In this article, I am going to share some ideas with you about how to have an outdoors stay-at-home holiday (or staycation) during isolation.
Isolation means holidays will be different this year
With much of the world practising various levels of isolation to protect themselves and everyone else from covid19, we’re all facing having our next holiday at home. Not only at home, but without even travelling away for picnics, bushwalks and day trips; no friends coming over for a BBQ and game of backyard cricket; no fishing expeditions, group rides or sleepovers.
If you’re anything like me and my family, you may not have ever had a home-based holiday that didn’t involve trekking from place to place, taking in a different mountain bike trail each day, or meeting friends for outdoor adventures in a National Park.
New experiences are simply adventures in disguise
So, being at home and not having the freedom to travel and socialise in person might be a new experience for you too. And new experiences are simply adventures in disguise! This is the perfect opportunity to create glorious memories in new and unexpected ways.
Here is a list of outdoors and nature-based mini-adventures that you can have right on your doorstep ….. literally! Many of these activities are family-friendly and suitable for most people if you are feeling well. If you’re a bit under the weather, I think you’ll find something here too if you take it at your own pace.
20 staycation mini-adventures to have on your own doorstep
- Backyard Picnic – Pack a delicious picnic for your family or house mates, grab some card games and a few books, spread the picnic rug in the backyard, put up your sun shelter or umbrella, sit back, relax and enjoy your picnic.
- Nature Craft – Collect nature items from your garden and craft them into a nature collage or arrangement. Search the Internet for ideas if you need inspiration.
- Sunset Wind Down – Set the alarm for half an hour before sunset, grab your favourite pre-dinner drinks and nibblies, and get outside to enjoy the colour show.
- Star Gazing – Prepare for an evening of star gazing by researching what you might expect to see in the night sky where you live. This is best done on an evening around the new moon phase, minimal light pollution, and a clear sky. Check out the apps that help you get the most out of your astronomical adventures.
- Sunrise Captures – Set the alarm for this adventure too if you’re not an early riser. Make sure you’re outside well before dawn to watch the sun greet the new day. Why not make it a regular adventure and capture the moments in photographs!
- Herb Gardens – Plant some herb seedlings or seeds in the garden or in pots. Seedlings might be ready for you to use in a holiday cooking adventure within a couple of weeks.
- Make a Movie – Use the video app on your smart phone or camera to film a documentary about your backyard or park if you are permitted to go there.
- Outdoor Dance Party – Create a playlist of your favourite music, put together some party food, and groove and move outside. If you have close neighbours you could invite them to join the fun ….. while they stay on their own side of the fence of course, and no sharing of food either. And as always be considerate of the noise level and timing of your dance party.
- Outdoors Yoga and Meditation – Take your indoors practice into the outdoors for the added benefit of fresh air, Vitamin D and all the goodness that nature has to share with you.
- Cubby House – Grab some old sheets or blankets and throw them over the top of the clothes line, the laundry trolley or other structure that’s suitable. Grab a good book, some board games or a picnic lunch and relax for the afternoon.
- Bushcraft – You’ll need some milled timber that you might have lying around in the shed or some sticks in the garden, as well as some rope or baling twine. Tie the sticks together into a tee-pee, chair, table or other construction that sparks your interest.
- Backyard Spotlighting – Spend some quiet time in your own yard after dark getting to know the night creatures and noises that often go unnoticed. Your eyes will adjust to the dark after a few minutes, but if you use a torch, take care to respect your neighbours as well as the wildlife that might be startled by the light.
- Outdoor Movies – Take your laptop outside either during the day or evening for an outdoor movie experience. Add to the atmosphere with popcorn and chocolate coated ice cream!
- Mindful Walk – You can use a mindful walk in your own garden to ground yourself and bring a sense of stability into your day. As you slowly walk around, observe how each step feels right through your whole body. You can do this in bare feet or wearing shoes.
- Working Bee – This is a great time to knock over that backyard job that seems to keep getting put off. Call your family or house mates together for a working bee followed by a celebratory shared meal. Don’t forget the before and after photos!
- Adventure Gear Check – Your staycation might be a timely chance to pull out your adventure gear and check it over – backpacks, panniers, hydration systems, sleeping bags, tents, boots, stoves and so on. Do you need to de-clutter? Upgrade? Repair? While you’re at it, you could set up the tent and camp out in your own yard for the night.
- Knotting – Grab a knotting book, You Tube tutorial or an app and get outside while you practise knots that come in handy on your adventures that take you further afield from home.
- Obstacle Course – Set up an obstacle course or an exercise circuit in your yard, and then get to it! You can create games and challenges using a stop watch, timer or a playlist of music.
- Birdwatching – Use a bird identification book, app or the Internet to identify the birds that visit your neighbourhood. You can record these in a journal or using one of the apps like eBird that has built-in data collection.
- Make-Your-Own-Adventure – Get your family and friends to help brainstorm mini-adventures that you can have without even leaving home. Perhaps you could connect in virtually with each other mid-adventure for a shared meal and a few laughs?
It’s not about coping – it’s about turning it into an adventure!
There will be many of us having a staycation over Easter and later in the year while we’re in isolation. It’s not a matter of learning to cope with it. It’s a matter of making the most of every opportunity to turn the moments into adventures and wonderful memories.
What will you do to have adventures on your staycation?
It’s over to you now – which of these mini-adventures are you going to try out first? What other ideas do you have for making the most of your staycation? How will your staycation strengthen your well-being?
You can listen to this article on the Outdoors is my Therapy podcast!
Discovering mountain biking as life’s ultimate parallel universe in her middle age, Kathryn Walton shares information and reflections in ‘Daisy Spoke’ that inform, inspire and empower women to a healthy and active lifestyle.