You have stressed, crammed, wrote papers, and spread yourself as thin as humanly possible for weeks, but now all that hard work has paid off–Spring Break has finally arrived.  Realistically, Spring Break might be a week of lying on the closest beach or even simpler than that, staying in bed with your laptop watching movies.  As college students, we are known to have empty pockets and although our Spring Break will probably be filled with video games and a bag of Cheez-Its, it doesn’t hurt to dream:

1. Canary Islands
You can find these islands off the coast of northwest Africa, although they are technically Spanish islands.  The average high is 69 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit year-round across these seven major islands.  Here you could explore four beautiful national parks.  Teide National Park on the island of Tenerife inhabits the third largest volcano on the planet!  There are many sports to watch including Canarian wrestling and football.  One of the most famous resorts on Tenerife Sur is Gran Hotel Bahia del Duque Resort which has a Spanish Colonia design and equipped with top of the line amenities including sparkling wine and chocolate covered strawberries upon arrival.

2. Hong Kong
A trip to Hong Kong might sound like a business trip, unless you are going to hit up the Peninsula Hotel, one of the most expensive hotels in the world.  This hotel overlooks the world-famous Victoria Harbour.  This is conviently located in the heart of Hong Kong’s top shopping and entertainment areas, Tsim Sha Tsui.  Guests can learn the culture by exploring on their own or taking classes at the Peninsula Academy.  A guest can learn a variety of things from tai chi to dim sum making.

3. Istanbul
Think private butler service 24/7 will release some of your tension you have been holding from midterms?  Maybe checking out The Sultan’s Suite in Çirağan Palace Kempinski would be right up your alley.  This palace overlooks the Bosphorus and includes a hand-crafted Turkish crystal chandelier.  A night may cost around 3,000 euros (around US$4,011) and may sound steep, but did I mention they have PlayStation 3 upon request?

4. Andaman Islands, India
Known as India’s “best kept secret” and named best beach in Asia by TIME magazine in November 2004, these white beaches come together with Indian culture and jungle life to create the best de-stress environment.  A seven day de-stress package includes Abhyangam therapy sessions for six of those days with a complete pampering seventh day including head and body massage, mukha lepam, snana lepam, scrub, and more!  You may need to pick up an Indian Spa Language for Dummies book before the trip, but it seems worth it!

5. Kenya – Safari
Cottars Safari Service is a 1920’s Safari Camp located near the Maasai Mara National Reserve in Kenya.  Here, you can enjoy all of the comforts of a traditional resort with double bedrooms and old-fashioned bathrooms under “all authentic white canvas tents.”  Professional tour guides and unique activities are always available here.  There doesn’t seem a better way to feel as far from that rickety school desk as possible.

6. Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia
College students can be somewhat nomadic as they travel from college to college in search of the best parties.  At the Terelj Hotel, a person can experience of “traditional nomadic life,” as well as exploring Gorkhi-Terelj National Park for a quiet bird watch or an exciting horseback riding trip.

7. Sweden – Ice Hotel
Everyone else’s Facebook pictures will include beaches, sun, and bathing suits right?  Why not experience a different extreme and mix up that News Feed?  There are rooms of ice and snow as well as Kaamos, Nordic, and Artic warm accommodations if you’re not looking for such an extreme experience.

8. Berlin, Germany – Propeller Island City Lodge
Throughout college, some students experience nights of falling asleep in rooms that seem to be spinning.  Propeller Island City Lodge features rooms with actual slanted floors and “appropriate” furniture.  One room offers a bed suspended from ropes.  In another, a bed is the center of a diamond shape room that is decorated completely with mirrors!  There is an artificial lamp room, a circular bed room, a topsy-turvy room and a whole bedroom constructed out of old windows.  Take your pick!

9. Brazil – Ariau Towers Hotel   
Maybe just getting far away from your college isn’t good enough.  Maybe towering high above all else is more your style.  The Ariau Amazon Towers Hotel is the largest treetop hotel in the world.  Touching back down to Earth Amazon dolphins are waiting to swim with you.  If that gets boring, you could always take a tour of the rainforest!

10. Fiji – Poseidon Undersea Resort
If you’re not feeling the treetop experience, maybe going below sea-level would suite you best.  Poseidon Undersea Resort offers underwater suites, 40 feet underwater to be exact, which is reached by elevator.  The 24 submerged suites are full of marble, leather, and fine fabrics surrounded in a 4-inch layer of glass.  For privacy, interior window film is available.  This is a very romantic experience, so you best bring your college sweetheart.

11. Portland, Oregon – McMenemins Kennedy School Hotel
Everyone has had those school nightmares of being stuck in school at night.  At McMenemins Kennedy School Hotel, a person could live out that nightmare.  It might not be such a great change from living at college, but the school definitely will bring you back to your grade-school days.

12. Kenya – The Giraffe Manor
Having roommate issues?  Try having a giraffe as a roommate here at The Giraffe Manor, 20km away from Kenya’s capital Nairobi. Rooms are decorated in 1930’s elegance and are surrounded by a well-kept giraffe habitat.  There are other things in the area to explore as well such as The David Sheldrick Elephant Orphanage, Kenyan National Museum and Maasai Market.

Coming back from one of these trips to return to your dorm room might be rough.  Better save these experiences for after graduation….


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