What: Taking a vacation at home
Why: Have you met a tourist or out-of-town friend who knew more about your hometown than you did? Ever drive past a museum and think “I need to go there someday,” but realize you have been saying that for 10 years? How about taking a vacation in your hometown? It is possible and it is a great way to save money, while learning about the town you live in everyday.
1. Start with a mindset – treat the vacation as if you know absolutely nothing about your town. Clear your schedule as much as you can – living as if you are not in town.
2. Stop by the tourist center and pick up a guidebook – read through it and your eyes may be opened to activities you may have never even thought of.
3. What to do? Here are some ideas:
- Find a place you have never visited
- Take a tour (museums, walking, historical)
- Shop at the local stores and shop as if you were a tourist – take your time
- Hike or bike on paths you have never been on
- Explore the farmer’s markets, natural beauty, or simply sit and people watch
- Grab a cup of coffee at a local coffee shop.
- Get ice cream after dinner and walk around town.
4. Take pictures – you have probably driven by a certain sight and thought: I need to take a picture of that someday – here is your chance!
5. Eat at a new restaurant
6. Think about staying in your town’s hotel or bed and breakfast if possible. If you stay at home, you may be tempted to do household chores – again, treat the vacation as if you vacating your home.
7. Talk to tourists – see what they enjoy doing around your town.
Confession of the Day: Since moving to a new state, my husband and I have enjoyed exploring what our new state has to offer. We have heard a few comments from people saying that us moving here has been good because it has encouraged them to explore sights and sounds right in their area – places they may not consider going to because it is so close to “home.” Often traveling time makes it feel like a vacation – but how far does one have to travel to make it a vacation? Vacations can often be just clearing the schedule, making time for your spouse, friends, or family, and exploring an area. Living with less encourages exploring for less – vacations do not always have to be extravagant. Vacations can be simple – it’s the time spent with each other or a retreat for yourself, that matters.
What is your favorite place to visit in your hometown? (This will help others if they ever come and visit your hometown!)