If you enjoy the quirky, geeky or weird, take it from us: you never know what unique event will draw you in, or what once-in-a-lifetime experience will call your name. After all, the world is waiting! Perhaps it’s a festival that only happens once a year or a weekend event that would be considered completely bizarre by many in your social circle — whatever your fancy, we have the inside scoop on the strangest and boldest spring break travel tips and destinations of the year.
Plan a Spring Break Movie Tour in Chicago
The options are plentiful for touring movie sets and film scene destination spots. Have a favorite show or film? Why not relive the magic? Research the scene locations, and plan a trip to follow the plot of your favorite movie. Think Under the Tuscan Sun, Game of Thrones, or Lord of the Rings for some epic film locations.
You can plan an entire trip to Chicago, guided by the epic 1986 movie release, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off. Start by creating a list of accessible scene destinations: the Willis Tower, Lincoln Avenue, the Art Institute of Chicago and the Mercantile Exchange. Then, book your accommodation as close as you can to your favorite scene. Or, try the two-hour-long “Chicago Film Tour” which specializes in getting you to those and some other favorite scenes in The Dark Knight, North by Northwest, and My Best Friend’s Wedding.
Skip Paris and Head to Villefranche-Sur-Mer
So many spring break trips are planned with the idea of heading to the nearest accessible metropolis and staying there. Let’s think outside the box a little. Sure, the hustle and bustle of the big city sounds great, but think of how many un-touristy destinations there are within a few hours of the big city. Be different. Skip the lights, and venture beyond for a real taste of local culture in a small town, like Villefranche-Sur-Mer.
Who says you have to do the full Paris romance tour on your holiday in France? Instead, head where the locals do. Villefranche-Sur-Mer is so much more authentic and it’s more affordable, too. Stay right on the Riviera, hit the beach daily, and take the train to nearby Marseilles, Nice or Monaco. Don’t forget to stuff some essential travel gear in your daypack — on warm days when the sun is beating down on the beach, you’ll be extra thankful for the sunscreen, sunglasses and floppy hat you packed!
Add Some Color at the Holi Festival in Nepal
If Nepal is on your bucket list, and your spring break happens to fall on just the right day in March, you might consider partaking in the colorful festival of Holi. This Hindu festival celebrates the victory of good over evil. For many revelers, it is a type of new beginning, where past misdeeds and errors are forgiven and the coming of spring is near. Experience the strange sensation of being amidst crowds of people throwing colored water and paint all over each other.
This destination is perfect for the traveler looking to party in a new and different setting. Spring break trips don’t get much better than this, and the only travel gear you need is an extreme sense of adventure. Travelers should take note, you can experience Holi in several large cities in India and some other parts of the world as well, so you don’t have to limit your adventure to Kathmandu.
Plan a Chincoteague Island Vacation
If you grew up around horses, you likely already know Chincoteague Island from the popular children’s book Misty of Chincoteague. The island is completely accessible by car, and spring break is delightfully off-season for this quaint little village. Its claim to fame is being “Virginia’s only resort island.” With Assateague Island (home of the Chincoteague Wild Ponies) very accessible from here, it’s a horse lover’s dream.
Book a vacation rental at lower rates than normal in the off-season and enjoy all the island has to offer. Kayaking, horseback riding trails, hang gliding, and wild horse tours are just a few activities on offer, so make sure you have the travel gear on hand to get active.
Want a bit more action? Chincoteague can be quite slow-paced, so check out the schedule for NASA’s rocket launches from Wallops Island, just south of the island for a bit of a thrill. Launches happen about eight times a year and are often viewed from nearby balconies or other designated areas. For those who want a unique and cool beach island getaway without traffic and busy streets, spring break trips don’t get much better than this.
Glamp in Canada
Glamping doesn’t have to be a summer-only activity. For the rugged travelers among us, a “winter to spring” glamping expedition in Québec (the French-speaking province of Canada) is an out-of-this-world experience letting you experience the freeze or thaw leading up to springtime in the region. Bonus: it’s maple syrup season!
Instagram-worthy accommodation in the province of Québec includes tents, yurts, and rustic cabins. Try the Parc National du Bic where glamping units are up for grabs year-round in the Rioux and Rivière-du-Sud-Ouest campgrounds. Or stay in a cube-shaped glamping tent in the Tombolo sector. You might want to bring some specialized travel gear to suit the weather, which can fluctuate quite a bit from February to April. Having an extra-cozy blanket on hand is a must.
Become an Artist in Wales
Spring break trips are fleeting, and soon you’ll be back to the school grind. So why not learn a new skill or hone an already-existing talent with your time off? Take a Welsh art holiday and stay at Pengwernydd Cottages for a traditional family farm feel with a tranquil mountain view. Art-lovers will be inspired by the rugged terrain. Surrounded by hidden rocky beaches and plenty of fresh air, enjoy a rural art retreat as you take in the history of Wales.
Art courses are taught in-house with workshops ideal for relaxation or additional attention to specific skills. This little farm offers fields dotted with sheep, wildflowers, and greenery. With much to inspire you on the 200-plus acre farm, your friends and family will be thrilled when you arrive home with a masterpiece in hand.
Want to be truly unusual? Then don’t go anywhere at all. No passports, no plane tickets, no fancy travel gear. Now that staycations have become “trendy,” you don’t even have to feel guilty for choosing to lounge around at home in your slippers and pajamas. That’s not to say that you have to stay home the whole time. Here are a few ideas to help you fill your days with fun:
- A Spa Day: Find out who else is staying nearby, and book a spa day or two. With the money, you would have spent on a flight, try that luxurious facial or full-body massage. Why not lounge in the hot tub too?
- Culinary Delights: Enjoy a high-end restaurant you wouldn’t normally splurge on. Or better yet, do your research and see if you can sign up for a cooking class with a friend. If you want to stay in, you can have people over and make some cocktails together.
- Day Trips: Spring break doesn’t have to be about multiple-day adventures. Hop on a local bus or train and see some parts of your local area that you may have otherwise missed. Try a nearby protected park or simply walk around a new neighborhood. You never know what gems await to be discovered!
- Book a Room: You never know what it might feel like to be a tourist in your own city. Book a few nights in a bed and breakfast or luxury hotel instead of a full-package resort. Sample the pool and evening cocktails in your home away from home.
Even if you plan on a stay nearby, you might want to pick up some luxurious items to make it feel like you are traveling on an epic adventure. Start with a fancy sleep mask for that spa day and see how amazing it is to just not do much at all with your friends on your next spring break trip. We know, stranger things have happened!