remedy for your itch for a vacation, without putting yourself at risk during a pandemic. Check out these fun staycation ideas that you and your loved ones can embrace this summer.

staycation ideas

Photo: Pexels

For those 21+, create your very own bar-hopping/wine-tour in your home 

Despite different businesses reopening their doors to the public, you may not feel safe and ready to go to them just yet. Instead of missing out entirely on the experience of going bar-hopping or embarking on a wine-tour you would usually do on vacation — just do it at home as a fun staycation alternative.

Whether you’re living with friends or family, have everyone sign up to create their very own “taste station” or “bar.” Each person can come up with their own selection for “visitors,” or other people to try. If you are trying to mimic bar-hopping, for example, have each person come up with a signature cocktail to serve everyone. Or, if you are trying to recreate a wine-tasting tour, have each person choose a wine and snack pairing (crackers, cheese, fruit, meats).

The more stations you create, the more fun and creative you can get. Set up a theme to better challenge everyone with their stations, from movies and TV shows to holidays. Have each person pick a movie to base their decor, snacks, and cocktails on, such as Harry Potter, Marvel, The Hunger Games, your favorite Horror film, and so on. Why not take the opportunity to dress up and transform your home into another place?

Go glamping in your backyard or porch area

Great summer weather often calls for spending even more time outdoors — going to the beach, hiking local trails, and going camping in the wilderness. However, the coronavirus pandemic has many campsites heavily restricted or closed entirely. Rather than forgoing your summer tradition of camping, try camping in your very own backyard space.

Think of activities you usually associate with camping — meals made by the campfire, staying up late just to tell some spooky stories — and intertwine them with your backyard glamping. You may not be getting the wilderness experience you’re used to, but embrace everything your own local outdoor space has to offer. Think of the positives, like your unlimited access to indoor plumbing, while glamping.

If you don’t have a backyard, fear not. You can still try glamping out on your apartment porch space, you can even recreate the experience by transforming your indoor living room areas. Transform a small porch into an outside oasis. Hang up some string lights, throw up tapestries or extra bedsheets for some extra privacy, and set up your porch like you would a mini campsite.

Be a tourist in your own city

Just because you aren’t traveling for your typical summer vacation, doesn’t mean you have to completely abandon being a tourist for a short while. Explore your very own city while following all the local guidelines. While you may not be able to hit up typical tourist hot spots — museums, galleries, indoor spaces — there are still tourist spots you can hit.

Think about the outdoor space your city offers, like local parks, hiking trails, and landmarks. If they are still open to the public, pay them a visit for a chance to spend some time outdoors safely. Better yet, if those outdoor spots have spaces made for visitors to host picnics, plan a picnic when you go to the park or hiking trail. If done properly, you can invite friends while maintaining social distancing and having an outdoor picnic.

For the picnic, try out a bunch of local eateries. Surf Yelp or ask friends for local, small business recommendations and order takeout from businesses that catch your eye. Have everyone bring their own food to avoid any cross-contamination.

While the coronavirus pandemic has drastically changed what our summers typically looked like, we don’t need to give up getting a quick break from daily life. Take one of these staycation ideas for inspiration on how you can give yourself a much-needed break while keeping it safe.

By Kaitlin Hurtado

Uloop Writer
Hello! I'm Kaitlin. I studied Literary Journalism and Film & Media Studies at UC Irvine. I'm a writer on Uloop's national team and a campus editor for UCI.

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