The days of free flowing tequila and questionable decision making may be long gone, but that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy a well-deserved spring break. Escape the drudgery of commutes and conference calls for a relaxing, restorative (yet still-rollicking) getaway. Here are three up-and-coming destinations to make it happen without the huge crowds. Shop all our picks of what to pack for him and for her now on Spring!

Austin, Texas: Tech cool and laid-back city hip
Proof that a stellar spring break doesn’t require close proximity to an ocean, the Texas state capitol charms with its live music, dynamic food scene, and offbeat vibe. From March 10-19, the city welcomes South by Southwest, with festivals highlighting music, film comedy, and interactive. Alternatively, check out open-air music venues like Scoot Inn to listen to indie bands from the sprawling backyard, and Shady Grove, featuring free live music on a patio shaded by pecan trees every Thursday night in the spring and summer. Make sure to taste your way through the city, too, from breakfast tacos to world class barbecue. (Pro tip: the temperature can fluctuate up to 20 degrees from day to evening, so pack layers.)

Dubrovnik, Croatia: Rocky beaches and historic sightseeing
Situated on the Dalmatian Coast, this southern Croatian city seems to spill right into the Mediterranean Sea. And while temperatures are mild this time of year, you can still take advantage of its prime seaside locale for strolls on the beach or the promenade of the historic Hotel Excelsior, reopening this spring after a major revamp. Explore the city’s historic Old Town, ensconced in massive, medieval walls and paved with cobblestoned streets — perhaps familiar as King’s Landing on Game of Thrones. And plan to spend at least one entire afternoon sipping Croatian wines in the intimate D’vino, because you’re on vacation.

Vieques, Puerto Rico: Idyllic beaches and nature

Forgo the more popular (read: crowded) San Juan for this tiny island off the Eastern coast of Puerto Rico. Pack the stack of books on your nightstand that have been sitting untouched for months and catch up reading on one of the island’s secluded beaches, and plan to get in the water often. Vieques boasts some of the best snorkeling in the Caribbean — jump in from Mosquito Pier or charter a yacht for an afternoon sail. Dive right off the boat to take in schools of rainbow fish and sea turtles, then return to the boat to relax with a rum punch. Don’t miss the Bioluminescent Bay for a first hand look at the luminescence from a micro-organism that glows a magical neon blue when the water is disturbed. Swimming has been banned here in an effort for environmental preservation, but kayaking is still allowed and highly recommended.

Shop all our picks of what to pack for him and for her now on Spring!

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