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Wednesday, November 11, 2020

5 Ways to Keep Travel In Mind Right Now

I know people like me right now who aren't going anywhere except the necessary places. They are getting groceries delivered or do pick-up. I also know people who have gone on vacation during this pandemic, but I really just don't trust any of it right now. With as badly as some people are coping and staying home as much as possible, I can't trust that most people are doing the right thing, and that means traveling just isn't in the cards for us right now.

If you're also feeling lost without being able to travel, then I've come up with several things you can do to have a little bit of travel in your life while still staying safe and at home. You've been seeing my Destination Date Night posts, then you already know one big way I'm coping right now, especially when everything is stressful right now. Here are 5 other ways:

Re-Write Your Travel Wish List

This is the time I've been talking to my husband about places we really want to go when we are allowed to leave the country again. We've been saving money by not eating out that much or going to the movies or traveling at the moment, so when we get to go again, we're ready with a brand new list and ideas. It helps that our date nights give us a little taste of a destination, making us want to learn more and see these things in person. 

Some people refer to this as a bucket list, but I like my lists to be a bit more optimistic. Yeah, we're going to die someday, but that doesn't mean it's going to be any time soon. We want to have fun and enjoy travel, not just check things off as we go along. Some places we've added during this are:
  • Cairo, Egypt and surrounding areas like Edfu, Luxor, and Aswan.
  • Mexico City and/or Oaxaca during the Day of the Dead festival.
  • Athens, Greece to see the ruins.
  • Tokyo and Osaka were already on my list, but now I'm even more into it.
  • Morocco for all the gorgeous colors, landscapes, and markets. 
  • Austin, Texas has been on my backburner list, but I'd love to do a short break there to take in the food scene, street art, and history.
  • Chicago for the excellent buildings, haunted history, and cool city sculptures. 
Aside from those, I'd love to get back to Washington, DC, Colonial Williamsburg, Los Angeles, Nassau, and Vancouver, BC. We're talking about a road trip to Anaheim in the coming months. We'll see if we actually do that.

Learn a New Language

I keep thinking I want to do this, or at least continue on my French courses. Eventually, we'll go back to France and travel outside of Paris to see the rest of the country. If there's a place high on your travel list and they speak another language, that's a good place to start. Check out Pimsleur courses. I have French CDs that I used to listen to in my car. You can also get them as an audio book. Eric did much better at his French than I did. I've also used the My Spanish Coach for my Nintendo DS. It makes learning languages and putting sentences together fun by using a game setting. They also have French and Japanese. 

If you need more personalized help, check out Babbel (don't forget to use Rakuten to get cash back) or DuoLingo (which is free). 

Binge Travel Shows

This is the perfect time to figure out where you want to go next or learn about other places through other travelers with some amazing travel shows. Here are some of my favorites:

  • Netflix
    • Jack Whitehall Travels with My Father
    • Somebody Feed Phil
    • Down To Earth with Zac Efron
    • Conan Without Borders
  • Hulu
    • Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown
    • Bizarre Foods: Delicious Destinations
    • Expedition Unknown
  • Amazon Prime
    • Uncharted with Gordon Ramsay
    • An Idiot Abroad
    • The Grand Tour

Explore Destinations with a Virtual Tour

We've been doing this for months, even if it's just a 20-minute video on YouTube, but you can find walking tours, destination live feeds, and even use Google Earth to explore places. I actually did that when I was missing EPCOT and "walked" around the park. 

Recently, we've been paying to take virtual walking tours from actual tour guides. We took a haunted walking tour of the Lincoln Park Zoo in Chicago and then took another tour from the same guide for Halloween, which was a haunted boat tour. We took a virtual Hamilton walking tour, which took us around New York and gave history that inspired Hamilton and then also behind-the-scenes of the actual show, including how the stage was conceived and what the show might have looked like. 

I'd suggest looking at Goldstar for tickets to these sorts of things. Since you aren't bound by proximity, you can go anywhere! Your local tour companies might also be running virtual tours right now. 

Take a Drive

Pack a lunch and some cool tunes and take a drive around your city, out to a nearby National Park, a scenic overlook, or an outdoor landmark. If you look well enough, you can make a day of it and find places you've never heard of before or go see things you haven't had time to see until now. You should check out some local restaurants or cafes that offer take-away, so you can eat safely and also support a small business with your dollars. I know many places here that offer curbside pick-up. Don't forget to charge your phone for pictures and keep masks and hand in your car if you don't already have both in there.

You can totally travel in small ways right now and keep the spirit alive. As much as I have moments where I miss travel harder than I ever have, I feel like what I do to fill the void is actually helping me quite a bit in the long run, because we are doing them every week or every other week instead of waiting for that one- or two-week vacation coming up. In fact, now we have other ways to fulfill our wanderlust between vacations when we get back to whatever normal is.

Explore fun things to do closer to home. Jumping on a plane might not be possible for everyone at the moment, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t have fun. With restrictions still in place on international travel, there are fabulous opportunities to explore days out, weekends away or road trips closer to home. From museums, galleries and historic sites to theme parks, family-friendly locations like Silver Dollar City and adventures in the great outdoors, you can visit beaches, ranches, cities or national parks to indulge your love of travel, enjoy new experiences and create more memories.

How are you keeping the travel bug from overwhelming you right now?

Disclaimer: This post includes affiliate links, and I may be compensated should you choose to make any purchases through them. This allows me to keep this blog running for you. Thanks in advance!

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