Ready for warmer temps and some fun, family experiences? It’s Spring Break planning time!
We’ve got a collection of Spring Break destinations guaranteed to make lasting memories for an entire week or a long weekend, and they are all within reach of Atlanta.
Our 13 recommendations for your 2022 Spring Break getaway include towns in Georgia that promise not to break the bank, cities just over the border, and a handful of places that require an (affordable) jaunt on a plane. Let’s get started!
JUST DOWN THE ROAD
If your family loves the outdoors, then Blue Ridge is where to point your car for the perfect Spring Break adventure.
Fall Branch Falls is easy to get to, and a great place to spend your day. We adore the Blue Ridge Scenic Railway, exploring Mercier Orchards, or hiking over the Swinging Bridge. We’d recommend a cabin on Lake Blue Ridge or a stay in a treehouse.
After all that adventuring, you’ll be starved! Lucky for you, Blue Ridge is full of amazing restaurants too.
Ellijay is also a north Georgia mountain town, with a bit of a different vibe.
We adore the square, with shops and restaurants that will impress event the snobbiest foodie. The locals are wonderful – with open minds and open hearts. From music to art to photography, their love of the arts captivate visitors.
Take the kids to Expedition Bigfoot for a super unique experience! Our favorite family hike in the area is Tumbling Waters at Carter’s Lake, without a doubt. Oh! And not too far is Gibbs Gardens, the ideal place to see Cherry Blossoms on the north side. And if you can sneak away for a daytime date — try visiting one of the area’s amazing wineries!
I bet when we starting talking about Spring Break destinations, you weren’t expecting us to throw Henry County out there as a choice. But let me tell you, it shouldn’t be overlooked!
Henry County is “comfortably south” of Atlanta, and it is jam-packed with tons of things to do for families. We LOVE it here! Spring is the perfect time to see animals at the Noah’s Ark Animal Sanctuary, or hike the trails at Panola Mountain State Park in Stockbridge. Make sure to make plans to visit Southern Belle Farm in McDonough — they have strawberries and so many fun things to do in the Spring.
Fill up on a chocolate chip pancake breakfast at Local Yolkal, then bike around the Oconee River Greenway. Take a historic walking tour, visit the Old Governor’s Mansion, stroll through Lockerly Arboretum, tour an abandoned insane asylum (really!), visit sites of interest related to author Flannery O’Conner, or relax on Lake Sinclair.
Helen is a perfect choice for a Spring Break destination — because it has so much to do for all ages. The outdoor adventures in this north Georgia mountain town are amazing, and there are tons of great restaurants and fun experiences here.
Take a ride (or two!) on the Georgia Mountain Coaster, hike to Anna Ruby Falls, stay in a barrel cabin at Unicoi State Park, hike to the top of Yonah Mountain, play mini golf, go horseback riding, visit the fun shops in downtown Helen, see where the Cabbage Patch Kids are “born” at Babyland General, visit the Old Sautee Store, and enjoy all the great Helen restaurants.
GEORGIA SPRING BREAK DESTINATIONS
Sometimes, you just need the beach for Spring Break — and Georgia has some great ones!
Spring Break is a great time to visit the Golden Isles. Jekyll Island is a nature lover’s paradise, with miles of biking trails, beautiful beaches, the picture perfect Driftwood Beach, horseback riding, trolley tours, and so much more. If you’re looking for a relaxing Spring Break in Georgia — Jekyll is a great choice.
Or spend a week at nearby St. Simon’s Island. Here you’ll find bike paths, amazing resorts, awesome restaurants, and great beaches. Visit the St. Simon’s lighthouse, take a trolley tour, visit the Fort Frederica National Monument, and look for the tree spirits.
Looking for a beach that’s charming and unique? Visit Tybee Island, where you’ll find that the waves are just right for kids. Take a beach walk with Dr. Joe, visit the Tybee Lighthouse, go on a paddleboarding or kayak tour, take one of the awesome dolphin boat tours, visit the Fort Pulaski National Monument, and enjoy delicious seafood (and feed the alligators!) at The Crab Shack.
Spring Break is the perfect time of year to visit Historic Savannah. It’s not too hot, not too cold — and it’s close enough to Tybee Island if you want to hit the beach while you’re in town.
Visit the Savannah Children’s Museum, take a trolley tour with Old Savannah Tours, visit the fun shops on River Street (we especially love River Street Sweets), visit Forsyth Park, visit Wormsloe Historic Site, have dinner at The Pirate’s House, grab an ice cream at Leopold’s, hike a trail at Skidaway Island State Park, take a free ferry ride across the river from River Street, and just enjoy this charming city. You’ll love it.
