Last-Minute Spring Break Ideas Gallery

Last-Minute Spring Break Ideas

As winter draws to a close and the weather in the Northern Hemisphere begins to improve (climate change notwithstanding), now is the time to think about your spring vacation plans. Even if you're not in school anymore or don't have any kids who are, it's important to take a spring break to shake off the winter blues, and now is your last chance.

A long flight is stressful enough, so we tried to bring together a list of places that aren't too hard to get to if you're living in the continental United States (although we did include a couple out-of-the-way destinations for our more adventurous readers). While spring break destinations are often associated with rowdiness and hardcore partying, that's not everyone's cup of tea. We've come up with places that are also known for their beaches, their scenery, the activities in town, or even their restaurant scene. Some destinations are better suited for the college crowd, sure, but some on this list are also perfect for families, couples, or even solo travelers — no matter what kind of trip you're looking for. So before it's too late, consider one of these ideas for a last-minute spring break you definitely need.

Atlantic City

Legal casino gambling has long made Atlantic City a popular East Coast destination, but that's not all it has to offer. Atlantic City also has the country's oldest boardwalk, which stretches four miles. You can also hire guides on the boardwalk who will give you a lift in an old-fashioned rolling chair to the hotels (particularly Caesars with its fine dining options), resorts, shops, and casinos if you're not up for the walk. Several piers off of the boardwalk offer even more attractions. Go to Garden Pier to visit the local history museum and the Atlantic City Arts Center where you can enjoy all kinds of live shows. Check out Steel Pier for rides and games at the local amusement park. The Atlantic City Aquarium has eight giant tanks full of amazing marine life, but you can also enjoy the sea outdoors by visiting Absecon Lighthouse and climbing its 228 steps for a fantastic ocean view.


Experience a vacation that's both Caribbean and Central American in vibe and location alike, in the small yet charming country of Belize. We strongly suggest that if you wish to visit Belize, you do it now, because the country is quickly becoming popular and its untouched beauty is an increasingly imperiled part of its charm. In addition to the gorgeous beaches, delicious Belizean cuisine, and fantastic resorts, this destination also offers a bit of culture and history in its renowned Ancient Mayan sites.

Buenos Aires

The capital of Argentina was recently dubbed the first ever Art Basel City, and in celebration, the city will be hosting a week of public arts events in September in celebration. Lovers of arts and culture will relish this city any time of the year, however, as Buenos Aires is known for its dance, design, and galleries. Visit in May to enjoy the pride and joy of 300 artists from 50 countries at ArteBA or come in the summer of August's BA Fashion Week. Try some Argentinian cuisine while you're there, too, as the locals sure know how to eat right.


The United Arab Emirates are known for their luxury, and as the country's cities grow, so do its tourist numbers. For the first time ever, there's a branch of the Louvre outside of Paris, and this past November, it opened its doors and its more than 700 exhibits in the safest city in the world, Abu Dhabi. For those who can't imagine a spring vacation without at least one trip to the beach, Jumeirah Open Beach is one of the best there is. Abu Dhabi is also home to the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque, one of the largest mosques in the world and meticulously kept, its bright white exterior and 82 domes positively sparkling. Take a ride on the world's fastest roller coaster at Ferrari World on Yas Island, just off the coast, where you can also visit the water park and gigantic shopping mall. An even bigger mall, however, exists in Dubai, home to the largest in the world. This shopaholic's paradise is a great place to purchase gold, textiles, and electronics, with the latter being particularly cheaper here than in most other places.

The Hamptons

Known as the "East End," the Hamptons are a group of hamlets and villages that make up the South Fork of Long Island and have been frequented by the rich and famous for decades. Three of the Hamptons' zip codes are among the 10 most expensive in the nation, which means its beach houses and country clubs are not only exclusive but also very pricy. If you can afford it, however, the Hamptons provide some of nature's most beautiful seaside, and there are plenty of art galleries where you can check out the local talent. The Hamptons draw huge crowds from nearby New York City, so the area is often best enjoyed after the summer crowd is gone. Golfing is also par for the course, as the Hamptons have some of the best private golf clubs in the country, and the area's bars and restaurants are unparalleled.


