5 Cheap Weekend Trips to Get You Through the Rest of the Semester

Spring Break came and went all too fast.

Now, we’re all back in Gainesville struggling through the final stretch of the semester. But, just because our dreamy snapshot of Summer break is over that doesn’t mean your chance to get out of town is gone.

Whether it’s getting away for the whole weekend or just skipping town one Saturday afternoon, here’s five cheap trips to get you through the rest of the semester:

Float down Ginnie Springs

You can’t live in Gainesville without making a trip to Ginnie Springs. Pack up the car with sandwiches and drinks and spend the day floating down the Santa Fe River. There are rope swings, campsites and beautiful natural springs. Located in High Springs, about 40 minutes north of UF, it’s the perfect day trip. Admission is $15 per person and inner tubes can be rented for $6 to $12, but you can bring your own tubes, paddleboards and kayaks, if you have them. The water is always cold but can be a refreshing way to spend a hot Florida Spring day. Pro tip: High Springs has a quaint downtown area with some cute shops that are worth stopping at on your way out from the Springs.

Soak in the sun on Crescent Beach

Sometimes you just need to go to the beach after being stuck in landlocked Gainesville for weeks. Crescent Beach, just south of Jacksonville, is about an hour and a half from UF. It’s a great option for a quick beach trip. If you want to make it a longer trip, you can get a group of friends together and rent an Airbnb in the area for as cheap as $70 a night. Be sure to bring sunscreen!

Site see in historic St. Augustine

Historic sights like Castillo de San Marcos and the oldest wooden schoolhouse in St. Augustine are staple sites to see in Florida. Along with all the historic sites to see, there is a charming downtown with cute coffee shops, bars, restaurants and shops. Be sure to bring your camera because it will be a very Instagram-worthy day.

Sunset at Cedar Key

On the other side of the state, you can catch the sunset on the West Coast in Cedar Key. It’s only an hour away from Gainesville so you can head out midafternoon just in time to catch the sunset. The little town is a small slice of tropical life. Seafood restaurants and quirky gift shops line the Gulf of Mexico. There’s also a pier that extends out into the water. You’ll definitely want a camera for this trip, too, to capture the sunset.

Hiking trip in Georgia

If you want to get in touch with your adventurous side, head north for a hiking trip in Georgia. It’s a great opportunity to escape and spend sometimes outdoors. If you’re willing to drive a little further, you can hike in Providence Canyon, known as Georgia’s little Grand Canyon. Be sure to wear comfortable clothes and lots of water.