A trip to a tropical island sounds pretty good right about now. But when your post-holiday bank account can’t accommodate jetting off to Hawaii or the Caribbean, make the most of your weekends with close-to-home day trips. No matter where you live, there’s probably dozens of fun things to see and do right in your own community or within an hour’s drive. Here are a few ideas to get your creative juices flowing. If you have any good suggestions for family-friendly winter fun that won’t bust the budget, I’d love to hear them.
- Dining Adventures. If you can’t be a world traveler, eat like one. Find a restaurant in your area that specializes in a foreign or ethnic cuisine you’ve never tried. Make a reservation and then do a little online research before you go. Once you get there, ask questions. Turn this into an ongoing trip around the culinary world. Keep a journal noting where you’ve been and what you’ve eaten.
- Try a New Sport. Or rediscover an old one. Is there a local bowling alley, skating rink or archery range near you? Give it a try.
- Patronize the Arts. Almost every community has some kind of live theater, dance ensemble, music group or art museum. Take in a show or exhibit. You’ll be supporting local artists and enjoying local culture.
- Host a Film Festival. Invite friends to bring their favorite DVD. You can even suggest a general theme like kids movies, musicals, mysteries, action/adventure flicks. You provide the venue and the popcorn. It’s a great, totally free way to spend a wintry afternoon and evening.
- Travel through the Universe. The winter sky is filled with wonders, especially if you drive a few miles from the city lights. Pack a star chart, a thermos full of hot cocoa and snacks. This can be a great date night for mom and dad, or a fun family evening.