When it’s blustery and cold outside, sometimes the only thing you want to do is hop on a plane and find yourself in a tropical paradise. What could be better for your health, right? Unless, of course, that vacay is packed with late nights, lousy food and all-you-can drink booze. There are plenty of healthy holiday vacation ideas that are special, enjoyable and don’t even necessarily mean you have to get on a plane.
Whether we fly far away or stay home, it’s important to treat ourselves to a holiday in some way, shape, or form. Even if we don’t jet off somewhere, sometimes a holiday is just a shift in your state of mind or a focus on self-care.
To me, a great vacation is about taking a break from regular life, exploring new scenery and taking care of my health. It’s about feeling better at the end than I did at the start.
With that in mind, I’ve rounded up three awesome healthy holiday vacation ideas for different budget levels.
At-Home healthy holiday vacation Retreat Option
You don’t need to leave the house to have an amazing vacation. Send the kids to their grandparents’ house and turn your home into a relaxing retreat.
Use this time to do all those wellness-oriented activities that have been falling to the bottom of your to-do list. Some ideas:
- Do some dry brushing to improve lymphatic drainage, reduce cellulite and make your skin glow.
- Spend the weekend doing a gentle green smoothie cleanse.
- Enjoy a hot cup of tea or an elixir as you curl up with a good book or a podcast.
- Take a nap, or a bath (just not both at the same time).
- Attempt a new cooking project you’ve always been meaning to try.
- Go for a walk and get some sunshine.
- Curl up on the couch and watch some amazing health documentaries.
- Play in the kitchen and cook some amazing meals yourself, or look into organic meal delivery options (Green Zebra is great if you live in the Toronto area.)
- Do some meditation, some deep breathing…or just spend some time doing nothing at all.
Urban healthy holiday vacation Retreat Option
If you’d rather spend your moolah on pampering than airfare, you can create an awesome weekend retreat for yourself in your very own city. All you need is some delicious food, some booty-shaking activities and a little bit of relaxation!
- Make reservations at some local healthy restaurants you’ve never tried before. Try branching out a little from your usual haunts – why not give a vegan, Paleo or raw restaurant a try?
- Look into local businesses offering juice and smoothie cleanses (but make sure their food philosophy jives with your own – you don’t want any mystery ingredients ending up in your green drink.) You could get a weekend’s worth of drinks delivered and sip on them between activities.
- Check out a local cooking class or nutrition workshop – preferably one where you get to eat the amazing food after making it!
- Get your sweat on at a hot yoga class.
- Check out a workout class you’ve never tried before – suspension yoga or hula hooping, perhaps?
- If group exercise classes aren’t your thing, why not go for a mind-clearing morning walk in an area of your city you’ve never explored before? (Weather permitting, of course!)
- Go dancing!
- Spend a day at the spa, preferably one with a wellness focus. If you’re in the Toronto area, we love Body Blitz.
- Treat yourself to an amazing massage.
- Take a meditation class.
Tropical healthy holiday vacation Retreat Option
Retreats and healthy holiday vacations are most awesome if you are into hanging with a group of like-minded people and have all of your needs taken care of. This option is at the top end of the budget, but often becomes a most invaluable experience when you consider the people you’ll meet, the things you’ll learn, the places you’ll see and the stress you’ll release.
Some of the more popular retreat destinations include Mexico, the Caribbean or one of my faves, Costa Rica. I love retreats as a healthy holiday vacation option as you are able to go alone or with a friend/partner. Often, you get to easily do, see and go to places you normally wouldn’t if travelling resort-style (or you’d have to organize it yourself.)
Costa Rica is a retreat mecca, and my top pick of places to kick it is at Hacienda del Sol in Costa Rica. This where I took guests when I planned retreats, and also I have been on vacation there with my husband. Hacienda del Sol offers wellness retreats that include juice detoxes, raw food programs, fitness training, yoga, jungle treks and all sorts of other good stuff.
I also recommend checking your local yoga studio or favourite health practitioner for any upcoming retreat options. A great way to get away with the community!
The key: Decide what the goal of your healthy holiday vacation retreat is, where you want to go, and you will surely find what you’re looking for.
Remember – a vacation state of mind can be achieved whether you fly halfway around the world or head to your local hotel for a staycation spa day, or just light some candles and put the tunes on in your own bathroom. The key is to take some time for yourself to breathe deep, relax and rejuvenate.
What are your strategies for getting into the vacation state of mind?