This Is the Best Local Spring Break Spot in Every State Across the U.S.

published Mar 15, 2019
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By seasonal markers, March is the light at the end of the long, dark winter tunnel. However, while this month brings daylight savings and the official start of spring, it can be just as brutal (if not more so) than its January and February cousins. Breaking out of our winter habitation and traveling somewhere revitalizing can make the world of a difference. The best part? It be done in a long weekend, thanks to spring break destinations that exist in your own backyard.

Using tourism boards as our main resource, we found the best March getaways within each state across the country. No, we’re not referring to the week-long college fiesta that serves as a reminder you’ll forever hate mango vodka. These low-key but jam-packed locations are ideal for whoever you might be spending your mini getaway with, from an ideal adult-only getaway to a family-friendly trip.

Time to jump in your car or book your train ticket and make some moves!

Alabama: Gulf Shores (above)

Things to do: Gulf Shores Public Beach, Waterville USA, Alabama Gulf Coast Zoo, dolphin-watching cruises, golf courses, charter fishing trips.

Alaska: Anchorage

Things to do: Anchorage Museum, Nordic skiing, Alaska Aviation Museum, craft breweries, glacial and wildlife cruises.

Arizona: Sierra Vista

Things to do: Nature’s Conservancy Ramsey Canyon Preserve, Carr Canyon, Fort Huachuca Museum, Fairbank Historic Townsite, Military Intelligence Museum.

Arkansas: Hot Springs

Things to do: Garvan Woodland Gardens, Bathhouse Row, The Maxwell Blade Theatre of Magic & Comedy, Gangster Museum of America.

(Image credit: topseller/Shutterstock)

California (North): Lake Tahoe

Things to do: Skiing/snowboarding at Squaw Valley and Sierra-at-Tahoe, Tahoe City (museums and historic landmarks), and Truckee (pedestrian-friendly village filled with art studios and museums).

California (South): San Diego

Things to do: USS Midway Museum, Old Point Loma Lighthouse at Cabrillo National Monument, Stone Brewing World Bistro & Gardens, Mission Beach.

Colorado: Colorado Springs

Things to do: Hiking at Gardens of the Gods, Cheyenne Mountain Zoo, Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center, U.S. Air Force Academy Planetarium.

Connecticut: Mystic

Things to do: Tour downtown Mystic (specialty shops, boutiques, bookstores, ice cream parlors), Mystic Seaport Museum, Mystic Aquarium, waterfront dining.

Delaware: Rehoboth Beach

Things to do: Rehoboth Avenue (unique shops, boardwalk, bowling and arcades like Lefty’s Alley & Eats), Rehoboth Beach Museum, Bellmoor Inn & Spa.

Florida: Merritt Island

Things to do: Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge, Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex, Canaveral Tours, Port Canaveral (restaurant marketplace and nightlife), Grove Street Shopping District.

Georgia: Augusta

Things to do: Augusta Riverwalk, Augusta Canal National Heritage Area, Augusta Museum of History, Phinizy Swamp Nature Park, Historic Trolley Tour.

(Image credit: YinYang/Getty Images)

Things to do: Panaewa Rainforest Zoo and Gardens, Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park, historic downtown area, restaurants serving up local, sustainable fare.

Idaho: Boise

Things to do: Alpine skiing activities at Bogus Basin, Boise Art Museum, Boise Contemporary Theater, Boise Brews Cruise, annual Treefort Music Fest (March 20-24).

Illinois: Galena

Things to do: Historic Main Street, Galena Cellars Winery, Galena & U.S. Grant Museum, Chestnut Mountain Resort (hiking trails, Segway tours, ziplining, mini golf).

Indiana: Fort Wayne

Things to do: Foellinger-Freimann Botanical Conservatory, Showcase Garden, DeBrand Fine Chocolates tour, Fort Wayne TinCaps Minor League team, Northern Indiana Lakes Country.

Iowa: Waterloo

Things to do: Galleria de Paco, SingleSpeed Brewing Company, “World’s Greatest Spring Break For Kids” (March 18-22), Isle Casino Hotel Waterloo.

