Are you looking for some fun staycation ideas for families that you can try out this year? If so, then you’re in the right place!
Vacations are something that we all look forward to planning and sharing together. Disconnecting from the daily grind and getting away from it all is an important part of good mental health. Plus, it’s one of the best ways to make lasting memories with the whole family.
Those are just some of the upsides to going on vacation, but let’s face it, planning a trip that everyone is going to love but doesn’t cost a fortune can be very challenging. With that, going on a big camping trip, road trip, or beach vacation isn’t always feasible.
That’s why we wanted to inspire you with over 50 ideas for a family staycation guaranteed to be fun and memorable for everyone!
The goal with a staycation is not to make it feel like “another day or weekend at home”, but to make it feel unique and special.
What do people usually do on a staycation?
To have a staycation, you take time off of work or your normal routine and have a vacation at home or around your local area. And even though some people don’t consider this a “proper” vacation since you’re not traveling anywhere, you can easily make it feel like one.
For some people, staycations are actually more fun because you don’t have the typical stress associated with traveling, booking flights, or making sure everyone has passports. Instead, you can just relax and enjoy the perks and activities of your own city.
How do you make a family staycation special?
The key to a successful staycation is to find creative ways to make it fun! Here are some tips for how you can do that.
– Change Up Your Routine
Just because you’re at home doesn’t mean you need to do your normal routine things. For example, you don’t need to have dinner at the table every night. Go out for a picnic, eat in a fort you build in the living room, roast hotdogs in the backyard…you get the idea!
– Recreate Your Childhood
If you’re feeling nostalgic for simpler times, or if you want to show your kids some of the things you enjoyed as a child, then incorporate those things into your staycation. This could include playing a game you used to play, baking a recipe from your grandmother, digging out your old childhood toys, etc.
– Let Your Kids Pick Some Activities
You don’t have to do all the planning to make a staycation fun. Involve the entire family. Let your kids pick things they want to do. That’ll take some of the load off of you and help to ensure that everyone is excited about the staycation.
– Avoid Technology
We live our lives surrounded by technology. But you can use your staycation as an opportunity to spend less time with technology and more time with your family. Trust me, this will make your staycation so much more special compared to a weekend at home where everyone is glued to their tablets, phones, or the TV.
51+ Staycation Ideas for Families
To help you plan a fun staycation for your family, we have brainstormed over 50+ activities that you can do together. This list includes everything from activities you can do outside, to ways to shake up your normal routine, and more!
Outdoor Staycation Ideas for Families
If you plan your staycation during the Spring or Summer, then you should plan some outdoor activities to take advantage of the warmer weather. This can include things you do in your own backyard, visiting local parks, and more.
The more time you spend outside of your home, the more it will feel like a vacation. And you don’t even have to spend a ton of money either. Here is a list of our top ideas:
- Set up a slip n’ slide.
- Have a water gun fight.
- Play backyard games like bocce ball, badminton, etc.
- Plan a “field day” with races, obstacle courses, etc.
- Do a backyard scavenger hunt.
- Play flashlight tag in the dark.
- Roast marshmallows.
- Camp in the backyard, or go camping in a nearby national park.
- Check out every playground in the neighborhood and rank them.
- Go for a bike ride.
Want even more ideas? Check out these backyard activities for families!
Be A Tourist In Your City
Again, the more you can do outside of the house, the more your staycation will feel like a vacation. So, try looking for some local hangouts and be a tourist. These activities can be free or paid. I guarantee there are a lot of things to do in your local area that you haven’t had the chance to explore yet!
- Visit a greenhouse.
- Go to the zoo or aquarium.
- Visit a museum or art gallery.
- Visit a science center.
- Go to a specialty gym like a rock climbing gym or trampoline park.
- Check out a nearby state or national park.
- Go to the library.
- Find an amusement park or fair.
- See a movie.
- Go shopping at a mall, boutique store, etc.
- Visit the swimming pool.
- Find a local beach.
- Go bowling.
- Visit a local farm.
- Walk nature trails.
While some of these things do cost money, there are ways you can save. For example, most cities will have deals during the summer where you can pay for a family pass that gets you into several local attractions like the Zoo, Aquarium, etc. This is a great way quickly add activities to your staycation and save some money at the same time. Groupon is one of my favorite sites for deals at local attractions and businesses!
Take A Class
If you live in, or nearby a city, you will find an abundant amount of classes that you can take on your staycation. These are great because your kids will be having fun while also learning new skills. You can’t put a price on that! Here are some ideas:
- Try a cooking class.
- Explore your creative side with an art class (drawing, painting, sculpture).
- Get crafty and make jewelry.
- Enhance your Outdoor Survival Skills with a class.
- Stay active with a workout class (yoga, ninja warrior, etc).
