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  1. Default Philadelphia to LA, Cali.

    Hey new member, nice forum... So0o I am driving out to Los Angeles from south eastern PA (about 40mins north of philly) in early August with a friend who will be staying and i will be flying back... luckily her dad works for an airline so i am all set on the way back.

    What we need is advice on getting there.. so far we have found 2 routes.. Interstates 40 and 80... and it seems like I-40 is our choice due to the grand canyon.. however i can be persuaded to take the northern route if the places to see on the way are awesome... ex- national parks. cities .. things that would best the grand canyon.. if that makes sense haha.

    If you could help with any destinations that you feel we need to see.. or would be good places to hunker down in at night.. whether they be hotels, cities, national parks... that type of thing i would greatly appreciate it.. thanks!!

    So far the destinations on the way i would like to see are

    St. Louis
    Grand Canyon

    Possible sites --

    Petrified Forest

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default Seems Like You've Made Up Your Mind

    Welcome aboard the RoadTrip America Forums!

    All the places you've listed as 'like to see' or 'possible' are on a route that would be far more accurately labeled I-40 rather than I-80, so it seems pretty clear which way you'd like to go. It's also pretty much the most direct route and could be driven in as little as 5 days with minimal stops. Any time that you can spend on the drive in addition to those 5 days could be spent on exploring and enjoying the attractions along the way, so I hope you'll be able to take at least a week to get to L.A. For scenic interest, I'd recommend that you use I-95 to Baltimore (No, that's not the scenic part) and then I-70/I-79/I-64 through Maryland, West Virginia, Kentucky, Indiana and Illinois to St. Louis. Possible stops in addition to those you've listed would then include Mammoth Cave National Park, the Ozarks, the Oklahoma City Memorial, Petroglyph National Monument, Las Vegas and the Mojave National Preserve. A couple of those, notably Mammoth Cave and Las Vegas involve moderate detours, but mot anything that will take you too far out of your way. The main thing is to set aside the time required for whatever you decide to do and see rather than trying to squeeze too many things into too little time.

    Last edited by AZBuck; 05-29-2009 at 08:16 AM. Reason: Typo

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Joplin MO


    I'd modify Buck's suggestion - take I-78 to I-81 to I-70 to I-68 to get to I-79 and I-64. Then out of STL, take I-44 to I-40, following the old 66 routing.

  4. Default

    thank you both. would these scenic road options you have suggested add more time/length to the trip or is it negligible?

    also we would probably not like the trip to take over a week as i need to be back by a decent date to prepare myself to begin schooling in charleston, sc. ..... which will probably be made another thread in the near future.
    does anyone have any experience visiting these cities? And/or opinions on which of them we should visit and not visit and why?

    St. Louis, Albuquerque, Amarillo, Tulsa...

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default Not Chosen for the Scenery

    The routes that glc and I suggested weren't chosen primarily for their scenic value (which is not to say that they're ugly by any stretch) but rather to be the best combination of efficient and relaxing so that your trip is as quick and as pleasant as possible. Any added time to the flat out fastest route is negligible and any route you take will require at least 5 days. If I had to choose between the 4 cities you list, I'd absolutely choose St. Louis with highlights including the Arch (and the Museum of Westward Expansion underneath it), a world class and free zoo, Forest Park (host to the 1904 World's Fair and home to some wonderful free museums), the Mississippi, etc. I might also be tempted to take a slight detour north of Albuquerque to visit Santa Fe and its many art galleries, Saint Francis Cathedral, Palace of the Governors and the Plaza. I have yet to have had a reason to stop in Amarillo or Tulsa despite several drives through.

    Last edited by AZBuck; 05-29-2009 at 02:14 PM.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Joplin MO


    For me, the only reason to stop in Amarillo is for dinner at the Big Texan. I also can't think of anything to stop for in Tulsa.

    I also chose my suggested roads to avoid tolls. I-68 and I-79 are actually quite scenic. If you are 40 minutes north of Philly, you are probably very near I-78.

    Buck's route, as modified by me, adds 50 miles and about an hour and a half to the trip. Well worth it. You are looking at about 2800 miles, which is 5 long days on the road, so if you have a week you have some time to play.

  7. Default

    thanks guys..

    glc- yes i am familiar with I-78 and I-81 and have taken 81 to at least wvu once before during the fall.. very beautiful drives.. so that looks like the best bet...

    azbuck- your suggestions for St.. louis seem perfect and i will be looking into them all.

    other than that.. i guess any other suggestions from ppl on this forum would be welcomed...

    i was interested in the texas pan handle(?).. but haven't found anything to do there yet haha... the Big Texan looks scrumptious though.

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