This temporary halt we have been experiencing these past few weeks should not drain our spirits. We can take this sudden pause to regroup our thoughts, take up a new hobby, get closer to our loved ones or even make plans for when the time comes that we can finally resume to normalcy.
Needless to say, this is also the perfect time to daydream about future travels and adventures – right at the comforts of our own home! Yes, it can definitely be done. Read on for tips on how you can feed your inner wanderlust.
1. Research a country
Researching a country doesn’t mean scouring the internet and plan out a complete itinerary. Instead of planning a vacation, dive into another country’s history! We all learned about our native country’s history in school. And we may have even learned some of the big events from some of the other major countries. But do you know why the Leaning Tower of Pisa leans? Or who the Vikings actually were? Or when Antarctica was discovered?
Not only will you learn something new and interesting, but you’ll also have a greater appreciation for a country that you have never visited or studied before! Maybe you can even turn it into a trivia game to get the whole family in on the fun.
2. Learn a language
If you’ve always said that you’ll learn French and then reward your hard work with a trip to Paris, then now is the perfect time to get started. Another good reason to learn a language is so you can understand the signs when you visit that country (even when translated, they leave a lot for the mind to wander).
3. Explore with Google Maps
Google Maps is truly a traveler’s best friend. Although we only use this for navigating in a new city or in a country we’ve never been to, it’s a good idea to explore the functionalities of the app while you’re on travel hiatus. One cool functionality is the Google Street View where you can see different parts of the world through panoramic images. While these images are limited, there’s still quite a bit of satellite images for most of the cities sprinkled throughout the world. Whenever you find a beautiful landmark or city, you can search for more images to see many different views at many different times of the day.
4. Cook foreign cuisine
If you can’t eat in Italy, cook an Italian dish. Craving street tacos? Maybe you can’t have authentic ones at the moment, but you can grab some meat out of the freezer and some toppings out of the pantry to make your own! But you don’t have tortilla shells? That’s fine. You can find a recipe for homemade tortilla shells online. You probably already have the necessary ingredients! Get creative and take your palate for a tour of the world.
5. Watch a foreign film
This is a great way to practice another language. This is also a good way to learn more about another country. While documentaries lay out the facts, other types of movies show you what the culture appreciates. For instance, if you watch enough movies created in the United States, you’ll start to notice their values, in addition to any cultural quirks or slang terminology. While Hollywood may not give the best representation of the rest of America, it does do a pretty good job of showcasing American interests and what they enjoy watching.
Keep that in mind when watching foreign films. You’ll learn about their daily lives as well as the type of show that catches their attention. And whether we like it or not, our favorite TV shows say more about us as people than we care to admit.
6. Reminisce on past vacations
Sometimes we get so focused on the future, that we forget to remember the past. If you have pictures from your travels lying around the house, create a scrapbook with them! Look through old pictures on your phone and share any snapshots that you forgot to post at the time. Everyone could use a little break from their news feeds right now. Maybe even find a notebook and write down some of your favorite stories from your travels.
While you’re thinking about past travels, think about what you learned that you will implement in future travels. Maybe a life hack or a bright idea. Perhaps you had a memory so wonderful that you want to try similar activities in the future.
7. Start saving for your next trip
The internet is full of ways to make money from home. Some of these jobs are absolutely great and doable with the basic resources you have access to. However, most of these jobs either require a lot of effort for a little money. Fortunately, there is a way to start raking in a bit of cash by doing something you ought to do anyway.
8. Declutter the house
Use this extra time to do an extra great job at cleaning every nook and cranny of your home. Do an inventory of board games in your closet. If any of them are too boring for your family at this time, then you can probably get rid of them. If you noticed that you watched Disney+ all week long and nobody even looked at the movie collection, you can go through them and decide which ones to keep. Work your way through each room in the house and start a pile of things you don’t need. If you have enough for a yard sale, then all you have to do is wait until life goes back to normal. If you don’t really have that much to sell, maybe pick out the most valuable items and put them up for sale online.
Here’s a silver lining for the travel advice for coronavirus: Use the time you would’ve spent traveling or socializing, to work on something that might enable you to travel or work on the go in the future.