8 BEST Summer Staycation Ideas for 2020

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It’s finally summer and if we’re honest, we could all do with a break from what has increasingly become a stressful and uncertain time for all of us. We’ve all been missing work, friends, family, and our normal day-to-day lives. Even after three months, things are still completely up in the air and in some states, the lockdown has been re-imposed to attempt to deal with further outbreaks. In light of job losses, business losses, and a desire to help boost the local, state-wide, and national economies, why not opt to remain in the USA this summer with our summer staycation ideas for 2020? We’ve pulled together a range of great choices across the nation for you to get together with your loved ones whilst giving something back at the same time.

#1 Wisconsin Dells, WI

If you’re looking for staycation ideas for families, Wisconsin Dells is a great spot to spend time together and keep the kids entertained. Wisconsin Dells is a city in southern Wisconsin and is known as the waterpark capital of the world. The city is home to several water theme parks, as well as a huge trampoline park, several zip lines, and indoor parks for smaller kids. Basically, if you’re around the Midwest, it’s a great staycation idea for families.

However, on top of the theme park aspect of Wisconsin Dells, the city has far more to offer people of all ages. If you’re on the lookout for romantic staycation ideas and, dare we say, even the thought of eloping, Downtown Dells even has a pretty wedding chapel for summer ceremonies. The downtown area is filled with cute motels and authentic shopping opportunities, as well as great food outlets featuring local produce. And you can’t visit Wisconsin without sampling the cheese and dairy that makes the state so famous.

For the wine and beer lovers in the family, no staycation idea would be worthy of exploring without the option to sample some Wisconsin tipples. The numbers of distilleries, wineries, and breweries in Dells and the surrounding areas make it the perfect spot for celebrating the end of quarantine. As long as you socially distance, obviously.

#2 Santa Fe, NM

If you love long hot days and beautiful old world surroundings, an excellent summer staycation idea for 2020 is a trip to the stunning city of Santa Fe. Also, they have the best margaritas in the southwest.

As well as the vibrant orange of the adobe building in downtown, Santa Fe offers tourists fabulous southwestern cuisine, like huevos rancheros for breakfast and tacos for dinner. If you like chill, you’ll be in heaven. If you’re a fan of Food Network, you’ll also find one of their featured locations here, as seen on the show Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives.

Those looking for romantic staycation ideas can immerse themselves in the beautiful art of Georgia O’Keefe, at the gallery that bears her name. And if you have energy left after that, hot up the Santa Fe Margarita Trail and road test all the different tequilas on offer. You won’t regret it. Not until the morning after, obviously.

If you’re up for a short hike, the sunsets from Cross of the Martyrs are routinely listed as amongst the best in the US. You can opt to walk from the city, or take a short drive to the parking lot and walk through the park from there.  Watching the sun sink from elevated views across the mountains is truly memorable.

#3 Twin Cities, MN

For Minnesota staycation ideas, take a trip to the wonderful twin cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul. The cities are built around the might Mississippi and St. Croix Rivers. The twin cities have much to offer people looking for family staycation ideas, as well as those more interested in staycation ideas for singles or couples. Minneapolis is known for its vibrant arts scene, with the Minneapolis Institute of Art, Walker Art Center, and Franklin Art Works showing year-round exhibitions and world-class permanent collections. For outdoor art lovers, Minneapolis Sculpture Garden is a must-see.

Outdoor enthusiasts looking for staycation ideas can enjoy Minnehaha Park, with its three separate gardens, biking and hiking trails, picnic areas, and, of course, the main attraction, Minnehaha Falls. The park is a popular spot for locals and visitors, and the wading pool is a great way to cool off during long summer days.

Sports fans can take staycation idea inspiration from a trip to St Paul with a visit to the Xcel Energy Center; home of Minnesota Wild. Even if the team is not at home during your visit, there are stadium tours available on most days. If sports aren’t your thing, St Paul is home to the historic Minnesota State Capitol Building, which is one of only four marble domed buildings on earth. The building offers free guided tours and is a great place to learn about the state’s history and how it operates. 

If you have kids and need some staycation ideas for families, look no further than Como Zoo and Observatory and the Science Museum of Minnesota; both of which are located in St Paul. You’ll have little trouble tiring out the kids with trips to these. Literature lovers in need of staycation ideas in Minneapolis-St Paul will be delighted with a trip to the former home of the legendary author. F. Scott Fitzgerald. The novelist’s birthplace is also located in St Paul. To be honest, Twin Cities staycation ideas are endless, so you’ll never run out of exciting things to see and do there.

Also read – New Airline Rules for Flying During Covid19

#4 Mount Rainier & Olympus National Parks, WA

Washington State is perhaps best known for cities, such as Seattle, and sights like The Space Needle and Pike’s Place Public Market. However, it’s also home to some of the most beautiful wide-open spaces in the United States. While Grunge and Starbucks get a lot of attention, those looking for outdoor staycation ideas (or staycation ideas for families) will fall in love with the beauty of Mount Rainier and Mount Olympus National Parks.

Mount Rainier National Park is currently open to the public after a period of closure due to Covid19. The park spans more than 236,000 acres of land to the southeast of Seattle. For those who like to live on the edge, know that Mount Rainier is an active volcano. However, it hasn’t caused any trouble since 1894, so you’re pretty safe. For outdoor staycation ideas, the National Park has a whole lot to offer.  As well as being home to the most glaciated peak in the lower 48 states, MRNP also features subalpine meadows and spans five major rivers. In addition to all the clean air and jaw-dropping scenery, a visit is a chance to test out your outdoor skills and maybe even teach your other half or your children how it’s done.

