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    34 Ways To Feel Like You’re On Vacation — Even If You’re Stuck At Home

    We sure do want to learn Nonna's pasta recipe, thank you very much.

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    1. First, temporarily cure wanderlust by reflecting on your amazing past trips. This cork board travel map (which comes with 194 world flag push pins) will have you looking back fondly at that 2007 Barcelona trip.


    Promising review: "Such beautiful quality and detail to this map! I love that it is made from natural materials as well. We can’t wait to add this to our homeschool learning this year!" —Monica Storey

    Get it from Amazon for $29.97+ (available in two sizes and a framed option).

    2. Food: a universal language and the language of l-o-v-e. Indulge in a British Cadbury chocolate box, sample some Japanese candy and snacks, and suddenly your taste buds are on vacation — riding the tube and climbing Mount Fuji.,

    Promising review (British Cadbury chocolate box): "The CurlyWurly bar is caramel wrapped in milk chocolate, and it reminded me of a skinny and long Slow Poke candy bar. The Flake bar was basically milk chocolate with a flaky and crumbly texture. The Twirl bars are shaped similar to a cigar, and the chocolate inside is slightly more intense than milk chocolate. The Double Decker is different, it has a chewy but light nougat on top, rice crisps on bottom and is covered in milk chocolate. Crunchie is totally awesome, and totally different. They describe it as a honeycomb center surrounded by milk chocolate. It was my favorite bar, as it was so different from any other bar in the USA." —NPR MAN

    Get a box of 10 from Amazon for $19.75.

    Promising review (Japanese candy box): "My 10-year-old daughter requested this because she was interested in finding out more about Japan. We had a one-hour tasting party on the living room floor and we compared the snacks to each other and to American snacks. We loved some, and we hated some. She took some duplicates to school and shared them with her friends. You can tell a lot about the culture by common flavors, textures, packaging, serving sizes, and a lot of other things that we saw in this box." —Amazon Customer

    Get 30 pieces from Amazon for $17.99.

    3. And some food for thought (not consumption): A Cook's Tour: Global Adventures in Extreme Cuisines by Anthony Bourdain chronicles equal parts travel and fare. From Cambodia to Portugal, you'll learn about the power food holds in cultures around the world.

    the book

    Promising review: "Anthony Bourdain admits cheerfully to selling his soul to the devil [television] in order to carry out his childhood James Bond world adventure fantasies. Along the way he experiences joy, fear, awe, and nausea. Those looking for recipes will be disappointed: those looking for hilarious and insightful descriptions of how food is cooked and served around the world will be thrilled. Bourdain never forgets the importance of food culturally; he packs the book with interesting tidbits on how a cuisine is shaped by necessity [what kind of livestock can you raise in an enclosed town?]." —Clara

    Get it from Amazon for $11.59.

    4. Travel the 🌎 via Airbnb virtual experiences. Here's a small sampling of the available classes:

    ~Visit~ a Barcelona workshop and design your own espadrilles. You'll first learn the history of this iconic shoe before choosing your size, laces, threads, and type of stitching — not only will you see the shoes being made, but the final product will also be shipped to your home at no extra cost!


    Streaming from: Barcelona, Spain

    Tickets starting at: $98

    Duration: 1 hour

    Cook a delicious, traditional Moroccan meal of chicken tajine (including vegetables and fresh salad!) with a local Moroccan family. Is your mouth watering? Because mine certainly is.

    chicken Tajine with vegetables and a fresh Moroccan salad

    Streaming from: Marrakech, Morocco

    Tickets starting at: $11

    Duration: 1.5 hours

    Luca and Lorenzo will walk you through everyone's favorite food: pasta. With their guidance (and recipes passed down from their Nonnas), you're basically guaranteed to become an expert at this famous Italian dish.

    cheese being poured over pasta

    Streaming from: Lastra a Signa, Italy

    Tickets starting at: $33

    Duration: 2 hours

    5. Ugh, another upcoming semester with no word from Hogwarts about your acceptance. No worries. Pretend to feast in the Great Hall by indulging in Bertie Bott's beans or whipping up your very own chocolate frogs.,

    Promising review (Bertie Bott's beans): "It was definitely every flavor! I bought this because 1) I am a big Harry Potter fan and I love Bertie Bott's, and 2) my husband did not believe me when I told him that every flavor meant 'every flavor.' He ate one jelly bean (soap), spat it out, and refused to eat anymore, saying he now believed me." —GiRose

    Get it from Amazon for $3.97.

