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South east US road trip - thoughts??

post #1 of 20
Thread Starter 
DH and I are planning a road trip next year around the south east US. We'll probably only get one chance to see the south eastern corner, so want to fit in all the highlights.

This is what I'm thinking:

Start in Washington, DC and spend a couple of days there.

Drive to Columbus, OH, spend the night there (is there anything to see in Columbus?)

From there, leave early and drive to St Louis, MO, spend a day and a half there.

Drive to Memphis, TN and spend a day or two there

Head to either Dallas, or Houston TX (any suggestions?), spend a day or two there

New Orleans, LA would be next, spend a few days there

Push right through from New Orleans to Orlando, FL, and spend a couple of days there (Disney and Space Center mainly)

Spend 2 days driving from Orlando back to Washington, then fly home.

This is a link to the possible route - http://maps.google.com/maps?f=d&sadd...,46.538086&z=5

What do you guys who know the area better think?
post #2 of 20
I might spend a day and a night in Dallas, just to see sights like Dealey Plaza. Then, spend the evening either in the West End of Dallas, or, if your taste runs more to that, go over to Fort Worth for an evening at Billy Bob's.

Houston is OK, and I really love Galveston. If you head east from Galveston, you can take the free ferry across to Port Bolivar and head east toward New Orleans from there.
post #3 of 20
If you come to Memphis- we'd love to have you guys over!!! There are soo many excellent restruants and places to go to in this area- you will have a blast!!!
post #4 of 20
I'd love to meet you for lunch and some sight seeing when you are in DC if you'd like! I'm about an hour and a half away from there but I haven't been over that way in quite a while.
post #5 of 20
Swing through Pennsylvania and stop at Gettysburg on your way to Ohio.
post #6 of 20
It might be worth going to Asheville, NC - its really pretty there especially on the parkway. Also, if you can, go to Biltmore Estate.
post #7 of 20
Asheville is beautiful. We stayed at a lovely lodge - I'll find out the name of it.

I also recommend stopping in Gettysburg!

And having been to both Dallas and Houston, I'd recommend San Antonio!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! It's worth a day or two. And you can see the Alamo.

Sounds like a fabulous trip!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Laurie
post #8 of 20
Thread Starter 
Thanks guys, I'm going to buy a big laminated wall map so I can start marking places recommended to us
post #9 of 20
That looks like a great tour. I'm hesitant to suggest anything else because (a) I'm not from the area and (b) your route looks so logical and anything else will just add mileage.

Having said that, I'm going to add a couple of things from our experience. We loved Memphis - from there we drove (but it is quite a journey) to Chattanooga for a couple of days. It was gorgeous! We stayed at the Holiday Inn (the old railway station with the Chattanooga Choo Choo in the grounds). Not far outside Chattanooga on the route back to Memphis, it is possible to visit the Jack Daniels distillery in Lynchburg which is in the most beautiful countryside.

If you get to Florida and fancy driving down the coast a bit further - driving down to Fort Myers to see Edison's house and laboratories and Henry Ford's winter home (they were neighbours) is well worth a visit.

I expect however that me adding more mileage to your map is the last thing you need.

Hope you have a great time!
post #10 of 20
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by flisssweetpea View Post
That looks like a great tour. I'm hesitant to suggest anything else because (a) I'm not from the area and (b) your route looks so logical and anything else will just add mileage.

Having said that, I'm going to add a couple of things from our experience. We loved Memphis - from there we drove (but it is quite a journey) to Chattanooga for a couple of days. It was gorgeous! We stayed at the Holiday Inn (the old railway station with the Chattanooga Choo Choo in the grounds). Not far outside Chattanooga on the route back to Memphis, it is possible to visit the Jack Daniels distillery in Lynchburg which is in the most beautiful countryside.

If you get to Florida and fancy driving down the coast a bit further - driving down to Fort Myers to see Edison's house and laboratories and Henry Ford's winter home (they were neighbours) is well worth a visit.

