Unveiling the Best Springtime Escapes: From African Safaris to Caribbean Paradises
Are you ready for the ultimate adventure? Get ready to embark on a journey through the world's best springtime escapes! From the breathtaking landscapes of Africa and the vibrant cities of Europe to the paradise-like beaches of the Caribbean, this article will unveil the most captivating destinations to feed your belly...and soul. Picture yourself on an African safari, immersing in the rich cultures of Morocco, or exploring the wonders of South America. Get lost in European cities like Paris, Rome, and Lisbon, or indulge in the beauty of Polignano a Mare, Italy. Don't miss the chance to discover hidden gems such as Nland Surf Park, Utah, or enjoy the serenity of the Great Smoky Mountains in Tennessee. Let's dive into an incredible journey and find your perfect springtime escape!
Courtesy Singita Lebombo Lodge
After two years of significantly decreased tourism, travelers’ dollars are needed more than ever in Africa. So the low spring season is a great time to visit our favorite safari spots (though some are best left avoided this time of year). As the summer rains have just passed, the spring is the best time to see tons of water surging over the otherworldly Victoria Falls in Zambia. March in Ngorongoro Crater in the Serengeti sees spectacular wildlife viewing (the Great Migration is in the Serengeti from January to March) and lush scenery brought out by the wet season. And since the calving period takes place in February, the plains will be crawling with baby zebras and wildebeest. East Africa is best avoided come April when the wet season is in full swing, but lodges like Singita Lebombo Lodge and Royal Malewane in South Africa will still have the jaw-dropping safari experience you’ll be gushing about for years.
With sunny (but not stifling) days and refreshing nights, plus the verdant gardens at properties like La Mamounia Marrakech, springtime is a lovely season in Morocco. While Marrakech offers history, romance and atmosphere, with gorgeous architecture and an extravagant shopping scene, the beauty of this indulgent spring getaway doesn’t end with the cities. In the Atlas Mountains, Richard Branson’s Kasbah Tamadot has rooms bedecked in sumptuous textiles and antiques, as well as a range of outdoor adventure activities and a hammam spa. Further afield, in the remote desert oasis of Skoura, a 14-room restored kasbah named “the House of Dreams”—Dar Ahlam—is an exquisite hideaway that offers indulgence and authentic cultural connection. Favorite activities include treks through the Valley of Roses, ending with a picnic by a river and sunset cocktails arranged on an isolated hilltop, furnished with cushions and carpets.
Feed Your Belly… And Soul
You would guess a small town of less than four thousand in a county with only 17,000 would have a small selection for places to eat. You’d be wrong when it comes to Bishop. You can literally eat your way around the world from hearty Thai dishes to aromatic flavorful coffee roasters. It’s a foodie oasis in the High Desert.
Bishop and its big backyard are the perfect spring getaway to start the season off right by connecting with nature. De-stress with a soak in a hot spring. Detox your body with a yoga session. And of course, feed your body with scrumptious food. We don’t know about you, but that sounds like the perfect vacation to us.
Just down the Caribbean coast from the Yucatán with a fraction of the tourism, Belize has transformed from a backpacker haven into a luxury destination over the past few years—and it’s only a five-hour flight from New York. There are tons of buzzy new resorts all over the country, but that doesn’t mean you can’t find rugged outdoor adventures if you know where to look: We’re talking rappelling into cenotes, climbing ancient Mayan ruins, and taking a nighttime crocodile-watching tour through Ambergris Caye. And don’t forget that Belize sits on the world’s second-largest living coral reef, so snorkeling with sharks and scuba diving the famous Great Blue Hole are both viable options.Stay here: Up north in Ambergris Caye, Mahogany Bay from Hilton’s Curio Collection is a family-friendly jumping off spot for many of the outdoor activities listed above. For some more relaxed moments, the resort’s private Beach Club (accessible by water taxi every 30 minutes) is a joy to spend time at—especially in one of the hammocks or private cabanas suspended over shallow water.