GEORGIA STATE PARKS
Spring Break is a great time to explore some of our state’s amazing state parks!
Hike down to see two waterfalls at Cloudland Canyon State Park. Or enjoy the views from above on the West Rim Loop Trail or the Overlook Trail. This state park has campsites, cabins, and yurts. (And it’s only 30 minutes from Chattanooga!)
Head on over to west Georgia and see Georgia’s Little Grand Canyon — officially named Providence Canyon State Park. Here, your kids will love exploring the canyons from above and below! There is so much to explore here, and the canyons are just completely unique. Camp at nearby Florence Marina State Park, or camp or stay in cabins at FDR State Park about an hour away.
North of the city, you’ll find Tallulah Gorge State Park. Get a pass to climb down to the bottom of the gorge, or just hike the beautiful rim trails overlooking it. And you’ve got to take the stairs down to the suspension bridge — it’s amazing.
Amicalola Falls State Park is a great place to visit during Spring Break. They’ve got an amazing lodge, cabins, and campsites. The thing to do here is take in the beauty of the magnificent 729-foot waterfall. You can hike to the top of the falls, drive to the top of the falls, or take the trail and stairs up to the top — seeing the falls the whole way. It’s really beautiful, and a must-do activity. If you’re feeling really adventurous, book a night at the Hike Inn!
For those looking to stay right in the city during Spring Break — we’ve got lots of fun Spring Break options for you, too! Visit the World of Coca Cola, Zoo Atlanta, the Atlanta Botanical Gardens, Fernbank Museum, the Martin Luther King, Jr. National Historic Site, Six Flags, or the Georgia Aquarium during the break.
Visit the College Football Hall of Fame, the Children’s Museum of Atlanta, Piedmont Park, the Beltline, the Center for Puppetry Arts, the High Museum of Arts, or the Delta Flight Museum. Or take a ride on SkyView Atlanta, before enjoying a picnic at Centennial Olympic Park.
Looking for nature? Try visiting Sweetwater Creek State Park, the Chattahoochee Nature Center, Kennesaw Mountain National Battlefield Park, Stone Mountain Park, or Red Top Mountain State Park. Or check out some of these 52 Atlanta Area Destination Hikes!
MORE ATLANTA: 53+ Things To Do In Atlanta That You Shouldn’t Miss
ACROSS STATE LINES
LAKE MURRAY COUNTRY, SC
As you’re looking for things to do in Columbia, SC…I encourage you to think BIGGER and consider all that Capital City/Lake Murray Country has to offer.
Visit the EdVenture Children’s Museum, rent a pontoon boat at the Lake Murray Marina, bike or hike along the Columbia Canal and Riverfront Park, visit Congaree National Park, or enjoy delicious eats at the aviation-themed Flight Deck Restaurant!
I took the boys on a whirlwind tour of the area, and loved every second we were there. I’m not gonna lie – I was shocked! People in Atlanta don’t regularly discuss Spring Break-ing in this region…but we’re hoping to change that with our list of what to do, where to eat, and where to sleep. (Details about everything we mentioned above can be found HERE.)
NEED MORE IDEAS? Amazing Spring Break Destinations for Families
BILTMORE ESTATE IN ASHEVILLE, NC
You know Biltmore Estate as America’s largest private residence located in beautiful Asheville, NC. The Richard Morris Hunt-designed French Renaissance manor was once the home of George Vanderbilt and his family. The Estate and its Fredrick Law Olmsted manicured gardens are not necessarily the first place you might think of when I say North Carolina Family Vacation…but you should!
Stay in one of the estate’s family-friendly rooms, swim in the heated pool, enjoy daily kids activities and crafts, visit the animals in the farmyard, have fun at the Pisgah Playground, get root beer floats at The Creamery, ride bikes, go horseback riding, tour the gardens, go fishing, and enjoy touring the estate. There is so much to do here, you’ll never need to leave the grounds!
ORANGE BEACH, AL
I visited Orange Beach for the first time ever in 2018, and I was mesmerized by the white sands and crystal clear waters. I’d even dare compare it to Cancun – glorious!
From sensational seafood and cajun eats to family condos right on the beach…we loved every inch of it. We spent most of our time in OB, but Gulf Shores is adjacent and offering just as many ideas for a family vacation. But seriously, if the beach is your thing…this one is the BEST warm weather choices for families in Atlanta.
MYRTLE BEACH, SC
From miles of Atlantic Ocean beaches to entertaining shows and attractions Myrtle Beach has plenty of amazing things for you and your family to do during Spring Break.
Take a ride on the Myrtle Beach SkyWheel, visit a water park, see dinosaurs, get close to alligators, go to the beachfront Family Kingdom Amusement Park, take a wildlife safari, and play as much mini-golf as you can handle. And that’s all in addition to the beach!