    Promising review (chocolate frog mold): "I'm not a baker, I'm not crafty, and I've never made anything with a mold before. When my friend wanted to throw a Harry Potter-themed party, I bought this mold and agreed to make chocolate frogs. They came out perfectly! I simply melted chocolate chips, poured it in the mold, and froze it until the frogs were solid." —Surreptrixus

    Get it from Amazon for $7.87.

    6. Or! If you're craving a more satisfying meal (one that is not, no offense, just candy), this magical cookbook will take your hand and lead you through some fantastic wizarding meals. Think everything from treacle tarts and rock cakes to kippers and meat pies.

    the book

    Promising review: "I LOVE THIS. I'm no master chef, but this cookbook might change that: I might even become a master wizard chef! Anyways, the recipes are phenomenal. The book has a bunch of cute references, and my younger siblings go crazy whenever I make something from this book. I most recently made the meat and potato pies, which can be found on page 44." —Tigerlily

    Get it from Amazon for $10.99.

    7. I guess the saying really is true: You've got the whole world in your hands (er, iPhone) with Google Arts & Culture. Take a virtual walk to iconic spots like Christ the Redeemer (Cristo Redentor) in Brazil, the Colosseum in Italy, the Taj Mahal in India, and so much more.

    Cristo Redentor in Rio
    Michael Heiman / Getty Images

    Explore all that Google Arts & Culture has to offer here.

    8. It may not be boating on the Amalfi Coast, but getting even a sliver of sunlight feels like an instant "I took PTO" boost — so why not work outside sans glare with a universal umbrella? This one is designed with UPF 50+ protection and a universal clamp, meaning it can easily latch on to a patio chair.

    reviewer photo of pug in shade under a blue umbrella

    Promising review: "This is the perfect umbrella to add to your existing chair! It tilts in all different directions to keep the sun off of you. I use it at outdoor concerts. Everyone was asking me where did I get it. It's way better than a canopy chair which only keeps the sun off you if it's directly overhead. And it attaches to your chair pole in seconds, piece of cake. I wish I had this years ago! It would have really saved me from the glaring sun at all the outdoor concerts I attend in the summer heat." —Pal

    Get it from Amazon for $19.99 (available in seven colors).

    9. Travel may be on pause right now, but what's stopping you from planning that eventual trip? Jot down dream vacay itineraries in this travel planner: It's particularly awesome because it has designated pages for things to do, places to go, places to eat, budget, and transportation. *starts to plan for eventual Cape Town, South Africa adventure*

    the blue spiral notebook labeled "Wander Always"

    You can even jot down some Dear Diary notes in lined pages meant for all your travel thoughts.

    Promising review: "My wife loves this planner! It's lovely, comprehensive, and (most importantly) compact. With the complicated game of packing tetris involved in international travel, this is a huge plus. It's also made planning our trip much more fun and enjoyable." —Kris Steele

    Get it from Amazon for $13.95.

    10. Experience the magic of Disney (sans having to peer over massive crowds) with the virtual Not-So-Spooky Spectacular fireworks show *or* 360-degree interactive videos of their most iconic rides. That's right! A front row seat on Space Mountain is yours.

    fireworks over Cinderella Castle in Disney
    AnaMaria Glavan / BuzzFeed

    This fireworks show is ~hosted~ by Jack Skellington, BTW!

