Staycation: Enjoying Your Own Backyard

While I love to travel, there are times when it just doesn’t make a lot of sense for me to pack up and go somewhere far, far away. I’ve got a family. I’ve got other responsibilities. And, even though I can take my work almost anywhere, the reality is that I just don’t do as much of it (as efficiently) when I’m on the road.

The good news is that I don’t have to travel long distances to have a good experience. One way to enjoy something new, and save money in the process, is to make use of the staycation.

What is a Staycation?

A staycation is when you confine your travel to the area surrounding your hometown. This might mean keeping yourself within the city limits, or limiting yourself to a drive of three or four hours. Some people, who really just want to relax, unplug and enjoy a staycation at home.

With a staycation, it’s possible to enjoy yourself and experience new things, without breaking the bank or heading to some exotic locale. Instead, you get out and explore your own backyard. You might be surprised at what you find.

Ideas for a Great Staycation

It’s possible to have a great Staycation without too much trouble. And one of the great things about planning a staycation is that you might actually learn something you didn’t know about your hometown. Here are some of my favorite staycation ideas:

  • Local Historic Sites: Every town has its history, and there are usually historic sites to tell the story. Find out from your town’s Visitor’s Bureau or Historical Society where some sites are. You can visit them, learning about your area’s history, and maybe even touring some significant buildings. You can also go a little farther afield and visit the historic sites in the next town over.
  • Local Entertainment: You might be surprised to find that there is local entertainment. There’s usually a community play to watch, live music at a local restaurant, or some sort of summer fest. If you live in a university town, you can almost always find something culturally oriented to do, from student art shows to recitals. Check out what your town has to offer.
  • Camping: This is a favorite staycation idea. My son loves it — and so do I. Visit a campground a couple hours away and stay a night or two. You can even camp in your backyard if you aren’t sure about getting out there in the “wild.”
  • Cheap Hotel: Remember that town about three hours away? Find a cheap hotel with a swimming pool, and check in for a night or two. You can enjoy the pool, visit some of the local sites, and generally have a good time without having to go to another part of the country.
  • Unplug: Sometimes, you don’t even have to leave the house. Unplug from technology, and have a spa day in your home. Get some scented lotions or oils. Run a bath. Sit in your pajamas all day and read. Just do what you want — without doing any work or letting the office know you’re around.

With the right staycation idea, you can recharge without going to far afield. What do you think? What’s your favorite staycation?

Image: Francine Mastirini via Flickr

About the Author

Miranda writes about financial topics for several web sites. Her blog is Planting Money Seeds, and her book, Confessions of a Professional Blogger, is available on Amazon.