Make the Most of Your Day Off: Planning Tips for Daycations

Daycations are the new staycations if you're short on time or cash. Here are some tips for making the most of your day trip

Credit: Flickr/darth_mehal

Take some time to smell the flowers on a daycation in your own town

When you’re pressed for time or money, why not 
take a “daycation” close to home? These one-day vacations give you the chance to relax and see your own town

Back in ’08, it was all about the “staycation” — being a tourist closer to home. Then last year, with the economy bottoming out, we heard about “naycations,” or opting to skip vacations altogether.

And now, daycations are the trend for 2010. As you can well guess, a daycation is a one-day vacation. Here are some tips for planning yours this year.

Tips for Daycation Planning

  1. Don’t try to go too far: The last thing you want to do when time is tight is waste an entire day travelling to your chosen destination. Here in B.C., we’re lucky because we can pretty much hit the beach or mountains within a single day and still be home that night tucked in our own beds.

  2. Think like a tourist: What’s there to do in your city or town? Wherever you live, you might not think much about what’s going on around you each day. But thinking like a visitor might have you taking advantage of everything from wine tastings to salsa dancing classes. There are so many great experiences you might not have otherwise considered.
Begin with your tourist bureau. Whether you live in Vancouver, Langley, Creston or Prince George, visiting the website of your local tourist office will help you find all kinds of information and links to local attractions and events.
  3. Get outdoors:
 One of the best things about B.C. is the province’s abundance of public parks. From Vancouver out to Mission, Hope and beyond, nearby provincial parks offer a close-to-home getaway that cuts down on driving time and money. Plan a picnic, barbeque or bocce game, for starters. Why not take advantage of the natural beauty that surrounds us here in B.C.?

  4. Take in some culture: Finally, if the weather’s a little off, think about taking in some culture. I’m guessing that unless you work there, you probably don’t even remember the last time you visited your local museum, and we have some amazing museums in B.C. A local cultural experience also includes the arts, so search our weekly BC Adventures feature for events and shows that are rolling through town and go make a day of the experience. 

There’s nothing wrong with being a tourist in your own city. And I’m guessing once you start, you’re going to want to do it again!

Day Trip Ideas

You can always check out tourist hot spots — local attractions you’d normally never visit — or consider one of these daylong options:

  • Rent a boat and spend the day on the water.

  • Take a walking tour of your own city.

  • Visit local art galleries and studios.

  • Go for a horseback ride. 

  • Explore the bicycle paths in your city. 

  • Watch for local festivals and events, such as the upcoming annual Vancouver PNE, and spend the day there.

Watch Claire Newell on Global BC News: Final (Mon.), Early (Wed.), Morning & Noon (Thur.), Noon (Sat.). Or catch her Tuesdays at 8:30 a.m. on Shore 104 FM.

Originally published in TV Week. For daily updates, subscribe to the free TV Week e-newsletter, or purchase a subscription to the weekly magazine.