Table of Contents
- Costa Rica
- Miami Beach, Florida
- The Bahamas
The pandemic has changed the way we think about travel and has stopped us all from jet-setting for the last few years. Now that most of the population is vaccinated and countries are easing and removing travel restrictions, travelers, especially college students, are ready to let loose and enjoy a traditional spring break trip.
Whether you’re looking to relax on a beach, party all night, or go on an adrenaline adventure, here are a few of the top spring break travel destinations to put on your list in 2022.
Costa Rica has been a popular travel destination for years, but it’s been steadily gaining popularity, especially among college students. It’s also one of the most biodiverse countries in the world! This incredible location has it all: surfing, nightlife, pristine beaches, art, gastronomy, national parks, and so much more, making this the perfect travel destination for spring breakers.
Beach bum paradise
Costa Rica has two beautiful coastlines that offer a variety of options for spring break travelers. On the West Coast in the Guanacaste region, you’ll find great beaches in Nosara, Samara, and Tamarindo. These coastal towns offer beautiful beaches, great nightlife, and chill vibes with yoga retreats and expats enjoying the jungle backdrop. Jaco is also a top beach destination, along with the Manuel Antonio area, boasting idyllic sand and majestic wildlife all around.
On the East Coast, you’ll find a different atmosphere, as the Caribbean waters wash along the Costa Rican shoreline. The two major tourist towns are Puerto Limón and Puerto Viejo. Limón features a vibrant Afro-Caribbean population boasting incredible people, food, and culture. Just south of Limón, you’ll find Puerto Viejo, a party town that is a hotbed for backpackers and beach-goers.
People come from all over the world to surf in Costa Rica. Whether you’re a pro or looking to learn, there is a beach for every age and ability level. Most travelers, backpackers especially, head to the West Coast to surf, party, and enjoy cheaper lodging options. One of the top surf spots is Jaco Beach in Jaco. Tamarindo boasts much of the same, located on the Northwest Coast of the country. In this area, you’ll find pristine beaches and surfers looking to enjoy the waves.
Both of these areas have waves for all surfers, but if you’re looking for a challenge, head south to Hermosa Beach. If you’re new to surfing and you’re up for an adventure, travel to Santa Teresa Beach in Santa Teresa. This small fishing village is a great place to learn, especially for those travelers who love to venture off the beaten path.
However, don’t sleep on the East Coast with towns like Puerto Viejo. This international surf spot brings surfers from all walks of life who want to experience the Salsa Brava reef break!
Parties and nightlife
Costa Rica knows how to party, and you’ll find a vibrant nightlife scene in most of the top cities and towns in the country. While you can enjoy the sun and the sand in Tamarindo, this backpacker town is known for its nightlife and dance clubs. However, Jaco comes in a close second place with an array of beach bars, elevated lounges, and nightclubs.
On the East Coast, Puerto Viejo takes the win with its laid-back vibes and beachy bars. Don’t let the surfer attitude fool you. This area hosts a handful of nightclubs and party bars that will stay lively through all hours of the night. Salsa Brava and Lazy Mon are two local favorites!
National parks and nature
Costa Rica is the place to be if you are a national parks and nature enthusiast. There’s the Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve where you can find solitude and walk the hanging bridges high above the ground, Arenal Volcano National Park in La Fortuna, the gateway to volcanoes, hot springs, hiking, and wildlife, and Manuel Antonio National Park, a place to snorkel, lay on the white-sand beaches, and hike in the jungle.
In these areas, you’ll find luxe ecolodges, eco-friendly hostels, and a whole lot of nature to reconnect with the Earth and yourself.
When it comes to adventure, Costa Rica has something for every type of explorer and adrenaline junkie. You can go white water rafting down the Pacuare River, jungle trek through various reserves and ancient sites, mountain bike to the Irazu Volcano, zip-line through the rainforest, and take an ATV ride along the coast. Pick one activity or try them all from almost any region in Costa Rica!
Like Costa Rica, Mexico has been a tried and true spring break travel destination for decades. The country is known for its beaches and ancient sites, but there is so much more to see and experience.
