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  1. Default To - NY - NJ - Washington DC - To

    Hello every1,

    Im planning a road trip from Toronto to NY-Washington - Toronto in the long weekend in september ( sep 4), its a family trip with 4 of us in all to travel these 2 cities in US in about 7-8 days. I would like to know about any suggestions for Hotel/motel living in NY/NJ and in washington and any nice places to look at while driving to NY and then to DC. I have a GPS system which should be handy + ill buy US maps as well.

    I plan to leave Toronto on Saturday morning ( sep 2) and travel towards NY and am interested in stopping before NY for sighseeing (1-3 hrs before NY)..but im not sure about any places where i can stay for the night as well enjoy the evening seeing something nice and different...any suggestions ?? ( just heard about mohegan sun, which is a casino ). and then reach NJ on sunday and stay in NJ for the next 3 days till wednesday morning and then leave for washington on wednesday and plan to reach DC by wednesday night. Any advice on travelling to manhattan from NJ..i dont want to drive in i guess the subway will the best choice. Hw do i reach the subway from NJ - Edison city. ? A day pass for NY subway should be enough to reach most of the places, i guess - Times square, The Liberty statue,chrysler building..and any other places to go to in manhattan.

    Ive heard parking is costly in both NY and DC so i was thinking of living in the suburbs of DC ( and NJ - for NY ) and take the bus/subway in both cities...there's a lot to see in i was thinking of taking any of those govt. bus tours of DC as they would include most of the tourist places in DC and then take the car/ subway to look at the remaining places in DC. Any places/motels to stay at in georgetown cheaper and near from the main city ( white house area ) and then leave for Toronto on saturday morning.

    Any suggestions would be appreciated. This is my first trip to US, so im giving it enough time..5 days in the 2 cities and 3 days of driving..

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

    Default Mass Transit

    Welcome to the RTA Forum!

    Mass Transit is certainly a fine way to get around in both NY and DC. I'm not sure on the specifics, but in New York, whereever your train drops you off in manhatten, you should be within a short walk of a subway station. DC is also a good city for walking, as many of the major landmarks and museums are all within a few blocks of each other.

    Your best bet will be to go to the transit websites and take a look at the maps and schedules.

    New York Transit
    PATH Trains to NJ
    Washinton Metro
    Last edited by Midwest Michael; 08-18-2006 at 03:00 PM. Reason: Fixed Link

  3. #3


    Quote Originally Posted by cncity View Post
    ill buy US maps as well.
    In the DC area, AAA have a number of free maps for members - one for DC itself, and others for different quadrants of the 'burbs. If you prefer "book" or magzine format, a local publisher is ADC. I've seen their products at pharmcy stores such as CVS & Eckerds, major office supply stores, etc. Prices probably at the website. Discounts at Costco if you have a membership.
    Quote Originally Posted by cncity
    Ive heard parking is costly in both NY and DC so i was thinking of living in the suburbs of DC ... Any places/motels to stay at in georgetown cheaper and near from the main city ( white house area ) and then leave for Toronto on saturday morning.
    There are so many options. If pricing is a key driver then, there are motels in Falls Church, Va, that will likely provide a shuttle to the local metro stop, and probably not charge for parking. Other options are around Tyson's Corner, if they provide a shuttle. Further out, rooms are about $100 and up, and they should have a shuttle to the Shady Grove metro station. The higher prices and charges for parking buy you more time to be in downtown DC, walking along the beautiful mall or visiting some of the outdoor exhibits.

    If you want to use Metro's all-day pass, note that M-F it doesn't strart till 9:30 when the rush hour is completely drained dry. Note that many public buildings will close at 5. DC has many restaurants to choose from, but so do the 'burbs. See "tourmobile" below for other options.

    If time in DC proper is key , Georgetown is really part of DC, but I don't know about the hotels in that area. A nice area not much further away (web site doesn't mention parking) is near the Woodley Park/Zoo, metro stop where the Omni Shoreham having prices running USD 239 to 699 / night mid-week 1st week in September -- walking distance to the zoo or metro. The O.S. site says nothing about parking charges so I'd ask.

    Other options Weigh the costs in DC against the extra time you'll have to spend in DC; or take advantage of your car.

    Any suggestions would be appreciated. This is my first trip to US, so im giving it enough time..5 days in the 2 cities and 3 days of driving..
    Most your touring sites (Museums and public buildings) are Gov't sites. Many of these are therefore open 9-5 or so. An exception - Washington Monument. The all day metro pass doesn't start until about 9:30. Rush hours from the outer burbs runs 7-9+ in the a.m. (peaking 8:30, and 4-6 in the p.m., peaking around 5:30. You can also get to the area via Metro, with some walking.

