What if there was a way to ignite a feeling of wanderlust from your own home?
Whether quarantining alone or with loved ones, there are a variety of ways to feed your wanderlust and create experiences from all over the globe — within the comforts of your personal space and without fronting the hefty costs of a plane ticket.
As someone who loves to travel, it’s rare to find a year-long calendar not blocked off with various trips to destinations all over the world. Given the crucial need to keep safe and healthy during a pandemic, staying put is the least we can do to help others (and ourselves). However, having to face the realities of the current state of the world can leave some feeling confined or anxious.
Thankfully, with the magic of creativity and modern technology, crafting a sense of wanderlust at home is possible! More than just a cultural outlet, finding ways to embody this mentality from a routine or common space can help bring about new ways of connecting with the world.
Dive into your sense of wanderlust with ten ways to add a touch of travel into your current space:
1. Read and Research
If you’ve canceled or pushed back your 2020 vacation, it may seem like you’re losing out on an experience. But there may be a benefit to having more time to thoroughly read and research your current or new travel destination. Once you have a place in mind, or a bucket list adventure of your dreams, start digging into your research. Now is the time to pull out a guide book, explore travel-inspired articles, or even connect with locals on social media, you may just come across a local gem that completely elevates the experience of your trip.
2. Start Learning a New Language
Whether it’s the language of your bucket list travel destination or one that’s always sparked your attention, try utilizing this extra time to connect with a foreign tongue. You may come to find it not only opens up your appreciation for a new language and culture, but expands your ability to connect with others. During this particular time, language learning services are even offering free use of their platforms to help those wanting to learn. Companies like Rosetta Stone and Babbel are offering free use of their program for students (K-12), while Fluent Forever is giving users a free (first) thirty days of use.
3. Cook a Local Cuisine
An outlet that might be one of my favorite cultural immersions is in the home! Not only can you and your household fly around the world within days by creatively using your palates, you can master and hone in on an element of cooking that brings you closer to a particular area. A great way to start adding destination-based meals to your home menu is to stock your pantry with seasonings. While staples like garlic, chili powder or paprika are phenomenal, try expanding beyond your local knowledge of spices and herbs. Try aji peppers from Peru, or gochujang from Korea, to really create authentic international cuisine.
4. Drink Local
Why stop with the food?! Beverages (even alcoholic ones), are a great way to craft a local immersion into a far-off place. Many destinations around the world pride themselves on their speciality drinks. It can be anything from freshly-squeezed oranges from the coasts of Florida to smooth saké from Japan to Vinho Verde of Portugal.
5. Bring Customary Games and Activities into the Evening Activities
Many aspects of wanderlust are brought on by the enriching fun and entertainment of local games or activities. Whether it’s a fun night of karaoke in Japan or challenging loved ones to a Colombian game of tejo (a jazzed up cornhole); different local customs can be brought into your home (or backyard) and enjoyed by all!
6. Enjoy a Sunrise
Having visited over fifty countries, I do have to say that one of my favorite activities — no matter where I am in the world — is enjoying a beautiful sunset. It’s a bonding experience that connects us with others: Whether it’s hours before or after, we’re all watching the same sun go down each and every day.
7. Set Up a Glamping Experience in Your Own Backyard
Oftentimes, it takes leaving home to connect with nature — when in reality it’s been under our noses this entire time. In addition to waking up with birds chirping, camping in your backyard can give you and your family the opportunity to spend quality time together in a different atmosphere than the one you’ve been in for the last few weeks.
*But what if you don’t have a backyard? For those urban dwellers, we’ve got you! Try setting up a pillow fort in your living room or bedroom!
8. Book Now, Enjoy Later
It’s no surprise that the travel industry has taken a small nose dive. For several different reasons, this is the time to book that trip you’ve always wanted to take (for later in the year or 2021)! Not only will you save money with the reduced rates, you’ll be supporting an industry that really needs our help! Along with flights and hotels, tour companies are struggling, too. By booking now, you’re helping them through a financial downtime.
9. Watch a Foreign Film or Travel Documentary
Films and documentaries are a great way to see into a new culture or learn foreign customs. Whether a food docu-series or a drama-filled film, there’s much to be learned about the world outside the Hollywood limelight.
10. Take a Scenic Drive
You may be surprised to know that many beautiful landscapes may be hiding hours (or minutes) away from your home. If you’re able to drive around, take advantage of this luxury and research scenic destinations in your local guide books. You may come to find a new favorite spot that you end up visiting often!
What’s your preferred method of getting away when you can’t get away? Let us know how you curb your wanderlust by leaving a comment below!
Cover Image by Artem Beliaikin