I love to travel but I also love spending time at home. Spending time in your own area especially when everyone else has headed out of town can be a lot of fun. I wrote in an earlier post that anticipation can be half the fun and this applies equally to whether you are heading to an exotic destination or staying around home, for a long weekend or a month long holiday, on a tight budget or more relaxed about spending, want to be active or just mooch around. Do some research first and come up with a list of all the fun things you’d like to do. Don’t make this a rigid schedule but having some ideas in advance can help with spontaneity – you can then easily go with where your mood and inclination (and weather) takes you at any time.
You can do things by yourself, with your significant other or family, or catch up with friends, or perhaps a combination of all of these. You can choose a theme for the holiday or do a little bit of everything. Choose the best balance of activities for you at the time: do you want to spend more time at home or out doing things, do you need quiet time or lots of socialising.
Sometimes de-cluttering can feel like a holiday too – spending just an hour a day sorting out paperwork, sorting your wardrobe, cleaning cupboards or gardening can make you feel energised at the end of the holiday, particularly if you make sure to combine this with relaxing and lots of fun things too.
We are especially lucky in Auckland with the range of activities that you can do, but you will find hidden gems no matter where you are. Here are some ideas to get you thinking:
- walk (or cycle) around your neighbourhood taking a different route each day exploring different streets and looking at all the gardens
- drive to a different city or regional park each day and explore the different walking tracks
- many places have websites such as Short Walks in Auckland that list a multitude of walks by category, type and area. Choose a category that takes your interest and decide to try them all.
- Get a guide book and decide to explore walks within in hour’s drive of where you live
- Walk the section of the Te Araroa Walkway that goes through your region or complete the Hillary Trail (or whatever hiking trails are in your area)
- Go for a swim at a different beach each day and take a picnic
- If it is winter, go for a walk on a different beach each day and stop for a coffee or hot chocolate at a café afterwards.
- Take time to linger over breakfast, reading the paper and doing the crossword puzzles
- See how many different islands you can visit by ferry and spend a day exploring each of them
- Drive to a marine reserve such as Goat Island and spend the day snorkelling
- Choose an area of your city that you don’t usually go to and be a tourist there, going somewhere different each day (either within that area or go to a different area)
- Visit a different shopping centre each day (if you are so inclined)
- Visit a different café in an area each day
- Explore all the free activities there are to do in your area – check your council website or search “Free Things to Do In ….”
- Over the summertime there are often free concerts in local parks – take a picnic and a book
- Check out the cycle trails in your area on websites like NZ By Bike
- Visit all the art galleries, museums and art-house cinemas you keep meaning to go to
- Visit all the local artists and artisans in a particular area – perhaps there is a sculpture trail to explore too
- Visit a different gourmet food store or farmers market each day and buy food to take on a picnic in a nearby park or beach.
- Explore the wineries in a different area each day
- Cook up a storm trying out new recipes and invite friends round (or to take something when you visit)
- Develop a new area of your garden or redecorate a room (if this is fun for you)
- Spend time doing the hobbies and past-times that you enjoy, or try new ones
- Rent all those movies you’ve been dying to see
- Get out the sun-lounger (or curl up by the fire) and read your favourite books
There are just so many fun things to do – I think I could happily be on holiday for ever!
For tours in New Zealand see:
Adventure Tours Australia (yes they have NZ tours too).
Intrepid Travel (a range of different travel styles – see my post on travel styles)
Peregrine Adventures (Comfort tours)
Geckos Adventures (for 18 to 30s)
Note: After people telling me they had booked an Intrepid Tour on my recommendation, I now have affiliate links with the Intrepid Travel group of companies and may receive a commission if you book a tour online within a couple of months after clicking through to these sites. So if you are enjoying my tips and stories and finding them useful in choosing your own travel, please click on these links and help me to bring you more ☺.