Summer break is just around the corner, and many parents are faced with the looming prospect of several months at home with their kids. If you’re dreaming of white sand beaches or a secluded cabin in the woods but don’t have the time – or money – for a major trip, it’s still possible to plan a family getaway with a staycation!
Alphabet of staycation ideas
There are hundreds of staycation ideas for kids and families of all ages. The following alphabet ideas are just a few of our favorites!
A: Aquarium. Before your visit, research the types of fish or marine life you may see.
B: Beach. Visiting the beach is a great way to beat the heat!
C: Camping. Whether it is in your own backyard, a local campground or the living room, camping is a great way to explore the outdoors!
D: Day Trip. Grab a map, and draw a circle around it to represent everything within an hour’s driving distance.
E: Explore. Try a mystery road trip or mystery walk. Simply start going and let your kids alternate telling you where to turn or stop. You never know where you’ll end up!
F: Festivals. Summer is full of festivals and fairs! Find one – or several – to put on the calendar.
G: Global grocery. Have each member of the family choose a state or country to research. Conclude the project by heading to the grocery store to shop for and cook a recipe from that culture.
H: Hotel. Plan a dream vacation where money is no object. Where would you go? How would you get there? Where would you stay?
I: Ice cream. Conduct a science experiment about freezing point depression by making your own ice cream!
J: Journal. Have each child write about their summer staycation; it preserves the memories and helps improve their writing skills!
K: Kindness. Do something kind for someone else, such as baking and delivering cookies to the neighbors.
L: Library. Libraries are home to a number of exciting, fun, educational, and often free summer programs.
M: Museum. Find a museum you have not visited before and plan a trip there.
N: Nature. Take a nature walk through a local park or botanical garden, recording the different plants and animals you find.
O: Outdoors concerts. Head out to enjoy an outdoor concert or festival, such as an outdoor movie screening or Shakespeare in the park performance.
P: Park. What summer vacation is complete without a trip to the park? Make it special with a photo scavenger hunt.
Q: Quiet day. Unplug and plan a day at home free from phones, tablets, and other electronics.
R: Reunion. Whether it is for the whole family or just a few members, plan a reunion. Have kids create invitations, plan the menu, and come up with games or activities.
S: Sports. Head to watch a local sports team play, or play outside together as a family!
T: Theater. Have kids write and stage their own play! Little ones can even participate and create a puppet theater.
U: Under the stars. Learn about astronomy by staying up late to stargaze.
V: Volunteer. Volunteer as a family for a local organization.
W: Water. Head to a local pool or water park; check for discounted rates such as family pricing or evening hours.
X: X marks the spot. Create a treasure hunt using a map or with a series of riddles.
Y: Yard. Plant a small vegetable garden and enjoy the fruits of your labor as summer progresses!
Z: Zoo. Start with an aquarium and end with a zoo! Enjoy visiting and learning about the animals.