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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Location
    Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, United Arab Emirates
    Posts
    1

    Default Minneapolis to Seattle for a Family from Abu Dhabi

    We are an American family living in the United Arab Emirates, with an 11 and 9 year olds. We haven't been back stateside in 3 years. In July/August, we will finally be in the Minneapolis area and are thinking of a trip to Seattle. Our goal is to show "America" to the kids, mostly those things they won't get to see here in the middle eastern desert (lush greenery, mountains, American history...). We are planning a 10-day trip, a leisurely one to Seattle with a Vancouver side trip, and a fast one going back home to Mpls.

    I have looked at all the other threads and suggestions but I am seriously overwhelmed! We'll have a stopover in the Blackhills, of course, but that's about what I can think of! Your help will be appreciated.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    South of England.
    Posts
    10,748

    Default A few suggestions.

    Hello and welcome to RTA !

    Some of the places on my list would include Badlands, Mt Rushmore, Custer State Park, Bighorn Nat forest and Rec area and then Yellowstone and the Grand Tetons where I would spend at least 3 days, a truly amazing experience. From there you could head through Missoula and Couer d' Alene and possibly visit Mt Ranier or Mt Baker, or head toward Twin Falls where nearby you will find Craters of the Moon and Shoshone Falls and then up through Boise. You could head into Portland along the lovely Columbia river Gorge on this route. These are just a few of many options so it's time to open the maps and see what areas appeal to you the most and then a route will start to form.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia
    Posts
    6,936

    Default Yellowstone and much more.

    Yellowstone would definitely have to be on your schedule. The thing with Yellowstone is, that it has a very short season, is much sought after, and the ideal is to stay within the park. Since accommodation is limited, I suggest that you check now, and if it is all booked, keep checking back as cancellations come up all the time. Even if you have to choose more than one place to stay, it will be so worthwhile.

    Since you will be coming along the I-90 corridor, I highly recommend that you take the Beartooth Highway into the north east entrance of Yellowstone. Driving over Beartooth Pass, and possibly stopping at the top of the world store, will be a great experience.

    At all NPs, be sure to sign the children up to the Junior Ranger program. It will teach them (and you) lots, not just about the parks, but the wildlife, the history, etc., and the children get a small souvenir to take home.

    Have the children keep a journal of the trip, to look back on later. It can be done in an ordinary schoolbook, or similar, and each night before bed they can record the most memorable parts of that day... along with stubs from tickets, pictures from brochures, drawings and photos (after you have printed them).

    Check out your maps, as there are many historical sites along the I-90 corridor. You could also look at Theodore Roosevelt NP.

    Lifey

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Green County, Wisconsin
    Posts
    13,063

    Default time concerns

    Quote Originally Posted by Jennifer S O'Brien View Post
    In July/August, we will finally be in the Minneapolis area and are thinking of a trip to Seattle. Our goal is to show "America" to the kids, mostly those things they won't get to see here in the middle eastern desert (lush greenery, mountains, American history...). We are planning a 10-day trip, a leisurely one to Seattle with a Vancouver side trip, and a fast one going back home to Mpls.
    One concern I see right away is the lack of time. 10 days just isn't much time to drive from Minnesota to the West Coast and back. At a brisk pace, you need 3 days just to cover the miles one-way, so for a round trip, a minimum of 6 of your 10 days are already gone. That leaves you with just 4 days to explore. Presumably, you'll want at least a day or two in Seattle itself, and another day for a sidetrip to Vancouver, so now you are down to at most 1 or 2 days to explore on your "leisurely" drive west.

    If you spend 1 day in the Badlands/Black Hills, your extra time is basically gone, and that's before you add in any extra American History (Little Bighorn Battlefield, perhaps?), Mountains (Beartooth Pass?) or the ultimate in unique America, Yellowstone National Park (which is about as far away as anything as you could ever find in the middle east as I could ever imagine). As others have mentioned, Yellowstone is a huge place, and you really need a minimum of 2-3 days just to see the park's highlights.

    So with 10 days, yes, you could drive to Seattle and back, but I don't think you'd have quite the trip you are imagining. If I were you, I'd either try to find quite a bit more time, or scale back the destination, and not focus on trying to get to the west coast.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    South of England.
    Posts
    10,748

    Default

    I agree that time is a concern if you have 10 days in total for the whole trip, but I read it as being 10 days just to get to Seattle. Please confirm which it is.

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