Last minute spring break

Sun, sand and the Caribbean – the perfect spring break. Unfortunately, not everyone can spend their break living like a sun god. Whether due to lack of planning or an even greater lack of funds,

Sun, sand and the Caribbean – the perfect spring break. Unfortunately, not everyone can spend their break living like a sun god. Whether due to lack of planning or an even greater lack of funds, some may be stuck at home with the family this spring break.

Luckily there’s still hope for the spring break-less. While you may not be relaxing at a tropical island resort with a strawberry daiquiri in your hand, there are plenty of inexpensive, fun and easy-to-plan excursions available for your enjoyment this spring break.

Experience the last days of winter – Blue Mountain Skiing

Never gone skiing? Blue Mountain Ski Area, about a two hour drive from Philadelphia in the heart of the Poconos, offers day and week ski passes at student discounts. Try out snow tubing or hang out in the warmth of the resort’s bar and lodge, Club 223. Check out www.skibluemt.com for more information on rates and where to stay.

Experience the sea – Baltimore’s Inner Harbor

It may not be the Caribbean, but it’s the next best thing within a two hour drive. Get up close and personal with the creatures of the ocean in the National Aquarium, visit Baltimore’s very own Hard Rock Café or the delicious Cheesecake Factory, and spend hours upon hours feeling like a kid again in ESPN Zone. Spend a day, a night or a week in Baltimore – the city’s abundance of dining, nightlife, historical and educational attractions will keep you as busy and happy as if you were really on that Caribbean island. Go to www.baltimore.to/baltimore.html for all and any information you need to know to plan your spring break trip to Baltimore.

Experience the big city – NYC

Tired of the city of brotherly love? Experience the Big Apple! New York City is the ultimate travel destination for students in search of sensational spring break excitement. You can go ice skating in Central Park or Rockefeller Center, which is the home of NBC studios. If you feel like waking up in the wee hours of the morning, you can appear on television as part of the Today Show’s audience at the Rockefeller. Other options in the big city include spending the day exploring vibrant Chinatown or the eclectic Soho. In the city that never sleeps, the possibilities are truly endless.

Orbitz is the ultimate godsend for cheap New York City hotels and transportation deals. The three-star Miliford Hotel in New York’s downtown Manhattan offers rooms for only $99 a night while The Plaza, a luxurious and well-known five-star hotel on 5th Avenue, offers rooms starting at $259 a night. All rates are available through www.orbitz.com.

Experience nightlife – Atlantic City

So you just want to party? Then Atlantic City here we come! If you’re 21 and love to take chances, then Atlantic City is your spring break dream. If you’re going to gamble, you might as well do in style at the Atlantic City Hilton Hotel. Just don’t book a room for the weekend – standard rooms can cost up to $275 a night. Blow your money gambling (or hopefully win some) and book a room for $40-50 a night during the week. If you’d rather not risk losing this semester’s tuition on gambling, go explore the city’s dining and shopping scene, or take a stroll on Atlantic City’s historic boardwalk. Visit Atlantic City’s own Web site www.atlanticcitysbest.com or the Hilton in Atlantic City’s Web site www.caesars.com/Hilton/AtlanticCity for more information.

Experience the Amish – Camping in Dutch Country

So you’ve heard about the Amish but you’ve never really seen them. Roughly an hour and half away from the hustle and bustle of Philadelphia are tranquil cornfields and the secluded, archaic community of the Amish. Spend a couple nights around the fire in one of Lancaster County’s campgrounds set deep in the heart of Dutch Country, and save enough money ‘roughin’ it’ to take a tour of a genuine Amish farm or shop your heart out in the area’s premier outlet malls. You don’t dig sleeping bags? Rent a cabin in the woods instead. Check out www.campingpa.com for information on Lancaster’s 36 campgrounds.

Experience Government – Harrisburg

So the last thing you probably want to do is learn more, right? Pennsylvania’s capital is more than just boring government buildings. Visitors can choose the educational route and check out The National Civil War Museum and The State Museum of Pennsylvania, or relax their brains while exploring the city’s Strawberry Square, home to upscale dining and shopping. The more politically inclined can take a guided tour of the state capital and check out a session of the House. Harrisburg nightlife is limitless – Wanda’s Bar & Lounge, Eclipse Nightclub and the Dragonfly Club are popular hotspots for college students and 20-somethings alike.

Sammy Davis can be reached at S.Davis@temple.edu.

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