Spring break is right around the corner, and if your student still doesn’t have plans, don’t worry! With Oxford being in the center of many fun cities only hours away, your student could have tons of fun by just taking a road trip with friends. But as a parent, you never just want to send your student off to a random city, so we’re here to tell you more about local cities that’ll make for a great spring break experience.
Distance: 186 Miles / Driving time: Two hours and 45 minutes
If your knowledge about Birmingham isn’t that extensive, that’s totally fine! Though Birmingham isn't the biggest city on our list, it's still a great place to send your student for a close, low-key spring break. Exploring the Birmingham Botanical Gardens and the Festival of Tulips are two events that give your student a chance to see some blooming flowers during the time they’re away from campus (and the persistent Oxford rain for that matter).
If your student is more interested in what Alabama has to offer in terms of sports, the Alabama Sports Hall of Fame and the Barber Vintage Motorsport Museum are world class venues that would give your student an experience they wouldn’t be able to find in Oxford. Though Oxford sports history is rich, these museums are iconic and deserve a visit even if your student isn’t extremely invested in sports.
Distance: 260 Miles / Driving time: Four hours
Though it’s a surrounding city to many students’ hometowns, Nashville is a great option for a student looking for last-minute spring break plans, especially if they love music. Original events and local restaurants such as Whiskey Jam and The Listening Room are unique to Nashville and give people of all ages a chance to indulge in new music from upcoming and even big name artists. However, at Whiskey Jam you’ll never know who's playing the venue until they show up.
Something Oxford doesn’t have that Nashville does is a surplus of activities for college students outside of standard nightlife venues. Locations and events like the Downtown Sporting Club and Cheekwood in Bloom offer students ways to explore more than just bars and clubs.
If your student is looking to explore food specific to Nashville, Street Eats is an event that is calling their name. With 20 food trucks adorning Deadrick Street between 4th Ave. North and 5th Ave. North, your student is almost guaranteed to try something new. For the spring break week food truck line up, click here!
Distance: 331 Miles / Driving time: Five hours
In visiting Atlanta, your student will have no trouble finding fun things to do while exploring Little Five Points, a chic Atlanta neighborhood. The neighborhood has shopping, restaurants, bars and even local comedy venues. If your student is looking for a good laugh, Dad’s Garage Theatre Company provides a laid back atmosphere for 18+ students.
If your student is looking to try new things this spring break, Ponce City Market and World of Coca Cola are two great places to explore. World of Coca Cola has multiple drink tasting stations arranged geographically, so your student can try juices and sodas from all around the world. Ponce City Market offers a twist on your student’s typical college courses by offering Pasta 101, a cooking class taught by a seasoned chef. Trust us, this is one course you’d definitely be getting your money’s worth for in the future, parents!
Is cooking not your student’s style? Skyview Atlanta may be more up their alley. The Skyview ferris wheel is about 20 stories high and features 42 climate-controlled gondolas with amazing views of the city. By taking a ride on the ferris wheel with a few friends, your student can get all the thrills of an amusement park right in the Centennial Park District.
New Orleans, Louisiana
Distance: 348 Miles / Driving time: Five hours
Last, but certainly not least, is the Big Easy. Contrary to popular belief, NOLA is more than just Bourbon Street (though it’s known for crazy fun!). In actuality, New Orleans can be pretty relaxing if you do it right. Known to locals as “The Fly,” a riverfront portion of Audubon Park is an amazing spot to have a quaint lunchtime picnic or watch the sunset before dinner. This would be an awesome way for your student to wind down after their drive, and it would even put them around other college students and New Orleans natives!
Other ways to explore the less exploited parts of New Orleans would be by visiting the Ashley Longshore Studio Gallery (home to many pieces of girl power art), seeing the Wine Institute of New Orleans, and kicking back at local hotel pools. If it’s warm enough, your student can get their fix of spring break sun by spending a day at the Drifter Hotel pool or at the Alto Rooftop pool atop the Ace Hotel. As popular spots for Tulane students, your student will feel comfortable and safe surrounded by people their age in an environment where they can relax.
There are some things you just have to do when you go to New Orleans, and if you don’t tell your student about these spots, they’ll be missing out. On our list of typical must-visit places is Frenchmen Street, Cafe Du Monde (and yes, according to students in New Orleans, they really are worth the hype), Bourbon Street, and riding the mechanical bull at Bourbon Cowboy.
If your student is still looking for Spring Break plans, we hope this article gave them so good ideas to guarantee a week of fun!