Cancún is an old favorite among spring breakers and the Zona Hotelera (Hotel Zone) area still has some of the best parties and bars in the country. You can hang on the beach by day, drink at the pool, and take an adventure to the Chichén Itzá ruins. By night, you can get wild at Señor Frog’s and party at La Vaquita or Coco Bongo until the sun comes up. If you’re looking for a little bit of everything in Mexico with a whole lot of party, you can’t go wrong with a spring break trip to Cancún.
Playa del Carmen
In Mexico, Playa del Carmen is truly an all-encompassing destination. You can enjoy secluded beaches, shop at the downtown markets, party all night, and take historical treks by day. From its prime location on the Yucatán, you are a quick drive to Cancún, Tulum, several archeological sites, and all the top adventure parks. If you want a little bit of everything on your next spring break (with a little less party than Cancún), Playa del Carmen should be your top choice.
Cabo San Lucas
Everyone knows about Cabo, but is it on your travel list? This coastal city features a world-famous marina with restaurants and elevated nightlife, beautiful beaches, yacht cruises, and so much more. You can spend the day cruising around an ATV track, take part in tequila tastings, rent a private catamaran with an open bar, or simply relax on the shoreline where the music is always playing. By night, hit the clubs that are found on every corner. From international DJs to local favorites, there is always a party to be found in Cabo.
If you’re looking for gorgeous beaches, romantic vibes, and incredible ruins, Tulum should be your first choice when considering a trip to Mexico. This area is a little more luxe than the rest and farther away from the airport, but the pristine beaches and killer resorts are worth the price and travel time. This is also an area worth day-tripping for ancient sites and history lessons.
Most people flock to the beaches for spring break, but if you’re a foodie and love innovative cocktails, Mexico City is a must-see in 2022. As the largest city and capital of the country, you’ll find an incredible melting pot of neighborhoods, food, drinks and history. Enjoy tours of the city, mezcal tastings, tacos al pastor, and a vibrant nightlife scene that is sure to impress. If you want to eat and drink your way through a city on your next spring break, Mexico City is calling your name!
Oaxaca is another must-see when it comes to food, cocktails, and culture. You can hang downtown in the capital of Oaxaca de Juarez or make your way to the secluded beaches in Mazunte and Puerto Escondido to reconnect with nature. From traditional architecture and Mixtec cuisine to kayak tours and lazy beach days, a trip to Oaxaca will have it all, and you’ll be away from the tourists throughout your trip!
Miami Beach, Florida
When considering spring break options within the United States, Miami is a top choice. With its gorgeous beaches, vibrant art scene, and killer nightlife, you can have the best of all worlds in this happening city.
Beach bum paradise
Miami Beach is a sought-after destination in the US. The sugar-white sands, turquoise water, and pool parties along the shoreline bring hoards of travelers each year. Book a cabana at a high-end beach club or grab your hostel towel and lay out on the sand. Either way, you’re guaranteed to have a good time!
Parties and nightlife
Miami is home to the original Ultra Music Festival held during their Winter Music Conference week right on Miami Beach, and there’s a reason this city hosts such a high-end electronic party. Between the exclusive day-club pool parties, the Collins Ave bars and lounges, and the high-end nightclubs that feature international DJs, there is always something to do in Miami. For pool parties, The Clevelander, The Shelbourne, and Nikki Beach are the old favorites. For nightclubs, you can’t visit Miami and leave without stopping by Club Space, LIV Miami, or Basement.
Arts and culture
Along with Miami’s music scene, the city boasts a stellar arts scene with attractions such as the Wynwood Walls and district, Pérez Art Museum Miami, The Margulies Collection at the Warehouse, the Caribbean Marketplace, the Haitian Heritage Museum, and countless installations and exhibits in the Miami Design District. Miami is swarming with diverse cultural intersections in its galleries, cafes, and bars, and they are all waiting to be explored. Don’t sleep on the art in a city that likes to party!
South Beach doesn’t mess around when it comes to food. You’ll find a mixture of Cuban and Haitian influences, and even Peruvian fare. This dynamic city is a hotbed for Caribbean and Latin American flavors, and you can find it everywhere from local mom-and-pop shops to high-end fine dining establishments. From local seafood to pastelitos, this is a foodie paradise!