If you’re hoping to get a bit lost in the world after months of remaining at home, Panama’s Islas Secas may be the place for you. Indagare Creative Director Simone Girner, who scouted the property when it first opened its doors in 2018, describes the property as such: “Some 15 miles off the mainland, 14 densely forested islands rise from the sea like ancient creatures—majestic and pristine. Frigate birds soar overhead, pelicans glide beside the boat, and every now and then a fish or stingray cuts through the turquoise-blue waters, as if they, too, were leaping for joy, aware of the privilege of being in such a special place.” The experience here is akin to a nautical version of an African safari lodge, with minimal human impact in the wild.
Mukul, Nicaragua. Photos by Melissa Biggs Bradley, courtesy Indagare
“The country of lakes and volcanoes” indeed. Central America’s largest and least densely populated country is home to 28 volcanos (six of which are still active), eight crater lakes and hundreds of beaches along 650 miles of untouched coastline. Nicaragua’s stunning tropical landscape and lush flora and fauna are the perfect complement to vibrant Spanish colonial cities like Granada, with its colorful facades, cobblestone streets, luxury hotels (including Hotel Plaza Colon and Tribal Hotel), wealth of cafés and charming old churches that help to tell the history of one of the oldest cities in the Americas. We suggest beginning or ending your trip with a venture on the coast, where the beachfront villas and rum tasting room make the secluded and ultra-luxe resort Mukul practically a destination of its own.
Related: The Benefits of Going Private
The country of “pura vida,” Costa Rica champions health, wellness and nature (and it’s home to one of the world’s seven Blue Zones, where the longest-living populations reside). Come for outdoor yoga, meditation on pristine beaches, excellent surfing and snorkeling, wildlife-viewing and jungle adventures by ATV, horseback and zipline—all while unwinding at an eco-friendly resort like Kasiiya Papagayo or Nayara Springs. The pampering Four Seasons Peninsula Papagayo is perfect for families or couples looking for a mix of adventure and relaxation, while the Andaz remains a tried-and-true favorite for a spectacular beach at a lower price point.
Related: Indagare Matchmaker: Costa Rica
Courtesy One&Only Palmilla
Mexico’s treasures are as diverse as they are diverting—adored for its dreamy beach resorts, colorful cuisine, playful atmosphere and vibrant art scene, it is the perfect destination for a getaway that balances cultural activity and indulgent relaxation. And whether you opt for a beachy getaway to the Riviera Maya (Hotel Esencia or the Belmond) or Los Cabos (One&Only and Las Ventanas), or a culture-, art- and food-focused escape to the central city of San Miguel de Allende, this spring break destination is a classic for good reason.
Related: Why Go Now: San Miguel de Allende
Holbox Island, Mexico
Located on the north coast of the Yucatan Peninsula, Holbox Island is separated from mainland Mexico by a shallow, warm water lagoon. Possibly Mexico’s best-kept secret, the waters of this laid-back island are home to a diverse range of marine life including dolphins, sea turtles, flamingos, pelicans, barracuda, and more!
If you want to really travel, Monterrey is a quick flight for us and always overlooked as a travel destination. This sprawling industrial town is filled with diverse activities. It has you covered from a cultured art scene to vibrant food/nightlife. The mountains that surround the city contain plenty of nature to explore. Monterrey is a must to visit for anybody who lives in South Texas. I feel like I shouldn’t have to be persuading you on this one, you should be booking a flight now.
European Cities: Paris, Rome & Lisbon
The limited crowds, blossoming flowers, and milder temperatures are the primary draw of European cities in the spring. Paris, for one, is absolutely dreamy between late March and early April, as flower shows, festivals, and street fairs crop back up after a gloomy winter, and blooming cherry blossom bring a pop of color to famous sites like the Eiffel Tower. (Our favorite hotels include the Hotel Ritz, Le Bristol or La Réserve, to name only a few). For a bump in temperature perfect for seeing the sites, head to Hotel Eden or Hotel de Russie in Rome where gelato season begins the day the sun starts shining and artichokes reach their peak freshness in time for the Easter feasts. Meanwhile, carnival season has begun in Lisbon, with Brazilian parades swarming the streets and top hotels like Bairro Alto and the Four Seasons Hotel Ritz showing their spring colors.