    11. Up the ante with some Japanese Daifuku Mochi, which reviewers swear are sold at the Japan Pavilion in Epcot. These are sure to give your taste buds the thrill of their l-i-f-e: This particular kind has cream and strawberry jam filling, plus a light sprinkling of powdered sugar.,

    Promising review: "YAAAAAY! They sell these at Epcot Japan pavilion and I AM OBSESSED!!! I posted a pic on a Facebook Disney page trying to find another seller for these and thank you Amazon!!! These are huge mochi. They're super soft and mostly mochi with just a little paste in the center. The paste has a smoother texture than bean paste and a much better flavor. There's finely powdered sugar on the outside. It is a burst of flavor and delight in your mouth. SO GOOD!" —Andrea

    Get a pack of eight from Amazon for $7.35.

    12. Cover everything in vintage-inspired travel stickers: your laptop, your water bottle, your notebook, your phone. Just do it.

    the stickers

    Promising review: "I journal and collage/scrapbook in a travel notebook. The scrapbook paper I use has an industrial vintage feel and these really go along great with that theme. They are really cute and there's a lot to pick from!" —K L

    Get a pack of 63 from Amazon for $6.59.

    13. Satisfy your wanderlust and explore the globe by way of a travel-themed movie — because nothing screams "Volare" quite like The Lizzie McGuire Movie does, amirite?

    Buena Vista Pictures

    Nor does anything scream ~peak petty~ like the iconic line, "Sing to me Paolo." Here's just a snippet of movies to rent/stream to satisfy your travel bug for the following places:

    The Lizzie McGuire Movie: Rome, Italy

    Crazy Rich Asians: Singapore

    Mamma Mia!: Kalokairi, Greece

    Paddington: London, England

    ...and for a longer list, read "17 Movies That Will Instantly Cure Your Wanderlust."

    14. Plus, turn movie night into an ~event~ by hosting it outdoors! This Kodak projector lets you watch shows, films, and YouTube videos with integrated Airplay (and a USB slot and HDMI cable for connecting), plus it can be connected to an external speaker *and* has its own built-in speaker. Blank wall + this little gadget = a personal home theater.

    Yi Yang / BuzzFeed

    Promising review: "Despite its compact size, this little guy can actually project quite far (I tested it at 14 feet or so, and the image measures approximately 50 inches x 60 inches). I’ve used it to watch films and shows, and it truly feels like I have my own personal movie theater. (The darker the room, the clearer and crisper the images are, so I always use it at night with the lights out. However, blackout shades would work, too!) It can connect to a phone or computer, AND it has its own speakers (though you can connect it to an external speaker as well). For longer binge sessions, I like to have it plugged in so it doesn’t run out of juice, but it can last through a couple of 40-minute episodes unplugged just fine. The best part is once I’m done with it, it fits nicely into my drawers for storage. Easy peasy. It’s a lot simpler to deal with than the full-size one I used to own." —Yi Yang, BuzzFeed Editor

    Get it from Amazon for $189.99.

    To learn more, check out "7 Game-Changing Tech Products You Need ASAP".

    15. It may be a while before we can travel to new cities and countries. Le sigh. But instead of seeing the glass half empty, consider this a new challenge in researching and exploring the history that your *own* city has to offer.


    I just found out that my hometown is the location of the first free kindergarten in America (!!!!). Poppenhusen Institute was built in 1868 — and is still standing.

    I went out of my way to walk past it during my daily walk and it very much looks like something out of Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children. I am so upset I haven't acknowledged it sooner.

    16. Get dressed up! No, really. Everyone has those outfits dubbed "vacation clothes" because of how photogenic they are. Ditch your leggings for something more festive when it comes to your next walk — throwing on this gorgeous two-piece set, for example, will instantly make you feel as if you're on your way to explore something new.,

    Promising review: "This outfit is perfect for weekend plans; you can dress up and down. Super classy and comfortable! I get so many compliments on it and it's a great vacation outfit." —Marisa Silva

    Get it from Amazon for $25.99+ (available in sizes XS-4X and in 15 colors).

