Being stuck at home in can really put a damper on your travel dreams. It’s hard when so many places are closed and travel is being restricted. And then to be told we have to stay home as much as possible? It’s pretty rough. My mom and I had plans to go to Tennessee this month. My brother was going to go to Japan for a month. Tim and I were making plans to go to Japan ourselves for our honeymoon. Unfortunately, all that has been put on hold. But, all is not lost. You can still get your travel fix when stuck at home. You just have to be a little creative. Check out these 10 ways travel bloggers are getting their travel fix while staying home.
1. SHARING TRAVEL EXPERIENCES
For me, one of my favorite ways to get a travel fix when I’m not traveling is by sharing my travel experiences. It’s fun to reminisce on scary experiences, laugh about travel bumps, appreciate past adventures, and marvel at the incredible things I’ve learned while traveling the world. It also inspires others to share their experiences and we learn a lot from each other.
Travel experiences don’t have to be big and exotic. Your travel experiences can be anything from a great conversation with someone you met while on a trip to observations about things you saw or did. It’s great to share experiences that are meaningful to you, no matter what they’re about.
For me, I like to share what I’ve learned, either about the specific place I visited or the culture. I’m getting more into sharing general travel experiences of what I did during the day and that’s been fun, too. It makes me smile to remember the things I did, even the mundane things. So, share your experiences and relive the joy you experienced on your adventures while you’re stuck at home.
2. READING TRAVEL MEMOIRS
Jen and Ryan from Passions and Places share why they’re enjoying travel memoirs while they’ve been stuck at home.
What’s the next best thing to doing something you love? Reading about it! And with travel nearly impossible right now, there’s never been a better time to cozy up with some travel memoirs. We’re fortunate to be spending this time in Montana, where we’re not under a strict quarantine, but we’ve chosen to socially distance as much as possible. And that means there’s been plenty of time for reading.
No matter what destination or type of travel you’re interested in, there’s sure to be a book about it. There are famous adventure tales like The Sex Lives of Cannibals or The Great Railway Bazaar, and stories of self-discovery like Wild or Eat, Pray, Love. But some of our favorites have been by less well-known writers. For example, Free Country: A Penniless Adventure the Length of Britain recounts the hilarious misadventures of two friends who cycle across Britain without spending any money. The Yellow Envelope tells the story of a couple who left everything behind to travel long-term, and Kinky Gazpacho chronicles one African-American writer’s life-long relationship with Spain.
The thing these books have in common is their ability to transport you from your living room to locales around the world and shed light on the everyday realities of traveling. And if you’re someone who’s missing the chance to travel right now, reading stories like these will help tide you over until we can all get back on the road again.
3. VIRTUAL TRAVEL
Federica of A Stroll Around the World isn’t letting distance stop her from seeing the sites she loves while she’s stuck at home.
As an Italian journalist self-isolating in London, I have spent the last weeks following the situation in my country of origin. The news coming from the Bel Paese was enough to close the front door of my house for the time being. However, while my itchy feet will not bring me anywhere for the next few months, the technology is a valuable friend that can satisfy my ever-growing desire to travel the world discovering archaeological sites and museums.
I grew up surrounded by the marvelous ruins of Rome and I studied archeology of ancient Greek and Roman Art. But the richness of the ancient art never bore me and keeps nurturing my mind. So, my virtual travel in discovering the archeological awe of our planet starts with a virtual tour discovering the Musei Capitolini collection and the Ara Pacis in Rome. But the ancient Roman art would not aesthetically exist without the classical Greek beauty. Athens in Greece is the place to go next admiring the Acropolis, cradle of the Western civilization.
You can check out more virtual travel destinations in my post about 21 Virtual Tours to Satisfy Your Wanderlust!
4. CREATE PHOTO BOOKS
Roshni of The Wanderlust Within found that creating photo books of past travels helped her fill the travel void.
