The Best Break Ideas for 2020: Fun, Inexpensive, and Close to Home

Break Ideas

Can’t go to a vacation destination? Here’s how to make the most of your free time, even if you’re quarantined.


No matter where you live, your summer and fall breaks are going to look a little different this year. And chances are, a walk to the nearest coffee shop isn’t going to be as exciting as a music festival or beach vacation. But don’t panic just yet: There are fun ways to make a local excursion feel exciting and spontaneous, even if you’re just headed around the corner. Here are a few ideas to get you started.

Pretend to Be a Tourist

If there’s a monument, landmark, or otherwise hot touristy spot near you that you haven’t visited yet, go see what all the fuss is about when there aren’t tons of people around. By taking a look at your own environment with fresh eyes, the old will seem new again. To make a day of it, pack a travel-friendly waist pack and turn your adventure into a bike tour. Head to a neighborhood that you don’t visit often and explore it thoroughly, especially the art and food scenes. Local economies need our help right now, and you can stand in for the tourists who have opted to stay home.


Engage in Virtual Learning

Whether you’re trying a free cooking class or a fun crafting workshop, remote learning can be a lot of fun. (Bonus: It’s also a great way to sneak in some self-care.) Here’s the key if you’re doing it over the summer: Link it to an activity that gets you outside or in connection with others, even if it’s in a socially distanced way. Do your friends want to try a virtual exercise class with you? Throw your supplies in a cute mini-bag and meet up in the park. Or could your new skill be used to help your neighbors? Maybe once you know graphic design basics, for example, you could help a local nonprofit redesign their logo. You’ll be helping others and developing your own abilities.

Find Your Happy Place

The sky’s the limit on this one, especially if you don’t have a “happy place” just yet. Half the fun is in finding out! Maybe you load up a pack with breakfast supplies and watch the sun rise. Or you could head to that underrated park no one knows about for some early morning meditation. Perhaps you could support an important cause, from volunteering to attending a local event to linking up with community groups. You could even slip a few pencils into a waistpack and go sketch people and landmarks (or write a short story about what you see, if that’s more your thing). Here’s another idea: You could try all of these activities and see which one you like best.


Remember, the key to successful vacation time isn’t the distance you travel away from school and life. It’s the quality time that you spend—wherever you are—even during times like these.


What else do you have planned to make the most out of your break? Let us know on social media with #LifeUnzipped.