The top gay resort destination in the West, the dry and sunny desert community of Palm Springs offers easy access to spring breakers in this part of the country. The city's airport has direct flights on most major airlines from numerous major hubs, and it's also within a two- to three-hour drive of Los Angeles and San Diego. Although the city's many clothing-optional gay resorts and pulsing nightclubs have made it a top vacation destination this time of year, until recently, it tended to attract a somewhat older crowd. An spate of hotels that have undergone hip makeovers, and a reinvigorated dining and nightlife scene have increased the city's cachet among younger gay and lesbian visitors, and the solid supply of economical and mid-range accommodations - to balance out the many fancy spots - makes it a good bet for students with limited budgets.
One major caveat: if your spring break plans are for early April, keep in mind that Palm Springs hosts two of the biggest and wildest GLBT parties in the world at this time: the lesbian-oriented Dinah Shore Weekend over five days from late March to early April, and the guy-centered Palm Springs White Party the following week. That's great news if you want to party with masses of other gay and lesbian revelers (of all ages), but it also means that rates at hotels in Palm Springs can be very steep at this time, and the most popular gay resorts and hotels in Palm Springs tend to book up early.