Ever since I came to college, I have heard of extravagant spring break adventures. Most people go to Florida or Mexico if they do not make the trip back home to family, and I had imagined that at least one of my college spring breaks would have to be on a trip somewhere with a group of friends; such an experience seems vital for college students. Now that I have approached senior year, I finally have taken the spring break trip leap. Well, almost.
When trying to decide the best place to visit, my friends and I had a few stipulations:
- Driving Distance, no planes.
- Within a college student budget
- Not incredibly crowded for Covid safety
Oh, and a hot tub was a massive plus.
After much searching and comparing, and spring break fast approaching, visiting Bar Harbor Maine came up on the top of our list. We booked the week’s stay, planned driving arrangements, and two weeks later, we headed to Maine. I packed many sweatshirts, sweatpants, and even five jackets, you know, the typical spring break suitcase fillings. I am very glad I traveled prepared because the Maine weather was still quite chilly, even in March.
Bar Harbor is not very crowded, and many of the little shops in the town were closed until April when visitors start to return for the peak season. We managed to find an open book store, an ice cream shop, and my personal favorite, a lovely little Thai restaurant. What could be better than reading poems then finding coffee-flavored ice cream before heading to get Thai food? I have two bowls of soup and I am prepared for the cold hike ahead of us. The trip is filled with hiking. At least one hike per day, and many blisters unfold throughout the week. We trek miles to visit an old lighthouse where we meet an elderly man who tells us stories of him and his friend who used to play there regularly after school. He still walks to the lighthouse every day.
Acadia National Park does not disappoint, and my favorite of its sights that I got to experience is Cadillac Mountain. It is noted to be the first spot in the US to see the sunrise every morning, so the group and I packed flashlights, and at 4:30 am, we begin the journey to the summit. We are greeted with mountaintop snowfall and the whole mountain to ourselves. I still cannot believe that for such amazing views, we are the only people to be experiencing them. I truly feel like it is just me, my friends, and our pal, the sun.
We experience many other beautiful parts of Maine before heading back to lil’ Rhody. I realize that spring break is not just about getting a week away from homework. It is really about stepping into what makes students happy and rejuvenated. It is about going outside and getting a mountaintop sunburn. It is about the campfire that popped (burnt) my popcorn and kept us warm for hours of late-night chats. It is about getting closer with friends and sharing memories. I am so grateful for my spring break experience, and it goes to show that if you don’t follow the traditional spring breakers, you can have a trip that is entirely your own and exciting. Oh, and pro-tip, pick a place with a hot tub– a big plus!