Finding Fun Things To Do During COVID-Related Restrictions

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COVID-19 has undoubtedly thrown a big ol’ wrench in your 2020 plans. You may have canceled campground reservations, decided to skip visiting a state or two, or have been staying at home to wait out the pandemic. Traveling looks different nowadays, and many activities we once enjoyed in public places are currently non-existent. Things are gradually opening back up in most states, but many restrictions are still in place. 

The good news for Escapees? RVs are naturally well-equipped with the comforts of home and allow us to travel safely while keeping our distance from others. If you’ve exhausted your list of Netflix shows and are ready for other things to do, read on. With a little thinking outside the box, there are still plenty of enjoyable activities to be found in your current area, wherever that may be.

Here are some ideas for finding fun things to do during COVID-related restrictions:

The Great Outdoors

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As we enter the shoulder season, there’s still time to enjoy warm-weather activities before it gets too chilly. Plus, getting outside for some fresh air and exercise is one of the best things we can do to stay healthy and improve our well-being. Current guidelines suggest outdoor-based activities over indoor ones, so seek activities that you can enjoy with simple modifications. If you’d rather avoid eating out, plan ahead by packing your lunch before heading outside for the day. Some activities to consider are:

  • Hiking or taking a nature walk. Enjoy your scenery, breathe in the fresh air, and get some exercise at the same time.
  • Grab a fishing pole and get out to the closest river or lake for an afternoon.
  • Speaking of rivers and lakes, kayaking or boating are fun activities that can easily be enjoyed while distancing from others.
  • Get out the bikes and hit a local bike path. This is a great way to explore a town if you’d rather not be on foot. 
  • Golfing can also be enjoyed alone or with friends while keeping a safe distance. 
  • Visit outdoor museums, art installations, or gardens instead of indoor ones. 
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Don’t forget about taking your camera along to snap some photos of your surroundings. Maybe try out a new method you’ve been thinking about, such as nighttime or macro photography. Get creative with it!

For The Foodies

  • Organize a virtual wine or beer tasting party for you and your friends. This one requires advanced planning, but invitees can order their own kit containing all the necessary items. Then everyone logs into a video call at a designated time and is guided through the tasting by an expert. 
  • Look up some fun new recipes to try at home with your family, or sign up for an interactive virtual cooking class. 
  • Visit a farmers market. These are almost always held outdoors and you can support a local business at the same time. 
  • If you’re feeling up to visiting a restaurant, outdoor dining is now more prevalent than ever. Bonus: Many local spots are offering live music as well! 

Lower-Risk Social Activities

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It’s important to find ways of keeping up with social interaction to avoid the risk of isolation. Depending on your comfort level, some of these activities could be an option for you.

Outdoor live music events, albeit smaller and more spread out than usual, are starting to pop up in various states. Bring your own camp chairs, blankets, and a cooler full of drinks and snacks to stake out your spot to enjoy the music while maintaining distance from other patrons.

Traditional RV convergences probably won’t return for a while. Socially distant gatherings, such as Xscapers Winter Home Base Convergences, are a suitable alternative for many of us!

You might consider creating a social bubble or travel pod with a few friends or family members you trust. Having a small group of people to interact with face-to-face at a safe distance can offer a valuable opportunity to be with people you care about — and boost your mood at the same time. This could be as simple as a fireside chat, a socially distanced picnic, or a bike ride. Or you could throw up a white sheet, get a small projector and Bluetooth speaker, and host a movie night on the side of your RV!

Go Virtual

The power of the internet has never been more apparent than in 2020. From virtual birthday parties to virtual concerts, video conferencing platforms are making it easier than ever to stay connected from afar. Video chatting with friends and family online provides the opportunity for much needed face-to-face interaction and bonding time.

Virtual get-togethers, such as Escapees Virtual Campfires every Wednesday at 7 PM CDT, are a great way to connect with fellow RVers. These are one of the many virtual events hosted by Escapees! 

You can also start a virtual book club, or take your existing book club to the virtual sphere. 

Another option is to virtually explore a place you’re not able to visit in person this year, like that National Park that’s been on your list for a while. 

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At The Drive Through

You might opt for drive-by sight-seeing on a scenic drive instead of packing into that popular viewpoint that’s always crowded. 

For the movie-lovers, drive-in movie theaters are having a major comeback moment this year. Some local towns are even hosting weekly pop-up drive-in movie nights in big empty lots. Who would have thought these relics from the past would become so popular again?

Off The Beaten Path

Many National Parks like Yellowstone or Great Smoky Mountains are popular for good reason, but you may have decided to steer clear of the crowds for a while. Don’t underestimate some of the less well-known places. Great Basin National Park, located on the border of Nevada and Utah, is just over 200 miles from Salt Lake City. It’s a designated International Dark Sky Place, making it the perfect spot for stargazing. It’s also home to Wheeler Peak Glacier, one of the southernmost glaciers in the US. It may be far from pretty much anywhere, but the solitude can’t be beaten. 

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You can also look for things like outdoor sculptures, historical ghost towns, and eccentric art installations to visit. Atlas Obscura is my personal favorite web-based resource for finding quirky and fun points of interest. Whether in the middle of a city or the middle of nowhere, you’re sure to find something unique!

Think Safety and Enjoyment

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As 2020 charges on, we’re all looking for ways to return some sense of normalcy to our lives. Whatever method you choose, it’s important for you to decide your own comfort level. Given a little advanced planning, you can make thoughtful decisions about your activities and create joy in your life while still taking precautions. While you travel, remember to be respectful of any local rules and regulations. Following social distancing guidelines is the responsibility of the visitors. Stay safe, and have fun out there!

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Author

Melissa and Jesse Azarva

Melissa and Jesse Azarva have been living and traveling full time in their RV since March 2019. Melissa has also been balancing a 9-5 job as a Project Coordinator. They are both adventurous, love to hike, and always find ways to stay active during their travels.

You can find them and their two dogs, Blue and Zamboni, boondocking throughout North America and documenting their adventures on their YouTube Channel and Instagram: @AdventureEndeavor  

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