Looking for the perfect spring break destination? You’ve got options! Maybe you want to spend spring break lounging around on stunning beaches, having tons of outdoor adventures, or just enjoying the warm weather with your fellow college students.
No matter what the perfect spring break trip sounds like to you, you’re in luck because the U.S. is filled with incredible spring break choices. And to help you choose the perfect trip for your vacation style, we’ve got details on the best spring break destinations in the U.S. so that you can plan an unforgettable adventure!
But before we dive in, let’s take shine some light on how to find the best spring break spot for you!
So, what is the perfect spring break trip?
The answer to that question depends on you. Ask yourself what kind of activities you most want to spend your spring break doing. Are you looking for a tropical destination where you can lay on the beach or are you into adventure travel? Do you want to explore a city that has amazing nightlife? Or, do you just want to be in warm weather with tons of other college students partying hard?
The best spring break destinations will offer activities that allow you to live it up while having fun or spending time with friends, but also give you the chance to relax and recharge. No matter what kind of trip you’re looking for, there’s a great spot for everyone on this list of places where you should go for spring break.
Our team of travel experts has found the best spots in America where you can spend your spring break, so read on to find out what they are!
1. Palm Springs, California
Palm Springs, California, is a wonderful spring break destination for those who’d rather fill their time with outdoor adventures instead of time on the beach. It’s also an excellent spot for a family vacation if you prefer spring break trips with your family.
The area is most widely known for Joshua Tree National Park, a stunning desert area filled with hiking trails and incredible scenery. When you’re tired of hiking, ride the Palm Springs Aerial Tramway for epic views of the desert and the San Jacinto Mountains in the distance. You’ll quickly see why Palm Springs is one of the country’s best spring break destinations for epic views. Finally, don’t miss the Living Desert Zoo & Gardens or the unique local art on Palm Canyon Drive!
2. South Padre Island, Texas
If you’re close to Texas, South Padre Island is a fantastic choice. This gorgeous barrier island offers more than just beautiful beaches and warm spring weather. It’s also one of the most affordable spring break destinations in the U.S.! College students flock here for the sandy beaches, water sports, dolphin-watching, and free entertainment at local restaurants and the beach.
For nature lovers, the Padre Island National Seashore is also the perfect spot for spring breakers to see sea turtles or migratory birds, while the South Padre Island Birding, Nature Center & Alligator Sanctuary will get you close to a variety of fascinating reptiles and tortoises. It’s a spring break spot you’ll want to visit again!
3. Charleston, South Carolina
If you’d rather spend your spring break time wandering through historic squares, visiting fun shops, and eating incredible food, Charleston, South Carolina, is the perfect destination! The early spring weather in Charleston is usually lovely and warm, but not so hot that you’re miserable.
Take your pick of affordable vacation rentals on the three gorgeous beaches, each with a different atmosphere and activities. The downtown area is just a short drive away, offering plenty of opportunities to dive into the city’s incredible history. In fact, this city is one of the best spring destinations for history and culture! While you’re there, don’t miss a tour around the French Quarter, a photo-op by Rainbow Row, or the delicious food from the city’s many local eateries!
4. Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado
One of the most beautiful places to spend your spring break vacation is this National Park in Colorado. The park has 355 miles of hiking trails that will take you besides gorgeous lakes and up the stunning rocky mountains. If you’d rather drive, the park’s Trail Ridge Road and Old Fall River Road are perfect for a scenic road trip.
Other fun spring break activities include fishing, horseback riding, mountain biking, and wilderness camping. You can also watch for bighorn sheep, elk, mule deer, and other wildlife while you camp out at one of the park’s five campgrounds. It’s one of the best spring break destinations for family fun and outdoor adventure!
5. Daytona Beach, Florida
Daytona Beach is possibly the most popular spring break vacation ever. Thousands of college students flock here every year to party on the beaches and visit the Daytona International Speedway.
This is another of the best spring break destinations for budget-minded travelers, and you can easily find an affordable hotel for your stay. When you’re ready to leave behind the tropical drinks and beach scene, consider booking different boat tours to experience deep sea fishing, parasailing, and scenic cruises. Or hit up one of the area’s multiple theme parks.
5. Las Vegas, Nevada
If you’re ready to party non-stop, Las Vegas is by far one of the best spring break destinations to choose. The city’s events span several weeks, giving you chances to join other spring breakers in all sorts of celebrations.
