8 Family-Friendly Activities Inspired by Travel

Living housebound is a strange reality that takes a lot of getting used to, especially for a family of frequent flyers. We share our best boredom-busting ideas that will allow you to spend quality time together while feeding your sense of wanderlust. Read on for 8 family-friendly (and quarantine approved) activities inspired by travel.

Spice Up Your Menu

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Tasting exotic new food is one of the greatest parts of travelling. It’s also an experience that you can recreate at home. Switch things up in the kitchen by getting together to cook a meal inspired by an exotic destination. It can be one that you’ve had on a previous trip or a dish that you hope to sample on a future family holiday.

Ask each family member to think about what meals they would want to cook, put all the suggestions in a hat and draw one out randomly. Make sure you pick a recipe before you do your regular grocery shop to avoid the need to leave the house again. Then assign each family member with part of the process so that everyone feels included – it could be chopping, measuring out ingredients or reading the recipe.

It's not only about creating a delicious dish, but also spending time together. So, try to be patient, allow plenty of time for the meal to be prepared and be sure you eat at the table together!

Artisan Afternoon

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Arts and crafts are a fantastic way to get creative and pass time away from screens. It’s also a great way to discover new hobbies. Next time you’re gearing up for a creative endeavour, consider tapping into your inner artisan and creating something inspired by travel. 

It could be painting one of your favourite views, creating a collage or scrapbook of things you collected on a previous trip, or learning a local handicraft such as basket weaving or origami.

Learn a Language

Having the ability to speak another language is a skill for life – especially if you plan on encouraging your children to travel when they are older. It’s also much easier if you can continue to practice speaking with other people. 

It you have young children, spend some time watching fun children’s shows that explore other languages (such as Dora the Explorer) or playing with language apps such as Duo Lingo together. If your children are old enough to learn independently, consider downloading a language podcast or audio lessons for all of you to work through at the same pace. Then you can practice what you’ve learned in conversation as you spend time with each other at home.

Watch a Foreign Film

Explore your newly acquired language skills by watching a foreign film together. Listening to native speakers is a great way to get better at speaking a second language – it's also a wonderful chance to dive into a foreign world without leaving your living room. Your film of choice doesn’t have to be foreign either. There are many great films that showcase other countries and cultures beautifully.

Explore Italy through ‘Mamma Mia’, go to Greenland with ‘The Secret Life of Walter Mitty’, see South America with ‘Up’ or ‘Rio’ or re-live the city of love with ‘Midnight In Paris’. Streaming services such as Disney Plus and Netflix make it so much easier to find a film for any destination, so you and your family can explore a different corner of the earth each night.

Visit a Museum

If museums are often on your must-see lists when travelling, then take advantage of the rare opportunity to explore some of the world’s best without any crowds. Many museums have had to shut their doors due to the pandemic but are offering those at home with the chance to explore their halls online with virtual tours.

You and your family can take a trip to the Louvre, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Smithsonian and more from the comfort of your couch. If you’re currently homeschooling your children, this can be a creative way to have them pick up some facts for a project through a virtual excursion!

Go on Safari Up Close

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One of the upsides of the global shutdown is that it gives our natural world the chance to recover from non-stop tourism. But life at home doesn’t mean that you and your family can’t continue to discover the best of nature. It may actually give you a chance to see it better!

Now is the best time to add nature-based documentaries such as David Attenborough’s Planet Earth to your watch list. Nature documentaries allow you to discover landscapes and ecosystems that you would never have the chance to see with your own eyes (think deep-sea expeditions) with the clarity and context that only film can grant you. You’ll learn more about our natural world and why it is worth preserving while leaving a minimal impact too.

Go Camping

Being homebound doesn’t mean that you can’t escape your everyday surrounds. Get creative by planning an exciting overnight camping trip in your own backyard or playroom. If you have a yard, pitch your tent, pack a picnic and get ready for a night of stargazing. Looking out at the night sky will make you feel like you’ve gone beyond your own backyard. 

If you don’t have a yard or a tent, get creative by building a good old-fashioned fort out of spare sheets. Lay picnic mats on the floor, hang fairy lights around the room to mimic the stars and pack a picnic to create a little escape in your home. You can even use an app such as Google Play to virtually switch up your surrounds.

Re-visit Your Travels

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If you’ve already done some physical globe-trotting as a family, then it’s likely that you have a few folders of photos and videos filled with memories. Now is the perfect time to dust off your digital photos, sort through them and turn them into something that can be enjoyed every day. 

It can be quite a daunting task, but if you turn it into an activity it becomes much easier and more enjoyable. We would suggest taking it one destination or holiday at a time to avoid overwhelm. Then prepare some snacks, hook your computer up to your television and start looking through all your old photos. The objective here is to sift your files down to a manageable amount that can be printed, turned into a slideshow or kept on a digital photo frame. This means that you should get rid of duplicate shots and blurry images.

Doing this together as a family will allow all of you to re-live your holidays, share stories and memories and count all your lucky stars together.

It's easy to feel trapped when you spend every day at home, particularly for travelling families. But being stuck at home with your loved ones is also a blessing in disguise. It allows you to spend quality time with each other and enjoy your home together. Most of all, it is a reminder of how lucky we are to have seen what we have, and to be able to look forward to more travel together in the future.

Do you have a favourite travel-related isolation activity? We'd love to hear what you've been doing to keep travel activities going in your family.

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