How to Have the Best Winter Break Ever

Because your time off should be memorable as well as relaxing.


After what must have been the longest semester of my life, I’m finally home for winter break – and possibly due to said semester, I am ready for some serious downtime for the two weeks before I’m back up on campus. But when did binge-watching become the last word in relaxation? Don’t get me wrong – I saved the whole Nailed It holiday special on Netflix for this purpose – but seeing as how this is my last winter break for the foreseeable future, I want to really optimize my time off. As such, I’ve carefully weighed and planned out my options – and this is my plan for the best possible break.  

Step 1: Make Time for Self Care

The most important use for time off, of course, is to recharge your overtaxed mind and under-slept body in between busy and stressful semesters. As such, an optimal winter break is one in which you’ve taken care of yourself. Building in good-for-you list items like eating healthy meals, sleeping at least 8 hours a night, and drinking extra water will make sure you’re able to spend not only your break, but also your spring semester, as your best self. 

Step 2: Plan a Staycation in Your Hometown

One of the easiest pitfalls of a winter break is getting complacent in your available activities – away from campus, your social schedule can empty out, making your couch seem like the most tempting option available. To fight this, treat your time at home just like you would a vacation at a new place, by looking at guides for the best places to go and the best things to do. You might find something you’ve never heard of before! 

Step 3: Hit the Sales

Of course, no holiday season would be complete without some holiday shopping – and once the gift-giving holidays are actually over, it’s open season to pick up some things for yourself. Because so many stores have sales at this time of year, it’s actually a great time to pick up some things for your apartment, some skincare you’ve been dying to try out, or even a few new sweaters to keep your look fresh for the New Year. 

Step 4: Do Something Productive

When you look back on your time off during the semester, it can feel distant — and once you’re back to the grind, it can feel like the time off was wasted, because it goes by so fast when all you’re doing is laying around the house. Instead, try to accomplish something with your extra time — by working on goals you set during the semester, or making time for something you’ve always been too busy for, you can really have the best break ever. (Looking for something productive? See our guide to productive things to do over winter break.)

Thoughts?

What are your favorite things to do during breaks from school? How do you plan to have the best break ever? Let us know in the comments below!