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  1. #1

    Default One week road trip through!!

    My fiance and I (both 28 years old, if it matters) are leaving chicago during the second or third week of april. Going through indiana, ohio, pennsylvania, maryland, west virginia, virginia, tennessee, kentucky, and back up through indian and illinois. we'll be driving on the following highways in this order; 90/80 east to 70/76 east to 522 south(small highway) to 81 south to 40 west to 65 north to 90/94 west, (may have some of the east or south directions wrong because Im not familiar completely with some of the highways) we plan on seeing shenandoah nat'l park, great smoky mountains nat'l park, mammoth cave nat'l park, and the nat'l corvette museum(in kentucky). My questions are if anyone can suggest on other "big name" sites that we should see or stop at, or any other roads not far off the highways that we should drive through for beautiful scenery, and any other tips. I appreciate any help guys, thanks in advance.

  2. #2


    Sounds like a busy week! Welcome to RoadTrip America!

    Please excuse me not replying in great depth right now but I've got a long day ahead of me tomorrow and I start work in 5 and 1/2 hours. I really should go to bed. Just wanted to say you may want to have a read of my account of a recent trip through part of that area. Hope it's of interest to you.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Central California

    Default Fallingwater


    Being from Chicago, I assume you are familiar with Frank Lloyd Wright and his architecture in your area. One of his most famous houses, Fallingwater, is very near your route, in western Pennsylvania. To say that it is a "must see" is an understatement.

    If you like history and historic forts, one of the best in the country, Fort Ligonier, is nearby in Ligonier, PA. It has one of the largest collections of French and Indian war replica artillery you'll see anywhere, as well as a beautifully reconstructed English fort.

    Just south of Shenandoah NP in Charlottesville, VA is Thomas Jefferson's Monticello, James Madison's Ash Lawn-Highland and Michie Tavern (two president's homes and a restored tavern, all within a few miles of each other on the same road).

    Finally, one of the best distillery tours is at Makers Mark, one of the best Bourbon distilleries. It is a little out of the way, but since they are a family operation, you get a lot of personal attention. The curious thing, though, is that they are in a dry county so you can't sample at the distillery. We went across the county line and bought a couple of airline-sized bottles to do our tasting. Good stuff!!!

    Craig Sheumaker
    co-author of the travel guide: America's Living History-The Early Years

  4. #4

    Default Early Spring

    I wholeheartedly agree about the attractions around Charlottesville, VA, just 35 miles or so from Shenandoah NP.

    I would caution you, however, to consider the possibility of weather-related closure or restrictions in Shenandoah NP and for the Smokies. It's not unusual for there to be snow or ice well into April. Then again, you could have bluebird weather. Communication with the NP authorities ahead of time should keep you posted as to what's open and what's available.


  5. #5

    Default any ideas where to go from chicago??

    so here's the dilemma, my fiance and i have 6 days to take a road trip from chicago to anywhere. We have been to mount rushmore so we dont wanna go there. we also dont wanna drive forever and a day either. lookin for a drive with beautiful scenery of course, nice places to go and see, maybe take some tours of whatever the area has to offer and see things we haven't seen before. we're going the 2nd or 3rd week of april and we're a young couple. looking for some good ideas guys and i know you have them, this site is great and i appreciate all your help, thanks in advance.

    {Editor's Note: This was a new thread -- but it looks like the same trip and therefore has been merged back into your original thread}
    Last edited by Mark Sedenquist; 01-15-2008 at 11:18 AM. Reason: Policy Clarification

  6. #6

    Default How about this?

    You might consider a loop taking in St Louis, the Ozarks, Memphis, the Corvette Museum, and Mammoth Cave, thence back to Chicago. That gives you the Gateway Arch (a cool ride in my book), some mountains (I think the Ozarks are pretty neat--hiking, canoeing, whitewater rafting, trout fishing), some country music/touristy stuff at Branson, MO, blues, BBQ and Elvis in Memphis, your 'Vette stuff not too far away at Bowling Green, then the awesome Mammoth Cave. I was on a geology field trip to Mammoth Cave WAY back in the day (mid 1970s) and we had bitterly cold temps in late March, as luck would have it, and we were camping, of course. But, it's always about 56 deg F in the cave.

    A little further south than the Ozarks are the Ouchitas, and at the eastern/southern end of the Ouchitas are Hot Springs, AR and Murfreesboro, AR, locations of some nice resorts and the only regularly productive diamond mining site in the US. Find a diamond at the state park digging site and it's yours.


  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin

    Default More ideas

    Yesterday we had a similar question about ideas for a weeklong trip from Wisconsin. The ideas from that thread could be helpful for you as well.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    The Great Midwest, Illinois to be precise

    Default Civil War Battlefields

    In Pennsylvania, there's Gettysburg. Maryland has Antietam. Of course, Virginia has lots of battlefields.

    Plus, the West Virginia Turnpike has some of the most beautiful scenery you're likely to see.

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