Polignano a Mare, Italy
Known as the ‘Pearl of the Adriatic’, this small and unique town is home to a captivating historical centre, a jagged coastline and hidden inlets for sandy beaches. Spring is the best time to visit Polignano a Mare as temperatures are just beginning to climb, but remain mild and humidity is still low.
Kinsale is located in County Cork on the southern coast of Ireland. Historically known as a port and fishing town, today it’s better known for the tourists that arrive from March through May to enjoy the fresh air of a cool, Irish spring. Top endorsements by Booking.com travelers include scenery, food/restaurants/pubs, and relaxation.
Antigua Guatemala, Guatemala
Due to its balance of subtropical and tropical climate, Guatemala is known as ‘The Land of Internal Spring’, and city and UNESCO World Heritage Site, Antigua Guatemala, is no exception. Historically the capital of the Kingdom of Guatemala, today it’s best known for its mild climate and elaborate religious celebrations during Lent.
Lynton, Great Britain
Lynton, a charming coastal town in Great Britain, is celebrated for its breathtaking natural beauty and pristine landscape. Perched atop a high sea cliff, it offers a picturesque view of the enchanting harbour village of Lynmouth. During the springtime, visitors can witness the proud display of purple orchids amidst the lush green valleys between the majestic sea cliffs.
Barcelona exudes an irresistible charm and a laid-back lifestyle that invites you to embrace the sunny Mediterranean climate. Explore the intriguing alleys and artistic havens of the Gothic Quarter, reminiscent of bygone eras. In spring, Barcelona comes alive with a vibrant atmosphere, boasting various festivals, events, and exhibitions.
New York City, USA
New York City, a city that embodies the principles of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, captures the spirit of the United States of America. Every corner of the city holds something new and unexpected, creating an atmosphere filled with anticipation. Spring in New York City unveils a city awakening from hibernation, offering endless opportunities to enjoy the world-renowned city parks.
Hudson Valley, New York
Courtesy Glenmere Mansion
The Hudson Valley, an expansive region stretching across northern Westchester County and both sides of the magnificent Hudson River, is a multifaceted destination that caters to outdoor enthusiasts, art lovers, history buffs, and food aficionados. Amidst the serene surroundings, travelers can unwind at luxurious retreats like Glenmere Mansion, Troutbeck, and the new Little Cat Lodge. Additionally, don't miss the opportunity to experience the Chef in Residence at Stone Barns, a unique culinary venture by Dan Barber's Michelin-starred Blue Hill restaurant that enhances the local farm-to-table cuisine with diverse cultural influences.
Experience a quintessential New England escape within driving distance of bustling eastern cities in the charming town of Barnard, Vermont. This idyllic destination offers scenic skiing, hiking, and cozy accommodations complemented by a boho-chic vibe, craft breweries, and vibrant college towns. For a truly indulgent getaway, make Twin Farms your home for a weekend or longer. Set on a 300-acre estate, this retreat once hosted literary legends Sinclair Lewis and Dorothy Thompson. With its beautifully designed lodge, suites, and cottages, as well as its world-class culinary program and remarkable art collection, Twin Farms ensures an unforgettable experience.
Charleston & Kiawah Island, South Carolina
Photo by Jen Barr, courtesy Indagare
Discover the timeless elegance of Charleston, one of America's earliest cities. Wander along cobblestone streets beneath the shade of centuries-old live oaks, immersing yourself in the unique blend of European charm and Southern hospitality. Charleston's culinary scene is a delightful fusion of tradition and innovation, perfectly complemented by pleasant spring weather. The city's boutique hotels, including The Pinch, Zero George, and The Dewberry, offer unparalleled charm and character. Just a short drive away, Kiawah Island provides a peaceful and upscale retreat. With its 10 miles of pristine beachfront and Beachwalker County Park, it's a haven for nature lovers. The Sanctuary, an oceanfront resort catering to golf enthusiasts, is our top recommendation for a luxurious stay.