Whilst stuck at home in self isolation in London I’ve decided to combine being productive with finding a way to satisfy my wanderlust. We all have to make use of this extra time at home so I’m doing things that have been on my to-do list. I want to look back at this time and know I achieved something I had always wanted to. I have been going through old photos to create photo books that I will get printed. The next few months’ worth of travels have been cancelled so it makes a big difference to be able to relive past travel memories now. It also helps me decide where I’d love to travel back to when the isolation period is over.
I am currently in the midst of creating 60 small photo books from the last 5 years’ worth of travel, that will sit on my coffee table, available for anyone to flick through when they come to visit me in the future. I am also creating doubles for some photo books, as they make great gifts for friends and families that I travelled with in the past, so they can also share in the beautiful memories and get their travel fix. CEWE photo world are a great company for creating photo books and with their online templates it only takes about half an hour to create a photo book from scratch.
5. LIVE CAMERA FEEDS
Alexander of Gourmand Trotter can’t leave home and is living vicariously through live camera feeds around the world.
As an avid traveler, the government lockdown in Spain has meant that all travel plans are canceled, and there is also no set date when I will be able to go outside my house for a regular walk again. For now, I can only go outside for hospital visits, pharmacy or to buy food from my nearest supermarket.
Fortunately, I’m not alone and can share this experience with my girlfriend. We can still watch live cameras from various cities and places around the world and travel virtually, even though we are locked up through the end of April.
Watching live cams is highly underrated and a lot more exciting than one might think. Contrary to travel shows that are scripted, the live cams are non-censored and happen in real-time, giving the watching experience that excited feeling because you have no idea what will happen next.
Two of my favorite websites to find live cams from around the world are Earth Cam and City Cams who list live cams from the biggest cities in the world and other interesting places. It’s quite surreal to watch them now since most of the world is in some kind of lockdown, giving them an eerie feeling. Nonetheless, for a moment I can picture myself in these places and get my daily dose of virtual travel inspiration.
6. COOKING INTERNATIONAL FOOD
Noel of Travel Photo Discovery has found that when he can’t enjoy international cuisines on his travels, he can recreate the experience in his home.
When you are isolated and staying home, there are still a lot of great options to do at home. Eating and cooking is one of those wonderful things to bring you back to places that you have traveled and tried some delicious food.
Just coming back from the Philippines, I wanted to recreate quite a few of the dishes that I enjoyed eating the delicious street food and other local favorites at each location that I visited and yes there is amazing Filipino food to try and make on your own. It’s easy to google recipes or even watch YouTube videos on how to make some of your favorite dishes that you have tried on a trip abroad or even just regionally in your area.
Taking your travel experience back home and enjoying a locally made meal that you can source from your area and try to make yourself will bring back some wonderful memories and skills in making more of these dishes that you have tried on your travels. Even if you don’t cook, it could be as easy as buying something easy like snacks, delicacies, or easy small foods that you can find in your area or even purchase easily on sites like Amazon. So definitely extend your travel experiences by cooking some wonderful dishes that you have tried and enjoyed from your last trip.
7. TRAVEL PODCASTS
Wendy from The Nomadic Vegan has found that listening to travel stories lifts her travel spirits.
Here in Portugal, the country is in what I would call a “soft lockdown”. While in most cases there are no fines or other criminal punishments for coming out of isolation, everyone has been told to stay in their homes, and it seems like most people are following those orders. I certainly am. It’s hard not knowing when I’ll be able to travel again, but one thing that helps me feel like I’m still traveling is to listen to travel podcasts.
In some ways, I prefer listening to podcasts over watching travel videos. With podcasts, I have to use my imagination to picture the places being described, so it engages my mind a bit more than just staring at a screen. Plus, I can listen while I’m doing other things around the house, like washing the dishes or even exercising. If you’re not familiar with travel podcasts, a good one to start with is Amateur Traveler. It’s been around for many years, and the back catalog currently includes nearly 700 episodes, so it will keep you busy for quite a while!
But of course, if you have a special interest in a particular type of travel or a particular destination, you can probably find a specific podcast devoted to your travel niche. For example, as a vegan traveler, I love listening to the World Vegan Travel podcast. And there are others that are great for couples’ travel, family travel, or any other kind of travel you can think of.
