(BPT) – When you hear the term “spring break” what comes to mind? Likely images of partying college students or theme parks packed to the brim with families. If you’re looking to enjoy a spring break vacation that’s a little more off the beaten path, consider a destination that proves to be a hidden gem for more mature crowds, whether it be young couples looking for romance to empty-nesters desiring a quick getaway.
With a few insider tips and tricks, you can indulge your desire to travel by following this advice for planning a grown-up spring break vacation:
Look for locations on the shoulder season
The secret to enjoying a destination with fewer crowds is researching locations that are currently experiencing a shoulder season – times of the year that are adjacent to peak travel periods. One example is Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, with a shoulder season in March, April and May, as well as September and October. During this time there are fewer crowds and enjoyable weather, averaging 60 to 70 degrees. Visit www.visitmyrtlebeach.com for more information.
Select off-the-beaten-path accommodations
If you want a grown-up take on spring break, skip the mega-resorts and opt for more intimate accommodations. Research different neighborhoods and locally owned boutique hotels. Bed and breakfasts are a great option for a more relaxing and comfortable adult experience. Vacation homes are also ideal for an adult getaway. These homes can also be found in great locations while offering more room and privacy to make guests feel right at home.
Avoid tourist traps and research unique areas to explore
Once you select a destination, research areas to explore that are less known to tourists. These places might include local favorites, a hidden beach a short drive up the shore, or a scenic town with loads of charm but not loads of people. Visitors to South Carolina looking to escape often head to the quaint fishing village called Murrells Inlet; the MarshWalk is a great area to indulge on delicious seafood, cold drinks and live music. No matter where you’re heading, a simple Google search or post on social media is sure to provide plenty of unique ideas.
Leave time open for relaxation and exploration
It’s your spring break, so make it exactly how you want it to be. There is no pressure to have a fully packed itinerary or to stay out late unless you want it that way. Leave time to read a book beachside, get up at dawn to watch the sun rise and hunt for shells, or take a siesta after lunch. You have no one to please but yourself, so leave the checklist of to-do’s at home and get into an adult vacationer’s frame of mind.
Sip and savor until your heart’s content
For decades, adults looking to kick back and tempt their palates have visited wineries to pop open local bottles in beautiful surroundings. Today there is a new libation movement that can make for a fun activity on your grown-up spring break: microbrewery tours. Small, locally operated breweries, such as New South Brewing located in the heart of Myrtle Beach, offer an intimate look at the complicated process of beer brewing, including weekly tours and samplings that allows guests to try a few pours.
Look for mature entertainment options
Say goodbye to theme parks and splash zones, and say hello to theater, music, history and more when you include alternative entertainment options in your itinerary. Spend the evening at a world-famous stage, such as the highly acclaimed Carolina Opry, which offers award-winning variety shows for adults. Or head to a historic locale, such as the Bowery music hall, which has entertained millions since 1944 with its Southern hospitality flair. Fun fact: the Bowery is where the band “Alabama” got its start.
Spring break months are ideal for traveling, and even adults need a getaway from the winter blues. With these tips, you can plan your own grown-up spring break and enjoy the hidden gems of any destination.