Sea Island, Georgia
Escape to the magical Golden Isles of Georgia and discover the private oasis of Sea Island. With its warm temperatures, refreshing ocean breezes, and unhurried pace, this hidden gem is home to one of the top traditional resorts on the East Coast. Indulge in rejuvenating spa treatments at the expansive 65,000-square-foot spa, where the serene lounge area provides a tranquil retreat. Golf enthusiasts will be enthralled by the three renowned golf courses, while a wide range of activities, from dance classes to fishing, offers something for everyone. Choose from a diverse selection of accommodations, including secluded oceanfront villas and family-friendly cottages, ensuring a truly personalized experience.
Miami, Palm Beach & Key West, Florida
Courtesy Little Palm Island
For a perfect blend of culture, sun, and relaxation, look no further than Miami, Palm Beach, and Key West in Florida. Miami offers a sophisticated cultural scene, stunning beaches, and an ever-evolving contemporary art and design community. Luxurious retreats like 1 Hotel South Beach and Setai Miami Beach provide a stylish and indulgent stay. Palm Beach, on the other hand, offers a more refined and peaceful ambiance. The Four Seasons Resort Palm Beach, located on a private stretch of beach, is the ideal destination for those seeking space and tranquility. For a unique boutique experience, consider staying at White Elephant, the charming sister property of the renowned Nantucket hotel. Key West, a vibrant and stylish enclave once favored by Ernest Hemingway, boasts excellent snorkeling opportunities and a laid-back atmosphere. To truly immerse yourself in a tropical paradise, visit Little Palm Island, accessible only by boat or seaplane.
Related: The Best Beach Resorts in Florida
Aspen, Vail & Beaver Creek, Colorado
Four Seasons Vail, courtesy Four Seasons
Deer Valley, Park City & Alta, Utah
Courtesy Montage Deer Valley
Just an hour away from Salt Lake City airport lies a trio of skiing destinations in Utah that offer unparalleled convenience. Deer Valley is perfect for those seeking a pampering and exclusive experience. The top hotels in Deer Valley, including St. Regis Deer Valley, Montage Deer Valley, Stein Eriksen Lodge, and the newly renovated Goldener Hirsch, grant easy access to pristine skier-only terrain and exceptional ski schools. Park City Mountain and Canyons, on the other hand, provide sprawling and diverse terrain ideal for skiing enthusiasts. Pendry Park City, a newly opened ski-in, ski-out hotel, ensures a seamless experience. For adventurers, a stay at Snowpine Lodge in Alta is highly recommended. Surrounded by breathtaking landscapes, this lodge offers thrilling snow activities and surprises snowfalls well into March.
Jackson Hole, Wyoming
Jackson Hole, courtesy Four Seasons
Renowned as "The Big One," Jackson Hole in Wyoming offers vast expanses of challenging ski runs alongside a genuine Wild West spirit. Embrace the rugged ambiance of the local ski scene, complemented by pockets of luxury centered around top hotels such as Caldera House, Four Seasons Jackson Hole, and Amangani. Despite its trendy reputation, Jackson Hole maintains a relaxed and welcoming atmosphere, making it an ideal destination for families, couples, and groups of friends.
Photo courtesy of the Sun Valley Lodge, Idaho
Sun Valley, the first winter destination resort in the United States, captivates visitors with its timeless charm, old-school glamour, and stunning natural surroundings. Bask in the allure of this idyllic retreat that once welcomed Hollywood legends like Judy Garland, Marilyn Monroe, and Clark Gable. Whether you're skiing the slopes of Baldy or Dollar, which is perfect for beginners, or exploring the themed Adventure Trails for children, Sun Valley promises an enchanting experience. Conclude your day with an après-ski cocktail at the historic Sun Valley Lodge, a highly recommended choice for accommodation.
