Since early this year, so many of us have felt cooped up in our homes as we work from laptops on our kitchen tables or from a home office. For people who have children, attempting to work from home has been chaotic and stressful as they juggle their work responsibilities with the distraction of their kids distance learning in the same room. And through it all, most people and their families have been reluctant to take a vacation, worried that there won't be anything to do when everybody's social distancing and avoiding crowds. Fortunately, there are plenty of fun, crowd-free, outdoor activities you can enjoy and maintain a safe distance from others. Hiking This is a great time to explore nature and experience its beauty, and Exploria Resorts has locations that are convenient to some amazing hiking trails. Gatlinburg Town Square, for example, is just minutes from the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, which has more than 21,000 miles of trails to explore, most of which are open. It's a good idea, however, to check the website at nps.gov/grsm in case some trails are closed due to health and safety concerns or weather. In the Orlando, Florida area, guests staying at Summer Bay Orlando are within 15 miles of two excellent hiking spots – Lake Louisa State Park and the Tibet-Butler Nature Trail. Both areas offer trails that are fairly level and easy to walk, with ample opportunities for bird-watching and enjoying the scenic natural surroundings. Horseback Riding One of the most relaxing, back-to-nature activities you can enjoy is exploring wooded trails from the saddle of a horse. The gentle rocking from side to side, against a backdrop of wildflowers and songbirds, can be mesmerizing. Near Gatlinburg, Tennessee there are several riding stables available, including four that operate inside the Great Smoky Mountains National Park – Smoky Mountain Riding Stables, Sugarlands Riding Stables, Cades Cove Riding Stables, and Smokemont Riding Stables. In the Poconos, you'll find several horseback riding stables near the Pocono Mountain Villas, including Bushkill Riding Stables, Top View Riding Ranch, Serene Horse Ranch, and Mountain Creek Riding Stable. Many of the stables in this area operate throughout the year, which means you can experience the brisk, cold air of winter on your face during your ride. Golf In Central Florida, golf is a sport you can play all year long and, once you're out on the course, social distancing is easy. Masks may still be a good practice, depending on who's in your foursome, but even before the pandemic, you'd rarely get within six feet of a total stranger. Near Summer Bay Orlando, there are several great courses to choose from, including four award-winning courses at Walt Disney World Resort. Other courses that are only a short drive from the resort include Mystic Dunes Golf Course, Celebration Golf Club, and Championsgate Golf Club. Golf is also a popular activity in the Pocono Mountains and the Gatlinburg area, depending on the season. For guests staying at Pocono Mountain Villas by Exploria Resorts, the 18-hole Pocono Hills golf course is part of the resort, and several other courses are only minutes away, including Great Bear Golf Club, Country Club of the Poconos Municipal Golf Course, and Terra Greens Golf Course. Near Gatlinburg Town Square by Exploria Resorts, nearby courses include Gatlinburg Golf Course, a public course with scenic mountain views, as well as Sevierville Golf Club, and Creekside Golf Course. The Beach The closest beach from Summer Bay Orlando is Cocoa Beach, and the Grand Seas by Exploria Resorts puts you right on the Atlantic Ocean in Daytona Beach. As long as it's not a holiday week or a busy weekend, maintaining social distance shouldn't be difficult. There's usually a steady breeze along the coast which makes it a safer environment compared to indoor spaces. And there are a lot of activities you can enjoy at the beach, such as swimming, sunbathing, collecting seashells, body surfing, and making sandcastles. The beach is also a great place for a long, leisurely walk. Fishing Freshwater and deep-sea fishing charters are abundant in Central Florida and off both the Atlantic and Gulf coasts. And the lakes around the Orlando area are known throughout the world for their trophy bass. In the Smoky Mountain region, there are also plenty of great lakes and streams throughout the area that are perfect for fishing, as well as fishing charters at Douglas Lake and Cherokee Lake, less than an hour's drive from Gatlinburg. No matter where you fish, however, be sure to get any necessary licenses and follow local regulations. Airboat Rides Natural bodies of water, like lakes and rivers, are practically everywhere in Central Florida. If you want to get out and truly see Florida in its natural state, one of the best ways to do that is by taking an airboat tour. You'll see plenty of picturesque wildlife scenes with a really good chance of seen an alligator or two in their natural habitat! There are a lot of companies that offer these tours and you can find them easily online. Watersports Central Florida is truly a watersports capital because the weather is always nice and there's water everywhere. At Summer Bay Orlando, families can enjoy a day of splashing in the water, along with plenty of other activities, at Buccaneer Bay without even leaving the resort. And because the resort is on a picturesque 64-acre lake, guests can explore the lake on a wave runner, swan boat, or kayak. At Exploria Resorts, we take your health and safety seriously, and social distancing is an important part of those precautions. So enjoy a great vacation, and try some of these activities as a way to enjoy your time safely. Ready to explore the many outdoor activities at our resorts? Plan your next vacation here!