It’s Spring Break Time! – AZ Edition
By Lauren Wong
The weather is warming and it’s time to start planning your perfect Spring Break getaway! This is geared towards those who live in the southwest and are looking for a destination you can drive to. There’s so many amazing places around here, so skip the flight fees and crowded airports, and find those beautiful places close to home. It’s time to give yourself that needed, and well deserved, break from life, the only goal being to relax and feel rejuvenated for when you return back to reality.
Here’s just a few ideas I have in mind that are drive-able and can be turned into a long weekend or week long trips.
Lake Havasu State Park:
Drive up to Lake Havasu State Park and rent a cabin or campsite. There is so much to do here, and you’re a short drive away from other gorgeous state parks and attractions. Located on the shoreline of the Colorado River, the park offers beaches accompanied by beautiful views, trails, boat ramps, 47 campsites, picnic areas, and a special events area.
Spend your week lounging by the water. If you own a boat, bring it! There are four boat ramps throughout the park. Otherwise you can rent a motorized watercraft at their onsite concessionaire, Wet Monkey Powersport Rentals. You can also swim along the shore, or lay out to tan on the white sandy beaches. You’ll feel like you’re out on the coast on a tropical getaway. If you’re an avid fisher, Lake Havasu is known for its world class fishing and larger than average bass. You can check out their website to learn more about what all you can catch out on the water.
If you want to travel out from the park for a daytrip, you’re close by Buckskin Mountain State Park, River Island Unit, Cattail Cove State Park, and Yuma Territorial Prison State Historic Park. You’re also near the London Bridge, Lake Havasu Museum of History, Bill Williams National Wildlife Refuge, and Havasu National Wildlife Refuge. It’s safe to say you won’t run out of things to do on your trip!
Stay anywhere on the strip and spend your Spring Break in the famous Sin City. It doesn’t matter the time or day, there is always something going on in Vegas. March is the start of pool season, meaning it’s time to put on your best suit and get your party on. Basically every hotel along the strip has a pool, but if you’re looking for a more high energy atmosphere filled with alcohol and DJs, look to see who will be performing at the top rated pool party venues. Wet Republic Ultra Pool, Encore Beach Club, Kaos, Drai’s Beachclub, and Marquee top the charts.
The party never ends in Vegas. Make your way down the strip hopping between all the hotels going from Paris to Venice, to New York all on the same street. Every hotel has its own special events (like riding the Venetian gondola) and unique casino. Enjoy entertainment from street performers, to concerts, comedians, and any type of show you can imagine. With so many options, picking which show to go to may seem daunting. Vegas.com lists Blue Man Group, Liquid Drag Brunch, O By Cirque Du Soleil, and Penn & Teller, as their best 2022 Spring Break shows. And, of course, don’t forget to catch one of the iconic fountain shows of Bellagio.
Puerto Peñasco (Rocky Point):
Located on the shores of the Sea of Cortez is this travel hotspot. It’s in the Mexican state of Sonora and is also known as Rocky Point. Aside from gazing out over the striking, crystal blue water, lushious, swaying palm trees, and white sandy beaches, there are so many activities to do here. So, grab your passport and get ready for an unforgettable week.
If you’re looking for a relaxing getaway, you can find that here. If you’re looking to join in on a vibrant party scene, you can also find that here. Spoil yourself and indulge in a massage right on the beach. Get out in the water for a swim, go kayaking, parasailing, jet skiing, surfing, kite surfing, etc. You can spend the day fishing, or rent an ATV for a bumpy ride through the desert. The clear waters make this a perfect place for spotting some exotic sea life while snorkeling and diving. Check out some local bars to find cheap drinks and immerse yourself in the culture of this beautiful area.
Take a trip to the coast, catching some rays and waves. Pick your stay depending on your vibe; beach or city. If you’re traveling with young kids, look into tickets for SeaWorld San Diego, LEGOLAND California, or the San Diego Zoo. You can even find private sandcastle-making classes, which are sure to leave a smile on your little ones faces. While you’re in San Diego, catch a glimpse of some wildlife. You can take a San Diego Seal Tour, and even go whale watching (they migrate from Alaska to California between December and April). And of course, don’t forget all the glistening, pristine California beaches. Lay out by the beach as you listen to the calming crashing of the waves, go for a dip, or wade out in the water with your board to catch some waves (you can look into surfing lessons if you want to try it out)!
If you’re looking to go to San Diego for more of the party/nightlife scene, look into staying in Gaslamp Quarter or Pacific Beach. Spend your days sightseeing at Balboa Park, Coronado Island, Sunset Cliffs Natural Park, Torrey Pines State Natural Reserve, and more before getting ready to party the night away.
There’s a reason Sedona’s known as being one of the most beautiful places on earth. If you’re looking for an outdoorsy trip, this is a great option. (If you’re looking for somewhere with a vibrant nightlife, skip ahead to check out the other featured destinations). Something I love about Sedona is how clear it is, you can look up and just see thousands of stars sprinkled about, lighting up the pitch black sky. Spend your night under the stars and go camping, or try out glamping, some rentals even have a telescope for you to use! Glamping is your luxury version of camping, more comfortable than regular camping, but still allowing you to be fully submerged in the outdoors. There are dozens of rentals on Airbnb that offer this unique experience.
Explore by yourself or sign up for a tour. One of the most popular excursions in Sedona is their Jeep Tours. You can take a tour to see Sedona’s well known vortexes, have a bus pick you up from your hotel to take you to the Grand Canyon, Horseshoe Bend, Antelope Canyon, etc. There’s an abundance of wine tours, stargazing tours, horseback riding, helicopter tours, and more. Tripadvisor has page after page of different activities you can sign up for in the area.
Utah National Park Roadtrip:
Personally, this is on my bucket list to do. Take a week and hit all five of Utah’s famous National Parks! Spend a day or a couple at each of them and do as much exploring as you possibly can. To save money, ditch the hotels and look into nearby campsites. This is the ultimate nature lover’s trip. Visit Arches National Park, Bryce Canyon National Park, Canyonlands National Park, Capitol Reef National Park, and Zion National Park.
If you’re more of a “go with the flow” person, don’t book your campsites or hotels ahead of time. Just get buckled in for the road trip and see where it takes you. Maybe there’s one park in particular that absolutely blows your mind and you want to spend more time there exploring. Do it! These parks will always be there for next time.