Short Spring Break Destinations
February 25, 2014 7:54 AM   Subscribe

The wife and I would like a relaxing, ~4 day spring break getaway the weekend of March 14. Difficulties: we'd prefer no more than ~4 hours driving or ~6 hours in a plane. Would prefer to avoid spring break crowds. We live in Pittsburgh. I'd like somewhere warmer than Pittsburgh.

More details:

- I'm not sure there's anywhere within a 4-hour drive of Pittsburgh that will be meaningfully warmer, so maybe that's mostly out?
- Tropical is nice but not necessary... when I say "warmer than Pittsburgh", 60 is OK.
- would like to spend under $2000
- I love the idea of a 3 or 4 day cruise, but am concerned they will be heaving with spring breakers - are there any destinations that will avoid this?
- I would love a beach but this is not completely necessary
- The wife is a little less beachy than me, so some things to do besides lie on a beach would be good too
- we're OK with international but don't want to spend too long flying with only 4 days so that restricts things a bit

We are open to hotels, Airbnb, pretty much whatever.

Things we're considering:

Sanibel Island, FL
Puerto Rico
Bahamas (too spring break?)
Cayman Islands?
somewhere on the Georgia coast
Outer Banks
We found some cheap airfare to San Francisco but I don't know if 4 days is enough there?

We've been to Charleston many times so probably not, though Hilton Head would be OK.

Tell me about your great short spring breaks!
posted by nakedmolerats to Travel & Transportation (7 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
San Francisco won't be warm. And the cross-country plane ride will eat up your time.

Here's my answer about Atlanta.
posted by Ruthless Bunny at 8:05 AM on February 25, 2014 [1 favorite]

San Francisco may well be warm - we've been having an atypically warm and dry winter. It was in the 70s this weekend. And if your bar for "warm" is 60, we'd be around that anyway.

Our beaches, however, are mostly not for lying around and sunbathing. They are for bundling up and walking along.

Four days would be fine here if you plan carefully and don't try to do Everything. You can still eat and drink many good things, walk around and look at stuff, walk across the Golden Gate Bridge, and so on.

Closer to you (and almost definitely warmer): New Orleans. It almost feels like being in a non-American city. There aren't beaches to speak of right there, but when you have so many delicious things to eat and drink, and such wonderful architecture to walk around and look at (or sit in a cafe and contemplate), you might not miss a beach.
posted by rtha at 8:43 AM on February 25, 2014 [1 favorite]

Bermuda. It's ridiculously close and warm and beaches. And sufficiently different that when you get back, you feel like you've been away for longer.
posted by TWinbrook8 at 9:02 AM on February 25, 2014 [1 favorite]

Culebra (off the coast of PR), hands down. It's so deserted that you can actually swim naked on some beaches because you won't see a single other human all day long (Zoni Beach is where I did that).
posted by qzar at 9:28 AM on February 25, 2014 [1 favorite]

Bermuda is very close--but beware. Bermuda is fairly far north and the weather in March is not really warm. The average high temperature in March is 68 and the average low is 60. And the water temperature in March averages 65. That is chilly. So if you go, don't expect warm sunny 85 degree weather and tropical 80 degree water to swim in. That happens in summer in Bermuda...but not in March.
posted by Seymour Zamboni at 9:30 AM on February 25, 2014

I lived in San Francisco for years and had many out of town visitors to entertain over long weekends. I'd say SF is one of the more ideal places in the USA for a four day getaway. There are tons of interesting things to do in a very compact area, good food at any price point, great bars and coffee shops, beautiful scenery nearby, etc. Also, this year it is very likely it will have better weather than the southeast in March. One caveat is, although San Francisco has a beach, it isn't really a beach destination. The beach is COLD. It's more of a "walk around and look at all this stuff" destination than a lounge at the beach destination.

Another idea is westside LA. I stayed in a great Airbnb in Venice Beach last March and had a blast. LA beaches are much more beach-y than San Francisco beaches. The downside is that if you want to leave the westside, transit eats up a lot of time.
posted by BabeTheBlueOX at 11:11 AM on February 25, 2014

Denver! No spring breakers (except on the slopes), the weather is generally warm (above 60 yesterday) and there is a ton to do.
posted by Sheppagus at 11:22 AM on February 25, 2014

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