Hi there all!
I am a 26-year-old single female living in southwest Virginia. I'm on vacation from June 24 to July 7. I want to do a big road trip, but am wondering what is a realistic trip for this time period? The furthest I've driven by myself is to south Florida.
I do plan on (and am excited about) doing this trip solo. I know that makes time constraint more of an issue since I can't just trade off driving duties with a friend.
The big questions:
1) What is a reasonable distance to cover in this time?
It's easy to romanticize driving to the coast and back, but I'll freely admit being totally ignorant in this capacity, having only ever flown to the west. How far back and forth can I go in 12 days and still make a memorable trip?
2) Book ahead, or do my own thing?
I'm not *planning* on stopping at a ton of roadside attractions. The way I'm thinking, I have little problem with hauling myself through several states without seeing much at all, but would still like the luxury of traveling at my own speed and stopping off wherever I feel comfortable. It seems to make sense to, rather than book nights here or there in advance, to stop when I feel tired/interested in a place/whatever. Am I correct in this assumption?
In whatever direction I go in, I have one or two destinations where friends can put me up whenever I arrive. The other stop-off nights, I'll just get a room.
3) Any recommendations on where to go during this time?
It's the summer. It's around Independence Day. It's the height of travel/tourist season. Where to go? I'll admit being a little more attracted to heading south/southwest than north, but I really am up for anything. I would also love to hear good recommendations on where to spend 4th of July, particularly as someone traveling alone.
4) Any good tips/warnings for solo roadtrippers?
I know it's a beautiful and fascinating world out there, but it can also be a scary one. While I've done some solo travel in Europe, I've never done a BIG road trip by myself. My Florida trip was just an A to B and back type of deal.
5) Rental car advice?
I don't think I'm going to take my own car on this adventure. Great car, but not sure about it doing this long-haul deal. Anyone have any recommendations as to good cars to take on a long driving trip? I currently drive a large sedan.
6) What if I kinda want to bring my dog?
Has anyone else traveled with their dog? Mine is a 17-pound adult mix who travels well, but I've never taken him on a road trip. I would LOVE to take him, but not sure if he'll be too much of an inhibition or not. I do have family to take care of him if it would be better to leave him in VA.
Thanks everyone for any advice you can give me; I appreciate it greatly! Happy travels to all!