Kansas: Kansas City

Things to do: Zip KC Zip Line Tours, The Moon Marble Company marble making workshops, Sporting Kansas City’s Major League Soccer, Legends Outlets, Great Wolf Lodge.

Kentucky: Lexington

Things to do: Keeneland Racecourse, Kentucky Horse Park, The Summit at Fritz Farm retail and dining destination, various whiskey distilleries, downtown Lexington.

Louisiana: Lake Charles

Things to do: Creole Nature Trail, Charpentier Historic District, Mardi Gras Museum of Imperial Calcasieu, USS Orleck Naval Museum, Sam Houston Jones State Park.

(Image credit: Maine Office of Tourism)

Maine: Portland

Things to do: Portland Museum of Art, Portland Trails, historic homes biking tour, art walks, ferry to Peaks Island, breweries, wine cruises.

Maryland: Baltimore

Things to do: National Aquarium, the Maryland Zoo, Maryland Science Center, Oriole Park at Camden Yards, the Edgar Allan Poe House & Museum.

Massachusetts: Plymouth

Things to do: Plymouth Rock, Pilgrim Hall Museum, trolley and walking tours, Village Landing Marketplace, Brewster Gardens, historic sites and houses.

Michigan: Detroit

Things to do: Detroit Institute of Arts, Detroit Zoo, Outdoor Adventure Center, Detroit Riverfront, Motown Museum, nearby Henry Ford Museum.

(Image credit: Minnesota Super Bowl Host Committee)

Minnesota: Twin Cities (Minneapolis-Saint Paul Metro area)

Things to do: Midtown Global Market, the hiking trails at Minnehaha Falls and the Mississippi River, Mall of America (Candytopia exhibit just opened), U.S. Bank Stadium (home to the Vikings), Paisley Park.

Mississippi: Jackson

Things to do: LeFleur’s Bluff, Mississippi Civil Rights Museum, Smith Robertson Museum and Cultural Center, Alamo Theater, Johnny T’s Bistro & Blues, Civil Rights Driving Tour.

Missouri: Branson

Things to do: Silver Dollar City Theme Park, Top of the Rock Ozarks Heritage Preserve, Library Plaza in Historic Downtown Branson, various hiking/scenic trails, country music shows.

Montana: Bozeman

Things to do: Bozeman Hot Springs, Museum of the Rockies, 406 Brewing Company, Bridger Bowl Ski Area, major nearby attractions (Lone Mountain Ranch, Big Sky Resort, Yellowstone National Park).

Nebraska: Omaha

Things to do: Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium, the Durham Museum, Lewis & Clark National Historic Trail Visitor Center, Old Market Arts & Entertainment District, Strategic Air Command & Aerospace Museum nearby.

(Image credit: Andrew Zarivny/Shutterstock)

Nevada: Reno

Things to do: Terry Lee Wells Nevada Discovery Museum, BaseCamp rock climbing facility, National Automobile Museum, Nevada Museum of Arts, Lake Tahoe nearby.

New Hampshire: White Mountains Area

Things to do: White Mountain National Forest, New Hampshire Maple Experience in Bethlehem, the Appalachian Trail, numerous resort and ski areas, Woodstock Inn brewery in Woodstock, helicopter tours, Alpine Adventures.

New Jersey: Cape May

Things to do: Cape May Point State Park (where well-known lighthouse is), birdwatching, Cape May Carriage Company horse drawn rides, Willow Creek Farm & Winery, Cape May Brewing Co., Beach Plum Farm.

New Mexico: Santa Fe

Things to do: New Mexico National Guard Museum, Bandelier National Monument, guided historic tours, Santa Fe Margarita Trail, “Kids Free Spring Break” deals.

New York: Rochester

Things to do: Geva Theatre Center, Blackfriars Theatre, Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra, The National Museum of Play, Susan B. Anthony Museum & House, Seneca Park Zoo.

North Carolina: Sylva

Things to do: Rafting on the Tuckasegee River, Museum of the Cherokee Indian, hiking on the Blue Ridge Parkway, American Museum of the House Cat, Smokemont Stables horseback riding nearby.