If you don’t live in a city, or if you just want to do the classes from the comfort of your own home, there are tons of things you can find online. For some free options, check out YouTube or Pinterest.
But, if you think you will want to do a lot of these classes and want more in-depth instructions, you should check out Artist’s Academy or Craftsy. They have thousands of creative classes, and you get access to them all at a low price (they often run amazing promos)!
With our busy schedules, it can be hard to make time for volunteer work. But volunteer work is a great way to get your kids more involved in the community and teach them important life lessons. So, why not spend a bit of time on your staycation doing some volunteer work?
Some things you can do include:
- Volunteer at the local animal shelter.
- Pick up garbage in the parks, along the sidewalks, etc.
- Visit a retirement community.
- Cook and clean at a soup kitchen or shelter.
- Help a neighbor in need with cleaning, decluttering, yard work, etc.
- Contribute to a local food bank by stocking shelves and cleaning.
Staycation Ideas for Families At Home
Cook Or Bake Together
Cooking and baking together is a great way to spend quality time as a family while on a staycation. It’s an opportunity to bond over shared experiences, learn new recipes, and have a lot of fun! Here are some quick ideas:
- Recreate “Chopped” with ingredients in your own home.
- Play guess-the-ingredient.
- Bake and decorate cookies.
- Make smoothies with different ingredients. You could even host a taste competition afterward!
- Have a DIY pizza night.
- Sign up for an online cooking class.
- Try a new recipe for dinner.
- Bake something new and different.
- Make homemade ice cream.
- Have a themed dinner.
- Elevate the typical Rice Krispie Treats.
- Make a copycat version of your favorite takeout meal or treat.
If you want to do more baking on your staycation, check out these creative ideas for baking with your kid!
Tip – you don’t have to eat everything you bake yourself! Take your baked goods to people in need, your neighbors, etc.
Related Read: Easy Pizza Rolls with Homemade Pizza Dough Recipe
Create Some Friendly Competition
Board games and card games are a classic way to put your mind to work while also allowing you to have fun together as a family. Plus, these are great for a no-tech day or night!
49. Play Games together:
- Go Fish!
- Crazy Eights
- Old Maid
- Memory Match
- The Game of Life
- Guess Who
- Connect Four
- Ticket to Ride
- Taco, Cat, Goat, Cheese, Pizza
Crafting is a great way for families to bond and create something together that will last. It’s also a fun way to express creativity and explore different mediums. Here are some ideas you can do on your staycation!
- Make your own Microwave Puffy Paint.
- Have fun with Marble Art.
- Try out some Monster Truck Paint.
- Look at this Airplane Clothespin Art.
- DIY by making some Homemade Playdoh.
- Give Origami a try!
- Create some Paper Dream Catchers.
Related Read: 50 Incredibly Fun Indoor Activities for Kids!
Have A Movie Night
Movie nights are great for staycation ideas for families because they’re relatively inexpensive, easy on your schedule (once you’ve picked out which movie to watch), and allows everyone to unwind.
There are plenty of options available that will appeal to all ages. So, whether you’re watching something with your little ones or older children, there should be something here that suits everyone’s tastes!
Have A Living Room Campout
Who says you have to sleep in your bed every night? Why not plan a fun living room campout night to mix up your routine and give the kids something to remember?
During the day, you can turn setting up the living room campsite into a fun activity. Move the furniture around. Set up the fort and beds. Make food and snacks.
Then at night, get into your pajamas and enjoy your living room campout. You could watch movies, play board games, tell scary stories, and so on.
Other fun things you can try:
- Sing campfire songs.
- Turn off the lights and use flashlights to get around.
- Listen to nature sounds.
- Make shadow puppets.
- Play truth or dare.
- Turn on a neat nightlight projector.
Related Read: 20 Creative Indoor Winter Activities to Do When You’re Bored
Do Some Redecorating
Something your kids might love to do is redecorate their space. This could include their bedrooms and playroom if they have one.
Here are some ideas of things you can do to redecorate that won’t cost a lot of money.
- Move the furniture around.
- Paint new pictures to put on the walls.
- Paint the furniture a new color.
- Add some wallpaper or stickers to one wall.
- Reorganize toys, books, etc.
- Clean out the garage, attic, and/or basement. For a full list of cleaning supplies, check out The EXACT Cleaning Supplies List Needed for a Spotless Home!
- Spruce up the yard by planting flowers, pulling weeds, etc.
Need more ideas? Check out these ways you can decorate a playroom on a budget. But these tips would apply to a bedroom as well!
With all of these staycation ideas for families in 2023, your family can have an exciting and memorable staycation right in your own city, living room, or backyard. I hope this blog post has inspired you to plan some new and exciting things to do together on your next staycation!
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