The Spring Break Series: 5 Unlikely Spring Break Destinations

With spring break right around the corner, many college students are daydreaming about their trips or desperately trying to throw together a last minute plan with friends. One thing’s for sure: we’re ready to go. When discussing destinations, many students often find themselves saying the same thing; Florida, Colorado, Arizona, or Mexico. There’s no denying the appeal for these destinations, as many of them are warmer than local Bloomington weather. However, there are so many unique destinations to travel and it’s always good to branch out! Here are 5 unique spring break destinations to try out if you get the chance!

1. Chicago, Illinois

Going to Indiana University, there isn’t a shortage of students who live in the Chicagoland area, myself included. However, if you haven’t been to the windy city, I highly suggest you check it out. Chicago has a wide range of activities, ranging from some of the largest and prestigious museums in the country to theater and concert venues with artists large and small. Public transportation is a breeze with the L and metro train systems. These can help transport you from the modern, busy downtown area to the quiet, old-school Lincoln Park (which has a free zoo for students on a budget!) There’s also two beaches to check out if you’re itching to get your feet in the sand! Both visually appealing and bursting with things to do, Chicago should definitely be on the bucket list for anyone who has never been.

2.  Tokyo, Japan

This option is definitely on the more expensive side, but if you are thinking about traveling overseas for spring break,  go to Asia! Specifically, I have always found Japan to be a beautiful, unique place where one can be enlightened and inspired. With a rich culture and history, Japan offers no shortage of gardens, museums, parks, entertainment, and restaurants to keep everyone busy. Not to mention, Japan’s culture is one of respect and dignity. Experiencing their lifestyle would be enlightening and a great way to learn through others.

3. Washington, D.C.

While the nation’s capital is a very talked about area throughout the entire year, not many think to visit during their spring break. It’s common to think that all you can do in D.C. is visit the capitol buildings and talk politics, but D.C. has much more to offer. With a bustling downtown area and plenty of prestigious forested areas, D.C. definitely gives off a home-style vibe while still having the extra fun element of the inner workings of politics happening at your very fingertips. Washington, D.C. is a wonderful place to not only feel relaxed, but also experience our nation’s history.

4. Dude Ranches

Okay,  I know what you’re thinking...WHAT? Yes, the name “dude ranch” may seem a little silly, but they’re a great destination for anyone looking to have a more active spring break while still staying warm. Many ranches are located in Arizona, New Mexico, and Colorado and offer experiences such as hiking, mountain biking, swimming, rafting, and most notably, horseback riding! Dude ranches focus on the “art of relaxation"  by surrounding guests with nature. 

5. Whistler, Canada

Many don’t think of Canada as being as picturesque or historically enriching as Europe, but the beautiful landscape with rolling mountains and seas of forestsmake Canada a wonderful place to visit. I personally chose Whistler to appeal to those looking to ski over spring break. My family has been skiing for nine years now and Whistler is the best skiing we’ve had. One of the resorts hosted the 2010 Winter Olympics and you can ski the same courses the athletes competed on! The base town has a lot to do when you're off the mountain too!


Spring break is a great time for getting off campus and exploring new places. Everyone wants to have fun, but some of the best experiences I’ve had while traveling have been when I was able to experience the culture of the destination as well.

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