When people imagine Jamaica, they think of gorgeous beaches, reggae music, and a deep history of food, art, and culture. All of this and so much more make it the perfect option for a spring break trip!
Beach bum paradise
Jamaica has pristine white-sand beaches with turquoise water and warm weather. Seven Mile Beach in Negril is a must-see for a laid-back vibe with beach bars, high-end resorts, vendors, and an idyllic view for days. If you’re looking to get in the water, Montego Bay is the best spot on the island for snorkeling and swimming.
For the adventure seekers, staying at Ochos Rios is the perfect choice with every watersport option you can imagine, including snorkeling and scuba diving. However, if you want to get away from the crowds, James Bond Beach in Oracabessa is your best option, especially if you are a Bond fan. You can stay at Ian Fleming’s private estate-turned-resort and head to the location of the iconic scene from “Dr. No,” where Ursula walks in from the sea.
Culture and history
The locals have a lot to show you when it comes to Jamaica’s culture and history. During your stay, you can enjoy an authentic experience of rural Jamaica during an ATV tour from Negril or Montego Bay. You’ll ride on all-terrain vehicles through rugged country roads that typical tourist vehicles can’t handle. You’ll pass scenic farms, mountains, rivers, and a rainforest, with time to swim at one of the natural pools in the area.
For a little less adventure and a bit more culture, visit the Bob Marley Museum, book a rum tour and drink your way through the country’s history, or eat your way through town on a guided food tour with a local.
Parties and nightlife
You can find great nightlife throughout most of the island. In Montego Bay, hit up Jimmy Cliff Boulevard for music, bars, restaurants, and a whole lot of Red Stripe and rum. In Negril, check out The Jungle or Bourbon Beach. You can’t go wrong at the Margaritaville location, and you definitely can’t leave without a trip to Rick’s Cafe. No matter where you are on the island, you’ll find great music, stellar drinks, and good vibes only.
By way of activities, Jamaica has it all. Hike to the Secret Falls and Cool Blue Hole for a swim, take a horseback ride in the ocean, go zip-lining through the lush tropical landscape, go on an ATV adventure, or enjoy kayaking, jet skiing, and parasailing on the shoreline. If you’re a hiker, take a trip to the top of the Dunn’s River Falls and enjoy the cooling pools after the trek.
However, no trip to Jamaica is complete without a trip to Rick’s Cafe to see the cliff divers! Grab a drink and watch, or brave the heights and jump on in!
Who doesn’t love a white-sand beach, crystal-clear ocean, and stellar Caribbean food? This is why people travel to the Bahamas year-round for relaxation and fun. Adding the Bahamas to your spring break list is a great move because you can find great all-inclusive deals, chill beaches, and vibrant nightlife.
Beach bum paradise
If you’re looking for a beach trip with party vibes, the Bahamas is the perfect option. You can head to Paradise Island for a luxe getaway, take a trip to Blue Lagoon Island, or chill on Nassau’s Cable Beach where you’ll find a range of resorts and a quick drive to downtown. However, you can’t leave the country without seeing the Pink Sands Beach with its rose-hued color and premium vistas. It’s an experience to be had.
Boat trips and water fun
Ocean lovers unite in this tropical paradise! From Nassau, you can take a boat ride to the Exuma Cays and hang with the iconic swimming pigs! You can also charter a boat to Pearl Island for snorkeling, or swim with the Turtles on Rose Island. Hey, you can even go finishing on a private boat. If you can dream it, it can happen in the Bahamas.
Food, culture and cocktails
In Nassau you can book an array of food and rum tours that encompass culture, history, and delicious gastronomy. From walking tours to reggae and rhythm parties, enjoy some Bahamian favorites and authentic dishes.
For the adventure seekers in your group, take one of the various ATV tours and enjoy stories about the island, off-roading, and even some food stops along the way. For underwater fun, book a scuba diving trip and see what everyone’s been talking about in this tropical sanctuary!
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