During the first dreary winter months of a spring semester, college students across the country are busy bundling up indoors and studying hard for their upcoming midterms. If you’re a student, you’ve probably spent most of your hibernation daydreaming about spring break, the most anticipated vacation time when you can forget about academic worries and just have fun.
While popular destinations like Daytona Beach or Los Angeles are tempting for many students because of their spring break packages, they tend to be rather pricey. When you’re a student on a budget, the last thing you wanna do during your vacation is worry about expenses.
Because the majority of that high cost can come from flights alone, you can actually save money by staying relatively close to campus and taking a bus to your destination. Having said that, we checked out some awesome spring break activities in every region of the United States, so you can find the greatest vacation spot that’s still close to your dorm. That way, you can actually splurge on your spring break and not have to stress about how you’re gonna get there.
Best of all, Wanderu offers the simplest way to book bus tickets (or train tickets, if you wanna be bougie) for your spring break getaway.
We looked into the cheapest bus tickets over a 30-day period on Wanderu and discovered that you can travel from campus to various spring break destinations for under $60! Whether you’re seeking out an adventure or just need a long nap on the beach, we’ve got the best spring break travel deals.
New York, NY
If your school is in upstate New York or Connecticut, NYC is a close-by getaway full of shopping, nightlife and plenty of tourist attractions. Spend the day climbing to the top of the Empire State Building, admiring artwork at the Met, or tasting some authentic eats at Katz’s Deli in the Lower East Side.
If you wanna stick to the low-budget theme, there are numerous things you can do around New York for free. Also, night owls will be happy to know that New York City was named the biggest party hub in the U.S.
Get to New York from Your School:
There’s a reason Boston is such an exciting place to attend school. There’s an abundance of activities throughout this historic city, including the Freedom Trail and the New England Aquarium.
If you’re a student that goes to school out of the area, Boston is a great destination for your spring break getaway. Shop along Newbury street, roam around the Boston Public Garden and go on a culinary adventure through Chinatown and the North End. For even more ideas, check out our Boston travel guide!
Get to Boston from Your School:
Killington Ski Resort, VT
The snow may be starting to melt but if you’re still in full winter mode, then head to Vermont where the slopes still have that perfect powder.
Killington Ski Resort is one of the largest skiing areas in the Northeast and features over 155 different trails for you to try out. The best part is that the nearest bus station is only a mile away so you can start shredding the slopes as soon as you arrive!
Get to Killington Ski Resort from Your School:
Hocking Hills State Park, OH
For all of you lovers of the great outdoors, camping is a must when the weather finally warms up.
Hocking Hills State Park is an ideal destination for camping with friends, family, or channeling your inner Henry David Thoreau and going solo. You can stay in one of the park’s cabins or even camp out in a Wigwam!
Exploring the caves or admiring the serene waterfalls will put you in full relaxation mode from the stresses of school.
Get to Hocking Hills State Park from Your School:
St. Louis, MO
Who says there’s nothing to do in the Midwest? St. Louis is packed with unique attractions for the ultimate urban spring break.
Spend a day shopping or dining out with your squad in the Central West End or check out City Museum, an interactive art exhibit that’s more like a funhouse for adults.
If you’re a sports fanatic, book your tickets early and visit St. Louis’s legendary ballpark, Busch Stadium.
Get to St. Louis from Your School:
Wisconsin Dells, WI
For all you Wisconsin and nearby students, take the stress out of spring break planning by traveling to Wisconsin Dells.
If being in the waterpark capital of the world isn’t enough to get your bags packed, the area also features several campsites, zipline tours, and nightclubs!
Get to Wisconsin Dells from Your School:
|Route||Avg. Train Ticket Price|
|University of Madison, Wisconsin to Wisconsin Dells||$54.02|
|Lawrence University to Wisconsin Dells||$46.38|
|University of Minnesota, Rochester to Wisconsin Dells||$45|
Home to country music, historic sites and some tasty bbq, Nashville is definitely one of the coolest cities to explore.
Check out iconic artifacts at the Country Music Hall of Fame or see a show at the legendary Grand Ole Opry. This southern city is an ideal spring break destination if you and your friends are looking for good eats, adventure, and incredible nightlife.
Get to Nashville from Your School:
Ocala National Forest, FL
If you’re looking for a tropical getaway but don’t want to deal with the spring break crowds, seek out this secret spot in Orlando, FL.
Ocala National Forest features some gorgeous greenery and an abundance of activities like horseback riding, snorkeling and bicycle trails. You can rent a cabin or pitch a tent at their campsites and sleep under the stars.
If you decide that you do want to mingle with other spring breakers and explore more of Orlando, there’s certainly lots to do in the area!
Get to Ocala National Forest from Your School:
New Orleans, LA
For a southern-style spring break, New Orleans is an absolute must-see!
