On vacation. Period.

Spending time in nature is a wonderful way to relax and recharge.

If you spend any time at all on Facebook and Instagram, you know that elaborate vacations have gone from a dream to the new norm. Is it time to get back to basics?

Just type vacation in Google or #vacation in one of your social media accounts for an endless source of inspiration on where and how to travel.

As you've probably noticed, these days "where" is far from your backyard. And "how" isn't exactly lounging around in your comfy clothes.

Once upon a time, there was something called vacation
Vacation used to mean time off work to relax. Period. You left work on a Friday afternoon, and you didn't go back for 2 or 3 weeks. Nowadays, disconnecting from your job can actually be a challenge, and planning a trip and travelling is hard work! 

While some people love to use their vacation time to travel, others would rather kick back and relax. Whether you choose a planned trip or lazy days at home, make sure you take the time to enjoy yourself and live in the present moment. 

Where will the road take you?
Unplanned evenings are often the most memorable. The same goes for unplanned trips. Why not pack a small bag in the morning and hop in the car for an adventure?

Go off the beaten track--take country roads and drive without a specific destination. Chances are, you'll find a beautiful spot to explore. You can also stop in at tourist information centres for ideas on places to visit. 

In tune with nature
As camping enthusiasts know, spending time in nature is a wonderful way to relax and recharge. But sleeping in a tent actually involves a lot of preparation, which can be a deterrent. Luckily, a growing number of public and private parks now offer a "ready to camp" option. They provide everything you need, and the accommodations are usually more comfortable and weather-resistant than a basic tent.  

Have you heard of a staycation? It means staying home for your vacation. The idea emerged in the U.S. after the 2007 financial crisis as a way to save money. But a staycation can be more than that.

According to staycationers, making your home a vacation destination eliminates the stress and tension of home life. Simply enjoying quality time at home outside the daily grind can make your house a more harmonious place. And it can be satisfying to finish up home improvement projects or solve issues that couldn't be solved during a trip to Portugal. 

You can also use a staycation to discover your own neighbourhood! Pretend you're a tourist and try out local restaurants, cafes, shops and activities. And with a list of projects to finish, books to read and nearby places to discover, you'll have lots to do!

Wherever you choose to spend your vacation, make sure it fits your needs and your rhythm, and don't be afraid to be spontaneous and try something new. And above all, enjoy yourself!

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