Taking regular vacations can be beneficial to our sense of well-being but it’s not always realistic. Whether there are money constraints, work/family obligations or personal reasons for not wanting to travel, many of us simply go without the time away that can be so restorative. More and more people, however, are choosing to find ways to create their very own oasis right in the comfort of their own homes.

Get Inspired

There are plenty of great ideas on Pinterest about how you can turn your backyard into your favorite vacation spot. No matter how many suggestions you get some other people’s articles, nothing can compare to being inspired to create something truly unique and special for your own family. Browse through the images and let your creative juices flow!

Camping Ground

This one seems fairly obvious but it’s about more than setting up a couple of tents in the backyard. Invest in a nice fire pit that everyone can gather around as the sun sets, roasting marshmallows and telling stories. Give the kids kits for birdwatching, spotting insects and catching butterflies, just like they would in the woods. Use lanterns to light your way at night and ban modern technology. You will be amazed by how much nature is just feet from your back door when you aren’t too busy to notice it!

Drive-In Delight

Does your family love a good movie night?  If so, you could easily turn your backyard into a drive-in for an evening. Pick up typical concession stand snacks (popcorn, licorice, etc…), arrange comfortable seating (consider these cute cardboard box car seats for little kids!), set up a screen with a projector and you’re good to go. Courtesy tip – don’t disturb your neighbors. Either invite them over for the fun or make sure you keep the noise down and end your movie before bedtime.

Day at the Beach

Don’t you wish that life was just like a day at the beach? You can recreate some of that magic at home! It will take a little effort but it could be totally worth it! Consider an adult-sized sandbox in which you can put a firepit and/or beach chair to replicate the feeling of sand between your toes. Have the sounds of the ocean streaming through outdoor speakers, set up a volleyball net, barbecue grill and slather on the sunscreen.

Garden Love

Do you really enjoy that feeling of being one with nature? Turn your backyard into a garden that is both functional and therapeutic to the soul. Let mismatched stones guide your path through wildflowers to a soothing hammock or wooden swing. Let sunflowers grow tall and obscure your view of the dishes piled in the kitchen sink. Install a small water fountain and tiny lanterns to enhance the experience.

You don’t have to leave home or go to extremes to bring some relaxation into your life. Make good use of the space around you and take every opportunity the make the most of what you have.