Depending on when you visit, you can enjoy St. Patrick’s day celebrations at one of the town’s Irish pubs or rent out a box for March Madness. But Las Vegas is better known for its pool scene and warmer weather. Take advantage of both by staying at a megaresort and sipping tropical drinks in relaxation, then party non-stop at one of the pool clubs. It’s one of those spring break trips you’ll never forget!
7. Hilton Head Island, South Carolina
Hilton Head Island is rated one of the safest and best spring break destinations in the U.S.! That’s a win-win. Based on your preferences, you can visit this South Carolina town for family fun or a party. Spring break is a busy time, but there’s plenty of beach and activities to go around.
Try ziplining, parasailing, or kayaking, then take a break from the spring weather while you duck inside one of the many local restaurants for some incredible food. You can also try your hand at golf, explore the island by bike, or chill out poolside at one of the many boutique resorts. With so many options to relax or be active, it’s no surprise that many people return for spring break trips year after year.
8. Key West, Florida
If you’d rather slow things down and unwind with island time, Key West is a great spring break destination for you. There’s no need for hustle or bustle here–just epic ocean views, great seafood, and all the water activities you could wish for.
The islands in this tropical chain are arguably the best spring break destinations for water activities in the country. If you’re an adventurous soul, be sure to book tours for snorkeling, scuba diving, and jet skiing.
If you prefer to take it easy, try a catamaran tour, kayaking, and combing for shells. When you want to stay on land, you’ll find plenty of shopping, art galleries, spas, and restaurants to enjoy, not to mention all the Instagram-worthy scenes you could wish for!
9. Outer Banks, North Carolina
Spring break trips are the perfect time to explore the Outer Banks of North Carolina! The early spring weather is ideal, and you won’t have to deal with the summer crowds. While the most common activities include beach days, shopping, and fishing, there’s plenty of rich history and fascinating stuff to do here.
Some of the area’s most iconic attractions include the Wright Brothers Memorial, Jockey Ridge State Park, and the lighthouses at Corolla and Cape Hatteras. While you’re in Corolla, go searching for wild horses on a tour or by driving your 4×4 vehicle along the beach.
Outer Banks is ideal to go camping with an SUV tent. Finally, don’t leave without tasting the iconic Duck Donuts to finish off the best spring break ever!
10. New Orleans, Louisiana
There’s no question that New Orleans is one of the best spring break destinations in the country. It’s the perfect blend of parties, history, and outdoor adventure.
Be sure to visit City Park and kayak at Bayou St. John at least once while you’re there. But plan to spend plenty of time in NOLA. This is party central for great restaurants, art, live music, and clubs. Keep an eye out for the parade and event schedules because they know how to party in New Orleans! And if you want to get a little culture while you’re there, you’ll find plenty of amazing history, museums, and city tours.
11. Miami Beach, Florida
Miami Beach must be one of the most iconic spring break destinations in America. It’s a huge city with an unmistakable skyline and glistening beaches. Miami is the perfect place to enjoy basking in the sun, going shopping, having a drink at a nightclub, or seeing some live music.
If you’re looking for something more active, check out the Little Havana or Little Haiti neighborhoods for some authentic Cuban or Haitian food and culture. You can also take a kayak tour along Biscayne Bay to see the city’s amazing skyline up close. And don’t forget to party during spring break in Miami Beach!
12. Myrtle Beach, South Carolina
The Grand Strand in South Carolina is one of the best spring break destinations because it’s a huge stretch of beach and ocean, with plenty to do in town.
Your first stop should be Sunrise Beach for some fun in the sun and great food, then take an evening stroll down Ocean Boulevard when you want to try out the shops and restaurants. If you want to go on some adventures, try ziplining, jet skiing, parasailing, kayaking or surfing. You can also take a tour of Pawleys Island or Georgetown on the water.
For more culture and history during your spring break trips, visit Myrtle Beach State Park where you can go hiking and camping along trails that lead you to tranquil lagoons. Or visit the South Carolina Aquarium for a chance to see all sorts of sea life up close, including sharks!
13. Galveston, Texas
When it comes to spring break destinations in America, Galveston is one of the best because it’s full of rich history and culture while still being a prime location for a beach getaway.