North Dakota: Fargo

Things to do: Fargo Air Museum, Fargo Theatre, Plains Art Museum, Wild Terra Cider Bar, Drekker Brewing Company Brewhalla.

Ohio: Mansfield

Things to do: Malabar Farm State Park, Historic Ohio State Reformatory, Richland Carrousel Park, ghost tours, snow trails, Kingwood Center Gardens.

Oklahoma: Oklahoma City

Things to do: The Adventure District (horse racing, cowboy culture), Oklahoma City Zoo, Science Museum Oklahoma, National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum, Myriad Botanical Gardens, Oklahoma City Museum of Art.

(Image credit: Sharon Eisenzopf/Shutterstock)

Oregon: Astoria

Things to do: Oregon Film Museum (housed in Clatsop County Jail), The Astoria Column, Astoria Riverwalk, Buoy Beer Company, Maritime Memorial.

Pennsylvania: Philadelphia

Things to do: Schuylkill River Boardwalk, Philadelphia Museum of Art, The Liberty Bell Center, Reading Terminal Market, Independence National Historical Park, Citizens Bank Park.

Rhode Island: Westerly

Things to do: New England beaches (Watch Hill Beach and Napatree Point Beach), Watch Hill Lighthouse, Granite Theatre, Atlantic Beach Park, Flying Horse Carousel, Ocean House.

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South Carolina: Myrtle Beach

Things to do: Myrtle Beach State Park, Boardwalk (take a ride on the SkyWheel), L.W. Paul Living History Farm, Ripley’s Aquarium, Go Ape Zip Line & Treetop Adventure, various beautiful beaches.

South Dakota: Custer

Things to do: Custer State Park (Buffalo Safari Jeep rides and various outdoor activities), Crazy Horse Memorial, Jewel Cave National Monument, nearby attractions include Badlands National Park and Mount Rushmore National Memorial.

Tennessee: Chattanooga

Things to do: Songbirds Guitar Museum, Tennessee Aquarium, Bluff View Art District, Walnut St. Bridge (one of the world’s longest pedestrian bridges), Clumpies Ice Cream, Rock City Gardens, Coolidge Park with antique carousel, “Spring Break Safari” for kids.

(Image credit: Carlos Bruzos/Shutterstock)

Texas: Galveston

Things to do: Moody Gardens (featuring native marine and rainforest animal exhibits), the Strand Historic District, Galveston Island an hour away from Houston.

Utah: Ogden

Things to do: World-class ski resorts, Ogden Nature Center, Irock Utah rock climbing, Peery’s Egyptian Theater, Eccles Community Art Center, Historic 25th Street.

Vermont: Lake Champlain

Things to do: Lake Champlain Chocolates, ECHO science and nature museum, Fort Ticonderoga (Fort Fever Series), maple season at various farms, Lake Champlain Bridge Heritage Area, Port Henry mural walking tour.

Things to do: Shenandoah National Park (many hiking trails), Museum of the Shenandoah Valley, Shenandoah Caverns, American Shakespeare Center, The Wayne Theatre/Ross Performing Arts Center.

Things to do: Leadbetter Point State Park, Willapa National Wildlife Refuge, World Kite Museum, Lewis & Clark Interpretive Center, West Coast Horse Rides.

West Virginia: Fayetteville

Things to do: Historic Fayetteville Theater, Wild Blue Adventure Company, Historic District walking tour, Bridge Brew Works, city center area.

(Image credit: loneroc/Shutterstock)

Wisconsin: Wisconsin Dells

Things to do: Known for the water parks (Noah’s Ark Waterpark, Mt. Olympus Water & Theme Park), Dells Boat Tours, Mid-Continent Railway Museum, House on the Rock, Belgiis Waffle Bar.

Wyoming: Sheridan

Things to do: Historic downtown area, Brinton Museum, Bighorn National Forest, WYO Theater, Trail End State Historic Site, King’s Saddlery shop, Ucross Foundation Art Gallery.

What are your favorite long weekend destinations in your state?