When spring break comes around, it’s the perfect time to take your family out on a fantastic vacation. But with that comes the possibility of pushing your budget to spend more than you would like with no money to buy a souvenir.
But it doesn’t have to be that way. Believe it or not, there are destinations that you can take your family that won’t break your budget.
The rest of this article will show you destinations that will be just as enjoyable for you and your family as they will be for your wallet.
1. Cocoa Beach, Florida
A relaxing, coastal surfing town, Cocoa Beach, just east of Orlando and a few miles south of the Kennedy Space Center, is an ideal and affordable getaway for any family on a budget.
Sitting on Florida’s Atlantic Coast, this destination has a wide selection of things to do in town and at the beach without breaking your budget for a hotel.
Even during the spring break season, Cocoa Beach has many family-owned inns and hotels that are reasonably priced. Finding a cheap room will be quick and straightforward, so you can let the fun begin!
Go boogie boarding on the beach and take a trip off to Port Canaveral on a cheap trolley ride where kids under four are free, and adults don’t cost much. Lori Wilson Park features free parking and easy access to the beach via a wooden boardwalk, but it’s better to be early because this place fills up fast on the weekends.
Other things to do include visiting the Meritt Island Wildlife Refuge, the Museum of Dinosaurs, or even exploring the pier.
Recommended: Best Western Cocoa Beach Hotel and Westgate Cocoa Beach Resort.
2. Blowing Rock, North Carolina
A small, off-the-radar mountain town, Blowing Rock in Western North Carolina, is sure to scratch the itch of an outdoor-loving family on a Spring Break getaway. Cheap accommodations are easy to come by in this slice of Americana.
If you’re looking for a bit of snow for your outdoor fun, look no further than Sugar Mountain, just west of town, about 15 miles away. Sugar Mountain features an ice-skating rink and easy slopes that run into March.
- If you’re looking for more outdoorsy things to do, the Blue Ridge Parkway, the road the town is located on, has many hiking trails that can be used if you’re there in the warmer months.
- The kids will be amazed at the storybook-like style of downtown, filled with independently run shops and restaurants.
- Tweetsie Railroad features children’s rides and a petting zoo if you’re looking for more child-friendly fun.
Recommended: Holiday Inn Express Blowing Rock South and Meadowbrook Inn.
3. Jamestown-Yorktown, Virginia
For an affordable, fun, and educational spring break vacation, Jamestown-Yorktown in Virginia is the place your family is sure to enjoy.
- Explore the ruins of the first English settlement in the U.S., the Powhatan Indian Village, and the impressive re-enactments of the 17th-century fort bring history to life.
- Some galleries and films will please even the most significant history buffs.
- During the warmer months, you can also do some kayaking along the James River.
Recommended: Hampton Inn; Suites Jamestown, and The Colonies at Williamsburg.
4. St. Pete Beach, Florida
St. Pete Beach is another small beach community destination for a low-cost Spring Break vacation. The town is on a small barrier island west of Tampa.
You can indulge in some beach fun, but also, if you go inland, you will see Sawgrass Lake Park, where the kids can spend the day watching alligators or wander about in the pedestrian-friendly St. Petersberg, taking advantage of the little shops and quick or leisurely bites at the bay-facing restaurants.
Recommended: Grand Plaza Beachfront Resort Hotel and The Don CeSar Hotel.
Mommy Poppins has more great frugal spring break ideas.
5. Glenwood Springs, Colorado
Glenwood Springs is an excellent alternative if you’re looking for a place like Snowmass or Aspen without a steep price point.
- Glenwood Hot Springs Resort has a naturally heated pool outdoors, a tube run, and a splash pad for a very reasonable price.
- There is a free slope for skiing for children under 12 at Sunlight Mountain Ski Resort. This resort will have you wanting to go up repeatedly with the absence of the long lines and waiting that you might go through at bigger ski resorts.
- The Hanging Lake in Glenwood Canyon is a must-see for nature seekers.
Recommended: Glenwood Hot Springs Resort.
6. Lake Placid, New York
Ever wanted to try some Olympic sports without the need to compete? Look no further than Lake Placid in New York State.
Here you can go to the Lake Placid Olympic Center to learn about the town’s Olympic history and do some ice skating. You can also go ice skating on Mirror Lake and do other winter activities.
If you’ve ever wanted to see what bobsledding is like and then go for some skiing afterward, head on over to Whiteface Mountain. Lift tickets are cheap, and you can save more if you book ahead.
With an adorable downtown to explore and all these winter activities, you won’t be at a loss for things to do in this town.
Recommended: Hampton Inn & Suites at Lake Placid.
7. Greenville, South Carolina
Located only driving distance from Charlotte and Atlanta is Greenville, South Carolina. With its own airport in town, flying is an option, but cheaper flights can be found to Atlanta and Charlotte’s airports.
Enjoy fishing and hiking at Lake Jocassee in a warmer spring just west of town. Downtown, Falls Park at the Reedy is a wonderful, nature-filled area perfect for a picnic lunch
In town, the kids will enjoy the Greenville Zoo, where they can partake in free learning safaris on Thursdays.
Recommended: Hampton Inn; Suites Greenville-Downtown-Riverplace and Courtyard Greenville Downtown.
8. Lake Powell, Arizona
Lake Powell is an artificial reservoir located on the Colorado River and is within a six-hour road trip from the airports in Las Vegas, Phoenix, and Salt Lake City, giving you options for flights at a discounted rate.
