Looking to book a vacation to escape the winter chill? With some travel plans put on hold over the winter due because of flight cancelations, winter storms and the spread of Omicron, more Americans are eyeing new destinations for a spring getaway this year.
Even though most of the places on this list don’t currently have any strict entry requirements, know that you will have to present a negative Covid test to travel back to the U.S.
From Aruba to Austin, these unique and warm destinations offer a bit of everything. Here are the top 8 destinations for spring break 2022.
Named one of the safest cities in North America, Merida in Mexico’s Yucatan state has plenty to offer anyone looking for a relaxing (or adventurous) spring getaway in 2022. Head here before the city gets scorching hot, which is typically in April and May to enjoy unique food markets, beaches, historic sights and more.
The capital city of the Yucatan has no shortage of hotel pools for travelers to lounge away the sunny afternoons. Hotel Medio Mundo in Merida’s old town is a welcoming boutique hotel that’s a top pick by family travelers and digital nomads.
From Korean to Italian and beyond, Merida has plenty of choices when it comes to international cuisine. You can also sample unique Yucatan flavors at the local market, or perhaps while enjoying a cocktail at one of the many rooftops in Centro overlooking the colonial architecture of the city.
Riviera Maya, Mexico
Party all night long in Tulum or Playa del Carmen or enjoy a more relaxing vacation by the beach in Akumal, the Riviera Maya is always welcoming travelers. It was just announced this week that the region of Quintana Roo is back to being a “yellow” zone (lower-risk) so any local restrictions that were put in place over the past few weeks are now eased.
Get to the Riviera Maya by flying to Cancun via one of the many cheap flights leaving from cities across the U.S. and Canada. Then, rent a car or take a bus to your city of choice to enjoy some much-needed beach and sun time for the upcoming spring break.
While Mexico doesn’t have any entry requirements for international travelers at this time, always remember to be respectful of the area where you’ll be traveling to, and wear a mask in indoor spaces like convenience shops and department stores.
San Diego, California
San Diego offers so many opportunities for a unique spring break vacation, whether you’re traveling with the kids, as a couple, solo or with some friends.
Drive up near La Jolla and take a hike in the gorgeous Torrey Pines State Natural Reserve, and then head over the downtown La Jolla for lunch and more ocean views. The Seaport Village near downtown San Diego is also another great way to spend an afternoon, with plenty of restaurants, shops, and a walking path to enjoy the ocean.
This Caribbean destination recently loosened its entry requirements for travelers, making it a perfect time to visit for spring break. Fully vaccinated travelers (with a booster) won’t have to show a negative Covid test for travel. Rapid antigen tests are currently accepted for all other travelers to Aruba.
Amazing flight deals to Aruba from different U.S. cities have been popping up recently, so keep an eye out and you can book a flight to paradise for less than $200 round-trip.
Grab a last-minute flight deal to Austin, America’s new favorite city, for an unforgettable spring break this year. There’s a ton of events planned in Austin for the month of March, including the annual Zilker Kite Festival, BBQ Austin, the world-famous South by Southwest (SXSW) and so much more.
There’s something to do in Austin every night of the week. Catch some live music at Stubb’s BBQ or Antone’s, or just wander one of the city’s many neighborhoods to find your vibe.
The city of Austin also has lots of great parks near the downtown core if you’re looking to get outside for spring break.
This U.S. territory recently removed its testing requirements for fully vaccinated travelers coming in from the mainland. And as of February 2, all quarantine requirements were scraped for unvaccinated travelers, so it’s now easier than it’s ever been over the past two years to visit Puerto Rico.
The weather in Puerto Rico for the month of March is typically warm and sunny. Temperatures range around 85°F and rarely dip below 65°F in the evenings. Explore some hidden beaches, go paddle boarding with the family and wander Old San Juan for a spring break that mixes culture and relaxation.
With incredible nature experiences, culture and weather, Florida Keys is one of the most unique destinations in the state. This spring break you can combine outdoor fun and leisure by exploring this sunny archipelago and all it has to offer.
While Key West is often the highlight of a trip to the Florida Keys, Islamorada is the adventure capital of the region and Marathon has some of the most beautiful beaches in southern Florida.
New Orleans, Louisiana
While visitors flock here for the annual Mardi Gras celebration, New Orleans is a place where you can celebrate anytime of the year. Last year’s festivities were canceled due to Covid, but the parade is back for 2022, with New Orleans’ Mardi Gras scheduled for March 1.
Book your trip early so you can grab the cheapest hotel deals available, as things will book up early for Mardi Gras. If you can’t make it to the festival, New Orleans is still a great place for a spring break getaway. Go on a walking tour, kayak along one of the city’s beautiful marshes and enjoy some delicious gumbo and beignets at a restaurant in the French Quarter.
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This article originally appeared on TravelOffPath.com