What Makes the Perfect Vacation?

Few things in life are as purely wonderful as taking a vacation. What else is as fun and healthy, and makes you more productive? Vacations are all-around great for us, and that’s a good enough reason to start planning your next one right now.

Of course, not all vacations are the same. If you want to make your next vacation the best one yet (and why wouldn’t you?), then you need to think about what makes the ideal trip. Here are the ingredients that add up to the perfect vacation.

A schedule that’s full, but not jampacked

Getting away from the daily grind and your busy work schedule is a big part of a vacation’s appeal. And when you’re sitting at your desk and feeling overworked, it’s easy to think that your perfect vacation would be a week of entirely unstructured time on the beach. The reality, though, is that a vacation like that will get boring fast. You need to do something. From restaurant reservations to tours and watersports activities, the best vacations have something going on, explain experts who offer parasailing in West Palm Beach.

On the other hand, it’s possible to overbook a vacation. Experts say that a vacation that is scheduled too tightly can actually cause more stress than it alleviates. That’s no good. So schedule some things, but don’t pack every moment. And be sure to give yourself more time than you think you’ll need to get from one location or scheduled activity to the next — you don’t want to be rushing around on your trip. A lightly scheduled vacation will actually feel longer, experts say.

Early planning

Vacations are relaxing, but let’s face it: Planning them can be stressful. That’s why you should do everything you can to reduce the stress that comes with planning your trip.

Assuming that you’re not using a travel agent to take planning tasks off of your plate, one simple way to keep your planning stress from getting out of control is to start early. The earlier you start planning, the more time you’ll have to get everything done. Plus, starting early will give you a better chance at landing the reservations and tickets that you want the most.

A balance of health and indulgence

When we go on vacation, our diets tend to go out the window. We tend to drink and eat too much, and we’re likely to spend relatively little time exercising. Sure, some people go on backpacking or rock-climbing trips as a way to unwind, but that’s not the norm: A more typical move is to lie around on the beach for a week.

But if you spend your whole vacation indulging your least healthy tendencies, then you shouldn’t be surprised to end up feeling lousy after your time off. Our bodies aren’t designed to be fueled on margaritas and pasta alone. If you want a truly refreshing vacation, you need to balance the good times with some healthy choices.

That can mean something as simple as taking a walk on the beach every morning and choosing a salad for a couple of the meals you have on vacation. You could choose to have some high-end booze, suggest experts who represent a respected craft beer distributor, and choose quality over quantity. Or you could make exercise a part of your vacation by taking a surfing lesson or scheduling another activity that gets you moving.

You’re not going to weight-loss boot camp, of course, but it’s still good to get moving and eat a healthy meal or two while you’re on vacation. If you do, you’ll get more out of your trip in the long term.

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