When you finally get to take time off from work or school for a long-overdue weekend getaway, you’ll want to savor every minute of it. Going on vacation allows you to get away, decompress, and recharge. To ease the stress of planning, we’ve compiled our top 5 ideas for weekend getaways we think you’ll love.
1. Visit a National Park
With over 420 national park sites in the US, there’s a good chance you won’t have to travel far to find a new place to explore. Studies have shown that spending time outdoors has a wide range of health benefits. What better place to retreat to than a place full of scenic views and exciting wildlife? Hike in the great outdoors, breathe in the fresh air, and sit and contemplate the meaning of life on top of a picturesque mountain. There is no limit to what you can do.
2. Become a Tourist in Your Own Backyard
Want to escape your everyday life without going too far away? Check into the local hotel you’ve been eyeing and explore your own city or town. Drive through neighboring areas, go into antique shops, visit the sites you deemed “too touristy” to go to before. We can get so caught up in our daily lives or in planning extravagant vacations we forget we can have just as much fun in our own backyard!
3. Go Camping
Enjoying the great outdoors is always a good suggestion. Trekking to the middle of the woods, pitching a tent, and sleeping under the stars in nature can be a liberating experience. If you’re not as into “roughing-it,” rent an RV and gain all the perks of camping, but with a solid roof over your head. Whatever your style, once you’re settled at your campsite, there’s plenty to do- hiking, canoeing, and fishing to name a few. Don’t forget the fixings for hot dogs and s’mores around the campfire to make memories that will last a lifetime!
4. Take the Road Less Travelled
It’s easy to get caught up in the classic vacation spots. Try branching out and researching a new area to visit. Zig where everyone else zags. Instead of New York City, try Upstate New York. Instead of Los Angeles, try Hermosa Beach. Skip the typical tourist websites and find ways to engage with the places you visit. Find new ways to get around, like biking or scootering. Connect with the local culture and allow yourself to absorb everything that comes with experiencing a place different than you’re used to. Plus, if the place you visit becomes a popular tourist destination later on, you can brag that you went there first.
5. Swap Houses with a Relative or Friend in a Different Area
Want to explore a new area with all the comforts of a home? Swap houses with a relative or friend for the weekend! Gone are the days of cold, impersonal hotel rooms. You’ll get all the conveniences of being at home right at your fingertips, like movies to watch, books to read, and toys for your kids. Make an itinerary for your guests and ask them to do the same to get an insider’s opinion on the best things to do in the area. Take time to get away and experience a new place like a local.
Wherever you go, make sure to soak in everything there is to experience. Schedule time to do something just for you to de-stress and reset for when you return. As the world continues to open up, it’s time to shed the sweatpants for jeans and slippers for hiking boots to enjoy all the wonders waiting for you.