- Rent a boat for a day to cruise through the lake and down the Colorado River, where you can fish with the kids or even have a picnic at the shoreline.
- Houseboats are available at an affordable price for all budgets.
- Your kids might also prefer to utilize their energy going rafting or hiking.
Recommended: Lake Powell Motel and Hampton Inn & Suites.
Follow True Money Saver’s blog for more locations.
9. Blairsville, GA
Blairsville is another quaint and adorable mountain town in the Blue Ridge Mountains that is just a two-hour drive north of Atlanta, Georgia.
- Bring the kids hiking on the Appalachian Trail or visit the beauty that is Wolf Creek Falls.
- You can catch some horseback riding adventures in April or May while some local flowers are in bloom for some beautiful, picturesque views.
- You can also go whitewater rafting, ride the Blue Ridge Scenic Railway, or simply enjoy the town’s surroundings.
Recommendations: Paradise Cabins and Spa and Paradise Hills Winery Resort and Spa.
10. Mexico City, Mexico
Most U.S. cities offer cheap flights down to Mexico, where you can experience the wonders of the southern neighbor.
Enjoy a tour in the historic part of town on a hop-on-hop-off bus ride on a Turibus or go hiking in the lusciously green Chapultepec Park with playgrounds for the kids to enjoy.
Papalote Museo del NIÑO is a newly renovated children’s museum that will keep the kids occupied with fun activities.
And finally, a boat tour on the canal in Xochimilco is a great way to cap off a wonderful trip.
Recommendation: Le Meridien Mexico City.
11. Quebec City, Quebec, Canada
Moving up to the French side of Canada, Quebec City is one of the most popular tourist hubs in the province of Quebec.
This is one of the most budget-friendly spring break vacation ideas since there are many things you can do just by strolling around the historic areas and reveling in the landscape and architecture.
Take a horse-drawn carriage for a fun ride with the kids, or even visit the UNESCO World Heritage Center.
You can also go cross-country skiing in the summer months at local parks or make the trip to the wonder of Montgomery Falls.
Recommended: Fairmont Le Chateau Frontenac.
12. Beech Mountain, North Carolina
Beech Mountain Resort, located two hours north of Ashville and 5,500 feet above the Blue Ridge Mountains, receives 84 inches of snow per year.
If you can’t let go of the winter sports, head out to this destination with the kids for affordable hotels and skiing, even in March.
The Emerald Outback 7-mile trail park is open to the public all year-round for the spring months. So be on the lookout for local birds for those bird watchers in your group.
Recommended: 4 Seasons at Beech Mountain and JuneBug Retro Resort.
13. Virginia Beach, Virginia
Another popular but affordable spring break destination, Virginia Beach has many spring break-specific packages to aid you in making the most of your vacation here without breaking the bank.
Spend the day strolling on the beach or visiting the Virginia Aquarium and Marine Science Center, where the kids can learn about what goes on under those waves while having fun in the process.
For food and a date night, clubs, restaurants, and bars are at your disposal for some nightly fun without the kids.
Recommended: Hilton Virginia Beach Oceanfront
14. McCall, Idaho
McCall, Idaho, is located about 108 miles north of Boise, on the shores of Payette Lake and surrounded by the scenic mountains of the Payette National Forest.
- Brundage Mountain is the nearest ski resort and offers free skiing for children under six, and those under 18 can ride the lift at half the adult price.
- The money you save can be used for accommodations at the finest hotel in town: The Lakefront Shore Lodge.
- Scenic bike trails are also available for fat-tire biking and snow biking.
Another recommended accommodation: Holiday Inn Express & Suites – The Hunt Lodge
15. Palm Springs, California
Moving away from beach destinations to a desert one, Palm Springs is another popular destination perfect for those on a budget.
Visit the iconic Joshua Tree National Park nearby or spend some quality time playing mini golf with the kids.
The Palm Springs Aerial Tramway shows off stunning views of the desert as it slowly turns into the scenic, green San Jacinto Mountains.
Recommended: Marriott’s Shadow Ridge and Palm Canyon Resort by Diamond Resorts.
Head over to She Saves She Travels for more frugal travel ideas.
16. Outer Banks, North Carolina
This coastal area of North Carolina has much to offer in terms of budget vacation rentals and beaches for the whole family to enjoy.
Visit the less crowded Duck Beach or Kitty Hawk, where the Wright Brothers achieved their first flight.
You can also enjoy the local town, bars, saltwater taffy shops, and the Cape Hatteras National Seashore for a beautiful 270-degree view of the ocean.
17. Washington, D.C.
The capital city of the United States and where the federal government is based, you might think this destination would be expensive, but you would be surprised.
Filled with so many iconic museums and aquariums that are free or low-cost, you and the kids can have lots of fun learning about space, the oceans, civilization, and more. One such example is the Smithsonian.
Take a stroll along the National Mall and Memorial Parks for some gorgeous architectural history, including the Capitol Building and other icons of the nation’s capital.
18. Mont Tremblant, Quebec, Canada
Heading back up to Quebec, Mont Tremblant is one of Quebec’s most iconic skiing destinations and has affordable spring break packages.
Mont Tremblant includes a variety of slopes for all levels, and even a half-pipe for any snowboarders in your group.
They also offer dog sledding, ice skating, ice fishing, fat biking, and snowshoeing. If you ever want to explore, you can also take a trip down to Montreal nearby.
All those nature buffs will thoroughly enjoy the Bison Reserve for the conservation of wildlife.
Recommended: Hotel Quintessence
Photo by [Itummy] via [Shutterstock.com].