Explore the rich history of this Louisiana city by feasting on beignets at the famous Cafe du Monde, jiving at jazz clubs, or looking for ‘gators on a swamp tour. Just keep your hands inside the boat for that one.
Since there’s so much to see, we’ve collected even more spring break ideas in New Orleans just for you!
Get to New Orleans from Your School:
Calling all history buffs! If you’ve got a penchant for politics, consider spending a week in our nation’s capital. Washington, D.C. is home to some incredible historical monuments and museums like the Lincoln Memorial and the International Spy Museum!
Add to that D.C.’s exuberant nightlife full of restaurants, bars and clubs that will fit any taste and preference, and you’ve got yourself a damn fine spring break destination.
You might even catch a glimpse of the cherry blossoms beginning to bloom, so stick around for the Cherry Blossom Festival!
Get to D.C. from Your School:
Myrtle Beach, SC
With midterms slowly approaching, nothing seems better than a long day at the beach. Or maybe even a week! If you’re craving that tropical getaway but don’t want to make that extra-long commute, Myrtle Beach is just a bus ride away with Wanderu.
Relax by the shore or take a long stroll down the boardwalk to properly unwind. You can even learn how to surf, if you’re feeling adventurous!
Get to Myrtle Beach from Your School:
|Route||Avg. Bus Ticket Price|
|University of South Carolina to Myrtle Beach||$28.57|
|North Carolina State University to Myrtle Beach||$41.28|
|Savannah College of Art and Design to Myrtle Beach||$36.62|
Grand Canyon, AZ
Grand Canyon is one of the best known national parks, with five million people visiting every year. This geological formation is truly striking with its colorful landscape, deep gorges, and flowing rivers.
For your spring break, you can explore several hiking trails, kayak down the Colorado river, and even ride a mule along the canyon.
To save cash, you can take a bus to Flagstaff where you’ll find several shuttles to the Grand Canyon.
Get to Grand Canyon from Your School:
San Diego, CA
San Diego is a great destination if you want to relax by the beach, hike along the coastline, or admire the insta-worthy scenery of this seaside city.
Be sure to spend a day at the famous San Diego Zoo in Balboa Park, a must-see attraction featuring guided bus tours and up-close experiences with a large collection of animals.
Get to San Diego from Your School:
|Route||Avg. Bus or Train Ticket Price|
|University of California, Los Angeles to San Diego||$18.01|
|California State University to San Diego||$29|
|University of Nevada, Las Vegas to San Diego||$38.68|
San Francisco, CA
Nothing is more picturesque than the scenery of San Francisco. Fog City is the go-to spot to unwind and forget about those upcoming midterms.
Whether you’re admiring the Golden Gate Bridge, chowing down on some tasty eats, or riding a cable car down the sideways streets, there really is no shortage of things to do and see.
If you really want to explore it all, bring your bike or use San Francisco’s bike sharing network for the ultimate tour of this gorgeous city!
Get to San Francisco from Your School:
|Route||Avg. Bus or Train Ticket Price|
|University of Southern California to San Francisco||$25.02|
|University of California, Davis to San Francisco||$30.48|
|University of Nevada, Reno to San Francisco||$16.24|
Hey y’all! When the winter blues are bringing you down, Texan heat will warm you right up. You can’t explore the south without taking a trip down to Austin.
Full of delicious food, natural beauty and rock’n’roll, Austin is your top destination for an adventure-packed spring break.
If your spring break occurs during the month of March, then you’re in luck! The legendary South by Southwest Festival takes place in Austin so you can jam with other spring break-goers at an epic concert or one of the many other entertainment events.
Get to Austin from Your School:
Nicknamed the Emerald City for its lush greenery, Seattle is packed with museums, artisanal shops and killer nightlife. Since there’s so much to do, we had to list our top 10 favorite activities in a separate post.
Check out Seattle’s famous Space Needle or, if you’re a coffee fan, go visit the first Starbucks store in Pike Place Market. If, for whatever reason, you get bored, treat yourself to a day trip outside of Seattle and visit the many nearby towns and places of interest that you will surely enjoy.
Get to Seattle from Your School:
Located near the northern border of Oregon is the state’s largest city, Portland. If art, culture, and an eco-friendly lifestyle is your calling, then you should definitely spend your spring break up in this hip West Coast destination .
You’ll find microbreweries, farm-to-table brunch spots and dozens of bicycle trails perfect for the newly warmed weather. Best of all, Portland offers the cheapest concert tickets in the region if you’re looking for a night out.
Get to Portland from Your School:
The United States has so many spring destinations that can be both fun and affordable. However, upcoming midterms can be so stressful that planning just seems like a pain! If you’re in need of a vacation but you’re not sure where to start, check out Explore by Wanderu. Just put in your location, budget, and when you’re planning to go, and we’ll find some cool places for you to check out!
If you’re really looking to expand your trip to other parts of the globe, Europe should be at the top of your list. If you’re worried about expenses, don’t worry, we found 15 European cities that you can visit for less that $400.