Occasionally in life we are confronted with situations where we simply can’t travel; stressful jobs, lack of funds, family emergencies and now global pandemics. It happens, and just for a while we have to put travel on hold and while this is frustrating and sad for the seasoned traveller and professional wanderluster, we will be able to travel again. In the meantime, there are things you can do at home or close to home that can help to scratch that travel itch without leaving home and while they won’t fulfil your travel needs like actual travel does, they come somewhat close just by using the immense power of the imagination and a few other tools.
I’ve carefully thought about what I’ve been doing these last couple of weeks in order to still feel like I’m travelling when in reality I’m not and I thought I’d share them with you. Here are some of the things you can do to travel and bring travel closer to you without leaving home.
READ A TRAVEL BOOK
There’s nothing quite like emersing yourself in an excellent book for a few hours every day, letting it take your mind to lands both near and far. There are so many different travel novels to choose from, from tales of writers wandering around untrampled lands and climbing the worlds highest peaks to epic non-fiction empowerment books. Travel through their well-written pages and gratify your wanderlust. Here are some of my favourite tiles to get you started:
- Into the Wild + Into Thin Air – Jon Krakauer
- Wild – Cheryl Strayed
- Seven Years in Tibet – Heinrich Harrer
- The Beach – Alex Garland
- Shantaram – Gregory David Roberts
- On the Road – Jack Kerouac
- Himalaya – Michael Palin
- The Road, White Fang + Call of the Wild – Jack London
- The Road to Oxiana – Robert Byron
- The Lost Heart of Asia + Shadow of the Silk Road – Colin Thubron
- Eat, Pray Love – Elizabeth Gilbert
- The Alchemist – Paulo Coelho
- The Motorcycle Diaries – Che Guevara
- Patagonia – Bruce Chatwin
- A Walk in the Woods – Bill Bryson
REMINISCE PAST TRIPS
One of the best ways to travel without leaving home is through your hard drives. There’s never been a better time to relive past travels, talk about them with the people involved, dig up old, wonderful memories and review past moments in photos. I often find myself daydreaming back to past trips nowadays, thinking about the sounds and sensations I felt in those moments, the people I met and the colours of the landscapes. The mind, particularly the memory is a powerful tool, use it to your advantage now that you can’t build new memories.
PLAN FUTURE TRIPS
The current coronavirus pandemic isn’t going to last forever and we will trot around the globe once more, so why not use your spare time to plan that bucket list trip you’ve always wanted to do? This way, once it’s safe to travel again you’ll have a few trips ready to be booked. Submerging yourself in planning a trip can oftentimes take your mind there and bring up those feelings of excitement and wanderlust right there at home. Here are some of my most popular bucket list posts to get you started:
READ TRAVEL BLOGS
Itching to travel without leaving home? Travel blogs are not only great for planning trips, but they’re also the best places to go for future travel inspiration, travel tips and even uncovering a destination you had no idea about. Get lost in their beautifully curated posts, meticulously edited pictures and immediately transport yourself to that destination (mentally of course). Some of my favourite travel blogs right now include; Find Us Lost, Live Like It’s The Weekend, The Blonde Abroad.
As you can imagine travel bloggers and small travel business will all be suffering right now due to the complete halt of the travel industry. If you would like to show your support, you can! Even a visit to your favourite travel blog a day and reading a few articles can really help out.
Follow me on Instagram here @roamandthrive
WATCH A TRAVEL MOVIE
There’s no shortage of beautifully produced travel-themed movies out there with epic cinematography that’ll immediately feel like you’re being whisked away. Delve into travel classics like Thelma and Louise or if you feel like something modern and contemporary opt for my current favourite movie Wild. Here is a list of some other travel movies I find it hard to get enough of:
- Before Sunrise – A story of fleeting love and romance in Paris
- The Beach – finding and destroying paradise in Thailand
- Y Tu Mama También – A road trip across Mexico in a tale of friendship
- Eat Pray Love – the ultimate story of self-discovery across 3 continents
- The Motorcycle Diaries – Che Guevara’s motorcycle trip chronicles across South America
- Indiana Jones – follow Indiana Jones as he fights evil around the world
- Lost in Translation – finding your feet and yourself in Japan
- Under the Tuscan Sun – spontaneous moves to Tuscany when you have nothing left to lose.
- Up in the Air – A continuous on-the-road kind of lifestyle
- The Way – a beautiful tale of family, grief across the Camino in Spain
- Vicky Cristina Barcelona – two friends and their frivolous trip to Barcelona
LEARN A NEW LANGUAGE
With all the extra time many of us have on our hands there’s never been a better time to learn a new language. Always dreamt of learning how to speak French? Or maybe you’d like to further perfect your Spanish skills? Why not learn a little Russian for that bucket list Trans-Siberian Railway trip you’ve always dreamed about doing? Learning a language now, or at least mastering the basics can really help you with your future travels and even future job prospects. Language apps such as Babbel, Duolingo and Rosetta Stone make it so easy to learn a language at home or on the go. Being more knowledgeable about just about anything never hurt anyone.
COOK UP SOMETHING EXOTIC
Eating in restaurants might not be an option for many of us right now but that doesn’t mean you can’t bring delicious flavours from around the world to your kitchen table. Think about your favourite food from around the world, find a recipe online and recreate it in your own kitchen. Japanese, Thai, Indian, Italian, Peruvian, Middle Eastern ingredients can nowadays be found stocked in large supermarkets or why not order them online.
MEET OTHER TRAVELLERS ONLINE
One of the aspects that I love about travel is meeting new people and while this can’t be done face-to-face for the moment why not meet new people online? By joining traveller groups, forums and communities online you have the chance to start some really riveting conversations, meet people with the same mindset as you and even meet potential future travel buddies. There are multiple travel groups that can be found on Facebook and other social media platforms with hundreds of members to make friends with. Self-isolation really doesn’t have to be lonely.
PERFECT YOUR BUCKETLIST
I don’t know about you, but since not being able to travel, I’m constantly on the lookout for inspiration for new destinations to visit then this pandemic blows over. That means an ever-growing bucket list. I invite you to use this time to redo your bucket list, cross out destinations and experiences you’ve done and replace them with new ones. Is your bucket list a total mess? Go back and organise it by continent, area, country or theme. Not only is it a great way to get your travel thoughts organised it also allows your mind to travel without leaving home, to those places through photographs, text and video. Some of my favourite platforms for travel and bucket list inspiration are Instagram, other travel blogs and Pinterest.
Looking for travel inspiration for your bucket list? Follow me on Pinterest @roamandthrive
TAKE A VIRTUAL TRIP
Every day more and more museums, national parks and attractions worldwide open their virtual doors for visitors. This means that you can enjoy these places using just an electronic device and an internet collection. Ever wanted to see the collection of El Prado museum in Madrid or visit the best viewpoints in Yosemite National Park? Now you can do so by taking their virtual tours in which they’ll whisk you around as though you really were there and give you all kinds of facts and insightful information helpful for when you do visit in the future. Travel + Leisure have a great post on which museums you can tour virtually here.
Any tips and suggestions you’d like to add about travel without leaving home? How are you coping with COVID-19? Let me know below, I’d love to hear from you.
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