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  1. #1

    Default Pre Christmas trip Austin-Miami

    Kia Ora everyone!

    My soon to be wife and I are in the midst of planning a wonderful honeymoon travelling for the first time from New Zealand to America for 5 weeks through December 2015 and January 2016.

    Whilst researching our holiday i stumbled across this wonderful website offering people amazing advice and insight into road tripping through your beautiful country.

    Among other adventures we have decided to dedicate a couple of weeks to an American road trip travelling from Austin to Miami. Our dates of travel are Dec. 10-23. I apologise if you guys have already posted advice on a similar route, I tried to find something before posting to prevent doubling up.

    We can't be flexible with our dates due to flight comittments on either side. The only real certainties we have are that we want to spend around 5 days in Florida to visit theme parks, Space center and Miami etc.

    We would love to see something in all of the states that we are travelling through, we love culture, history, food, wine and all things beautiful.

    Any advice would be greatly appreciated!


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Melbourne, Australia

    Default A few suggestions.

    Hi Fraser, and Welcome to the Great American Roadtrip Froum.

    Congratulations on your upcoming nuptials. I can't think of anything better than to plan a road trip as part of your honeymoon.

    Whereas I know FL relatively well, I am not as familiar with the States in between there and Austin. I'll leave that up to others. Just wanted to draw to your attention some things which may benefit you during the planning and when on the road.

    Do you have any good detailed maps of the US or of the States through which you will be travelling. If they are not available locally, I suggest you get a Rand McNally road atlas, which you can order from the RTA store. You will have it in a couple of weeks. It has not only all the routes you could take, all the cities and towns through or by which you will pass, but hilights the scenic routes as well. You will find most of the attractions - natural, historical, touristy, etc. - along the way are marked on the maps. Much more so than you will ever get to see on a little screen.

    If you are a member of your local automobile club, be sure to take your membership with you. It will give you access to free maps and tourist information from the AAA anywhere in the US.

    There's nothing like having good maps while planning a trip, and of course, they are essential when on the road. Don't be tempted to rely solely on your electronics. Many have done so at their peril - some fatal.


  3. #3


    Many thanks for your congratulations Lifey!

    Thanks for your advice, we don't have any maps beyond the google variety, we would have planned our entire trip this way but not anymore! I will definitely be investing in a Rand Mcnally road atlas. I love the idea of seeing multiple different routes, and circled spots we want to see in black and white.

    We are AA members in NZ, i wouldn't have thought of taking my card with me but i will make sure to now.

    With your knowledge of FL what cool spots do you think we should check out beyond the steriotypical tourist spots i mentioned in my original post?

    We would love to check out some different national parks or hidden swamps. Things that we would never see in NZ.


  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Melbourne, Australia

    Default Your interests may be different.

    Quote Originally Posted by NZ Fraser View Post
    We would love to check out some different national parks or hidden swamps. Things that we would never see in NZ.
    The beauty of a road trip is that you can go exactly where you want to go, not necessarily what others may think are the best spots. To illustrate that point, the last place I would ever go is a theme park.

    Having said that, to my way of thinking, and if you are interested in NPs, the Keys are a must. It is possible to drive the full length of the oversea highway in two and a half hours, but that is driving it. Attractions I loved along the way are Wild Bird Center's Sanctuary and Big Pine Key Check towards the end of this thread

    Then there is the Everglades NP and Big Cypress National Preserve. The latter being the last refuge of the endangered Florida Panther. They run walking tours from the visitor centre. In fact a nice day would be to take the Tamiami trail west of Miami to (almost) Naples, and Alligator Alley back to Miami. Along the trail there are also businesses which run airboat tours into the Everglades, though not into the national park. Along the Alley there are rest areas with viewing platforms to see the Alligators in the water.

    In the Everlades NP the Pelican runs tours from Flamingo into the back waters. There are boardwalks which will take you within feet of alligators, when they are out of the water. There is a Pine forest with the tallest tree almost five feet! And then there are all the Vultures near Flamingo, where you can also see the accommodation which used to be there before it was destroyed by hurricane Wilma.

    And driving south from the Kennedy Space Centre along US1 there are the magnificent murals on The Arcade Building in Fort Pierce.

    You might also like to look at travelling from New Orleans along the gulf coast on US90 to Tallahassee. Then take USalt27 and 27 to Ocala. These are divided roads with an almost highway speed limit, but ever so much more scenic, and take you through some lovely small towns.

    Yeah! there is lots to see in Florida once you start digging around. (Most if not all mentioned here, you will find in the Rand McNally.)


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