Boys, babes, sun, surf and drinks that come by the foot. Spring Break recaptures all the passion of our ancestors’ vernal rites, but with a whole lot more skin. In the past, gays and lesbians had trouble finding their place in the sun, and as fun as it is seeing if the old joke about the difference between a straight boy and a gay boy being about six beers is actually true, Spring Break’s gone homo in a big way in recent years. Here are the top five spots we wish we had all-expense-paid assignments to (hint, hint, Boards of Tourism) this year.
The Scene: The biggest national gay Spring Break destination, Key West offers all the booze, boys and morning-after hangovers of regular Spring Break, but with a far greater hook-up potential.
Where to Stay: Dubbed “the best gay men’s resort in the world”, Island House Key West boasts a health club, cafe and a clothing optional policy.
Fun By Day: That’d be the beach, bub.
Fun at Night: Key West’s Bourbon Street is where the action is.
More Info: Gay Key West
The Scene: Spring break in P.S. is a study in contrasts. For the girls, there’s the Dinah Shore Weekend, which draws an older crowd, while Jeffrey Sanker’s White Party brings out the circuit queens.
Where to Stay: There are a ton of gay resorts in P.S. Century is our favorite and caters to a young crowd. Alternatively, rent out one of P.S.’s many mid-century homes.
Fun By Day: Hiking Mt. San Jacinto, biking in town, lounging by the pool.
Fun at Night: Toucan’s on Palm Canyon Drive is a local hot-spot.
More Info: Palm Springs Gay
The Scene: A relaxed and affordable alternative to Cancun, Tulum, Mexico, is the famous party destination’s more authentic little sister. If long days by the beach, snorkeling and New Age spirituality is more your scene than wet t-shirt contests, Tulum is just your style.
Where to Stay: EcoTulum is right on the beach, very gay-friendly and offers everything from sand-floor huts at $40/night to luxurious cabanas at $200+/night.
Fun By Day: Snorkel in the local sinkholes (locally called cenotes), explore the Mayan ruins or soak up the sun.
Fun at Night: Downtown Tulum isn’t much to look at, but its collection of bars are solidly authentic.
More Info: Tulum
The Scene: If you want to party it up in mixed company, P.V. is the best of both worlds: plenty of drunken frat boys and sorority chicks, plus copious gay bars catering to your needs.
Where to Stay: Want to get your A-Gay on? Blue Seas Spa & Resort is the high-end and gay-owned hotel of your dreams, yet thanks to the strength of the dollar, one bedrooms run about $150/night.
Fun By Day: The gay scene by day centers on Playa Los Muertos, the gay beach. You’ll recognize it by the blue and green chairs– and you know, all the gay people you’re surrounded by.
Fun at Night: The colorfully named Zona Romantica is on Vallarta’s south side and home to over a dozen gay bars.
More Info: Gay Guide Vallarta
The Scene: Who says Spring Break means bikinis and Speedos? Colorado’s skiing mecca offers up great skiing, hot tubs and a variety of apres ski opportunities for homosexual snowbirds.
Where to Stay: Rental opportunities abound, but if you’re looking to stay close to the action, Independence Square Lodge is downtown Aspen’s only lodge.
Fun By Day: We thought you might like to ski here.
Fun at Night: While Aspen offers plenty of apres ski joints, like straight folks, gay visitors to Aspen will want to take advantage of the stunning views and warm fires to create their own kind of fun. Maybe not the best spot for singles, but an excellent alternative for couples.
More Info: Aspen World Guide