As the COVID-19 pandemic continues across the world, canceling events and closing attractions, it's likely that your vacation plans got thrown out the window along with it.
The weather is getting warmer, kids are getting ready for summer and you were looking forward to getting that time off work for a week or two. Now, you are struggling to figure out how to use that vacation time with no Mediterranean beach to spend it on.
Whether you are stuck at home to care for your children who are home full time or stuck in isolation because your business can't operate under the government's work order; the coronavirus pandemic doesn't have to completely rob you of your vacation.
The fact is, you don't really have to travel all the time.
We know it's no Jamaica, but hear us out: When was the last time you took a walk around your hometown.
Taking a day trip, whether it's an hour away to a town you've never visited for a scenic drive (If you are able to in accordance to your provincial regulations) or just stepping outside your front door.
You can tour that city and it can get you out of the house ... or you can play tourist in your own city. Atlas Obscura is a great resource for finding interesting, off the beaten path locations in your area. Granted, the museums are closed in the major cities and a lot of local attractions are shut down, but you can still walk around and learn something about the history and see some interesting places around you.
Parks are also an option (if they are open), especially during the spring and summer time. Trips to parks can also be done alone or with your family if you're all quarantined together. As with everything, just make sure to observe and respect social distancing around others and always wear a mask if you are going to be in areas with other people.
Even if you're driving 100 miles away and doing a full long day trip, it could be a great opportunity to explore ... and do hikes and things of that nature.
Staycation: Indoor edition
Not everywhere is safe and for some regions, it's difficult to get outside but there are plenty of ways you can enjoy your staycation inside.
Why don't you bring the spa to you! Perhaps you and your family could do spa day complete with manicures, pedicures and face masks.
You can also schedule movie nights with your friends through Netflix Party, or with people already in your home. After the movie, open it up to questions or reviews. and of course, there's always your favourite board games. Try putting together a game night for the family.
If you are quarantined with family, you can have a no-screen day. This is great for the kids but you should plan out part of the day and have a good idea of what you want to do.
Also, if you have a backyard, there are many backyard activities for the family. Lawn Darts or Ladder Golf are among just a few possibilities getting you and your family out of the house while still keeping them safe.
Couple's Getaway: Quarantine edition
You may have had to cancel that romantic couple's getaway in Paris, but that doesn't mean your living room can't be just as intimate.
You can plan a special day where you watch your favorite movie and take time to support a local restaurant. If your local restaurants are doing takeout. Maybe you order something high-end when you usually wouldn't. It's a great opportunity to have a romantic dinner at home while also supporting local businesses that are struggling right now.
A lot of times people equate vacation to going on a trip somewhere or doing something, but how about just taking a day to do absolutely nothing?
While it's always important to take some time to yourself, given the current climate, it's even more necessary to turn your brain off.
If you have a glass of wine at 10 a.m., that is OK, if you lay in bed until 3 p.m., that is OK. Because the stress level is so high and balancing the stress of uncertainty with also still working, its a good opportunity to let your mind be at ease.
When taking your self-care day, It's imperative that you unplug from social media and really just indulge in being by yourself.
It's really giving yourself permission to have an absolutely ridiculous day of nothingness.
Take a trip down memory lane
For those whose passion in life it is to travel, travel and then travel some more, canceling your trip to Belize may have you feeling lost, confused and just all around sad.
Take a deep breath, it'll be OK.
How many times have you looked back at a place you haven't visited in 10 years? This is a great time for people who are used to traveling to go back to your hard drive ... take some time to revel in the memories. Because we're constantly planning the next trip, we never get to reminisce about what was so great about so many trips that we've already had, whether it's two months ago, two years ago or 12 years ago.
Plan a low-key trip post-quarantine
With the uncertainty of the coronavirus pandemic, it may be difficult to plan a big international getaway once it's safe to travel again. But not all hope is lost.
There's a lot to see and do within our own country
As things ease up and inevitably start to reopen, this will be a real opportunity to explore more of Canada. Cities like Toronto, Vancouver and Montreal will be great spots to visit or head to the Maritimes for some of that extra special, "East Coast Hospitality". It's going to be a great time to try out restaurants and support these businesses as they're coming back together.
You can start the planning process now and have something planned out for when it's safe to start travelling across this great country.
Chris Adams is the owner of Canadian Shade. A toronto-based shade solution provider that specializes in Canadian Made products.