I expect however that me adding more mileage to your map is the last thing you need.

Hope you have a great time!
Thanks, those are great ideas! We're happy to add miles to see stuff like that - Edison's house and laboratories in particular is something I'd be interested in seeing!
post #11 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by LDG View Post
...having been to both Dallas and Houston, I'd recommend San Antonio!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! It's worth a day or two. And you can see the Alamo.
Having been to Dallas, Houston, and San Antonio, I'd recommend Austin!
post #12 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by sarahp View Post
DH and I are planning a road trip next year around the south east US. We'll probably only get one chance to see the south eastern corner, so want to fit in all the highlights.

This is what I'm thinking:

Start in Washington, DC and spend a couple of days there.

Drive to Columbus, OH, spend the night there (is there anything to see in Columbus?)

From there, leave early and drive to St Louis, MO, spend a day and a half there.

Drive to Memphis, TN and spend a day or two there

Head to either Dallas, or Houston TX (any suggestions?), spend a day or two there

New Orleans, LA would be next, spend a few days there

Push right through from New Orleans to Orlando, FL, and spend a couple of days there (Disney and Space Center mainly)

Spend 2 days driving from Orlando back to Washington, then fly home.

This is a link to the possible route - http://maps.google.com/maps?f=d&sadd...,46.538086&z=5

What do you guys who know the area better think?
IMO, I wouldn't consider MO, OH, TN or LA or any place in TX as the Southeast. I think of the Southeast as being any state below Maryland on the coast. To me, MO and OH are in the midwest; TN and LA are in the South, and TX is - Texas. I guess it is the Southwest, but it is so big it contains a little of various parts and that makes it unique and interesting. Anyway, as I said, IMO.

I grew up in the Northeast but have travelled to the Southeast and the South as well as lots of other places in the US. So, if you start off in DC, I would try to spend as much time there as possible. The Smithsonian is so big - you cannot possibly see all of it in one day. Think of seeing the Victoria and Albert museum and the British Museum in one day.

Virginia is lovely, with pretty beaches and at least two famous places in American history - Williamsburg, which recreates a colonial village and Fredericksburg where a famous Civil War battle was fought.

We went to visit my brother when he lived in NC, so all I saw of it was the Greensboro area but there are pretty beaches in NC, too.

Since Nikki is in Memphis, where I have never been but always wanted to go, I would go from NC to Memphis for a day or two (remember, you have a tour guide who is a cat lover!)

I have been to Atlanta, but it was when DH was there on business and Jenny was still in a stroller, so I probably didn't see enough of the sights of this pretty city.

I lived in FL for 4 months. There is Orlando with all sorts of attractions besides just DisneyWorld. The Tampa/St. Petersburg area is pretty (lived there). There is a Ringling Brothers museum in Bradenton (near). I have never been to Miami or the Everglades but I always wanted to see both.

I would drive to AL. Montgomery is a city rich in history of the South. Then head for LA and...
New Orleans! Spend maybe a little more time there than you think you should. It is a unique city with 2 different cultural heritages. The French Quarter is fantastic and some of the best chefs in the world are in New Orleans. Commander's Palace in the Garden district is awesome. Another interesting place is the Catholic cemetary. Trust me on this one. And the Mississippi River is there.

You can drive to TX from LA but I do not know exactly what that route would be and it depends on where you want to go. I have been to both Dallas and Houston and they both are interesting. When I go back to TX, I want to see Austin and San Antonio.

Okay, so here are my IMO recommendations for a fly-drive trip. Fly into DC and go south, stopping wherever you want in VA, NC - side trip to TN - SC, GA and FL. Next drive to AL and LA. Take a flight or drive to TX. Fly out of TX back to CA.

Reserve OH and MO for a trip that you make to the midwest and includes MI, IL, IN etc.

As you can tell, I love to travel but I am not opinionated at all.
post #13 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by CarolPetunia View Post
Having been to Dallas, Houston, and San Antonio, I'd recommend Austin!
..I agree
post #14 of 20
The problem with Texas...

