Six ways to get your travel fix during the pandemic

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These tight restrictions mean we won’t be travelling for a while, but that’s not to say we can’t participate in a little ‘armchair travel’ in the meantime.

Whether you’re a seasoned backpacker with many countries ticked off the bucket list, or someone who loves a simple staycation, travel means something to all of us.

And right now, as the world cancels its travel plans and planes stay grounded, with hotels left empty and beaches deserted, it can be hard to imagine you’ll ever go on holiday again.

Fear not, though. If you’re yearning for anything from distant shores to a city mini break, there are lots of ways to satisfy your wanderlust without leaving home.

1. TV shows that remind you how great your country is to travel
Miriam Margolyes Almost Australian shows the celebrated film and TV star as she embarks on an epic two-month journey across Australia to discover what it means to be Australian today. You can catch it on ABC’s iview and it might just give you some ideas about where to travel once the ban lifts.

If you really want to be taken somewhere you haven’t been before, Australia’s Ocean Odyssey: East Australian Current takes us on a spectacular journey from the Great Barrier Reef down to Antarctica. The show talks all about the ocean currents that create life on our planet, and what we can do to protect our planet’s beating blue heart. Also available on iview.

If you’re looking to virtually venture a little further afield, Netflix’s Our Planet starring David Attenborough takes you everywhere, from forests to deserts and beyond.

2. Old guidebooks
Sitting on your shelves, there’s probably a whole host of guidebooks from European cities to Caribbean islands. Get them down and have a flick through.

As you thumb through the worn pages, telling stories of your travels, you’ll soon be immersed in the facts and photography, as well as finding some old restaurant cards or receipts to take you down memory lane.

If you’re looking to purchase a new book to inspire future travel destinations, take a look into Atlas Obscura an Explorer’s Guide to the World’s Hidden Wonders. It holds delightful, unusual facts about the marvellously strange world we live in, and is available from Booktopia for $40. One of my favourite pages is about the goat-filled trees of Morocco … “Morocco’s argan trees are infested with hordes of fruit hungry goats who hop up into the branches to feast on the fruit they produce”.

And if you don’t have ‘actual’ books to hand there are always the e-versions.

3. Delve into your travel photo back catalogue
We’re all guilty of returning from a trip armed with a memory card full of photos that we have every intention of printing and organising, only for it to be stored in a drawer for a ‘later date’. This extra time without travel could be the perfect excuse to cosy up and sort them out. You could turn them into a professionally printed photo book or print each photo and make a paper and glue scrapbook. This trip down memory lane may remind you of some stories you’d forgotten about and will help keep your spirits up while we all stay home.

4. Cook up a travel-inspired storm
Have you ever taken a cooking class while overseas? Do you still have the recipe book lying around somewhere? If so, dig it out and recreate a dish that you last cooked while exploring a new land. Or maybe there’s that one special dish you always think about but have never set aside the time to make yourself.

Take a look through the cupboards for any exotic ingredients you bought with the best intentions but forgot about. It’s time to get cooking with that fancy olive oil and squid ink pasta you bought in Italy, or smother a roast chicken in that harissa from a market in Turkey.

Add to the theme with music and even dressing up as if you’re on holiday (weather permitting). You could even watch a travel show that involves cooking, like Rick Stein’s Long Weekends, while you dig in.

5. Learn a language
Have you ever dreamed of flawlessly ordering a coffee and croissant in Paris? Or requesting two tickets to the opera in Milan?

While learning to speak a second language fluently might not be too realistic, you can definitely get a grasp of the basic foundations of another language. You can start learning from home with apps, videos, or even online courses.

6. Plan your dream post-lockdown getaway
Those books have another purpose – some of them are bound to be aspirational purchases – so get planning!

Head to travel blogs for further info from those in the know and begin your plans. After all, once the world is open again, you need to be ready to embrace it.

How are you preparing for travel once the restrictions ease? Will you be jetting off or staying closer to home?

With PA

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Written by Ellie Baxter



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