March 15, 2013

Five One-of-a Kind Historic Places to Visit This Spring Break

  • By: Adriana Gallegos

Ahh, spring break -- the perfect time to get away from the routine and just relax. But while students, teachers, and parents are counting down the days to freedom, it can be hard to find a destination that’s perfect for everyone.

The good news is, whether you are a nature-lover, foodie, or history hound, an unforgettable spring break experience can be found from coast to coast at the sites of the National Trust for Historic Preservation. (Also, all five sites are guaranteed to have sunny weather!) Which one is right for you?

Filoli Garden. Credit: National Trust for Historic Preservation

The Outdoorsy Type

Spring is in the air and buds are popping out in Filoli’s Garden, just a 30-minute drive from San Francisco. Take the family or your special someone to explore one of the finest remaining early 20th century country estates in California and a world-class garden recognized by the American Daffodil Society. With a wide variety of flowers about to bloom, it's guaranteed to be a picture-perfect destination.

Drayton Hall. Credit: National Trust for Historic Preservation

Traveling with Kids

Head down to Charleston, South Carolina to visit Drayton Hall where there are plenty of activities to keep them busy. Kids can choose from nine different interactive online games -- a fun way to make history interesting -- to learn about life at Drayton Hall in 1791. It’s also an opportunity for both parents and kids to see one of the only standing pre-revolutionary houses in the United States. Bonus event: If you happen to be there on March 29, you can take part in the Lowcountry Oyster Roast.

Acoma Pueblo. Credit: National Trust for Historic Preservation

Culture Tourists

Travel to New Mexico to visit Acoma Pueblo, the oldest continually inhabited community in the U.S., and experience the Native American Pueblo culture and history that has endured for centuries. Take the walking tour with one of the local tour guides to learn about his or her traditions and the village. While on the tour, you’ll experience breathtaking views, gaze at amazing rock formations, and see many local artists displaying their beautiful pottery and jewelry.

The Shadows. Credit: National Trust for Historic Preservation

Cajun Foodies and Bayou Lovers

Head over to Louisiana’s Shadow-on-the Teche in New Iberia, a two-and-a half-hour drive from New Orleans. The Shadows is a beautiful antebellum historic house museum that tells the story of the 19-century southern Louisiana plantation. Live oaks draped with Spanish moss cast shadows on the house, gardens, and Bayou Teche.

After a house tour, have a pleasant picnic right on the bayou, once described as the "most richly storied of the interior waters, and the most opulent." Plus, the fun doesn’t end at The Shadows. New Iberia has plenty to offer on its picturesque Main Street, and you might also want to visit the famous Tabasco factory on Avery Island, a short drive from Shadows, where you can stock up on Tabasco Pepper Sauce for the whole year.

Villa Finale. Credit: National Trust for Historic Preservation

French Art History Buffs

Take a jaunt to San Antonio to visit Villa Finale. If you enjoy anything French, you’ll love the memorabilia relating to the life and death of Napoleon Bonaparte. And in keeping with the theme, a French Cultures Festival is in full-swing in March, with one event in particular that invites visitors to take a short, French-themed tour of the house, choose an object in the museum’s vast collection, and draw it at their own pace and in their own style. There will also be a Texas Meets Paris: Printmaker Mary Bonner's French Works Exhibition. Apprécier!

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