    17. Enjoy a fancy cup of coffee at home as you would abroad. This heat-resistant, borosilicate glass Bodum pour-over carafe is designed with a permanent filter that makes a smooth serving of joe, is dishwasher-safe, and can make up to eight cups at a time.

    the glass coffee maker

    Promising review: "Super easy to use, makes a mean cup of joe, and is nowhere near the price of a Chemex. I use mine on a daily basis and would absolutely recommend this product to any of my coffee loving friends." —Brad Lemons

    Get it from Amazon for $19.85 (available in three sizes and five styles).

    18. Whip up your own homemade chocolate croissants and feel like you're in the City of Love with each bite. Paris, I love you — and your ~pain au chocolate~.

    BuzzFeed Tasty

    Here's the recipe for making your very own homemade chocolate croissants!

    19. Skim through Aimee Song: World of Style for both travel *and* style inspo. This gorgeous book contains blogger Aimee Song's favorite looks worn around the 🌍.

    a page from the book

    Get it from Amazon for $3.30+.

    20. Nothing screams "I'm staying at a hotel" quite like a bomba$$ breakfast, so treat yourself to a fancy spread. Tackle one of these fancy brunch recipes (hello, photogenic acai bowl) and take the ~hard~ work out of egg-based dishes with this Dash rapid cooker.

    BuzzFeed Tasty, Amazon

    Dash rapid egg cooker: All you'll have to do is fill this cooker with water, add up to six eggs, and breakfast will be served. This handy gadget holds up to six eggs, has an automatic shut-off feature, and the removable parts are dishwasher-safe. It's good for hard boiled eggs, soft boiled eggs, poached eggs, scrambled eggs, and individual omelets!

    Promising review: "The claims are true. This is the easiest and fastest I have ever hard boiled eggs. I just got it, and I haven't tested it for making anything but hard-boiled eggs, but oh man is it great for that. It was easy, it was fast." —Apoc

    Get it from Amazon for $19.99 (available in five colors).

    21. Pitch a weatherproof Coleman tent in your backyard for a DIY camping trip (and be sure to add in s'mores, spooky stories, and star gazing for the full effect).

    the dark blue tent

    Promising review: "Love this tent! We're not big outdoors people, I needed a tent that's easy to set-up and comfortably fits a queen size air mattress...this tent exceeded my expectations! The last time I set up a tent was in the 80s (and the tent was from the 60s)...this is a dream to set up. I put the tent together in our backyard by myself and inflated the air mattress within the tent. I also hung a little LED lantern from the center inside the tent. Enjoyed our night under the stars with one adult, one 9-year-old and a French blldog. Breaking everything down was a breeze too!" —C. Sisbarro

    Get it from Amazon for $55+ (available in four sizes and two colors).

    22. Gather up old travel mementos and stick 'em in this ring-bound ticket stub journal (here's looking at you, various museum receipts). Not only does this turn tickets into a scrapbook you'll cherish forever, but it also prevents said ticket stubs from cluttering up every nook, cranny, and corner of your living space.,

    Raise your hand if your junk drawer is currently cluttered with miscellaneous pieces of paper and e-tickets.

    Promising review: "Instead of saving all my ticket stubs in a box, I can actually organize them! It's so neat to have something that makes it easy to remember a cool place with great people that doesn't break your bank (like souvenirs and expensive photos). Cool little book!" —Maritzaida Acevedo

    Get it from Amazon for $13.97.

    23. Enlist the help of the Finishing Touch vibrating rose quartz facial roller: this tool stimulates circulation, promotes collagen production, reduces the appearance of fine lines, and feels divine. "One facial massage and lymphatic drainage, coming right up." — you to yourself in the mirror, because IRL facials are on pause for the moment.

    hand holding pink facial roller / Via @finishingtouchflawless

    This comes with two rose quartz heads: a facial roller and under-eye press. Plus, it's powered by one (included) AA battery.

    Promising review: "I love this roller! I’ve been using it every night and I can already tell a difference. The eye attachment is the perfect size. Also love that it came with its own battery which is super convenient." —Amazon Customer

    Get it from Amazon for $18.99.

