Facebook tracks spring break hot spots

Crowds celebrate spring break action in this file shot from Panama City Beach, which topped Facebook's list.
(Mari Darr-Welch / For The Times)

Social media have become one of the most telling barometers of travel hot spots. And there’s nothing hotter than spring break. Using last year’s data, Facebook put together the lists below of the most popular spring destinations for college students and families. Among the overlaps: Santa Monica. Meanwhile, several other SoCal beaches made the family-friendly list.

These lists show the top 10 most popular beach destinations based on volume and increase in Facebook check-ins, a feature of the site that allows users to check in to a location while updating their status. The two lists were compiled by looking at action from February and March of last year, for those ages 18 to 24 and those more than 25 years old.

Popular college spring break beaches:

  1. Panama City Beach, Fla.
  2. Santa Monica Beach
  3. South Beach, Fla.
  4. Gulf Shores Beach, Ala.
  5. Port Aransas, Texas
  6. Main Beach (Santa Cruz)
  7. Venice Beach
  8. Fort Myers Beach, Fla.
  9. Cocoa Beach, Fla.
  10. Mission Beach (San Diego)

Popular family-friendly spring break beaches:

  1. Myrtle Beach, S.C.
  2. Main Beach (Santa Cruz)
  3. Santa Monica Beach
  4. South Beach, Fla.
  5. Jupiter Beach, Fla.
  6. Orange Beach, Ala.
  7. Banana Bend Beach, Texas
  8. Huntington Beach
  9. Long Beach
  10. Newport Beach

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