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A little ice with your tropical drink?

Spring break destinations range from sunny to the polar opposite

and renowned shopping on its own Fifth Avenue, not to mention several gorgeous beaches. There are also daily trips to nearby Mayan ruins, including Chichen Itza (one of the seven wonders of the modern world).

Prices can add up if you choose to stay at one of the many resorts in Playa, but the trip does not have to be expensive. Using sites like Expedia  or StudentUniverse can land direct and one-stop flights in the $250-$400 range. (The nearest airport is Cancun International.) Once there, an airport shuttle to your lodging costs about $15 per person.

While there are plenty of boutique hotels or motels, there's also another, less-expensive option: condominiums. The North American Standard Co. offers great deals on condos around Playa. For $1,050 (or sometimes less), five people can stay in a two-bedroom, two-bath condo four blocks from the beach. To top it off, the condo rental service offers a free concierge service to help vacationers find their way and plan excursions.

After all that, if you still want a piece of that spring break action, Cancun is only a cab ride away.


Looking to get off-the-beaten-school-break path? Oui, you say? Look no further for your international, multilingual destination needs than our neighbor to the north, Canada and its island-city of Montreal.

On the St. Lawrence River, Montreal is officially first French-speaking, and second English-speaking. That said, English is widely spoken, especially at such vital places as public transportation outlets and restaurants.

The city boasts New World charm on small cobble-stoned streets in the Vieux Montreal (Old Montreal) and Vieux Port (Old Port) neighborhoods. Some parts, especially the Place Jacques-Cartier, can get a bit touristy, but they’re still worth a walk-through. Walk from the Basilica Notre Dame down Rue St. Sulpice to Rue St. Paul and along to Place Cartier.

Also be sure to check out the more modern student, or Latin, quarter around Rue St. Denis — again a bit touristy but full of hookah bars and places to grab traditional Quebec fare, including poutine (fries with cheese curds and gravy).

You can fly to Montreal (the fare from New York for the first week in March on was around $500 roundtrip) or, if you don’t mind a 10-hour trip on Amtrak by train, roundtrip on the Adirondack line for about $150, from New York’s Penn Station.

Hostels are available for just a few piastres (Quebecois for a dollar), specifically from $20 to $72 a night for single private rooms. Proper hotels run about $175 for two nights with’s current deal. (Stay a second night at selected hotels for 50 percent off the first night’s rate.) From cities like Boston, universities often organize low-cost weekend bus trips, so check your campus news.

Whether it’s ice-skating at spots around town, hiking up the Mont Royale, or taking in a Canadiens’ game or a rock concert, Montreal’s the place to do it. So bring your sense of adventure and kick it Quebec-style!


You’ve heard of St. Martin, the Virgin Islands, Aruba, and other Caribbean paradises. But you’ve probably never heard of Anguilla.

(GlobalPost/Tim Fitzsimons)

Part of the British West Indies, it is a long, scrubby island, unlike its mountainous and famous neighbors. Anguilla, which means “eel” in Spanish, lies north of St. Martin, one of the Caribbean’s main vacation hubs. Getting to Anguilla usually means flying into St. Maarten (average flights from Boston are about $330 round trip) and taking a water taxi ($15 one way) eight miles to the dock on Anguilla.

Anguilla does have several mind-bogglingly expensive resorts, all of which lay on