Photo by Jeff Schultz, courtesy Sheldon Chalet
Alaska is a captivating ecological wonderland, boasting diverse vegetation zones and borders with the Arctic Circle and three oceans. While not a destination known for pampering, it enthralls visitors with its untamed landscapes and boundless adventure. Spring is a fantastic season to enjoy winter sports such as heli-skiing, hiking, and snowmobiling in the mountains, with fewer crowds and longer daylight hours. For an outdoorsy experience, consider a stay at Sheldon Chalet, a five-bedroom haven located on the only privately-owned land in Denali National Park. Its unmatched views of Mount Denali's summit from your bed are truly remarkable. Alternatively, Tordrillo Mountain Lodge offers a comprehensive wilderness retreat on the shores of Lake Judd, where you can indulge in heli-skiing and King salmon fishing through their "Kings and Corn" program, available only in June.
Related: Ultimate Wilderness Vacations
During March and April, the Caribbean offers beautiful powdery white-sand beaches, warm turquoise waters, and luxurious resorts. For those seeking a romantic and secluded atmosphere, Turks & Caicos is the perfect destination, just a 3.5-hour direct flight from New York. Families looking for a friendly and accessible option can visit Antigua, which is also reachable via direct flights from the U.S. Jumby Bay, an all-inclusive resort located on a private island in Antigua, offers top-notch amenities and a fantastic beachfront location. Other highly recommended destinations in the Caribbean include Amanera in the Dominican Republic, Harbour Island in the Bahamas, Sugar Beach in St. Lucia, and Necker Island, Richard Branson's exclusive hideaway in the British Virgin Islands.
Related: Direct Flights to the Caribbean
Cartagena, Columbia, is a stunning time capsule located on the shores of the Caribbean Sea. It features an old town surrounded by Spanish-built colonial-era fortifications and a modern skyline reminiscent of Miami. The city offers a mix of delicious cuisine influenced by the Caribbean, Mediterranean, and international flavors. With its world-class music scene, focus on film and literature, and chic shops and hotels like Casa San Agustin and Sofitel Legend Santa Clara Hotel, Cartagena is an irresistible destination.
The Maldives, a nation of over a thousand tiny islands, is a paradise for surfers, scuba divers, beach lovers, and honeymooners. It offers luxurious overwater bungalows and beachfront villas, perfect for an extended spring break vacation. Properties like One&Only Reethi Rah, Cheval Blanc Randheli, and COMO Maalifushi provide five-star service and amenities in a remote and picturesque setting.
Related: Ultimate Exotic Beach Vacations
Contact your Indagare Trip Designer or Indagare to start planning your spring getaway—for this year and the future. Our team can match you with the hotel and activities that are right for you, and provide information on transportation options, private villas, charters, and more.
– Abby Sandman on February 21, 2023
While the Caribbean is often crowded with coeds during spring break, Anguilla remains consistently uncrowded and laid-back. This eastern island, located about six miles from St. Martin, has rebuilt much of its infrastructure following the 2017 hurricanes. It offers some of the best beaches in the Caribbean, including the notable standout, Shoal Bay. Visitors can also enjoy delicious local dishes like crayfish and johnny cakes. A visit to Sandy Island Restaurant, a sand bar only accessible by boat, is highly recommended for seafood and pork ribs, along with lounging on the table-side beach chairs.
Stay here: Altamer Resort is a private villa located on an enviable stretch of Shoal Bay West, offering a secluded and luxurious stay. The resort features Myron Goldfinger-designed exteriors, curated paintings on the walls, and spacious bedrooms with stunning sea views. The property also offers curated concierge services, including a "beach concierge" option with a personal butler to set up umbrellas, beach chairs, and a picnic lunch on any Anguilla beach of your choosing. For a more traditional resort experience, Zemi Beach House is an oceanfront villa located on Shoal Bay East. The resort offers amenities like 24-hour room service, comfortable interiors, and Malin + Goetz bath products. The villas provide private plunge pools and direct access to the gorgeous beach.
Treehouse Utopia is the perfect grown-up version of the backyard treehouses of our childhood. These meticulously designed cabins in the trees offer a getaway to relax, recharge, and reset. Located in Utopia, Texas, not far from the Sabinal River or Lost Maples Natural State Area, guests can also enjoy light hill country hiking.
Nland Surf Park
Nland Surf Park is a unique destination for surfers. Located on the outskirts of Austin, Texas, this park offers clean and consistent waves that are hard to find naturally at a beach. Nland has a variety of waves for different skill levels, from beginner-friendly bay waves to knee to waist-high inside waves, perfect for honing your surfing skills. For those seeking longer and more intense waves, Nland also has a reef.
