This post may contain affiliate links. Read the full disclosure
Your holiday is cancelled. Or you don’t have the budget to take a trip. So why not plan a staycation with kids at home instead! Our guide on the best staycation ideas for families will have you creating amazing memories, without having to leave your backyard!
How To Plan A Home Staycation With Kids
It’s always disappointing when a planned vacation needs to be cancelled, but there is no reason why you can’t have a fun, exciting and memorable staycation with kids instead!
The same goes for having no travel budget and instead deciding to create a vacation at home! There are plenty of benefits to taking a staycation for families and couples, as a budget-friendly way to enjoy holiday vibes at home!
If you want to know how to make the most of a staycation with your family, consider the following guide that will have your kids laughing all “staycation’ long—all without leaving your home.
Choosing a Staycation
Choosing a staycation theme can be a bit overwhelming, but a
little planning can go a long way towards finding the perfect staycation theme
or idea for you and your kids.
Why not ask your kids what they might want to do for a staycation?
Ask them if there are any specific countries or themes they would be interested in recreating for the staycation. This can help you springboard towards more unique staycation ideas.
After all, a staycation with kids should be something they genuinely enjoy!
Here are some fun general staycation themes:
Since travel is out of the picture, it’s time to bring travel into your home!
An international theme staycation based on another country—such as Italy, Japan, France, etc, can be a great platform for a wide variety of ideas. It’s also a perfect way for kids to learn about a new country.
If you are struggling to decide on a theme, these kid’s travel subscription boxes might help! Loaded with fun activities to teach kids about new countries each month… plus a simple way to decide on your next virtual destination!
Check out our mammoth armchair travel guide with a huge collection of virtual tours in museums, castles and famous attractions, plus wildlife live streams from around the world.
For Mexico, you may enjoy a day of tacos, quesadillas and nachos, non-alcoholic mojitos and take your afternoon siesta before an afternoon of Day of the Dead inspired crafts and dress ups.
AmazingCo has a variety of home experiences that are perfect for staycations, available in Australia, the USA, NZ and the UK.
Try a family date night or foodie fun party or any of their other fun experiences that are delivered to your door or completely virtual.
If your family loves to camp and you already have everything you need, why not turn your backyard into a camping staycation?
Set up the tent and beds, get out the sleeping bags and prepare for a night under the stars.
Sure you could just sleep in the backyard and eat meals inside like normal, but why not make it more like an authentic camping trip and pack the esky, seeing if you can avoid going inside for anything other than to use the bathroom.
Some of these campervan meals are perfect for a backyard camp kitchen cook up too!
You can recreate the experience of a movie theatre in your own home with a bit of planning and DIY set-up.
To make an indoor movie night different from any other night watching a movie on the TV, try these tricks:
Hang thick blackout curtains over the windows to simulate the darkness of a cinema
Make movie theatre style popcorn with extra butter
Dip your ice cream cone in chocolate to make homemade choc-tops
Set up a mock ticket counter and let your kids “buy” their popcorn, tickets and other treats
Decorate paper bags to look like cinema popcorn bags
Make movie tickets for your kids to ‘buy’ and give to the usher—that’s you!
How to Make a
Staycation Feel Like a Vacation
Whatever type of theme you choose for your family’s staycation, don’t forget the following ideas. These tips will help your staycation feel much more like a family vacation to your kids:
Make sure the house is clean and clutter-free
For an international theme, have your kids pack a suitcase with clothes to suit (don’t forget dressing up for dinner!)
Let your kids be on vacation mode during your staycation—set aside the remote learning work for a day or two!
Be a little more relaxed on your usual routine with things like bedtime
Keep to holiday traditions you normally have as much as possible
One vacation tradition for us is always making a DIY travel activity kit for the kids. This would work just as well for keeping little ones occupied on a staycation too.
And remember to take plenty of staycation photos!
You can share them online with friends and family. Or print them out to place them in your treasured family albums.
For whatever reason you are opting to have a fun staycation with kids at home, there is no reason you can’t make it just as memorable as your vacations. What a wonderful, budget-friendly way to turn your home into a weekend adventure destination for the whole family!
Staycations are also a great time to look back at old travel journals or scrapbooks… or perhaps catch up on those unfinished travel memory projects!