7 ways to experience the joys of travel without leaving the house
Spring is on the horizon in the northern hemisphere, and with it what is usually one of the best times of year to travel. Whether you were hoping to enjoy the cherry blossom season in Japan, book a long weekend trip in Europe or enjoy a staycation, for most of the world, that isn’t going to happen this spring. And you know something? That’s okay. The most important thing is to keep you and your loved ones at home and safe. Our beloved Prophet Muhammad (saw) said:
“When you hear that [a plague] is in a land, do not go to it and if it occurs in a land that you are already in, then do not leave it, fleeing from it.’”
21 Bukhari, 5729 and Muslim, 2219
While local and international travel all over the world is grounding to a halt, it’s time to get a bit more creative in finding ways to scratch that travel itch.
Here are 7 ways you can experience the joys of travel without leaving the house:
1. Print your travel photos
Give your smartphone a spring clean and sort through all those photos you’ve accumulated over the months/years. Most of us are guilty of taking beautiful photos and then storing them on an external hard drive where no one can appreciate them. With all the extra time you have now at home, sort through your snaps – you’ll probably find many that’ll bring happy memories flooding back to you. Get your favourite snaps printed in a photo book as a keepsake, or better yet, as a gift for a loved one. Being restricted from travelling now is a great opportunity to relive your past travel experiences, and rediscover happy memories.
Check out SnapFish for regular deals on buying album and canvas prints.
Parent hack: If you’re stuck at home with children, young or old, get them involved in sorting through the photos with you. They’ll enjoy revisiting happy memories!
2. Plan and book your next trip
We can’t know for certain when it will be safe to travel again yet. On the plus side, this means you have more time to plan where you’ll go for your first trip post-Coronavirus. You could spend a whole afternoon watching travel vlogs from all over the world, and enjoy that feeling of travel without leaving the house. If you haven’t drafted a bucket list yet, there’s no time like the present. For some inspiration, check out our list of top ten Muslim-friendly destinations. We’ll also be releasing new trips you can book onto in the coming weeks. If like us you’re keen to get something in the diary now, you can book onto one of our trips to Bosnia and Croatia, Uzbekistan, Cappadocia and Istanbul now with guaranteed free cancellation should the trip be unable to proceed.
For some practical tips on planning your next trip, check out our inspiration wall for our free travel guides. If you’re amongst those financially hit due to restrictions on business and employment, maybe now is the chance to plan your perfect staycation? A long weekend break in The Cotswolds, for example, with lashings of cream tea and scenic walks, might just be what you need.
3. Take on a culinary challenge
One of the best things about travelling is the adventure that your tummy and taste buds get to enjoy. On a deeper level, eating as the locals do is one of the best ways to connect with and immerse yourself in the local culture.
With more time at home and restaurants shutting up shop, now is your chance to master some of your favourite recipes. Whether you enjoy Mexican burritos or Japanese ramen, exploring new dishes is a great way to travel without leaving the house. Here are a few recipes to get you started:
– Eat like a Bey with this recipe: https://balkanlunchbox.com/beys-soup-begova-corba-recipe/
– Japanese style halal Ramen: https://halalpitmasters.com/2019/05/08/japanese-style-halal-ramen-noodles/
– Affogato: Italian ice coffee dessert: https://myhalalkitchen.com/affogato/
4. Brush up on your Islamic history with these essential travel diaries
We have a rich collective history of Muslims travelling far and wide to seek knowledge. Allah told us in the Qur’an,
‘Say, [O Muhammad], “Travel through the land and observe how He began creation”.
Surah Ankabut, verse 20
It’s no wonder then that we also have a number of travel diaries ranging from a few decades to several centuries old, many of which made really important contributions to historical sources. Start with the story of Muhammad Asad, a young Jewish journalist who on his travels to Arabia, discovers Islam and becomes Muslim. There is the story of Ibn Fadlan, a 10th Century secretary to a diplomat who was sent by Abbasid Caliph Al Muqtadir to Volga Bulgaria, present-day Russia. His accounts are believed to be the only eyewitness account of a Viking chieftain’s burial. And of course, there are the travels of Ibn Battuta, whose journey to Hajj produced one of the best-known and loved diaries. His accounts feature tales from several countries and regions, including Mali, the Swahili Coast, Central and South Asia.
Feel inspired? Why not start writing your own travel diary?
5. Dive into a fiction book
Not an e-book. Treat yourself with the luxuriant feel of real paper between your fingers, and instead of binge-watching Netflix, discover adventure through the pages of the book. Get started with the Conqueror Series by Conn Iggulden. This series shares the story of a young man named Temujin and his harsh early life surviving on the Steppe, and how he later became known as one of the most powerful leaders of all time; Chinggiz Khan. This set of books was released years ago so you’ll be able to find cheap new or secondhand ones online quite easily.
6. Learn 100 phrases in a new language
Pour quoi pas?
Perhaps you haven’t learnt a new language since your school days, but if you love travelling then there’s definitely at least one time you wished you had brushed up on a few essential phrases!
For complete beginners to a new language, the app Duolingo makes the transition easy work by focusing on teaching you key words and phrases at the early stages. Once you feel like you’ve grasped the basics and want to dig a little deeper, Babbel’s focus on dialogue and grammar make it another great app to support you on your language journey.
7. Complete a 2000 piece jigsaw puzzle of the world
…and see how well you can locate your Guam from your Guinea. This is great played with family or as a personal challenge!