Even if it’s been decades since you were a student who had glorious week off from responsibility to celebrate the onset of spring, you’re certainly a person who still deserves nice things. And a restorative spring break is a bona fide nice thing.
Given that Booking.com’s 2019 travel predictions note that more than half of the 21,500 people surveyed would like to visit a destination none of their friends have been to before, it stands to reason that an extra-unique respite might be your ideal getaway. Rounded up below are under-the-radar destinations perfect for Zenning out. So, skip the crowded beach in favor of these 10 unique destinations where you can actually relax.
Don’t stress—check out 10 relaxing spring getaway destinations below.
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1. Mayakoba, Mexico
Within the well-known locale of Riviera Maya is a quieter, tropical-jungle paradise surrounded by natural lagoons. At 1,600 acres, Mayakoba is one of the largest sugar-sand beaches in Mexico. It’s home to Fairmont Mayakoba, which is ideal for those who want to kick back (maybe into downward dog for beach yoga), relax and sip a margarita oceanside.
Lonely Planet recently ranked Belize as one of the top 10 countries to visit in 2019, so you’d be best to get there in the early part of the year. Belize is home to the world’s second-largest barrier reef, unique marine and wildlife, stunning caves, temples and jungles. Because Belize is on the small side, seeing the main hot spots in just a few days is possible, leaving plenty of time for scuba enthusiasts of any level to take dives of a lifetime. (Snorkeling is a great option, too.)
3. Amelia Island, Florida
Amelia Island’s southern charm, scenic beach views (and uncrowded sand), fresh seafood, and ongoing festivals make it a serene spring-break destination for solo trips, couples retreats, and friend excursions alike. Located on a grand stretch of the island’s coastline, The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island offers a holistic-wellness experience emphasizing mindfulness and healthy living. And even if you don’t take part in those offerings, the crazy-beautiful sunsets here will surely fill you with Zen vibes.
4. Scottsdale, Arizona
Scottsdale has been a place to enjoy healthy retreats and buzzy wellness practices for quite some time—and that makes it the ultimate locale for completely disconnecting and reflecting. The Sanctuary Resort and Spa, Camelback Mountain offers an impressive range of spa services with standouts like the luk pra kope, a massage with medicinal herbs, or the tok sen, which blends the fluidity of Thai massage with vibration therapy.
5. Miami, Florida
Sure, if you seek it out, there’s a lively pool-party scene in Miami that screams “classic spring break,” but there’s also a low-key side of the city that’s worth checking out for a relaxing getaway. Healthy restaurant options abound, like Plnthouse, which is vegan celebrity chef Matthew Kenney’s plant-based cafe, or Icebox Cafe, known for serving healthier twists on comfort foods. Spa-goers would be wise to make the Diplomat Beach Resort a go-to, as it just relaunched its offerings with an array of exclusive wellness treatments, holistic programs, daily fitness classes and more. Beyond the beach, there are endless opportunities for outdoor activities, such as touring the Everglades, kayaking Biscayne Bay, and fishing.
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6. Pérez Zeledón, Costa Rica
Costa Rica is a prime location for surfing, sunbathing and adventure, but its region of Pérez Zeledón is lesser known. Wellness meets glamping at the soul-awakening Kinkára, a bespoke retreat destination. Amid the slopes of the Cordillera de Talamanca mountains, guests are encouraged to unplug and connect with the surrounding nature. The retreats include farm-to-table food, comfortably furnished and spacious tents, round-trip private flights from San José, and daily yoga practices.
7. Santa Monica, California
If you’re looking for a mix of urban and beach life, Santa Monica is a great option. The city has three and a half miles of beaches, which are typically less crowded in spring months than at other times. Just minutes from the famed Santa Monica Pier is the Ambrose Hotel, an environmentally friendly boutique hotel that offers complimentary electric car service within a three-mile radius and a gym outfitted with Peloton bikes. (So, you may never want to even leave.)
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8. The Cayman Islands
For a Caribbean jaunt, try the Cayman Islands. The Kimpton Seafire Resort + Spa offers in-room yoga mats, beach and paddleboard yoga classes, tai chi flows, and complimentary Sun Bum lotion at the pool. Its restaurants use fresh and local produce and follow a simple yet innovative approach. The island also hosts a weekly farmers’ market totally worth your time.
9. Santa Fe, New Mexico
You’ll leave a spring-break trip to Sunrise Springs Spa Resort in Santa Fe feeling completely rejuvenated. The spot’s all-inclusive “Awakening Journey” package is a three-night intuitive experience designed to cleanse the mind, body and spirit. Guests can also participate in the resort’s sacred sweat-lodge ritual and use a $150 self-care credit toward a wellness service of choice, like its newly offered CBD massage.
10. Vail, Colorado
For those who love a spring ski trip, head to Vail and relax by a firepit, sip on warm cocktails, and make s’mores. The Lodge at Vail recently debuted a float tank that aims to alleviate muscular pains from a day on the mountain, in addition to trouble sleeping and much more.
While you’re preserving your positive mind-set on your relaxing vacay, why not preserve the environment, too? Here are sustainable travel tips. And if budgeting is a top priority, check out this hotel that literally lets you name your price.
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