Have you ever considered a staycation? A staycation is just a holiday at home or nearby where families explore their local area. It is much less expensive than a vacation to an island resort 1,000 miles away. A 1,000 mile round trip in a standard size car or on a round trip flight will generate over half a ton in carbon dioxide emissions.
1. Stay at home or close by
Airline travel, road trips, and train travel account for a significant chunk of a family’s environmental footprint each year. There are some eco-friendly resorts in faraway islands, but it’ll burn significant airline and cruise miles just to get there. Opt to stay in and enjoy the many amenities your apartment community has to offer. Many properties offer resort style pools at the clubhouse, but how how often to do you get to enjoy it after moving in? If you do need to step out of your home, have your staycation at a nearby bed and breakfast or vacation rental. Sites like Airbnb.com and homeaway.com allow you to explore vacation options in the mountains, in the city or at the beach. If you’re lucky, you might be able to find a rustic cabin with no electricity or running water for an eco-friendly getaway.
2. Be a local tourist
How long have you lived in your town? Have you seen everything that it has to offer? Any place can be a vacation spot. We spend so much time living in a routine that we often forget that our home is a vacation spot for others. If you live by a winery, you can spend an afternoon indulging. For some, a large state park is just minutes away for a day hike, rafting or an overnight camping trip. Your local tourist information center can provide you with some surprising activities and places to explore during your staycation.
3. Rediscover Local Nature
Time spent outside improves our health, weight and vision. It increases our social skills and lowers stress. After all, isn’t distressing one of the primary reasons why we go on vacation? Go for a skate, bike ride or hike. Many national parks have nominal fees and offer great places to explore. Yes, it might require a little driving, but if you can find a park within a short drive (or bike ride) you can still have a green staycation. Freecampsites.net is a great resource to locate free and budget friendly campsites throughout the country.
4. Eat Locally
If you’re going to splurge on food for your staycation, take the time to get to know your local farmer’s market. It’s great place to pick up some locally grown vegetables, meat, and other tasty treats. For those who do not like to cook, farm-to-table restaurants are becoming increasing popular. They are excellent places to indulge in your locally grown products. You can even go to the source and visit the farm where your food comes from. For example, in Northern California there are many cherry farms and strawberry patches around for picking.
Sit back, relax, and enjoy what your home front has to offer. Not only will you reduce your carbon footprint, but a staycation could potentially save you money as well.