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Top 6 Spring Break Destinations for Northeast Travelers: plus some travel tips

Updated on May 6, 2016
Catherine Stolfi profile image

Catherine is an independent research consultant at NASA Langley with degrees in English, Biology, and Environmental Science (M.S.).

Female friends vacationing at a beach destination
Female friends vacationing at a beach destination | Source

When it comes to spring break travel in the U.S., destinations that could be traveled to and enjoyed within a one week period are what we're looking for. You’ll find a good list of popular spring break destinations for those living on the northeast including the many cities of the sunshine state such as Miami, Orland and Key West, Florida, the Bahamas, especially Nassau, Puerto Rico and yes, even Mexico. There are a plethora of beautiful beaches but also fun activities if you're not looking for just a beach bum vacation. We have the place for you whether you're looking for a wild nightlife, amazing cuisine or some adventure water sports. You'll also find my booking tips and some new passport laws that every traveler needs to know before you head out for your quick paradise getaway.


Puerto Rico
Puerto Rico | Source
Puerto Rico
Puerto Rico | Source
Puerto Rico
Puerto Rico | Source

USA destinations

Florida

Orlando For fun in the sun, the sun shine state invites those seeking sandy beaches, water sports and arguably the two most popular theme parks in the world, Walt Disney World and Universal Studios.

Orlando is host to Walt Disney World and Universal Studios. Walt Disney World includes affordable resorts within their park, such as Disney’s All-Star Music, Pop Century and Movies resorts, and Disney’s Art of Animation Resort. You can also stay within the Downtown Disney resort area at the hotels near the Disney Marketplace, which includes a Holiday Inn, Best Western, Double Tree and Hilton. You will enjoy the same complimentary transportation perks at these downtown Disney resorts as those within the Theme Parks area. The Disney Park website has group deals and is user friendly which makes planning your Disney vacation quite fun.

Key West If you're looking for something more laid back and less tiresome, head to Key West at the southern tail end of Florida. Key West is an interesting place and has a personality all its own. It feels more like the caribbean within this island chain and the locals agree, actually being quite infamous for trying to declare secession from the U.S. This protest started out as a serious one against US boarder patrol's checkpoints that were set-up which deterred some tourists and local residents. However, it's now seen more as a lighthearted jester and the 'Conch Republic' believes more in sun and fun and are overwhelmingly welcoming to tourists. Be prepared for beautiful beaches that give any island in the caribbean a run for their money.

Miami If you're not ready for the family friendly or laid back scenes, head to the biggest party town of the southeast, Miami, FL. Get ready for some hot bikinis, beach sports and an exciting nightlife.


Puerto Rico

From the culture and food of Old San Juan to the tropical rainforest of this US territory, Puerto Rico has something for everyone. Get ready to titillate the pallet at this island nation that is more famous for its casual dining then any other for some authentic cuisine. You can also fit in some adventure travel by hiking the rainforest, snorkeling at night in the bioluminescent bay or ziplining through the air. The Bacardi distillery is always a fun trip, located just off the docks of Old San Juan by ferry, enjoy a day of sampling and learning the process of making this island famous rum. While in San Juan take in some history at the Fort Castillo de San Felipe del Morro or Fort San Cristobal. And, of course, you must make time to visit some of the most beautiful beaches in the world, located on the opposite side of the island such as Coco or Luquillo Beach.


Average Temperatures in the Bahamas Year Round
Average Temperatures in the Bahamas Year Round | Source

International Destinations

Bahamas

For paradise close to home - most destinations are an average of 2 1/2 hours away by plane - visit any island of the Bahamas for a guaranteed relaxing and sunny destination spot. You can snorkel, scuba dive or Jet Ski during your spring break in paradise. Visit Nassau, Bahamas simply for its beaches and downtown area: see the historic forts or shop for bargains along Bay Street, Nassau’s famous international shopping location. Picturesque, pastel pink-colored Colonial-style Government buildings, erected in the early 1800s by Loyalists, border the stores on Bay Street. The nightlife there is hopping with more than half of the island’s population residing in the town of Nassau. They have a variety of live shows, dancing, and music, including a taste of live Junkanoo music—the Bahamian music of choice. The beautiful, white sand beaches of Nassau include, Junkanoo beach, Montagu beach, and Saunders beach.

Mexico

On the highland valley of Mexico City, the nation’s capital, you can visit Aztec ruins at the Templo Mayor and see the most significant structure of ancient Tenochtitlan. You can also see the large round pyramid in Cuicuilco, which was buried by lava flow of the Xitle volcano more than 2,000 years ago. There you can see the pyramids of the Sun and Moon, two larges structures located on the Calzada de los Muertos. In Puebla is Cholula where you’ll see the remains of what might be the largest pyramid in Mesoamerica, about 214 feet high. The top destinations for enjoying Mexico’s sunny beaches include Los Cabos, Acapulco, known for it beautiful bays, Cancun and the Mayan Riviera where lagoons, archaeological zones and world-class tourist resorts add to the stunning beach.

Puerto Rico - Luquillo Beach
Puerto Rico - Luquillo Beach | Source

Booking

If you plan on traveling to Hawaii, the Bahamas or Florida for Spring Break, there are plenty of vacation coupons worth from $150 to $500 on travel websites such as Orbitz, Expedia, Travelocity and Priceline. The best deals on these sites are for vacation packages because each website will have specific deals with hotels for a great price. Also, the more nights you book, the more you can save. Unfortunately, the airfares on these sites are all of the same because there is very little wiggle room between government taxes, fees and gas prices. Simply book your vacation package, including flight and hotel with a car rental option. Also remember to search a coupon code before booking.

Travelers Be Aware of New Passport Laws

Implemented on January 23, 2007, everyone traveling by plane between the United States and Canada, Mexico, Bermuda, and the Caribbean region are required to present a passport or other valid travel document to enter or re- enter the United States.

These laws were a part of the Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative (WHTI). It’s a result of the Intelligence Reform and Prevention Act of 2004 (IRTPA), requiring all travelers to present a passport or other document that confirms identity and citizenship when entering the U.S. Valid WHTI- compliant documents include passport cards or a government-issued photo ID, such as a driver’s license, or proof of citizenship, such as a birth certificate. The Caribbean territories this passport law applies to include the Bahamas, Jamaica, Bermuda, Cayman Islands, Aruba and more.


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