We’ve collected our favorite explore-the-world-from-home activities to give you and your group a head start on the learning, trying, and playing, that’s to come once you hit the road.
We’re firm believers in exploring the world through food. So, for a different way to travel without leaving home, order in from a local restaurant that serves international cuisine. Consider it an ordering trial run, extra practice with new utensils, and a basis for comparison for when you’re out on the road.
Get some scrap paper and get folding. Look up some origami lessons on YouTube to get started. You’ll be a master of the art of folding paper in no time. (Hint: Focusing on each step can help reduce anxiety and boost relaxation.)
Tucked away, far behind the stale boxes of cereal, we bet you have some golden nuggets of canned food. Now’s the time to break them out, because there’s so much you can make (and a lot of foreign cuisines you can try) with even the most unassuming of cans. Try Spanish-spiced roasted chickpeas—from a can. Spam fried rice—from a can. Or sardine rillettes—you guessed it, from a can.
We all have goals, some more travel-y than others. Take this time to commit those goals to paper. Plan out what you want to do on your upcoming tour—or document your travel dreams for the next five years (and beyond, if you like). We bet it’ll help keep those wanderlust vibes going strong. Plus, checking off a list feels amazing.
We know different cultures speak different languages. But it’s easy to forget that they may have different body language, too. With a quick YouTube search, you can find out how body language is used around the world and practice your nonverbal communication.
When it comes to travel, most of the dreaming and planning happens at home. So as you wait for your trip, think about where you want to go next and start building out a dream itinerary. Or for a different way to travel, tap into your local knowledge to design an oh-so-perfect itinerary for exploring your hometown. Find out why coordinating travel times, hitting city highlights, and balancing opening hours is truly an art form.
Tightly pack a suitcase (the more unusual the items, the better: a pineapple? a bike helmet? a rotary telephone?), then time yourself as you unpack, then repack it. This’ll come in handy when it’s time to pack their own bags, promise.
Pop that popcorn and take a deep dive into a country’s culture with a movie night. Popular choices: Amélie for France, Wild for the Pacific Northwest in the U.S., The Secret Life of Walter Mitty for Iceland, or Spirited Away for Japan.
Here’s your chance to take in seriously great art without ever leaving the house. Poke through the Guggenheim’s expansive online art collection or browse Frida Kahlo’s artistic repertoire, and you’ll think you’re “ooh-ing and ah-ing” in front of the real thing. Want more art? Check out other museums here.
Music aficionados, rejoice! Crowdsource foreign language songs or tunes you or your friends encountered abroad on past trips and create an international music playlist. Bonus points if you create dance routines to go with each track.
You may not be able to traverse the Great Wall of China or see the top of Big Ben right now, but if you’re up for a challenge, the 632 steps it takes to reach the top of Big Ben are the same whether you’re in London or your living room. Here are few other challenges to start you off: