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  1. Default USA Road Trip - from Australia (incl route 66)


    My boyfriend and I are planning a big roadtrip across the US! We're very excited and just wanted any suggestions/tips for our upcoming trip.

    We're flying into San Fransico and driving from San Fran to Santa Monica,then we're heading along route 66 to Chicago,we're planning on spending a few days in Chicago before heading to Cleveland, then onto New York. We're going to be in NY for about 4 days then we're going to fly to Oralando for staying in Disneyworld.

    It's our first time to the US and this is costing us a LOT but we're so excited. We plan on heading over in May 2009.

    Any tips/suggestions would be greatly appreciated!

    Sorry - I should have included our plan!

    Day 1 – San Francisco, California
    Day 2 – San Francisco, California to midpoint between Santa Monica, California
    Day 3 – Midpoint to Santa Monica, California
    Day 4 – Santa Monica, California
    Day 5 – Santa Monica, California
    Day 6 – Santa Monica California to Las Vegas, Nevada
    Day 7 – Las Vegas, Nevada
    Day 8 – Las Vegas, Nevada to Grand Canyon, Arizona
    Day 9 – Grand Canyon, Arizona to Holbrook, Arizona
    Day 10 – Holbrook, Arizona to Albuquerque, New Mexico
    Day 11 – Albuquerque, New Mexico to Santa Fe, New Mexico
    Day 12 – Santa Fe, New Mexico to Amarillo, Texas
    Day 13 – Amarillo, Texas to Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
    Day 14 – Oklahoma City, Oklahoma to Springfield, Missouri
    Day 15 - Springfield, Missouri to St Louis, Missouri
    Day 16 – St Louis, Missouri to Chicago, Illinois
    Day 17 – Chicago, Illinois
    Day 18 – Chicago, Illinois to Cleveland, Ohio
    Day 19 – Cleveland, Ohio to New York City, New York
    Day 20 – New York City, New York
    Day 21 – New York City, New York
    Day 22 – New York City, New York
    Day 23 – New York City, New York to Washington, DC (drop car) then flight to Orlando, Florida
    Day 24 – Orlando, Florida
    Day 25 – Orlando, Florida
    Day 26 – Orlando, Florida
    Day 27 – Orlando, Florida to San Francisco, California
    Day 27 – San Francisco, California to Melbourne, Australia
    Last edited by alissha; 03-18-2008 at 03:42 AM. Reason: adding travel plan

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    South of England.


    hi there
    that sounds like a wonderfull trip!!
    i guess that would be wide open to a number of options,so what are your main interests?
    from l.a. a visit to vegas is a must for most travellers and from there a trip over the hoover dam and then you can pick up an old part of route 66 through seligman and,again, the grand canyon is an obvious choice[a must do one imo if you have not been before]. it depends on how much time you want to give to this end of your trip,the national parks around here are could give a few days up in utah where you have parks like zion,bryce,capitol reef and so on,not to mention death valley and monument valley easily accessed from vegas and grand canyon.
    i would have thought it would be a comfortable 6 day drive giving you 9 days to play with in between but i'm sure some one with experience of this will be along to help out.
    Last edited by Southwest Dave; 03-18-2008 at 03:14 AM.

  3. Default Why Santa Monica?

    I do have to say.. a lot of visitors to LA always head for Santa Monica? And I'm curious.. why Santa Monica? It's near the Santa Monica Pier, a couple of good beaches, not far from the Getty Musuem, and Venice Beach... But most of the rest of LA is like on the other side of the city. Access to Hollywood is pretty much via surface streets and a fair distance (like 15 miles of surface streets) Disneyland is like an hour away.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Washington state coast/Olympic Peninsula

    Default Good job planning!

    You are allowing yourself a fair amount of time to stop and explore along the way. You won't be able to linger for hours, but you should be able to see most things if you keep at a nice, steady pace.

    I agree with Larrison that there are other places more centrally located to things you might want to see. If you're planning on seeing the Mouse, stay in Anaheim, for example. Why don't you share with us what you plan to see in LA and someone can give you advise as to where you should seek lodging. Since it looks like you're going to DisneyWorld in Orlando, it would be fun to compare the two parks.

  5. Default

    I picked Santa Monica over the last couple of days because I was a little overwhelmed with where we should stay right in LA. We’re looking to stay somewhere for no more than $200 per night in LA, if you have any suggestions that would be great. We probably won’t do Disneyland but would like to go see the celebrity houses, the walk of fame, Rodeo Drive, Sunset Strip etc. Just pretty much all the touristy things. We could possibly go to Disneyland if we’ve run out of things to see and do. The thing I was worried about in LA was picking the right places to stay. I’ve read on the internet and watched discovery shows on the gangs and I didn’t want to pick somewhere dangerous (ignorant I know!! – sorry). Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated?
    I think we’ll stay in Santa Monica the night before we begin our journey to Vegas so we can head straight onto route 66.

    Is downtown Chicago the best place to stay while we’re there too?

    Yeah – we’re spending the last bit of our trip at Disneyworld.

    Thanks so much for your responses!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    The Great Midwest, Illinois to be precise

    Default Great Trip

    Just a bit envious of you.

    Glad you chose Route 66 for the trip to Chicago.

    We have stayed at the Redondo Beach Motel on the Pacific Coast Highway. It is about 20 miles south of Santa Monica and was around $100 when we stayed in September 2006. Of course, rates fluctuate with the season.

    It is within walking distance of the Redondo Beach Pier which we like better than the Santa Monica Pier.

    Another really neat "undiscovered" town we found was Segundo, located between the two towns.

    For a real treat, while in Springfield, Mo, drive about 8 miles south on US-65 and get rolls "throwed" at you at Lambert's Cafe. That will be an experience.

    Of course, in the other Springfield, the Lincoln Museum, Bill Sheas, and Cozy Dog's. Here, I'd stay at the Route 66 Hotel south of town. Definitely try a horseshoe while in town.

    A little north of town, drop in on Ernie Edwards at the old Pig Hip Restaurant in Broadwell. He and Bill Shea will tell you lots of great stories.

    Chicago hotels are very expensive. Perhaps stay in the suburbs and take the Metra train downtown, which will drop you off at Union Station on Route 66. This will put you right by Lou Mitchell's and the Sears Tower.

    By the way, congratulations to your country for the locating of the HMAS Sydney. That is quite an interesting story.

  7. Default

    I was just wondering if you knew what the best guide to mapping out 66 was?

    I'm struggling to get my hands on some good maps/guides in the bookstores in Australia and was hoping I could order something online.

    Thanks for all your help RoadDog, I'll be sure to look into your suggestions.

    This is going to be a trip of a lifetime for us!

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin

    Default Guide to Guides

    On the RTA Route 66 Page, there is a whole list of recommended books on the subject. There are even links to the appropriate pages at Amazon, so even in Australia, you could easily purchase anyone of them, should you find one to your liking!

  9. Default

    thanks so much for all your help :)

    we're so excited about this.

    i know this forum is about roadtripping but i was wondering if anyone could recommend a website to buy internal USA airfares. We need to fly from NY to Orlando and from Orlando to San Fransico as this is where we have return flights to.

  10. #10

    Default Just my thoughts

    Sounds like a plan to me!! never made the trip on 66 from west to east (have east to west).

    I have just a couple refinements that you might want to consider. Like you I believe it will be much cheaper to stay in Santa Monica than in L.A. and not being familiar with LA you could find yourself in unsafe areas. It is not that long of a drive to see the things you want in LA from Santa Monica.

    When going from Santa Monica to Vegas, if you choose to use 66, which I recommend, be sure to take it from Needles/Topock to Kingman---probably the most scenic part of the route. It is only about a two hour drive from Kingman to downtown Vegas. Add a couple hours if you stop at Hoover Dam. When going from Vegas to the Grand Canyon, go back to Kingman and hit 66 thru Peach Springs going on to Seligman for a brief stop. Unless you have reservations for rooms at the Grand Canyon, you will probably want to stay in Flagstaff. On the east side of town there are old motels that fit the 66 motief but are clean and comfortable and cheap.

    So far as guide books on route 66, the best I have seen is "EZ66 Guide for Travelers" by Jerry McClanahan.

    Hope I have been of some help and
    Remember the journey is as important as the destination

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