Want to kick summer boredom to the curb without breaking the bank? If you have a few days to spend as a family this summer, but aren’t able to take a substantial vacation, why not enjoy an equally awesome family staycation? Or, plan a weekend staycation in addition to your larger vacation plans for the summer to really soak up the joys of summer.
By staying local rather than travelling to far-off destinations, you’ll save time and money on travel and accommodations. Remember that with a bit of creativity and planning, your family can have just as much fun without the price tag of a larger vacation.
Here are 5 fantastic family staycation ideas you and your children are sure to love!
1) Local Museums and Factories
We seldom take the time to tour and enjoy what’s right there in our own city. During a staycation, you can take the time to visit the museums and even factories that you’ve never visited before. Check out your city’s website for information available to tourists and see what sort of museums are closeby. From historical museums to themed children’s museums, you may be surprised at what you find! Don’t rule out the local fire station. Many stations can arrange a quick visit, so if fire engines are exciting for your family, consider calling to ask about the possibility.
Don’t forget to take into account tours at local factories. Whether you have a pretzel factory or a car manufacturer in town, many of these businesses offer tours to the public. Take a morning or an afternoon to explore them with your kids!
While planning these visits, be sure to take your family’s interests into account. For example, if your children love arts and crafts, consider visiting an art museum. You might also consider seeking out local “paint your pottery” shops or finding an art studio that will allow you to arrange one family art lesson. With your family’s interests in mind, you can tailor your visits to make sure everyone has a good time.
2) Camping in the Backyard
Tenting is a classic summer activity many families enjoy. However, if it seems a bit much to pack up and head out with all your gear for a few nights of camping, why not enjoy just one night in the backyard? Your children will delight at the idea of tenting. If permissible in your area, light a small campfire or fire up the grill to enjoy some classic camping foods in the evening. Try hamburgers, hotdogs, and/or grilled vegetable shish kabobs. Then, enjoy s’mores for dessert! Spend some time sitting around the fire telling stories after dark until it’s time to head to the tent for bed.
Don’t have a good backyard for camping? Ask to swap houses with friends for a night or check out camping opportunities in nearby parks. Staying close to home means that one night of camping is much more doable and you won’t have to pack up as much gear.
Make sure you get some photos of the family on your camping adventure! Then, you can sync them to Picniic so that all of your family members can access them.
3) Local Sports Game
Summer is baseball season. Why not head out to the nearest field to watch a local game? You don’t have to make it to a big leagues city. Smaller, lesser known teams offer all of the excitement of a game without the crowds and high prices! So, find your nearest local diamond and reserve your tickets for an evening of fun. Make it extra special by planning to enjoy snacks while at the game. Take along binoculars to see the players up close and get ready to spend an evening learning about baseball.
4) Visit a Nearby City
Your staycation doesn’t have to stay within your city’s limits. Why not check out a nearby city or town? Driving to the next city over can awaken the sense of adventure as you explore a city that’s not quite as familiar as your own. While there, you can enjoy visiting museums, factories, and parks. Or, check out the city’s local farmer’s market, library and city square to compare them to your own. Then, pick out a new restaurant to try for lunch!
If you really want to make a day of it, you could consider taking public transit to the next town over rather than driving. It can be exciting to take the bus, subway, train or other public transportation and really make your staycation stand out to your kids.
5) Spend a Park Day
Plan a whole day at a local park! Pack up a picnic lunch, plenty of snacks and lots of water. Many local parks feature a pool where you can spend part of the day. Spend the rest of the time laying on a blanket in the grass, playing a game of soccer or exploring the woods. You could also head to a nearby state park where you can enjoy some time hiking. Some state parks also feature lakes and rivers where you can try canoeing or even swimming! A day out in nature is the perfect way to spend time as a family.
Ready to plan your staycation? Keep everything organized in your Picniic calendar! You can schedule your activities there so that the whole family can see your itinerary.
Make your staycation feel extra special by planning a few days of activities in a row, or space out a few staycation days throughout the summer. What might it look like? On day one, you plan to visit a local museum. Afterwards, you enjoy a picnic lunch and spend the rest of the afternoon at a local park. That night, you camp out in the backyard. The next day, you have a lazier day at home playing board games and attend a local baseball game in the evening. The perfect staycation weekend!
Remember, the most important part of your staycation is spending time together and having fun. So, start planning and before you know it, your staycation will be here!