Check out the top ten most popular vacation destinations in the world! From across the world to your backyard, there’s a place for anyone and everyone to take a breather and have some fun! Relax and enjoy the ride!
Amsterdam, the Netherlands | Why it’s #1: Floating through picturesque Amsterdam canals is the main way to navigate this romantic and beautiful city in Europe. Rent an Amsterdam bike, eat Amsterdam street food, or explore the Van Gogh Museum and the Anne Frank House. And when you’re a little bit older, come back to visit the “coffee shops,” Dutch breweries, and the infamous Red Light District.
Vancouver, Canada | Why go: Vancouver is a fairly young city, but it’s quickly becoming the back drop for TV series and movies; some even go as far to call it the “new Hollywood.” From hiking, mountain biking and kayaking to visiting the Granville Island or the Capilano Suspension Bridge, there’s a little something for everyone in Canada. Make sure to try the poutine on your way home!
San Diego, California | Why go: With plentiful sunshine and a cruising coastline, San Diego is a sports-lover’s paradise. Being active on vacation not your thing? Visit the family friendly San Diego zoo, home to giant pandas, reindeer, and otters. A pro for traveling during spring: in summer, hotel rates sky rocket while availability is slim. Keep money in your wallet and avoid peak tourism time.
Washington, D.C. | Why go: Thousands of people flock to D.C. in the spring time to see beautiful cherry-stained Japanese-style flowers in bloom along the river in their annual Cherry Blossom Festival. Be sure to check out our nation’s capital’s memorials: the Lincoln, Vietnam, and Korean Veterans memorials.
Paris, France | Why go: Springtime in Paris sounds cliché, but those aside, Paris is the hub of fashion and home to some of the best museums and eateries. Local Parisian food markets and book shops start popping up again after their winter hibernation. A few Parisian customs to keep in mind: locals love it when you know their language. Even a simple bonjour or excusez-moi every now and then will impress even the most notoriously rude franḉais. Take pride in what you wear; Coco Chanel wasn’t at the peak of her fashion career in Ledyard, Connecticut, so it’s best to leave your fanny packs and Nike sneakers at home.
Cape Town, Africa | Why go: While many families travel to Cape Cod for spring break, try a new kind of Cape: one with rings of mountain ranges, rolling vineyards, and untouched beaches. In the central part of Cape Town, blends of nationalities and cultures create what is hailed as South Africa’s capital of gastronomy, nightlife, and jazz music. To make it educational, tour Nelson Mandela’s jail cell or visit a museum dedicated to District 6, a neighborhood that was declared “white”, forcing thousands of displaced African citizens into shacks or out onto the streets. It’s impossible to understand the now vibrant Cape Town without exploring its somber past.
Athens, Greece | Why go: Spring is one of the best times to visit this beautiful Mediterranean city. Visiting on your spring break means two things: Greece isn’t full of summer tourists yet, and the local “Athenians” decide to stick around a little bit longer. Even better, if you visit around early Easter-time, you’ll be in the heart of the city for their annual Easter festivals where roasting Greek lamb on a spit is a constant sight.
Bermuda | Why go: While there’s a small chance you may get snatched up by the Bermuda Triangle, this tiny British island in the spring time is a sunny 75 degrees most afternoons. Prices are high, but the laid-back beach vibes of the locals will give you some needed R&R.
Orlando, Florida – Walt Disney World | Why go: Disney lovers, rejoice! Temperatures in Florida in the spring time hang around 70 or 80 degrees, and lines haven’t yet reached the winding lengths as they do in peak summer time. However, the theme park and water rides may be a little too kid-oriented, rather than high school student-oriented. In a two-hour plane ride, you can say you ate a giant turkey leg while waiting in the Space Mountain line.
Mystic, Connecticut | Why go: The best spring break getaway is in your backyard! Consider taking a staycation in Mystic next spring – it’s budget friendly and there’s not much pesky traveling time. Enjoy all things nautical, grab some ice cream at the Mystic Drawbridge, and let the sea breeze lull you to sleep.
Leah Sheltry, Features Editor
Junior Leah Sheltry is Features Editor for the 2014-2015 Colonel. She is Vice President of YUGA club and is on the swim team.