As the weather warms up and the open road calls out, spring break fever is in full gear! But just like last year, everyone’s 2021 spring vacation will need to be a spring safe-cation, complete with social distancing and other safety measures.
Worry not, we’ve gathered up 10 great and safe outdoor destination ideas for you and your family — because you deserve some fun after a full year of quarantining, putting big travel plans on hold, and converting your whole life to zoom.
Get out there and enjoy your break! Here are fun 10 safe-cation ideas.
1. Rent a cabin. Lake? Mountains? Beach? Take your pick. Break out a map and check out destinations within a few hours’ driving distance. Choose based on what you want to do while you’re there (hiking, fishing, small-town strolling or just relaxing on the property). Ask the rental or property owner about their cleaning policies and review other guests’ reviews. Once you arrive, do your own sanitizing of high-touch surfaces just for peace of mind.
2. Get your hike on. Springtime is hiking heaven. Ocean, forest, desert, or something in between? Take a family vote. You could go for day hiking adventures or book a longer backpacking or trekking tour. Check with tour companies, many of which are open. If doing the former and you want to hike in local, state, or national parks, definitely check the parks’ websites to see about closures and safety precautions.
3. Hit the bike path – on or off-road! As with hiking, you could choose more casual daily biking from a central spot, such as a rental cabin, or book with a bike touring company. If going for the latter and your family isn’t already in biking shape and has equipment, start training ahead of time.
4. Check out local (hidden) gems. Stay home and make a series of day trips to local destinations. There are probably plenty of places you’ve said you wanted to visit but have never had time to. These could be local geologic wonders, tucked-away waterfalls, wildflower spots, or hiking peaks. Keeping it local means you can fall asleep each night in your own bed – while keeping your activities both safe and affordable.
5. Climb some rocks. Maybe your kids were just getting into rock/wall climbing when the pandemic hit? Or maybe you were the aspiring rock climber! Either way, climbing rocks outdoors is great for exercise, mental agility, and family bonding time. Check to see if there are local destinations that have rock features, or you could travel by car to destinations a bit farther away.
6. Giddyup! Any riders in the family? Horseback riding is a great way to take in the grandeur of the great outdoors. Check out pack train outfits and guest ranches. The former usually entail a several-day trip on horseback, complete with camping in your own tent and prepared food. The latter is a bit more luxurious, with hotel-like accommodations and daily rides on or off the ranch grounds. Many times beginners are welcome!
7. Go fish. Another favorite American pastime! Find a river and you can find fish. As with hiking and biking, you can plan and prep your own trip or go with an outfit. Kind of depends on what areas you might want to fish, fishing permit logistics, how remote the river and fishing spots are, etc. Do a little digging to find your perfect trip.
8. Dust off the camping gear. Campfires, s’mores, star-filled skies – Covid didn’t ruin everything! You can keep this very safe, just be aware of the bathrooms and showers. Unlike pre-pandemic times, though, you’ll need to do a lot of research beforehand as many parks, campsites, and other locations are closed or have limited capacity. That said, look into local campsites, state and local parks, hipcamp, and other private camping options.
9. Visit a tiny town. Sometimes it’s nice to hole up in a nearby tiny town, exploring nature and local charm by staying super low-key. Businesses have a year of Covid cleaning and protocols under their belts, so you should feel fairly safe – but definitely act according to your own safety standards. That might mean bringing many of your own supplies, eating take out and taking long walks or drives, etc.
10. Take an RV road trip. If the siren call of the open road is too great to ignore, you can always rent an RV and have a traveling home for journeys longer than a weekend. Companies are adhering to strict cleaning policies, but make sure to do your own deep clean anyway. Cozy, fun, and adventurous – RVs are made for the American highways and all the natural beauty along the way. Take note: rentals are way up these days, so start your research/booking process sooner rather than later!
If you are still wary about traveling by plane, don’t fret, a vacation can still be in your future this spring break. Take advantage of exploring your local area – we’re sure there are plenty of gems waiting to be discovered. And as always, stick to your Covid precaution measures (we know you’re a pro by now!)
For more road trip safety tips click here.
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