    24. Use a Kodak instant camera with Bluetooth capability for printing full-sized travel photos from your phone's camera roll. The photo paper is even equipped with adhesive on the back, aka scrapbooking your last vacation just became a *whole* lot easier.

    Jasmin Suknanan / BuzzFeed

    "When I opened the package, I charged the camera for a bit until it was ready to go and followed the instructions for installing the printing paper. I've used instant cameras and the like before, but I thought the installation instructions were pretty clear and easy to follow even if someone had never used a similar camera. The booklet says you can download the Kodak 2-in-1 app on your phone so you can print photos that are already on your camera roll, so I downloaded the app and paired the camera to my phone using Bluetooth to test out with some photos I took on a Labor Day trip to Rhode Island. Pairing the two was super easy with the instructions from the app. The app also lets you edit and customize the photos before printing. So no one photo, I added some text before printing, and the other I left blank.

    They printed out beautifully!!!!! I also love that the photo paper is actually adhesive — you can just peel off the back and stick it anywhere. That's perfect for me since I actually keep a travel journal with photos and things from my trips — no glue or tape required to keep those pics in place. I can definitely see this being a bonus for anyone who loves journaling or scrapbooking and wants an easy way to hold onto their memories. Overall, I really thought it was fun to use. The photo quality is great, too. I've had instant cameras where the colors and brightness are diminished and it felt like a waste, but this is pretty vibrant." —Jasmin Suknanan

    Get it from Amazon for $149.95 (also available in bundles with photo paper).

    25. ATTN, spooky friends: You can take a video tour of the famed Winchester Mystery House — all from the comfort of your own couch, where the ghosts (I assume) won't be able to find you.

    the Winchester Mansion
    Courtesy of the San Jose Convention & Visitors Bureau

    This mansion, once owned by rifle heiress Sarah Winchester, is known for spooky staircases and doors that lead to nowhere. The virtual tour is available from now until April 7 (and when you're done, you can watch this episode of BuzzFeed Unsolved for more creepy deets, if you so please).

    You can rent the video for $5.99, or purchase it for $13.99.

    26. If you think "vacation" is synonymous with "a hotel spa visit", then try your hand at these surprisingly easy massage techniques — nothing like a few trapezius pulls to finally rid your back of those pesky knot(s).


    To learn more, check out "Full Body Partner Massage."

    27. If you lack the patience required for the above (or your hands are prone to cramping), I hear you loud and clear: so does this portable massage ball. This provides 360-degree rotation and is comfortable to hold, which means giving your partner (or yourself) a massage will have never been so easy.

    reviewer holding blue massager

    Promising review: "Amazing. Seriously, buy this. It is the best back massage I’ve ever had. I have trouble with my wrists and hands and can’t massage my husband’s back for very long. This is small and easily fits in my hand. I can give him a great massage without pain. He massaged my back with it as well and it’s phenomenal!" —Mifflinpartyofthree

    Get it from Amazon for $7.49.

    28. Create the ultimate time capsule with this illustrated travel journal. Filled with thought-provoking prompts in listicle form, jot down everything from world heritage sites and beaches to festivals and parades you've experienced firsthand — or would *eventually* like to experience.

    page from the travel journal

    This journal = the ultimate time capsule.

    Promising review: "This is an awesome purchase, especially for young adventurers. I bought this for myself at a local bookstore, and I can't help but get super excited about everything I am filling out. It's inspiring to scour the internet for all of the 'natural wonders, formations, and phenomena' I want to see. On the other end of the spectrum, it includes 'spiritual places, islands, and volunteer travel'. The format is very well-organized and, if you are a list-maker like myself, you will immediately fall in love with this book. It covers every possible travel topic in a simple, easy fashion. I plan on keeping this small journal as long as I travel (which will hopefully last a lifetime)!" —Deb

    Get it from Amazon for $13.87.

    29. Skip the airfare (turbulence included) and tour Machu Picchu by internet — a special 360-degree technology allows you to feel as if you're exploring this Inca citadel by foot.

    Machu Picchu

    There's even an audio guide that details each section you ~explore~.

