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  1. Default Vacation from Northern Minnesota to Mexico Beach

    Next summer, my family in Gilbert Minnesota is going down to Mexico Beach Florida. We are still deciding what route to take (I don't like the one MapQuest gives us). We would also like to take a few scenic routes, stop at a few side attractions on the way, and we want to go through at least one tunnel (the kids would like that). The adults have never been to the beach in a long time (We used to go to Myrtle Beach, but that place started to turn into a dump.) The kids are already in kindergarten but have only left the state once, and they never have been to the ocean. (We went to Indiana Dunes once when the kids were toddlers, but that Great Lakes, not ocean). Oh, and when you give the route, can you give them a good town to stay in a hotel on the way, because we probably won't go through the whole trip in one day.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default Your Homework Assignment

    First of all, if you plan to do this with only one stop along the way, you are not going to have any time for any of the things you're asking for, or even to make the trip safely, as you'll have to cover 750 miles a day. So I'm going to see if I can't come up with something that takes (at a minimum) 3 days, although 4 might be needed to have time for scenic drives, 'alternate means of transportation', and side attractions. On Day 1, just have a relaxing scenic drive down US-53/US-63 and WI-35, All are scenic and the later is part of Wisconsin's segment of the Great River Road. Near the southern end of Wisconsin, take the time to cross the Mississippi on the Cassville Ferry. Tunnels are a bit hard to come by on this trip, so a ferry might be a good alternative for the kids. Crossing on this ferry also sets you up for a short drive down US-52 and IA-136 to Dyersville and the Field of Dreams. Now, for a change of pace, head for the Quad Cities and hop on the Interstates for a while, using I-74 to cut a path between Chicago and St. Louis. A short detour down I-57 will bring you to Charleston and some painless history at the Lincoln Log Cabin before a little more 'back road' traveling on IL-130/IL-15/IN-64/US-231 to cross the Ohio at Owensboro, KY and pick up the Green River/Natcher Parkway into central Kentucky with Mammoth Cave as your destination. Again, a great substitute for a tunnel. Depending on how much time this all takes you, you might, at this point want to just boogie on down to Florida using I-65/US-231 the rest of the way or you can continue to meander your way south taking in the Great Smoky Mountains and the southern Appalachians. As you can see, you've got some research to do and decisions to make before anyone can be offering suggestions for specific places to stay. In particular, you'll have to decide how much to be about the journey versus about getting to the coast as quickly as possible.


  3. Default

    Thank you! I've never thought about driving along the Mississippi.

  4. Default

    Quote Originally Posted by froman View Post
    Thank you! I've never thought about driving along the Mississippi.
    Coming from where you are, you might be able to head through Duluth which I know has a few "tunnels" that are sort of elaborate overpasses on the interstate.

  5. Default

    I never knew there were tunnel in Duluth. What roads are they on?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin

    Default Duluth Tunnels

    The Tunnels in Duluth are on I-35, basically right along Downtown Duluth. They allow people to stay above the interstate when going from Downtown to the lakefront. And, as was already pointed out, they are more of an elaborate underpass than what you might think of as a traditional tunnel through a mountain or under a river.

    There is also a tunnel on I-94 in Minneapolis.

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