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  1. Default 3 kiwis in America

    Hi everyone ,
    My husband and I and our 2 year old are planning on doing a road trip October 2017 from New York to Texas . We are from New Zealand and we have never gone to the states before so we want this to be a trip of a lifetime . We reckon we will have about 3 weeks and we are looking for suggestions on where to go . We love places that are hidden gems and off the beaten track .
    Also what's your advice as far as traveling in October as we have no idea what weather is like that time of year in the states ??
    Any advice is kindly appreciated so that we can start planning our trip :)
    Thanks in advance !!

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


    Welcome to the RTA Forum!

    Well, we'll start with the easy one: October is probably my favorite month to travel in the US. Very generally, temperatures are in the sweet spot between summer heat and winter cold. It is well past the peak of summer tourist season, although most seasonal attractions are still open, and the changing of the seasons can make for quite the colorful show in forest areas. The biggest downsides are that October is peak season for areas where people travel just to look at the fall colors, and if you're along the Atlantic or Gulf Coasts, you do have to be aware that it is hurricane season.

    Beyond that, however, there is very little we can tell you. You're talking about a huge area with millions of possibilities. Texas alone is 2.5 times larger than New Zealand, and you haven't even said where in Texas you plan to visit. The route options between NY and TX are equally huge - you could head down to Florida and go across the gulf coast to TX, you could go across the Great Lakes towards Chicago and down, or you could do a million possible routes in between.

    You really need to start by laying out a rough idea of what you have come up with so far, what is on your personal "must see" list, and how long you plan to stay in places like NY and your other major stops. Once you can provide some of that information, only then will others be able to know what kinds of hidden gems could then fit in with your plan.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Melbourne, Australia

    Default Hidden gems are where you find them.

    A fallacy is that somewhere there is a list of hidden gems. Once a place is mentioned in a guide book or on the internet, it ceases to be a hidden gem. It will be widely known to all qho read these published words.

    Hidden gems are those things you find by sheer chance, by getting off the high speed highways and wandering the backroads, by speaking with the locals in any locality, and asking what their favourite spots are.

    Even if I knew of any along your intended route, and I were to mention them here, they would cease to be hidden gems. The tens of thousands of folk who visit this site every day would be aware of it.


  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    South of England.

    Default Getting started.

    Any advice is kindly appreciated so that we can start planning our trip :)
    The best thing for you to do right now is research. You will find lots of info and ideas here at RTA, from searching around the forums and checking out the links to road trip planning, route and attraction links in the tool bars above and below and by studying a good map. Once you have at least a few ideas mapped out and tell us more about your interests we can offer some meaningful suggestions. If in the meantime you have any specific questions, just ask.

    I would just say that there are many great areas further to the west to explore, full of National and State parks and diverse scenery. If you want to visit Texas in particular then that's great, but if you haven't done a lot of research to this point you might want to check out Utah, Arizona and even California with 3 weeks to spare.

    Enjoy the planning !

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Southern California


    Sometimes, a hidden gem is hidden right out in plain sight. People go by them (including myself) without realizing what they're missing. Some of them are mentioned in AAA Tour Books as "Gems" but people ignore those too, often because they are only spending so much time in a given area and they have to pick and choose.

    Do you have maps yet? If not, you could order a Rand McNally Road Atlas from this site (just scroll down to the big blue box) and have it in a few weeks. Many things are labeled on these maps, from national parks, historic sites and forests, to state parks, historic sites, and so forth. Even some of the larger museums are on these maps.


  6. Default

    We were planning on doing the gulf and Atlantic coasts but if it's hurricane season we may have to rethink out route . We thought we would stay in New York for about 5 days and then go from there . Going to Texas isn't a must someone just told us to go there for the gun shops as my husband is a keen hunter .
    I'm pretty keen to go to Nashville aswell somewhere along the line . I've done quite a bit of reasearch but i still can't decide where we should go as there's Ofcourse a lot to see in a big country . If people could tell us some must see places that would be cool !

  7. Default

    Also we do prefer country side over city so apart from New York and possible Houston we aren't to keen on visiting big cities

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Melbourne, Australia

    Default Why not fulfill both your wishes in one.

    As mentioned, get the maps and do your research. Absolutely no need to go to Texas for gunshops, you will find them abundantly in most States, especially the western States. Thing is, you will not find the spectacular national parks in Texas. The best known and most visited ones are in California - Yosemite, Sequoia,. Death Valley, etc.; Utah - Zion Bryce, Arches, Canyonlands, and more; Arizona - Grand Canyon and others.

    So look for spots which fulfill the wishes of both of you. Once you have your maps, and do your research, you will no doubt come up with much more The maps will also show you the many many routes you have to choose from when you head out of NYC to the west/southwest. You will note that besides the high speed interstates, there are secondary highways and lots of local roads. As well as all that, scenic routes are highlighted,

    There will always be someone here to help refine your route and fill in the gaps. So as Dave said, once you have some dots on the maps, ask away.


  9. Default

    Thanks guys ,
    Have ordered the rand McNally road atlas so once we get that we will look at routes and ask you guys or help then .

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