    30. Why not travel by way of cocktail? Sip on a Barraquito to transport to Tenerife, Spain or pair every Italian pasta dish with an Aperol Spritz. If you'd like to hone in on one country or specific regions, there may be a book for that: take these cocktail books catered to France and Latin America, for example.

    Aperol Spritz, Amazon

    Promising review: "I collect a lot of cocktail books and this one quickly rose to the top. (One of my hobbies is a cocktail Instagram account.) Ivy's backstories and histories of agave-based spirits, sugarcane-based spirits, and grape-based spirits of Latin America are well-researched and incredibly detailed. It's rare you have a cocktail book with so much research. The recipes are so well-balanced and nuanced." —Sean Wilson

    Get the Spirits of Latin America: A Celebration of Culture & Cocktails, with 100 Recipes from Leyenda & Beyond by Ivy Mix from Amazon for $19.31.

    To learn more, check out "16 Cocktails From Around The World That'll Have You Feeling Like You're On Vacay".

    31. Invest in these jumbo silicone ice molds guarantee a better cocktails-at-home experience. Fancy looks aside, these perfectly shaped chunks of ice take forever to melt — aka, so long diluted negronis and hello beverages that look like something out of a mixologist's handbook.

    Hannah Loewentheil/BuzzFeed

    You'll get two silicone molds and lids: one for square ice cubes, the other for round. They're both reusable and BPA-free!

    Promising review: "From negronis to margaritas and everything in between, these simple ice cube molds instantly make my cocktail creations taste better. And not to mention the jumbo ice cubes make any basic DIY drink look fancier too." —Hannah Loewentheil

    Get a set of two from Amazon for $13.98.

    To learn more, check out "These Jumbo Ice Molds Are My Most Important Tool For Making Cocktails At Home".

    32. Spend the ~day~ at the American Museum of Natural History by browsing through extensive research collections, taking a virtual tour, or downloading the Explorer app to learn more about your favorite exhibits.

    dinosaur exhibit at American Museum of Natural History
    D. Finnin/© AMNH

    The options are endless when it comes to exploring this famed museum whilst wearing pajamas. You can also tune into their Facebook page for recorded tours, peruse museum highlights with Google Arts & Culture, and they even offer a bunch of online learning programs for students and teachers — we're talking museum quizzes and other grade-specific activities to keep your little ones entertained.

    33. Get beach waves without, well, actually going to the beach via the Remington wand. This miracle tool allows even the finest, straightest of manes to hold the most voluminous mane: Just wrap your hair around the barrel, wait a few seconds, and you're done. Minimal effort required. Several tears shed.

    AnaMaria Glavan / BuzzFeed

    This wand heats up within 30 seconds and has a 60-second automatic shut-off feature, meaning you'll never have any midday did-I-turn-off-my-curler panics ever again. The barrel also comes in 1-inch and 1.5-inch sizes, heats up to 410 degrees Fahrenheit (and can be adjusted), and has a ceramic coating for even heat distribution.

    SIDE NOTE: I have been using the same Remington wand for about six (maybe seven) years and it is truly a gift from above. For reference, I have super straight, thin hair that usually can't ever hold a curl, but this helps me achieve a full head of beach waves in under 15 minutes.

    Promising review: "I have had this for five years and it still works amazingly. I use it so much that people don't know my hair is naturally straight, and I get compliments on it all the time. Honestly, I cannot believe how well this works and how long it's lasted considering how cheap it is. I bought this on a whim (cause it's only $20!) and it is one my greatest purchases of all time." —madison

    Get it from Amazon for $21.97+ (available in two barrel sizes).

    To learn more, check out "Remington's Curling Wand Did What I Thought Was Impossible And Curled My Pin-Straight Hair".

    34. And finally, remember that just because you can't travel *right now* doesn't mean you can't travel *ever again*. Hold your horses, wear your mask, binge wanderlust TV, and slowly plan the dream trip you'll take once it's safe again.


    The reviews in this post have been edited for length and clarity.

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