Keeping your travel bug active

Keeping your travel bug active

While we are living in such strange and unusual times it may be challenging to keep your travel bug alive and active. Here are some ideas to stay active on the travel front when you’re unable to travel and have to practice social distancing.

I’ve always imagined by travel bug is a ladybug. Image from Pixabay

Watch travel shows

One obvious way to keep your mind occupied and find new interesting destinations is to watch travel shows. I love watching travel shows because in addition to finding new destinations you can also learn something new.

Here are some of my favorite shows:

  • Parts unknown (available on Amazon Prime, iTunes)
  • Street food (available on Netflix)
  • Gordon Ramsay: Uncharted (available on Disney+, Nat Geo TV app)
  • Jack Whitehall: Travels with My Father (available on Netflix)
  • Dark Tourist (available on Netflix)
Image from

Naturally, any travel themed movies are also a great way to kill time.

Arrange your travel pictures

If you are like me, you have tons of travel photos. Often those lovely memories are collecting dust in albums or digital storing devices somewhere and even remembering what is where can be challenging. If you still have loads of physical photos my suggestion is to digitize them. Once you have all your pictures in digital format arrange them so that they are easy to find based on destination and time. I personally also love having my favorite photos hanging on my walls, so one idea is to pick out your favorites and have them made into your personal artwork.

Digitized paper photo from Amsterdam
Another old digitized travel snap

Plan a menu and cook it

Look back at your travels and pick some of your favorite cuisines. Then plan a menu around that cuisine and cook it. You can also be more adventurous and try a cuisine you’ve never had before. If you do not want to build the entire menu around one cuisine just combine your favorite foods from various cuisines. If you are not much of a cook you can support your local restaurants and order takeaway from your favorite ethnic restaurants.

Home-made fish tacos with mango salsa
My attempt at summer rolls, not pretty but tasty

Learn a new language or brush up on one you know

I’ve been lucky enough to learn several languages already in school and I am pretty good at several of them. I am still keen to learn new ones and some of the ones I’ve studied before I don’t really remember much of. My favorite free tool for learning languages is Duolingo that offers a handy mobile app. If you are serious and ready to invest money in learning my favorite is Rosetta Stone, which we used to learn some Portuguese before moving to Brazil.

Explore travel blogs and travel-related Instagram accounts

I love reading travel blogs and marveling over travel photos on Instagram. Being stuck at home with nothing but time on my hands, I’ve been exploring the wonderful world of blogs. There are several great ones out there and many travel bloggers post lists of their own favorites so that is a great place to start when looking for new blogs to follow.

Here are a few recent lists:

If you’re not in the mood to read blog posts but love beautiful pictures Instagram will provide hours of entertainment.

Take a virtual museum tour

There is a number of museums offering virtual tours and often you see things far better than if you visit the museum physically. It is also a great way to avoid crowds. Here are some articles on museums with virtual tours:

The Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam offers virtual tours

Plan your next trip or make a bucket list

Even if we cannot travel right now, we’ll be able to do so again at some point in time. When that day comes it is nice to be prepared. So why not spend a day or two planning your next adventure. Research and make lists of where to stay, where to eat, what to see and do, etc. You can also make or update your bucket lists, whether they are destination, activity or accommodation related or related to travel in some other way.

Do you have any tips on how to keep your travel bug active in these exceptional times? I would love to hear your thoughts on the subject.

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