Greetings virtual travelers! Spring break for many of us would be starting tomorrow, and this fact is heavy on my mind. Some of you had plans to travel to amazing places, others looked forward to visiting colleges with your high school kids and some had staycation plans to celebrate Easter or Passover with loved ones. Whatever your plans may have been, this spring break is not what any of us expected or wanted.
The best we can do is think of creative ways to have a fun spring break at home. If you have school-aged kids, they will likely have homework but free time to fill. Since this will be the only spring break under these circumstances, why not make it special? Whether you live alone or with a big family, below are 7 ideas (one for each day next week) that will help you make the most of the non-break…
Have a spa party with facials, manicures, and pedicures. Set the scene with soothing music and burning scented candles. Wrap yourself in your cozy bathrobe and place a warm towel around your neck. Make fresh cucumber-mint or other fruit water and sip it with your feet elevated. Try a Tai Chi class or guided walking meditation on YouTube for something more active but still relaxing.
Set up the family room for a travel movie night with popcorn and candy (here’s the link to a robust list of options https://hiddengemtravelconsulting.com/travel-movies/ ). With the kids, you could watch Around the World in 80 Days (from 2004 on Prime Video) – a lesser-known film that they likely haven’t seen. For adults only, play award-winning Sideways (another film from 2004) which takes place in California wine country so best watched with a flight of wines and charcuterie platter. For an international spy thriller, The Night Manager mini-series offers Switzerland, Spain, and Marrakesh backdrops and British star power.
Cook a theme-dinner from your desired destination. We were supposed to be in Greece next week so we are planning to enjoy a traditional Souvlaki dinner (warm pita with marinated grilled meat topped with Tzatziki sauce). Treat yourself to a special dessert – you deserve it 😊. While dining, play the music that’s local to your destination.
Sunset happy hour (full disclosure, I think we will do this every night next week). Steel drum music and rum drinks will recreate a festive Caribbean night out. If you love Nashville, why not recreate it with beer, some country music, and a bit of line dancing in your cowboy boots? Or prepare your favorite bar snacks with creative cocktails (aka Quarantinis) and some jazz music. Check out these creative cocktail recipes from Travel+Leisure’s #1 rated river cruise line, Uniworld https://bit.ly/3aINu0Y
Take a virtual destination tour of the place you were planning to go to or where you want to go next when this is behind us. YouTube and tourism websites are great resources for videos. Need destination inspiration? Watch Netflix’s Restaurants on the Edge. It’s an interesting series (six 47-minute episodes) that helps restaurants that are having a tough time staying in business in Malta, Hong Kong, Canada, St. Lucia, Austria, and Costa Rica. Malta is now firmly on my Wanderlist 😊
Sunny day? Pretend you’re at the beach, even if you have to dress warmly. Dig out your beach gear and set up your yard with a badminton or volleyball net, Kadima set, beach chairs, picnic gear, and favorite beach snacks. Play some Beach Boys tunes or read a book – whatever you like to do on the beach. Rainy day? Set up inside the house or even in the garage. Take some fun pics and videos to document your creativity!
Revisit vacations from the past. Pull out your photo albums, play a slideshow of your travel photos and reminisce. Rank them in order of memorability and discuss if a return trip is desired. Photos in disarray? Keep an eye out for a newsletter in the next week or two with tips on how to get your valuable vacation memories organized so you can easily enjoy them.
Hidden Gem Tip: We will all look back on this time and remember where we were, who we were with and how we coped (similar to 9/11). Creating some bright spots shows our resilience and ability to get through the toughest times in life. Well worth the effort.
Wishing you and your family continued good health,