    Scenic drives enjoyable when there's no rush hour (besides busy, there are reversable lane, and one-way issues invoked during rush hour that are best to avoid) .. Assuming you start from Georgetown, or drive over from Woodley Park, cross over the Potomac (pa TOE mic) River into Virginia, and take the first exit off any of the bridges to the George Washington Parkway, North. A mile or so after you pass the turnoff to Spout Run, will be the first of two pull offs overlooking the river, and a great view of the Wash DC skyline, including the Wash. Monument, from at least one. (You cannot reach them coming from the opposite direction.) Carefull getting back onto the Parkway -- access is abrupt. Further up is an abandoned fort (only accessible in this direction), the CIA, F.Highway.A (no tours :-), and a picnic area - tables, trails, etc. Lastly, take the road to I-495, about 15 miles away at I-495, head into Maryland, and take the next exit, before entirely getting off the bridge and head SouthEast back towards DC. Before you get there, you'll find places to pull off and walk along the near the river and see the C&O canal with toepaths, joggers, etc. The canal was the main source for transportation in the late 18th, early 19th century. When you cross back into DC, some of the road may be a little rough. Go slowly and when you least expect it, there will be an opening in the stone wall on your Right, where you'll find a boathouse (new link 8/19) that rents canoes, boats, etc. (Returnning to the road, turn sharp right, carefully.) When the road terminates at a stop light, turn right, and the road will take you back into Georgetown.

    Or if you stay in Maryland, after rush hour, take I-70 to I-495 South (toward "Northern Virginia"). After you get on I-495 take the second right-hand exit near River Road to the Clara Barton Parkway. This parkway merges with the road mentioned in the second leg, above. After you arrive in DC, you have the option of driving around town or over to Arlington Cemetary to pick up the TourMobile. With your GPS, plot a course towards the Lincoln Memorial, then take the bridge opposite the memorial to the tourmobile on the other side of the river. When you leave, pick up the G.W. parkway on the West side of the river, as described in the first leg, above.

    I would not advise a first time visitor to try the trip in the reverse direction (into DC via GWP, and out of DC via the Maryland side) at any time of day - most stopping points are either inaccessible from the other way, or deadly coming back on -- the boat house) plus other one-way, and surprsing road connections.

    Your GPS will come in handy as DC's these roads are not all signed well. In particular some of the bridge naming and signs pointing to the parkway are not always clear. Caution the popular Right-on-Red you find througout the rest of the U.S. is banned at almost all intersections within DC's city limits during the daytime.

    Washington's home, Mount Vernon, is privately managed, but closes around sunset, except for the gift shop and occasional special event reasons. Its an hour out of the city by car, or you may be able to find tour buses - tourmobile doesn't go there.
    Last edited by The Taco Monster; 08-19-2006 at 05:01 AM. Reason: (new link, to boathouse)

  4. Default

    Thnx michael those links are very usefull..that will help me chose hotel..most probably ill look a hotel near the PATH system which will reduce my distance to reach manhattan.

    Taco master ..thx for the great reply..that was very helpfull..I have 1 question....are all the tourist spots ( White house, Lincoln memorial etc ) very close to each other in the downtown. Is it advisible to drive to downtown and park somewhere and then walk to these places or is it better to park outside the city, take the metro and travel in downtown to all the places using the metro.

  5. #5

    Default White House, Congress, etc.

    The W.H. and Congress are separated by about 1 1/4 mi if you go by the diagnonal street Pennsylavania Avnue. 1/4 mile longer if you go by 15th Street and Constitution Ave, due E and N, or S and W. The best metro stops are near the museums and Congress by a few blocks. The museums are mostly on Consitution and Independence, offshoots from Congress running E/W.

    WH physical tours appear limited to US nationals with 1 month advance reservations - a post 9/11 restriction. Congress allows tours, but not browsing. Virtual tours. If you have a Yankee friend, esp. one who lives in DC, they may be able to get you better tickets through their Congress-person.

    Museums no restrictions. Some Gov buildings of interst on Pennsylvania. Parking is problematic, but if you plan to park all day and come in with rush hour, one option is parking is Rosslyn, Va, near Metro stops. At that distance from DC, your "rush hour fare" will be trivial, although you still have to wait until 9:30 to use the "all day passes." Another option, if you pay the higher parking prices is DC bus passes for $3 each, and truly is all day.
    Last edited by The Taco Monster; 08-20-2006 at 01:00 PM. Reason: added links and more info

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
    Las Vegas, Nevada

    Default Walking Tour of the Mall area

    Quote Originally Posted by cncity View Post
    ...there's a lot to see in i was thinking of taking any of those govt. bus tours of DC as they would include most of the tourist places in DC
    I reviewed an audio book by Christopher Buckley that is excellent and even if you don't have time for doing the walking tour of DC as he suggests, you might enjoy listening to it as you drive south. I have been to DC a number of times and learned a whole bunch of stuff I had no idea about. Plus he has a somewhat whimiscal take on the whole history thing.


  7. #7

    Default on foot

    Quote Originally Posted by Editor
    walking tour of DC

    Great idea! Also your AAA/CAA Mid-Atlantic book has a number of DC Walking Tours, including one near the White House. The mall's an awfully pretty area, though. Peaceful, too.

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