Olympus National Park is set on the peninsula that juts out into the ocean to the east of Seattle and just to the south of the Canadian border and Vancouver Island. For staycation ideas in Washington state, it’s hard to go wrong having your base here. Like Mount Rainier, the highest peak in the park, Mount Olympus, is glacier-clad, making it a challenge for lovers of climbing and hiking. The stunning wildlife and rainforests show the local ecosystems off wonderfully, and it’s difficult not to relax and de-stress in the midst of such a stunning backdrop.

If you’re in the market for romantic staycation ideas, check out the lodging options in either park. Prepare to be in the good books with a stay in a rustic log cabin or pretty campsite nestled under the stars beneath snow-capped peaks.

#5 Ogunquit, ME

I discovered Ogunquit by accident many years ago, and it remains one of my favorite memories of vacationing in Maine. It’s difficult to accurately describe the old town charm that vibrates through this quiet coastal town in southern Maine, but let me try. If you’re on the hunt for romantic staycation ideas this summer, or staycation ideas involving beaches and relaxing days, then take a trip up north.

Ogunquit has a fabulous reputation for its hospitality, theater scene, and LGBTQ-friendly locals and businesses. It’s everything that progressive, accepting towns aspire to be. In addition to the white sandy beaches it is famous for, Ogunquit has the CUTEST independent stores, restaurants, and cafes. Lazing away your days with a good book and a glass of wine finally found the perfect spot. Although Ogunquit enjoys the slower pace of life, that’s not to say it isn’t full of life and a sense of fun. It is. For staycation ideas involving live theater, arts, and culture – you’ll find it all in the four miles of this stunning coastal town.

#6 Hot Springs, AK

If your staycation ideas revolve around relaxation and former Presidents, Joy Springs has you covered. The city was the home of former President Bill Clinton, after his family relocated from Hope, AK, in 1950.  Hope Springs sits in the beautiful Ouachita Mountains and is famed for its hot springs (go figure…). The city is literally nestled in the mountains, and there’s a whole lot of fun things to see and do there. If you’re taking along the kids and looking for staycation ideas for families, take them on a day trip to Magic Springs Water and Theme Park. The star attraction is Hot Springs Mountain Tower, which allows you to climb to the dizzying height of 1,200ft above the mountains and look out across Hot Springs and the surrounding mountain ranges.  There’s also an Alligator Petting Zoo, for those who like to live on the wild side. If you’re not *quite* that brave, the National Park Aquarium may be more your thing.

For those looking for romantic staycation ideas for couples, Hot Springs has a plethora of gorgeous bathhouses for hours of relaxation and stress-free vacationing. Here, you can bask in natural hot springs and boost your health and happiness.

Vacationers in the mood for outdoor staycation ideas have a choice of trails for hiking, small public parks for casual walking, and taking the weight off tired feet with a boat trip in the clean country air on the Belle of Hot Springs traditional riverboat.

Also read – Travel Tips During the Covid-19 Pandemic

#7 Punxsutawney, PA

You’ve undoubtedly heard of this small borough in Jefferson Country, Pennsylvania because of its most famous resident, Punxsutawney Phil. The famous Groundhog, who predicts the weather and was the subject of the classic Bill Murray movie Groundhog Day, has his own statue in the town (obviously) and attracts thousands of visitors for his predictions every February 2nd. If you’d like you to visit Phil, he can be found in the town library.

Famous Groundhogs and weather predictions aren’t the only draw to this borough, however. If you’re on the hunt for staycation ideas for families, kids will love following Phantastic Phil’s Trail. Within Punxsutawney, there are no fewer than 32 large groundhogs, all wearing different outfits and with amusing accessories, that you can collect on your way around town. A map of all the locations can be picked up from the Chamber of Commerce.

As well as exercise including finding all the Phil statues the town is also a great shout for those looking for staycation ideas for outdoor pursuits. The beautiful Mahoning Shadow Trail follows an old railroad along 15 miles of glorious scenery that is always open for walkers, runners and cyclists.  If you master Mahoning during your time and need another challenge, Gobbler’s Knob & Trail for a leisurely walk to check out the metal art sculptures.

Those with staycation ideas revolving around shopping also won’t be disappointed in Punxsutawney as downtown has a range of independent boutiques and is the perfect place to pick up a Phil souvenir!

#8 Conclusion on Summer Staycation Ideas

Giving back to your community, or another community and boosting the US economy is a great double duty way of spending money at home and having a fantastic staycation in 2020. Staycation ideas are plentiful, and there’s something across the nation for all interests and ages. Whether your staycation ideas revolve around families, friends, couples, romantic breaks, or all-out fresh air and adventure, you’re sure to find something perfect. And you never know, maybe 202 will help you find your dream vacation spot a little closer to home!

Also read – 10 Best Vacation Spots in the US for Couples

FAQs on Summer Staycation Ideas

How will I know if my staycation idea location is Covid safe? Checking the local news will give you a good idea of the situation on the ground at the place you’re planning to visit. Any local lockdowns will be widely advertised, so you’ll be able to keep up to date with what’s happening. In terms of attractions, most have their own websites (including the parks and trails), so these have information about amended opening hours and what can and cannot be done in the current circumstances.

Are all accommodations open now? Most accommodations, depending on the level of outbreaks in the area, will be back open for business. This is easy to check up on, though. If you usually hit the road and book accommodations when you arrive, you’d be best taking care of this before you leave. If fewer places are open, you’ll find that the remaining ones are booking up faster, and you don’t want to drive hundreds of miles and not be able to find anywhere to sleep.

Check out – 40 Cheapest Places to Travel in 2020

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