The inevitable and long-awaited week during spring semester filled with sun, friends, food and ridiculous behavior. What better time is there to act like a true college student? Whether you’re going to the beach, road-tripping or tourist-ing in a major city, spring break is never boring. So pack your bags, grab those snack and don’t forget your sunscreen. It’s that time of year again! And seriously—don’t forget your sunscreen.
Check out The Best College Spring Break Destinitions that will Make Your Friends Green with Envy over Your Insta Posts
- Panama City Beach, Florida
If you try to book an Airbnb for anywhere in Panama City Beach this late in the spring break game, you won’t find anything available below $400 a night. The area has been booked to the brim—as it is every year. If there were ever a Spring Break capital, here we have it my friends. All you could ever ask for right in the Florida panhandle. Lots of sun, warm Gulf-of-Mexico waters and an insane amount of same-minded people just looking for a good time. If you find yourself with some free time, venture off to Destin Beach. A few waves away from the central of Panama City, it’s idyllic beaches make it worth the trip.
- Miami, Florida
When people ask you where you’re going for Spring Break? “Miami. Where else would you go?” said Andrew Gonzalez, New York University alumnus and Miami native. In comparison, Miami and Panama City Beach are pretty much interchangeable when it comes to spring break. Though on opposite ends of Florida, but they party just as hard. Emphasis on the party hard. Miami just does it the Latino way. With one of the largest enclaves of Cubans in the country (Little Havana), Miami is loud, proud and full of delicious food. South Beach? A typical spring break destination and rightfully so. Why? The parties, the people, the traffic—wouldn’t be Miami without it. Make sure you visit Calle Ocho, one of Miami’s most famous streets, where you can find a string of the hottest restaurants and clubs in the city.
- New York City, New York
Not your typical sunny, beach vacation, but definitely still a strong contender. And for good reason. Few places in this country compare to Central Park in the spring. Snow has melted, leaves have greened and ice cream can finally be eaten outside again. Go to Sheep’s Meadow and pack a picnic. It’ll be one of the best afternoons you spend in NYC. Want something different from the typical city atmosphere for your spring break? See how the other half lives in the Hamptons and take some time on the beach. You might even spot some hot celebs or be invited to a party? It’s New York. Anything can happen. Not to mention, there’s always that New York slice of pizza to make the whole trip worth it.
- Los Angeles, California
Oh, the city of stars. You can’t go wrong here, can you? Looking for a tourist-packed spring break? The Hollywood Walk of Fame, the Hollywood sign and a celebrity bus tour are a start. Make your way to Anaheim, only a 30-minute drive, and spend your break in the happiest place on Earth. “Disneyland is Disneyland. I live in NYC and still have an annual pass because it’s so much fun!” said NYU senior and California native Daphne Sigala. You could also go on a studio lot tour and awe over some of your favorite TV shows. What else could you possibly need? Oh, right. There’s the shopping. And the famous California surf and turf. And In-n-Out. You could go to LA just for In-n-Out. And yes, you want fries with that vacation.
- Orlando, Florida
So many tourists come that these parks have set up “blackout dates” for employee guest passes to reduce unpaid entry during this time. “It gets crazy. They’ve even had to close down Magic Kingdom for near over-occupancy,” said University of Central Florida junior Ashley Berrios. If you’re going to Disney, here’s a pro tip: Unless you want to spend $6 on a water bottle, bring your own. Also, make sure you get the Dole Whip only available at Magic Kingdom. That frozen pineapple goodness will cool you in the Florida heat (temporarily). “I always get the Dole Whip. It’s so sweet and delicious. It’s my favorite Disney staple,” said Berrios. Also, despite popular belief, Orlando also has some other awesome perks aside from theme parks. It is an hour away from either beach coast and home to the Dr. Phillips Performing Arts Center, where you can often see touring broadway shows and orchestras.
- Daytona Beach, Florida
Another Florida destination, but don’t be fooled. They are not the same. Daytona Beach, located on the East Coast of Florida, holds some of the year’s most anticipated events: Bike Week and the Daytona 500. But the area is more than just that. As one of Florida’s cleanest and most family-friendly beaches, every Daytona trip is a good one. Go to the beach, get some sun, hit up the pier, get some ice cream. Spend a sunset afternoon strolling down the boardwalk where talented street artists sell some breathtaking pieces.
- Cancun, Mexico
An international destination? No fear! While traveling to Cancun, Mexico might be a little out of your #brokecollegestudent budget, your time there will be a breeze. The drink deals, the club deals, the food deals? You’ll be overwhelmed with the possibilities—and money won’t be a huge problem. The area offers great excursions for friends and family, as well. Go on a boat tour and see some of the most colorful sea life in the world. Rent a jet ski and jet the day away or go scuba diving and see the life down there up close. Not to mention the Xcaret, Cancun’s botanical water park, uses only natural sources of water. Consider Cancun an absolute get-away paradise.
- Laguna Beach, California
Are you hearing Hilary Duff’s “Laguna Beach” theme song in your head? Don’t worry, so is everyone. Here’s a forewarning, though: Laguna Beach is way better in real life than it was on MTV. “The beaches are amazing and you could spend a full day there and still not want to leave,” said Sigala. Feeling like heading to the west coast this Spring Break? This might be just the spot for you. Like Sigala said, Laguna Beach seems like a never ending paradise—you’ll never want to leave. With clear blue waters, long reaching shores and crisp Pacific Ocean air, it could be the destination of your dreams. You can also try exploring the area itself. “I loved going to Thousand Steps beach. It’s not a secret anymore, but worth the trek!” said Sigala.
- Nassau, Bahamas
Imagine sitting in the Atlantis resort, sipping on your fresh tropical smoothie, watching the pure pink skies turn to purple as the sun sets. And then the party begins. The Bahamas are just as beautiful, as clear-watered and as exciting as any travel brochure sells them off to be. You could head off on an excursion and go island hopping, scuba diving and climbing waterfalls along the way. Plus, Atlantis Resort sits in the heart of Nassau, ready to grant you your dream vacation. From the water park to the gorgeous aquarium, you could probably spend your whole time there.
- Las Vegas, Nevada
When you think Las Vegas, you usually think gambling, partying and weddings, right? It doesn’t really equate with long walks on the beach or fresh seafood after a long day of tanning, but that doesn’t make it any less enjoyable. Nevada has more than enough sun to go around and Vegas is always down for a party—especially the spring break kind. NYU senior Kimberly Howland suggested visiting the Stratosphere, the wax museum, the Aria Hotel, New York and a gondola ride in the Venetian. There’s more than enough to do. You could even check music festivals and see which one is heading Vegas’s way. “Go to the Luxor to go on the elevator that goes diagonally!” said NYU junior Kailley Callamras. Even the quirkiest ideas can turn into a fun time.