If you can extend your stay, we highly recommend a day or two in Historic Georgetown, too.
ONLY A PLANE RIDE AWAY
We have a trip planned to California for break this year, hitting San Francisco, Monterey, Santa Cruz and San Luis Obispo. We asked our readers for some tips while planning and boy did they come through. A few of our favorites – rowing boats on Stow Lake, playing video games at the Musee Mecanique in San Francisco, surfing and redwoods in Santa Cruz, and whale watching in Monterey. We are taking a kayak tour in Morro Bay where we hope to see sea otters in the wild!
There are so many options, we may never make it south to San Diego, so we consulted this list of great California beaches from Trekaroo. Here are a list of Spring Break destinations in California from our Cali-Native friend, Leslie at Trips With Tykes. And you can use her tips to help determine if it’s time to fly...and how to use Uber with kids when you get there! LA, here we come!
Planning a National Parks road trip? The America the Beautiful Pass covers entrance for an entire year to all the US National Parks and over 2,000 federal recreation fee sites. Fees are covered for everyone in the car for per-vehicle sites and for up to 4 adults for per-person sites. This is a no-brainer, friends. While fees vary, you’ll likely break-even after two visits. Plus, REI will donate 10% of pass sale proceeds to the NPS Foundation.
MONUMENT VALLEY, UT
Driving through Monument Valley National Park in Utah and stopping at the breath-taking rock formations is definitely a must do out west, but for a truly spectacular experience you’ll never forget, book an overnight glamping trip to Hunt’s Mesa.
The ride there is an experience in itself. There are no roads — we rode straight up rock formations in an old Tahoe — but the risk was worth it. Our guide, a Navajo medicine man, told us stories under a brilliant star lit sky. We watched the colors of the valley change to gold and grey for both sunset and sunrise. On our way out, we were treated to a private backcountry tour of the valley climbing gorgeous arches and peeking into long ago deserted hogans.
Another option? Head to Lake Tahoe for fun in the sun!
ANTELOPE CANYON IN PAGE, AZ
The Grand Canyon is on most people’s bucket list, for good reason. But a lesser know, equally amazing site is about 100 miles north in Page AZ. This is where you’ll find the Antelope slot canyons. DISCOUNT TICKETS: Antelope Canyon Admission and Tour
A slot canyon is narrow canyon formed by wear of water rushing through the rock, creating a gorgeous pastel world below the ground. When you go, book an early tour. It’s single file to get into the canyon, which makes the line grow as the day progresses. You can wait a few hours to get in, and some of that can be in the hot sun, so bring sunscreen, hat and water too. But I promise, it will be totally worth it. (We talk about it a bit HERE.)
Be sure to visit Horseshoe Bend as well! And while you’re in Arizona, check out one of these 15+ Amazing Phoenix Hiking Trails with Awesome Views.
This Caribbean Island was devastated by Hurricane Maria, but they are back open for business and desperately need your visit. And who could resist? It’s warm, beautiful, and doesn’t require a passport!
Have no fear; hurricane season doesn’t start until June and the beautiful beach coast of Puerto Rico is still gorgeous, and hands-down better than any silly water park. Ha! And yes, you can still visit that bar from the Despacito video. And the pina colada was invented there…why are you not booking tickets now?
PARK CITY, UT
Utah is home to 19 different ski resorts, with Park City being among the most popular. In late season, the crowds begin to thin out, but the snow is still great. In fact, you can sometimes ski in March with short sleeves – and that’s just what we’re doing this year. I’m hoping we can do some dog sledding and take out a snowmobile. And forget Georgia’s mountain biking – how about SNOW biking?! Woot!
Don’t miss a stroll through Park City’s downtown for museums, shops and great eats. Could our upcoming vacay be our favorite Spring Break ever?
Need more ideas? We love these budget-friendly options from our friends at Global Munchkins. (Oh! We love the all inclusive resort!!) And here are some Spring Break ideas out West from our friends at Pit Stops for Kids. Finally, we are in love with these ideas for a Costa Rica trip from our friends at Trekaroo.
MORE VACATION FUN:
- FAMILY GETAWAYS: 50+ Best Family Weekend Getaway Ideas in the Southeast
- BEAUFORT, SC: 29 Things To Do In Beaufort, SC For A Perfect Weekend Away
- GEORGIA GETAWAYS: 25+ Awesome Drivable Weekend Getaways in Georgia
- FLORIDA: 33 Best Weekend Getaways in Florida for Marvelous Memory Making
- TEXAS: 11 Amazing Kid-Friendly Weekend Getaways in Texas
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