8. DRESSING UP
Jen of This Family Blog has found that dressing up in time-period outfits while they explore historic sites online adds to the authenticity of their virtual travel experience.
Currently on government ordered lockdown we decided to travel through early American History without leaving our living room. Let me tell you how we are getting our American History travel fix right in our own living room (Also, it’s making Homeschool History a breeze…and we can dress up in epic outfits and no one stares at us funny.)
Although there were over 500 nations prior to the first colonists arriving on this continent, for the purposes of this article, we will start with the oldest settlement in America: Jamestown, Virginia. Historic Jamestown lets you check out the site and the current archaeological dig from the comfort of your home. Old Salem is a notable part of early American History and has a fascinating resource for teaching about the area.
Moving into my favorite time in American History, the American Revolution, you can actually travel back in time to BE George Washington in this interactive theater. It takes you all over Colonial America to pivotal moments and you (as George) get to make decisions. It’s like choose your own adventure except with real people and events and it is AWESOME! I may or may not have played this in full colonial outfit in front of my computer complete with really bad early American colonial accent. Don’t judge.
We’re also traveling to a couple different colonial villages to make various Colonial Crafts! I’m really looking forward to next week when we will be visiting the Civil War Battlefields and will culminate with a trip to Washington DC to study Lincoln and the virtual tour of where his assassination took place.
9. CREATING A BEACH VACATION AT HOME
Marcie of Marcie in Mommyland didn’t let a cancelled trip ruin their beach vacation.
Like many other families, we had to cancel our Spring Break trip to Hawaii. Not only are we self-isolating with our “Stay at Home” order here in Washington State, but Hawaii also closed its state borders to outside travelers. Many hotels and all tours and tourist attractions have closed for the foreseeable future. While we know it’s for the health and safety of everyone (and fully support the quarantine), it’s still a bummer to not be on our vacation. We aren’t letting that stop us from pretending to be in Hawaii, though! We decided to recreate our Hawaiian vacation at home!
The easiest way we started was by listening to Hawaiian music. There are several ways to stream Hawaiian music and it provides the perfect ambiance to almost any activity we do. And it helps transport us to Hawaii when we eat Hawaii food. We’ve been getting Hawaiian food delivered and have also been making Hawaiian garlic shrimp and kalua pork sliders at home. For an extra treat, we’ve been making our own Dole Whip and getting creative with our toppings!
A big part of traveling for me is supporting local businesses. We like to eat at local restaurants instead of chains and I like to shop at local boutiques. Because I knew I would normally spend some money shopping in Hawaii, I decided to go online and find some awesome Hawaiian boutiques to support. It’s my way of supporting the Hawaiian economy during this difficult time. Plus, it gives me something to smile about every time I put on my Hawaiian t-shirts!
10. PLANNING FUTURE TRIPS
Claudia from My Adventures Across the World finds she can get her travel fix by creating travel plans for the future she she can hit the ground running when travel opens up again.
One of the best things to do at home even when traveling is not really possible is to actually plan a trip. Yes, you read it! Plan a trip! There is no better time to do this, because chances are that you are forced indoors and bored with nothing fun to do, and there is nothing more fun than creating your perfect itinerary (well, other than actually traveling in person, that is!).
The web will prove a great resource to plan your perfect trip – blogs will inspire you to visit places and attractions and third party sites will give you an idea of the prices of places to visit and accommodation.
If you know where you want to travel once you are finally allowed to do so again, get to work. Think of a destination you want to visit; decide how much time you want to spend there and what your budget will be. Then put that against the amount of time you have and the attractions you want to visit. For each day you have, make a list of the places you want to visit, in the order you want to visit them – try to keep it logical and flowing, so you don’t move around too much and waste time commuting. It’s better if you don’t pack your itinerary too much – less is more, as the saying goes.
Check out sites such as Get Your Guide or Viator to get an idea of the prices of attractions and guided tours. You may also want to look at hotels to get an idea of what you like – note the names of a few places, but don’t book yet. Chances are that the prices will have changed by the time you are ready to book!
Leave a comment to let me know how you get your travel fix while stuck at home.