Old Man Winter refuses to exit gracefully this year. Many parts of the country are still buried under snow and ice, including my neck of the woods. However, in some states spring is well underway and with the change of seasons comes a host of affordable travel opportunities that allow you to conquer cabin fever without going broke:
Anza-Borrego Desert State Park: California’s largest state park is located roughly two hours northeast of San Diego. It boasts more than 110 miles of hiking trails that provide phenomenal views of vibrant spring floral displays and other horticultural offerings including mountain daffodils, towering ocotillos with fiery spines of scarlet blossoms, and a host of other colorful wildflowers. The park’s 600,000 acres are also home to hundreds of butterflies that flock to the desert during the annual floral pageant.
Balboa Park: From April 25-28, San Diego’s Balboa Park comes alive with pops of color from more than 100 floral exhibits. During Art Alive 2013, designers from around the world travel to the San Diego Museum of Art in Balboa Park to create floral renditions of famous paintings and sculptures. A family of four can peruse the entire spring exhibition for less than $30 and museum members get in for free.
San Diego Zoo: If your kids are too young to appreciate spring’s flora and fauna, then consider a trip to the zoo. The San Diego Zoo offers affordable single-day passes for families which provide access to new exhibits, including the Conrad Prebys Australian Outback display, which showcases the wonders from the Land Down Under. You and your kids can venture through a eucalyptus grove and discover species from wombats to wallabies and kookaburras to cockatoos. The Australian Outback exhibit also features impressive views of the Zoo’s Queensland koala colony – the largest koala colony outside of Australia.