For those who love adventure and exploration, a trip to Basecamp Terlingua in Terlingua, West Texas is a must. Surrounded by Big Bend National Park, this destination offers endless opportunities for hiking, biking, and river rafting adventures. After a day of exploration, guests can relax under the stars and enjoy the incredible stargazing opportunities that West Texas provides. Basecamp Terlingua offers futuristic glamping accommodations, allowing guests to enjoy comfort while immersing themselves in the breathtaking night sky.
Great Smoky Mountains, Tennessee
Located in eastern Tennessee, the blue-toned Great Smoky Mountains are a must-visit destination for hikers, foodies, and design enthusiasts. The region is home to two sister properties, Blackberry Farm and Blackberry Mountain, which together encompass nearly 10,000 acres of land. Visitors can enjoy activities such as hiking, biking, horseback riding, pottery making, archery, painting, yoga, fishing, and whiskey tasting. The décor and atmosphere of these properties perfectly balance the country location with a touch of luxury. At Blackberry Mountain, guests can enjoy a jewel-toned, Art-Deco-inspired cocktail bar, while at Blackberry Farm, they can meet the resident truffle-hunting Lagotto Romagnolo dogs. Both properties offer unique and unforgettable experiences.
Utah & Arizona
In late 2020, Indagare Founder Melissa Biggs Bradley embarked on a family trip to Zion, Bryce National Park, and the Grand Canyon. This region, located on the border between Utah and Arizona, offers breathtaking natural scenery and adventures. Visitors can explore rocky riverbeds, admire the Vermillion Cliffs, spot California condors, and marvel at the Colorado River. Top accommodations in the area include Amangiri (along with its brand-new Camp Sarika), Miraval, and the Lodge at Blue Sky.
In search of the perfect springtime escape? Look no further than these breathtaking destinations that promise to feed not only your belly, but also your soul. Travel to Africa for an unforgettable safari experience, or indulge in the vibrant culture of Morocco. For a taste of adventure, head to South America and explore the natural wonders of Belize, Panama, Nicaragua, and Costa Rica. If European charm is what you seek, cities like Paris, Rome, and Lisbon will captivate your senses. Alternatively, immerse yourself in the idyllic coastal beauty of Polignano a Mare in Italy or Kinsale in Ireland. From Guatemala to Great Britain, from Spain to the USA, be ready to embark on a whirlwind journey that will leave you breathless. Whether you choose the bustling streets of New York City or the tranquil landscapes of the Hudson Valley, there is something for everyone. So pack your bags and get ready to embrace the beauty of spring in these enchanting destinations.
The Best Destinations for Halloween: From Colonial Williamsburg to Venice, Unforgettable Halloween Experiences Await 2023-11-23 03:00:20
Discover the top Halloween destinations that will send shivers down your spine! From the historical charm of Colonial Williamsburg to the haunting beauty of Venice, prepare for an unforgettable Halloween experience.
Top Travel Destinations During COVID: Budget-friendly Airfare to Explore Spectacular International Hotspots 2023-11-23 03:00:05
Discover incredible budget-friendly international travel destinations during COVID. Explore the wonders of spectacular hotspots with affordable airfare. Plan your dream trip today!
Exploring the Ultimate August Travel Destinations: Unveiling the Best Places to Visit in Europe, Asia, Oceania, and Beyond! 2023-11-23 03:00:02
Discover the must-visit August travel destinations across Europe, Asia, Oceania, and more! Uncover the hidden gems and top places to explore, ensuring an unforgettable and adventurous journey abroad. Start planning your ultimate summer escape now!
Exploring Enchanting Autumn Escapes: Unveiling the Best Travel Destinations in October 2023-11-23 02:57:21
Unveiling the best travel destinations in October, embark on an enchanting autumn escape as we delve into the most captivating spots. From vibrant fall foliage to charming cultural experiences, discover the top destinations to embrace the beauty of this season. Plan your perfect October getaway now!