Just a six-to-seven-hour nonstop flight from the East Coast of the United States, Ireland is an affordable destination in terms of both time and price. Its capital, Dublin, made it to our list of the top destinations for 2018, but the entire island is full of magical spots, with amazing churches, ruins, distilleries, and scenery for you to discover.

Las Vegas

Las Vegas is a great weekend destination any time of year, but the springtime really brings out its shine. The weather is fantastic, clubs are open late, and casinos are open 24/7 with all-day pool parties taking over multiple resorts along the Strip.

Mackinac Island

Pronounced "MAK-i-naw," Macinac Island is the hidden gem of Michigan with Victorian charm and fun activities for the entire family. The island is a three-in-one destination: You can visit active Mackinac for a more outdoorsy time with biking, hiking, horse-riding, and paddling; grand Mackinac for a more upper-class experience at the Grand Hotel resort; or fudgie Mackinac to indulge your sweet tooth with the island's famous fudge amid historic and shopping sites. Tours of the island are available on foot, bike, or even via kayak or stand-up paddle board, both of which are available for rentals. Golfing and fishing are also popular endeavors. We also recommend bringing your own bicycle; Mackinac is known for its island-wide motor vehicle ban.

Napa Valley

Located in California's Bay Area, Napa Valley is the premier winemaking region in the United States. Given recent fires that have been devastating for the area, tourism is more needed than ever. That suits any wine-loving traveler perfectly, as the wine tours here are wonderful for a laid-back, relaxing vacation amidst a beautiful countryside. They're a great reminder of the United States's overall strength as a wine destination, as well as what this country has to offer economically as well as culturally.

New Orleans

The Big Easy turns 300 this year, and over a decade after Hurricane Katrina, it's ready to party hard in celebration. Enjoy the best of Southern and Creole culture and cuisine any time of the year, but visit in late April and early May for the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival. And those are just two of the 160 festivals held each year in this party city, all of which are sure to do something special in 2018 in honor of the tercentennial. New hotels are also popping up and old hotels are ready for you too, such as the historic Pontchartrain Hotel, which just underwent a $10 million renovation.


While Machu Picchu has been growing in popularity as a bucket list landmark, tourists are also starting to discover the rest of Peru alongside it. Visit Trujillo, where you can learn about the Moche and Chimu, ancient civilizations from even before the Inca, by visiting the pyramids of the former and the adobe complex of the latter, before heading to the northern part of the country, where you'll find a different kind of hiking experience on the jungle trails. Other must-sees include Leymebamba, home to around 200 Incan mummies, and Chan Chan, a city made entirely of adobe and the largest pre-Columbian settlement in South America. Make sure you don't leave without visiting the food scene of its capital, Lima, or enjoying some marinera dancing alongside Peruvian music.

San Juan

Puerto Rico is officially open for business and tourists are needed more than ever to help the island get back on its feet.­ Witness the rebuilding and resilience of San Juan, where old and new coexist in the architecture as well as the city's culture. Nightlife, beaches, and a growing arts scene have all helped San Juan earn its reputation as a strong tourist destination, but it's the food here that's really worth coming for.


If you're not ready to be done with winter just yet, head to Canada's premier ski destination: Whistler. Home to one of the largest ski resorts in North America and located on Whistler Mountain, Whistler is a great destination for skiing, snowboarding, ski jumping, tobogganing, and snowshoeing, even in the spring time. However, there's more to Whistler than just skiing, as the resort town also offers opportunities to explore the area with activities such as riding their Peak 2 Peak Gondola, hiking trails surrounded by snow walls, throwing axes, and enjoying the local cuisine and spas.


A destination that's sure to change your life, Zambia is the place to experience a safari in the birthplace of the walking safari, with a guided tour company or through a safari lodge such as the King Lewanika Lodge which just opened up as the first permanent camp in Liuwa Plain National Park. Visit in April for the Kuomboka Festival, which tourists can attend for the first time this year and partake in the festivities marking the end of the rainy season. Not up for the hassle of a last-minute trip? Check out our guide on how to have the perfect spring break staycation with your kids.

More from The Daily Meal:

The Most Exciting Travel Destinations

50 Best B&Bs in America

The Cheapest Places to Travel Month by Month

Famous Places to Visit Before They Disappear

The Fastest-Growing Tourist Spots in the World