Families can celebrate their love of travel through kids’ activities like creating virtual scrapbooks, building keepsake shadow boxes and making DIY luggage tags.
Vacations are about precious time away together. Even if you can’t travel right now, there are plenty of travel-themed activities you can do as a family at home. Here are some vacation-inspired kids’ activities to keep young explorers dreaming about their next big adventures:
Celebrate Great Travel Memories
You’ve been meaning to organize all those photos from your last trip — have your kids help. Older kids and teens can use an app like PicPlayPost to make slideshows of the trip, add songs and text to create videos, or make picture/video collages of their vacation that they can share on social media.
You can also turn vacation photos into digital scrapbooks. Just like classic paper scrapbooks, these offer tools to add embellishments, background layers and little details to your photos. But instead of glue and scissors, the scrapbooker works with digital editing software. Check out ScrapGirls or Sweet Shoppe Designs, both of which have tutorials on how to get started.
Experience Virtual Sights, Sounds
New sights and sounds represent a huge part of the travel experience. Take little ears on an auditory voyage, whether it’s back to a place they’ve been or envisioning places to go on their next trip. You can listen to street sounds in Berlin or explore a forest with acoustic ecologist Gordon Hempton via his Sound Tracker label. YouTube also has free sound-focused videos like The World’s Most Beautiful Waterfalls.
Webcams can provide inspiration for drawing and storytelling. What are the giraffes doing today? Find out, then peek in on the baboons or penguins, too, via the webcams from the San Diego Zoo. Or watch the sun set over the ocean using the Moana Surfrider’s live webcams of Waikiki Beach, then draw using crayons to try and match the colors. Webcams are a great way to revisit vacations you’ve taken together.
Curate Your Own Museum
Invite kids to curate their travel collections — shells, plane tickets, trinkets photos — inside of a shadow box. You can order one from a craft store or even use a wooden drawer divider, turned on its side to create a little shelving unit.
While creating, reminisce on the best parts about the trip. What is the story behind each item your child put in the shadow box? What do they hope to see on your next family vacation?
Host Your Own Arts Fest
There are “chalk walks” all over the world, where artists take to the pavement to create stunning works of chalk art. Hold your own chalk art festival in the driveway by giving your kids prompts like “draw a roller coaster,” (waterslide, beach, fairy wings, etc.) and then take a photo of them in the “scene.” Don’t forget refreshments like popcorn and lemonade to add to the festival vibe.
DIY Luggage Tags
Get ready for a future family vacation by making easy-to-spot, personalized luggage tags. You’ll need thick cardboard or thin wood, cut into a rectangle. Drill or punch a hole at the top then use craft glue and maps, menus or family vacation photos to cover the plain base.
Once it’s dry, add a sturdy ribbon or rustic twine to attach it to a bag. When the time comes for your next adventure, everyone in your family will be set to go with tags that perfectly suit their own personalities.
If getting there is half the fun, remembering a favorite trip is also a major part of the experience. For times when you can’t travel or are just between trips, these family activities will help you cherish the good times together — and start planning your next vacation.