Whether it’s the abundance of used bookstores and funky cafes, the interesting lineup historic buildings and landscaped lawns of universities, or simply the undercurrent of youthful vibe and energy—there is always something extra special about college towns.
The United States takes pride in its diverse travel destinations that, at the same time, are home to first-class, top-rated and well-known colleges and universities. student life, It pretty much hard to decide which place deserves the #BEST both in housing the best school and vacation spot in America.
In an effort to provide detailed, accurate and updated information to every student/travel-enthusiast, we have come up with a list of places that are not only widely known for their respective colleges but also for their beautiful beaches, breathtaking scenery, and fun activities. We are talking about destinations to ease the stresses brought about by college life. We mean the best vacation spots for families, couples, and friends. They’re haven for solo travelers, too!
Table of Contents
- Atlantic City in New Jersey
- Cannon Beach in Oregon
- Key West in Florida
- Lake Geneva in Wisconsin
- Mackinac Island in Michigan
- Myrtle Beach in South Carolina
- Napa Valley in California
- New Orleans in Louisiana
- Santa Catalina Island in California
- Martha’s Vineyard Island in New Bedford, MA
1. Atlantic City in New Jersey
When casino gambling was legalized in Atlantic City, the place has been a popular East Coast destination. But that’s not all it has to offer. The city is also home to the oldest boardwalk in the country, stretching 4 long miles! Tourists and visitors will find decent hotels, resorts, shops, and casinos everywhere in Atlantic City. Several favorite spots also include the Grand Pier that houses the local museum and the Atlantic City Arts Center; the Steel Pier for rides and games at the local amusement park; the Atlantic City Aquarium consisting of eight giant tanks of various marine life; and the Absecon Lighthouse with 228-step ladder that begs for a climb and promises a breathtaking view of the fantastic ocean. Atlantic city is the proud home of Atlantic Cape College and Atlantic Cape Community College.
2. Cannon Beach in Oregon
Cannon Beach is a coastal town with a population of 1,700. Obviously, being a vacation spot, visitors often outnumber the residents. Each year, over 750,000 tourists come to Cannon Beach for a grand yet inexpensive vacation. Photographs of its shore often feature Haystock Rock, the 235-foot, 3rd largest monolith in the world. The Ecola State Park is a favorite of many hikers and campers because it has a great view of the coast. Charming little shops can be found along the streets of Cannon Beach, the picture-perfect college town that is home to Ecola Bible College.
3. Key West in Florida
Famous for being “one of the wildest party destinations for spring break”, Key West is located in the Southernmost point of the United States. This place is synonymous to drinking and partying under the summer sun all year round. In addition to its gorgeous weather and fantastic scenery, the area has a great party atmosphere and an endless array of bars and pubs. Florida Keys Community College is one of the 57 colleges within 200 miles of Key West.
4. Lake Geneva in Wisconsin
Residents who own lakefront properties in the small town of Lake Geneva are required by law to dedicate a parcel of their land as pathway encircling the lake. Here, bicycles are a no-no, such that people could walk lazily around without a worry in the world! If you are the type who loves sailing or parasailing, you have the option to rent a boat that will take you to the lake! Before leaving, be sure to stop by at the souvenir shops for trinkets! Aurora University has a campus in Lake Geneva.
5. Mackinac Island in Michigan
Pronounced “MAK-I-NAW”, this beautiful island in the state of Michigan is a truly a gem. Here, Victorian charm and fun-filled activities await families or group of friends. Mackinac Island is a 3-in-1 destination: Active Mackinac is for the outdoorsy as it is best for biking, hiking, horse-riding and paddling; Grand Mackinac offers a luxurious experience at the Grand Hotel Resort; and Fudgie Mackinac is perfect your sweet tooth indulgence with the island’s famous mouth-watering fudge which you can enjoy in the middle of historic and shopping sites. Tours in Mackinac Island are available by foot, bike, or even via kayak or stand-up paddle board. Golfing and fishing are also popular activities. Because Mackinac mandates an island-wide motor vehicle ban, visitors are advised to bring their own bikes. Located in Mackinac Island is Mackinac College, a top-rated university.
6. Myrtle Beach in South Carolina
A popular tourist destination, Myrtle Beach gets over 14 million vacationers every year. Tourists can’t get enough of swimming, seafood and shopping activities. Tagged as the perfect southern beach weekend, Myrtle Beach can get quite crowded. As such, visitors are encouraged to arrive to the spot even during off-peak seasons enjoy moderate temperatures and quieter shores. Its Broadways comes alive at night with its string of bars, shops, restaurants, a movie theater, and an aquarium. It also has tons of variety shows and concerts! Did you know that Myrtle Beach has more miniature golf per square miles than in any other places in the world? Regular golfing is also world-class at Myrtle Beach. Travelers come to visit to hit one of the area’s more than 120 links. This awesome college town is home to Coastal Carolina University.
7. Napa Valley in California
Napa Valley proudly houses more than 400 wineries, its biggest claim to fame. Aside from being the most important wine-growing region in the United States, it is also frequently visited for its gourmet and spas. And who can miss the scenic views in Napa Valley? The place is perfect for resting and relaxation with its hot springs and mud baths. Golfers can choose to play in one of the 10 golf courses throughout the valley. Being in one of the best colleges in California, students at Napa Valley College can’t be any prouder. And surely, they have the time of their lives in this college town!
8. New Orleans in Louisiana
The city of New Orleans is known as one of America’s biggest party cities. It is hailed as one of the top destinations for 2018. With its great sunny weather during the spring, fantastic Cajun and Creole cuisine, and a wide selection of awesome bars, it’s little wonder why! There might not be a great beach to enjoy in New Orleans but there’s more than enough live music, good booze, and endless parties to keep your college stress at bay! Loyola University is a well-known academic institution located in New Orleans.
9. Santa Catalina Island in California
Santa Catalina Island or simply “Catalina Island” is situated 22 miles off the coast of Southern California and technically still part of Los Angeles County. Snorkeling and scuba-diving are both popular activities. Sea Trek is an equally exciting diving experience where even beginner swimmers are required to wear high-tech diving helmets for an underwater guided walking tour. There are also plenty of glass-bottom boats and semi-submarines that can be enjoyed. And if you love history and wildlife, going on an eco-tour is the best option for you. It must be vacation day everyday for college students at Santa Catalina School!
10. Martha’s Vineyard Island in New Bedford, MA
Long known as a getaway for old money scions and politicians, Martha’s Vineyard is located off the coast of Massachusetts. It is known for its bohemian streak, which it embodied best in its small but beloved nude beach that comes by the names “Moshup Beach” because of the Moshup Trail that leads down to the sand. It is also called “Gay Head Beach” because of its position below the scrub-topped Gay Head Cliffs. This charming vacation spot offers clothing options for sunbathing and recreation. And did we mention that its feel-good spot is home to a top-rated academe? Cape Cod Community College is nestled in the heart of Martha’s Vineyard.
Who says attending college should to be boring? Our top 10 college towns prove you can make a grand vacation out of your college life!