For various reasons, this summer is going to see a lot of staying closer to home than originally planned. But that’s no bad thing! In fact, we’re going to show you just what an amazing opportunity this is and what a blast you’re going to have staying local this summer!

If you can, think back to a time when you had visitors from out-of-town that you showed around your city and area. Didn’t it look different through their eyes…interesting, exciting, full of cool corners and beautiful spots you’d never noticed before or had taken for granted? I’m always amazed by this phenomenon and after my visitors leave I vow to spend more time exploring my own backyard.

And now’s our chance! It’s also a chance to support our local economies during a critical time. By hiring a local photographer to capture all those summer memories you’re going to make at home this year, you’re also giving back and investing in your community!

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#1 Get to know your area better

When we travel to exotic countries and world-class cities, museums, art galleries and monuments are often at the top of our to-do lists.

Show of hands how many of us have visited the local museums in your area? I am ashamed to say that it took a lifetime before I set foot in our fantastic museums such as the landscape museum and the Panizza museum. I often went to elementary school but then growing up; I didn’t go anymore.
And as you wait for museums and art galleries to open back up this summer, take a drive out to those landmarks that have put your area on the map. Is there a particular neighbourhood that tourists flock to, a style of architecture unique to your city, or must-see civic buildings and statues that come up in a Google search? See what you can learn about your area, even if it’s a virtual tour of your local museum or a picnic beside a statue you never noticed before!

In this article, I recommend the ten places must-visit on Lake Maggiore.

#2 Take yourself on a walking tour

Along the lines of discovery, walking is one of the best ways to do it! One of my favourite things to do when travelling is to take long, rambling strolls around the city I’m visiting. It is a great way to keep travel budget-friendly while also finding your very own hidden gems. So consider applying this tactic to your hometown.
If you live in a big city, drive to an area you don’t often visit, park, and get out for a walk. If you live in a small town, take a stroll down the main street with fresh eyes. Hopefully, this will be easier after the stay-at-home orders, or maybe you’ll need to imagine you’re an out-of-town visitor. However you set out if you stroll with eyes and senses open, we guarantee you’ll see your home turf in a new light and experience a sense of relaxation different than when you’re out running errands or focused on getting from point A to B. You’ll see cute houses you never noticed before, shops you’ll wonder why you’ve never visited, and little details that were always there but somehow slipped your attention.

#3 Get out in your nearby nature 

Nature has been a solace for many of us these past months, from potted plants & buzzing bees on patios and terraces to lush backyards visited by deer and squirrels. Now that we’re able to get back to our local parks and even further afield, as State and National parks prepare to open, we can embrace nature even more.

Perhaps you already know your nearby parks well and are already planning your outings. If not, this summer will give you lots of opportunities to learn what those areas are and reap the benefits of them. Whether you’re lucky enough to have forests, deserts, meadows, or oceans near you, consider them part of your summer vacation this year.

#4 Be a local foodie

I love a pub crawl, or cafe hopping, or just indulging in restaurants and local delicacies when I’m abroad. And, let’s face it, the top priority for many of us when travelling is to try all the amazing food at our dream destination. So this summer have a culinary adventure in your own city or region!

For taste’s lover and good food, Lake Maggiore’s territory offers a vibrant food and wine tradition.

There is something for all tastes: from mountain cheeses, cow and goat patties graze in the open air along vast green expanses, to the processing and transformation of meats into tasty salami for the most determined palates, from the wide variety of production of honey with the numerous typical sweets of the local cuisine for the softest tastes.

Even the wine is not neglected and goes perfectly with the various culinary proposals of this territory, from the sweet hills of the Novara area to the waters of Lake Maggiore ranges up to the high Ossola valleys.

In fact, when I think of all these amazing culinary options around me, I sometimes wonder why I would ever take a vacation elsewhere.

Have you considered what your local specialities are? As restaurants and shops begin to open around the country, it’s important for us to support our local growers and businesses. Whether you already have local favorite dishes or not, get out and explore the culinary options around you. Lose yourself in your local flavours!

#5 Most of all… shift your mindset

Vacation is all about getting away from the have-to’s, spending time with loved ones, and getting some much-needed rest & relaxation. Even as I’ve worked from home these past two months, I’ve noticed a distinct difference between workdays and days off. I’m still in the same space, but it feels completely different. On days off I don’t check emails, I get up later, I read in the middle of the day, and I treat myself to takeout. So I know that a “staycation” can be just as relaxing as a vacation away. Put all the work stuff away. Close those apps on your phone. Try some of the suggestions above, or whatever comes to mind. But most importantly, wake up each day, have a good stretch, and say, “I’m on vacation.” Then watch how your shoulders ease down, the corners of your mouth lift, and your entire outlook shifts.

While you’re staying local this summer, capture the good times with a contactless photoshoot. Our local photographers will give you all the good feels and snapshots of a dream vacation away, without having to go anywhere!

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