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  1. Default Last Minute Road Trip From Hudson Valley, NY to Myrtle Beach. Advice Please :)

    Hi All!

    I hope everyone is having a wonderful holiday season. I was wondering if I could get a bit of advice from seasoned road trip enthusiasts. My husband and I would like to take the kids down to Myrtle Beach from the 26th- 30th. The earliest we could leave is Christmas afternoon and we'd need to be back by the 30th at 8pm. Our children are 13, 15, and 21 (special needs).

    My husband and I have done road trips like this in the past- just not under these time constraints. Do you think we could do the drive and still feel relaxed enough? Or should we plan something a bit closer? All advice is appreciated :).

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin


    Welcome to the RTA Forum!

    You're looking at a drive that's a bit over 700 miles, and especially noting that you'll be traveling with 3 children and driving along some of the busiest roads in America, during the time of year with the least amount of daylight, you're really looking at a day and a half each way.

    So if you leave Christmas afternoon, you'd get to MB on the afternoon/evening of the 26th. You'd really have to look at getting back on the road the afternoon of the 29th and get at least a little ways north, to be back by the evening of the 30th.

    So, 3 full days worth of driving for what works out to about 2.5 days in Myrtle Beach. It's certainly not out of the question, but it also doesn't sound overly relaxing to me either. Perhaps something like Virginia Beach or the Outer Banks of NC might be a better choice for this trip?

  3. Default

    Thanks for the welcome! Ahh,completely makes sense. Virginia beach or even Williamsburg would probably be best. Thanks so much for your advice :).

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default An Option on Getting There, and Also in the Area

    I think Michael gave you some great advice on shortening the drive and maximizing the 'rest' portion of this RoadTrip, and I'm really glad to see that you have taken it to heart. Still, it's going to take a full day to drive from the Hudson Valley (I used Kingston for route/time purposes) to Virginia Beach. Now probably you can do that in one calendar day if you decide to wait until the day after Christmas but, as Michael pointed out, with holiday traffic on that weekend, it wouldn't be fun. What would work out better than that is taking the later part of Christmas day and the early part of Boxing Day to make the drive. I'm also going to suggest a route that avoids the worst of the traffic nightmares (New York and Washington) on the way down.

    Heading south on I-87, use I-287 to swing as wide as practicable around New York. I've driven that road on a holiday weekend (Fourth of July) and I would expect it to be busy, but still moving at a nice clip. Continue all the way around to the Garden State Parkway and take that south instead of the New Jersey Turnpike. If you leave mid-day on Christmas, then Manahawkin would be a good overnight site. It's a good compromise in that it gets you past the entire New York metro area and offers easy access to the beach (at Ship Bottom/Surf City) for an evening's stroll. Continuing south from there you'd take the Garden State Parkway all the way to the end and then US-9 to North Cape May and the Cape May-Lewes Ferry over to Lewes Delaware. Stay on US-9 on the opposite shore down to US-13 south and the Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel over to the Norfolk/Virginia Beach area.

    Now the other advantage of going to Virginia rather than Myrtle Beach is that there's a whole lot more to do in the Virginia Beach area: history, theme parks, and beaches are just the start. And in fact don't miss the opportunity to stop on Sea Gull Island while using the Bridge/Tunnel on the way over to have lunch or just watch the commercial and/or naval vessels steaming in and out of Chesapeake Bay. You might also want to consider a day trip down to the northern end of the Outer Banks (about a hundred miles to the south) and visit Kitty Hawk and Fort Raleigh.


  5. #5


    The routing AZBuck provided above is a good suggestion for traffic avoidance and some more scenic driving. Along that vein, and not knowing what you want to do at your destination, some closer in destinations are Cape May, NJ (where the ferry is located); across the Delaware Bay at Lewes, DE; a little further down the highway to Rehoboth, DE; and Ocean City, MD.

    The village of Lewes, DE, has a nice downtown area with some shopping and eateries. Just to the south is Cape Henlopen State Park, with beaches, some old Naval batteries and a submarine lookout tower. Another diversion south are a string of discount shopping centers (no sales tax!) and then the town of Rehoboth, which has restaurants and shopping, and a destination itself.

    Ocean City, MD, features a boardwalk, some wide beaches and Assateague and Chincoteague National Seashores to the south. Beach pony heaven. OC/MD is slow this time of year compared to peak summer season but is no longer deserted (as it was 30 yrs ago during the winter).

    Virginia Beach/Norfolk (and Williamsburg and Yorktown north on I-95) provides a city atmosphere although the beach area slows down quite a bit during the winter. Being a city (asides from the VaBeach beachfront area) means it doesn't slow down--plenty of restaurants, movie theaters, shopping areas, etc. VaBeach is about 2-3 hours south of Ocean City (or Salisbury along the US 13 route).

  6. Default

    Thanks so much for the wonderful advice. Small world- we use to live in Kingston. That route sounds like a plan- and doing it overnight would probably work out best. We'll definitely have to visit Kitty Hawk and Fort Raleigh. I wish we had more time, but there's always spring break!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Joplin MO


    If you are going to take the ferry, you should check the schedules and make reservations.

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