Well, it's as we've always told our friends: "Texas is a great place to live, but you wouldn't want to visit there!"

That's especially true of Austin. Really a nice place, but not much to do for a visitor.

San Antonio is nice to visit, too.

And, of course, from San Antonio or Houston, you have to go north to get to the Deep South.

If you make it to Dallas when I'm home, I'd be more than glad to take you sightseeing.
post #15 of 20
If y7ou go to Asheville,NC you might also want to check out Black Mountain which is very close to Asheville. It's a pretty litte town. I don't know if the black berries will be ready, but they're delicious.
post #16 of 20
I'm glad to see New Orleans is on your list. I lived there for about eight months in 2006, and loved every bit of it. It's definitely got its problems, but it's a great place to visit if you know what places to go to.

If you stop in eastern Tennessee, you can visit Dollywood It's actually a cooler place than you'd expect. I had a lot of fun there, and I hate amusement parks.
post #17 of 20
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by mrblanche View Post
The problem with Texas...

Well, it's as we've always told our friends: "Texas is a great place to live, but you wouldn't want to visit there!"

That's especially true of Austin. Really a nice place, but not much to do for a visitor.

San Antonio is nice to visit, too.

And, of course, from San Antonio or Houston, you have to go north to get to the Deep South.

If you make it to Dallas when I'm home, I'd be more than glad to take you sightseeing.
There's plenty of things to see in Texas - rednecks in the wild for a start

We can't come to the US and not go to Texas. If Houston isn't too exciting, maybe we'll try to find a ranch that's somewhere along our way instead, and get the ranch experience.
post #18 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by mrblanche View Post
The problem with Texas...

Well, it's as we've always told our friends: "Texas is a great place to live, but you wouldn't want to visit there!"

That's especially true of Austin. Really a nice place, but not much to do for a visitor.

San Antonio is nice to visit, too.

And, of course, from San Antonio or Houston, you have to go north to get to the Deep South.

If you make it to Dallas when I'm home, I'd be more than glad to take you sightseeing.
Gary and I have been to Austin, too. I agree here - there's not a lot to do in Austin for visitors. We loved San Antonio as tourists because it's beautiful, and the River Walk is so nice and so much fun!

So.... Carol and Cococat, I still have to disagree!

Having been to Dallas, Houston, San Antonio AND Austin - I'd still have to recommend San Antonio!

Whatever you choose to do Sarah, I'm sure you'll love it!

Laurie
post #19 of 20
Historic Charleston, SC would be a great place to visit (and is definitely a southeastern state ) There are PLENTY of things to do ... visit the downtown area, all the old plantation home tours, walking tours, dinner cruise on the harbor, shopping on historic King Street, etc. Rob and I are about 20 miles or so outside that area
post #20 of 20
Being from right smack in the middle of the Southeast (central Alabama), I would definitely make an effort to spend a day or two in the Mountains (Gatlinburg, Chattanooga, or, barring that, at least drive part of the BlueRidge Parkway in North Carolina on your trip), and you can go to a wonderful aquarium in either Gatlinburg or Chattanooga. The drive from Ohio, through the Tennessee Mountains to Charlotte is really pretty (don't advise it in winter though, been there, done that- gah! lol).

The white sand beaches in Florida are a must (bring really dark sunglasses!)-try a little section of beach called SeaGrove, between Panama and Destin- really nice spot, and a town called SeaSide is nearby- just beautiful, with lots of little shops.

Let's see...downtown Charlotte, NC is really pretty (lots of resturants and shops, etc.); Huntsville, Alabama has the Space and Rocket Center (see a real space shuttle! lol), and there are lots of out of the way nature spots/national parks you might want to research if you end up going through any part of Alabama. It looks like you might be going near Mobile, Alabama on your way to Florida- there are lots of historic/pretty things in Mobile, if you want to check it out.

I know there is more, but it's late and I'm tired- if I think of anything else, I'll come back . Sounds like a great trip!
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