You won’t want to miss the historic downtown area that’s home to some of the most beautiful architecture in America. When you’re ready to hit up the beach, head over to Seawall Boulevard where you can enjoy a day at one of Galveston’s 15 miles of beaches. You’ll find plenty of great spots to take a dip or relax in the sun–and if you’re lucky, you might even spot some dolphins.
After you’ve had your fill of beach time, see what else Galveston has to offer at Moody Gardens where you can explore their famous Rainforest pyramid, then visit downtown to check out their tall ships and historic tall ship festival.
14. Carmel By The Sea, California
If you’re looking for an alternative to the typical spring break destinations in America, then Carmel By The Sea is where you want to go. It has a quiet, peaceful vibe that’s almost completely opposite from your typical college town.
You’ll be able to explore some of Carmel’s great restaurants and stores while checking out what they have to offer. Or relax by the water at Point Lobos State Natural Reserve where you can kayak, hike or go camping around beautiful rocky coves.
If you’re looking for some outdoor adventures while you’re away from campus, head to Carmel Valley for wine tasting tours before visiting Big Sur to see some incredible views of the California coast.
15. Waikiki, Island of Oahu, Hawaii
Hawaii isn’t just for honeymooners and retirees–it’s also an amazing spring break destination. Of all the Hawaiian islands, Oahu is one of the best because it has so much to offer whether you’re looking for tropical beaches or some exciting water adventures.
Waikiki Beach is a great destination for enjoying all the fun that comes with being on vacation, including lounging in the sand, shopping for souvenirs, or just taking a walk. You can also check out some of Honolulu’s great museums and historical sites.
If you want to go on some amazing adventures during your spring break trips, try skydiving, parasailing, snorkeling or jet skiing. Or, if you want to do some more laid-back things, just relax on the beach or visit one of the park’s many gardens–just remember that it will be hotter than blazes during your trip!
You can also spend some time at Diamond Head State Park where you’ll have an amazing view of the coast after hiking up to the top. Another great place to check out during your spring break trips is Kualoa Ranch, which has both private tours and group tours you can sign up for.
Tips That Will Help You Have The Best Spring Break Ever
Whether you’ve been planning your spring break getaway for months or are just now trying to decide where you’ll go, these suggestions will make your trip more enjoyable and exciting than you could ever have imagined.
- If you’re traveling with a group of friends, make sure everyone gets along. You want to have fun on your spring break trips, not spend the entire time arguing!
- Make sure to book your hotel or resort in advance, and if the weather is going to be bad during your trip, reschedule and choose another destination.
- Never leave any of your valuables unattended while you’re out on the town or on the beach–you don’t want to go on spring break trips just to come back and find out you’ve been robbed!
- If you’re flying, make sure you leave your house early so that if there are any flight delays or problems with your luggage, you’ll be able to quickly resolve them before it’s too late.
- Remember that the key to having a great trip is being prepared, so research your destination beforehand, check the weather forecast and pack enough clothes and the right travel accessories.
- Don’t overpack and use packing cubes to stay organized and save space in your suitcase.
- Make sure you and your friends take the proper precautions to stay safe and don’t forget that having fun is what spring break trips are all about!
Spring Break Safety Tips
Every year, thousands of students go on spring break trips during the month of March. While these trips are usually a lot of fun and can be great memories, they can also lead to some pretty dangerous situations that you should be aware of before you go. So in order for your trip to be as safe as possible, here’s a list of things you should keep in mind:
- If you’re drinking, make sure your friends watch out for you and don’t let you wander away by yourself.
- Watch how much alcohol you drink, and never leave your drink unattended or accept it from a stranger.
- Make sure to tell someone where you’re going whenever you go somewhere or leave a party.
- If you’re going to be drinking, make sure you have a designated driver who won’t drink at all.
- Try not to walk alone at night, and don’t agree to go anywhere with someone you just met unless there are other people around.
Remember that even if it’s spring break, safety should always come first. So before you go away to your destination, make sure you and your friends take these tips into account so that everyone can enjoy the trip without having to worry about bad situations that might arise.
If you are a solo traveler, check out our article about the best places for solo travel United States.
With so many different options, you’re sure to find the best spring break destination 2022 on this list. Just remember, spring break trips are all about having fun, so try every activity while you’re there and see what brings out your inner adventurer.