What is your idea of the perfect spring break vacation? No longer are these trips just for college co-eds. More and more people are marking their calendars and booking getaways for the entire family during school break. For many, a chance to relax is the priority, but what about more adventurous spirits? We’ve got you covered with this list of active spring break vacations featuring outdoor adventures for the entire family.
Best Spring Break Destinations for the Active Family
Traveling Moms are ready to help you take an adventurous spring break. We’ve been there, and we want to inspire our readers to try exciting activities like jet skiing, zip lining, river rafting and much more! Whether you want to stay in the US or travel abroad, consider these ideas for your active spring break vacation.
New Hampshire – Ziplining, off roading and hiking in the White Mountains
Avoid the summer crowds and experience New Hampshire’s White Mountains for Spring Break. It’s the perfect location for outdoor adventure activities. Quite a few of our TravelingMoms have explored the area and just love it. A visit to Alpine Adventures provides an opportunity for mountain zip lining and off road tours in massive four-wheel drive vehicles. Hiking in the Franconia Notch area is also a beautiful way to spend a few days in the region.
Vermont- Hiking, ropes courses, and mountain biking
During spring break, you might still catch some good skiing in northern Vermont, but even if there is no snow, there is plenty to do in the Green Mountain State. If you are looking for a luxurious place to stay, you can’t beat the Stoweflake Resort. Its large indoor pool is always good for a swimming workout. Open in all weather conditions, the Norther Lights, Rock and Ice in Essex, Vermont offers ropes courses, a giant swing, and a 450 foot zip line. Spring is also a great time to get muddy with some mountain biking in southern Vermont.
Washington, DC – Track your steps while seeing the sites
Our nation’s capital is a top tourist destination for families. It’s also the perfect place to wear a pedometer because you will certainly get in your steps. One of my blogger friends said he and his wife averaged 17,584 steps per day on their trip. How’s that for an active family vacation? A self-guided walking tour is a great way to see the sites and skip the lines for at least a day. If your kids have a March spring break, you might have a chance to see the famed Cherry Blossoms in bloom. Our Travel Hack TravelingMom shares her tips for seeing them.
West Virginia – River rafting, ropes courses and more at Adventures on the Gorge
World Traveling Mom Sarah Ricks loves Adventures on the Gorge in West Virginia. She says it’s a perfect destination for families who have different appetites for adventures travel. “Adventure junkies can pilot their own whitewater rafts, tackle challenging aerial ropes courses, and zipline above the treetops.” Most activities are open during spring break season. There are plenty of lodging options as well.
Georgia – Discover nature and chase waterfalls in Blue Ridge
Our Cultural Heritage TravelingMom, Christine Tibbets highly recommends Blue Ridge, Georgia as a place for families to connect for outdoor adventures. The Blue Ridge area has major trail systems including access to the Appalachian Trail. Christine says it’s quite easy to “chase waterfalls” in the area. Simply ask for maps and access ideas at the Fannin County Chamber of Commerce.
Florida – Kayaking, parasailing, and shell hunting on Sanibel & Captiva Islands
Sanibel and Captiva Islands on the gulf coast of Florida are the perfect destination for an active spring break vacation. Surrounded by some of the most beautiful beaches in the U.S., these islands are a great option if you want to avoid busy theme parks and massive spring break crowds at other Florida destinations. They provide excellent activity choices for sporty families like mine. Our family favorites include kayaking, parasailing and shell hunting.
Colorado – Spring skiing, tubing and even a mountain coaster
If you are not ready to stay goodbye to the snow, Colorado is the place to go. Many ski resorts in the state still have snow through April. Traveling Grandmom Diana Rowe recommends Copper Mountain Ski Resort as perfect for families of all ages. Beyond just skiing, the resort hosts activities like a mountain coaster, a tubing hill and is an adventure station for REI’s collection of activities.
Arizona – Saddle up at a dude ranch in Tuscon
Have you ever considered a dude ranch for your family? This is one on my bucket list for sure! Our Frequent Flyer TravelingMom took her family to the White Stallion Ranch in Tuscon, Arizona. She shares why “your kids may be ready for a dude ranch family vacation sooner than you think.” Doesn’t her 8-year-old daughter looks right at home on this trail ride?
West Coast and Beyond
California – Explore the natural attractions of the central coast
Our Globetrotting Grandmom, Terry Marshall explored this particularly beautiful part of California. She shared with us 5 of the best things to do along the Central Coast of California. Channel Island National park is perfect for adventurous families. Here, you can get up close with nature by hiking, kayaking, and snorkeling. Another must-see in the area is Pismo Preserve. It’s the newest hiking, biking and equestrian trail system in the area with sweeping views of the Central California Coast.
Hawaii – So many adventures – which island is right for you?
While Hawaii is only a single state, its eight different islands make it a destination that invites repeated trips. The state boasts not only some of the best beaches in the world, but also some of the most incredible outdoor adventures. You can hike lava fields and tropical canyons, learn to surf, swim with sea turtles and so much more. When you’re bringing kids along to the Aloha State, you should pick the best island for your family. Active TravelingMom, Kimberly Tate breaks down all you need to know about choosing the island that’s best for your family.
Alaska – Avoid the summer crowds with a spring visit
Springtime in Alaska is a great time to visit cities like Anchorage and the surrounding wilderness. The most exciting outdoor family adventure during this time of year is dog sledding. Our Preschooler TravelingMom, Britni Vigil says, “A fantastic option for kids and adults alike, glacier dog sledding tours take you into the heart of what makes Alaska such a popular destination.” If your spring break is in mid March, you might be able to catch the end of the famous Iditarod dogsled race.
Costa Rica – volcanoes, jungle tours, zip lines and more!
If your family loves having access to thrilling experiences, an Adventures by Disney Costa Rica tour may be the right vacation for you. This luxury tour of Costa Rica includes visits to volcanoes, rain forests, hot springs, and much more. According to Kristin Maxwell, “This is not your ordinary tour, just as Disney is not your ordinary company.” She shares why an Adventures by Disney Costa Rica tour will blow your mind.
Bermuda: Shipwrecks, caves and other family adventures
Bermuda is a unique family destination with pink-sand beaches and a blend of British and American culture. Home to over 300 shipwrecks and a network of caves, it’s a perfect location for an active spring break vacation. Vehicles are not allowed on this small island (just 21 square miles). Bermudians ride motorbikes to get around, but Los Angeles TravelingMom recommends hiring private tour guides. Peak season is April-October so if your spring break is in March, you can beat the crowds.
South Africa – Every adventurous family should go on safari!
While getting to Africa is expensive, flights are long and preventive shots are necessary, Suburban TravelingMom Jamie Bartosch says, “It is worth every hour in the plane, every injection, and every dollar you’ll spend. It’s an incredible, remember-for-the-rest-of-your-life vacation.” South Africa offers unique experiences that you can’t get anywhere else in the world. World TravelingMom, Sarah Ricks agrees. She says, “A safari to see wild animals eating, ambling, and playing in their natural habitats is unlike any other experience.”
Thailand – Hiking to temples, riding elephants and chatting with monks
Thailand is a beautiful country with a fascinating culture. Unique activities like riding elephants and trying Buddhist customs are sure to be life-lasting memories. Suburban TravelingMom, Jamie Bartosch says, “It’s a spectacular destination for families with teens and multi-generational groups.” Their experiences included making an offering to Buddhist monks, shopping in the floating markets, learning how to carve fruit into flowers and, of course, riding giant elephants.