While the world is on lock down, it’s easy to think there is nothing to do at home except watch movies and eat. However, it is now easier than ever to see the world from the comfort of your couch. Here are some of our favorite ways you and your family can spend time together and travel from home. From blogs and podcasts to music and subscription boxes, there are plenty of ways for you to learn about world travel from home.
1. Read travel blogs
No one is traveling right now, but you can still read travel blogs. It’s a great way to research new destinations and travel around the world from home. Think of all the daydreaming.
When you read travel blogs you learn from others travel experiences, so it’s a great way to research a destination before planning a family trip. It’s amazing to see the world through the eyes of other travelers and their children. Who knows, you might find a destination you never considered before!
Since the travel industry is struggling right now, it helps to read travel blogs and share articles with friends and family. When it’s time to book your travel, use these sites and the writers get a small percentage of the booking (but it doesn’t cost you more). It’s a win-win for everyone.
2. Listen to travel podcasts
Travel podcasts are a great way to learn about new places together or when you have some downtime. Some of our favorite family travel podcasts are Vacation Mavens, Ireland Family Vacations, and Go with Nugget for Kids.
Vacation Mavens is a family travel podcast that provides destination guides for vacation destinations across the globe. It’s one of our top travel podcasts for families who travel as they also offer tips for parenting on the go.
Go with Nugget for Kids is our top travel podcast for your young ones. Each episode takes your kids to a different destination to learn about the culture. It’s a great homeschooling geography lesson!
Ireland Family Vacations is for families planning a trip to Ireland. The host, Jody, knows Ireland inside and out, and shares interesting Ireland travel tips and history. A must listen for families traveling to Ireland.
3. Play travel board games
Now is a great opportunity to spend time together. It could be tempting to play on game consoles or binge-watch TV series. But why not put the screens down and play some travel board games? Many games can also be educational, so you can check off homeschooling and quality family time together. These are some favorites below or you can check out these travel games for kids.
- Scrambled States of America
- Ticket to Ride
- Name That Country
- Race Across the USA
- Educational world map puzzle
4. Research your family history
Do you know where you come from? It’s possible you have family members across the world who you don’t even know about!
Sites like Ancestry.com can help families start their research and build a family tree together. If you want to know more about yourself, Ancestry and 23andme sell DNA testing kits. People have been known to find out new discoveries in their family tree and some have even found new family members!
5. Read books from around the world
Another way to reduce screen time is reading! I have put together lists of my favorite books from around the world for kids, and for adults.
How to Travel the World Through Books (for adults)
6. Make a vacation scrapbook or vision board
Do you keep photo albums? Or do your vacation pics sit on your computer? Buy a scrapbook, some glue and accessories and print your favorite photos to make a vacation scrapbook. It’s a great way to revisit your favourite places and share memories.
Another great resource for photo books is Chatbooks, an easy to use app that will put together photos straight from your phone. Whenever you want to revisit anywhere in the years to come, you can get out your vacation scrapbook.
You can also plan for future travel. With all this reading, listening and researching about different destinations why not plan your next trip? We’ll be allowed to travel again at some point! Travel Mamas has a great post about how to host a vision board party. Put all of these ideas onto a vision board and you will be ready when travel is safe again.
Another idea is to brush up on your photography skills. Nikon is offering free classes, which includes a Dynamic Landscape Photography class!
7. Learn a new language
If you have relatives or friends that speak a foreign language ask them to teach the kids a few words. It’s easy to hop on Skype or FaceTime and have a conversation.
Rosetta Stone is offering 3 months for free to schoolchildren to inspire them to learn a language. It’s also a great way to keep up with language classes if you are homeschooling.
Other fun ideas include foreign language bingo, flashcards, or a bilingual picture dictionary. You can even make flashcards by looking up words on the internet or use language apps (or apps or general) like DuoLingo.
8. Cook recipes from around the world
Many people are using this time to learn how to cook or get more creative with their dishes. Why not try some recipes from around the world?
Kids Around the World Cook is one of our favorite recipe books. As it’s written for kids, you can cook these meals together and it’s available on Kindle, which means you don’t need to wait for delivery.
Some of our other favorite cookbooks with recipes from around the world include:
- Cooking Class Global Feast
- Pancakes to Parathas: Breakfast Around the World
- The International Cookbook for Kids
9. Create a travel bucket list
Each member of the family picks a destination to visit on your travel bucket list, and together you plan it out. Research it, plan it, create an itinerary and work out a budget. You could then even put together a vacation saving plan with strategies for reaching your travel goal. If you need inspiration, check out Lonely Planet’s Where to Go When, or some of our favorite posts: Bucket List Destinations for Families and Best National Parks Around the World.
10. Try a travel subscription box
If you’re looking for something to inspire your kids, then Little Passports is a great option. You will receive monthly activity packs that will help your little one explore the world from your lounge.
Right now most travel subscription boxes are offering discounts and free trials so make sure you look them up quick!
11. Take virtual tours
Many tourist attractions are now offering virtual tours. It’s a great way to travel around the world at home!
You can visit museums abroad, like the National Museum Australia which offers endless hands on activities to entertain kids. Many zoos and museums are offering virtual tours. Why not turn one on and have a picnic while your explore these different destinations?
Sygic Travel is a YouTube channel that offers 360-degree tours of cities, from Paris and Barcelona to New York City and New Delhi! I could get lost for hours scrolling through the feed.
You can even visit theme parks virtually. We are loving this virtual trip to Disneyland!
Why not mix geography and history by putting together a famous travelers quiz? Put some questions together and let your kids research and find the answers. Children could even put a presentation together on their favorite traveler and present it to the family. Check out the book series “Who Was” for ideas (we like Marco Polo and Lewis and Clark).
13. Watch travel movies
Who doesn’t love to cuddle up on the sofa as a family and watch movies?
I’ve put together a list of our favorite films to watch when we need our travel fix. If you have a subscription service you’re likely to find them on there. Netflix now offers viewing parties, so if you’re separated from some of your family, you can watch movies about travel and interact with them together.
14. Make playlists and learn to dance with music from around the world
When traveling around the world at home, music is one of the most immersive ways to do it. Music is a huge part of a country’s culture and identity, so why not spend time learning about the songs and dances of other countries?
There are plenty of places to find playlists of music from around the world, you can search on Spotify, YouTube or even ask Alexa if you have one.
Why don’t you split into teams, or you can go off individually and learn a dance from another country? Youtube has tutorials from Kpop and flamenco to tango and belly dancing. Family members can then put on a show, or teach everyone else a dance they learned.
15. Use art to learn about other cultures
Who knew that you could use travel to inspire so many homeschooling lessons! Not only can you teach your kids about art using virtual museum tours, but you can use art from around the world to inspire them to create a masterpiece of their own.
Around the World L has some amazing sources of inspiration for ways your child can be creative. From making a lantern to Frank Lloyd Wright’s architecture, she does an amazing job of laying out art prompts for kids.
16. Learn about holidays around the world
Art and music are both important parts of a country’s culture, but so are their holidays. I have several posts about bucket list festivals and holidays around the world.
From Diwali in India and Hogmanay in Scotland, and even Caga Tio in Catalunya. You can find all of my holiday celebrations around the world posts here. This may even inspire more trips for you to take in the future!
So there are plenty of ways you can travel around the world at home! Where will you begin?