Where to go and what to do???
I'm planning on taking a month long road trip. I am contemplating doing a coast to coast trip starting in LA or San Diego, driving to the east coast, and returning to the west coast. Is this doable? Or would it be advisable to only do half the country (i.e. western states)? Any advise would be greatly appreciated! Thanks!!
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It takes, in very round figures, about a week to cross the continent comfortably. With twice that for each crossing, the trip you've outlined is quite achievable, and in fact is the dream of many people on these boards. Time is not the only constraint, however, You will also need a fair amount of money, say $3000 as a rough estimate, and the stamina to be on the road that long. Have a look over some of the Planning Pages to get a feel for some of the other considerations you'll need to make such as what it is you're trying to accomplish, what things you want to see, what your travel style will be, etc. All of these things affect what kind of trip to make and how long to make it.
on what you expect to achieve.
If you want to see as much as possible in the minimum amount of time, then you can certainly do west to east and back in a month.
However, if you'd rather spend a little time (a day or two) at the biggest, bestest sights, then you might consider doing the western loop. A trip that includes the Grand Canyon, several of the Utah parks, a drive through Colorado, Grand Tetons, Yellowstone, Glacier and the coast from Seattle to LA via Yosemite will take at least a month.
Later you can fly to the East Coast and do a similar loop at another time.
co-author of the travel guide: America's Living History-The Early Years
Must see sights - Western USA
So I decided on the following route so far...
LA up the coast to Seattle,
West to Glacier National Park,
South to Yellowstone,
(maybe west to Mount Rushmore - worth the drive???)
Down to Colorado,
Down to Big Bend, El Paso, etc.
Then to New Mexico, and Four Corners,
Grand Canyon, maybe both N and S Rims,
Up to the "Loneliest Road", NV,
West to Yosemite,
Down to Death Valley,
And finally back to LA
I have about a month, so I have plenty of time to enjoy the sights along the route. But are there any othere must see places to visit along the way? I'm not only looking at the most popular tourist attractions, but other "off the beaten path" sights/towns/drives. Any help would be greatly appreciated!! Thanks :)
That route would take me about three months -- yes you can certainly cover that much territory in four weeks of travel -- but it still seems a little busy to me. You could spend the entire time in just the four corners area and see only about 1/4 of what there is to discover.
Originally Posted by andrewjsl
Really? Because I figured in about 31 days, I can spend 15 full days driving (which will cover the ~ 6000 miles my route would take) and then have ~ 16 days to actually sight see.
Originally Posted by Editor
But I'm sure you're more experienced, so I guess I should try to cut down on my route...
It depends on your goals
The issue is what you want to do on your non-driving days. It would be very easy to spend a month (each), in any of the national parks on your route (and still only see a fraction of what there is to see). If you want to see as much of the broad picture as you can -- your trip is reasonable. On one of my early solo outings I drove 10,000 miles in about two weeks (a bit too far for me now).
Originally Posted by andrewjsl
For me these days, my idea of luxury is taking a road trip with no plan, turning down side roads, just to see where they go. I have been known to drive 600 miles in a day and only make about 150 miles progress in a lateral fashion. During off-highway excursions, a long day in the saddle will net 50 miles or less.
Pre-planning is great -- it enables you to learn about places you might not otherwise find -- but once you hit the road -- my advice -- let the road and what you find therein dictate where you go the next day.
Thanks again. Well, I'm not really planning to see all the sights in depth, but just see the "major" parts of them.
The other problem I'm having that you brought up is planning vs. not planning. On one hand, I don't want to be bound to a strict schedule, but then again, I don't want to end up 2000 miles away from LA on the day my flight departs! I'm thinking of just planning to be somewhere on a certain day for every few days to make sure I stay on track, but then not really having a specific plan in general. Your thoughts?
That's exactly how I like to do it. Keep in mind where you need to be by a certain point. Feel free to vary the route, stop longer than planned or add new destinations suggested by locals, but just make sure you allow yourself enough time in hand in case you encounter problems (broken car, etc) or whatever.
Where to go and what to do???
So my roadtrip is fast approaching (in less than 2 months) and I'm still not sure exactly how to decide where to go and what to do. My basic plan is this: LA to SF, Loneliest road to SLC, (maybe up to Yellowstone), Denver and CO, down to NM, west to Arizona, Four Corners, Grand Canyon, then LV, and back to LA. On the way, there are SOOOO many national parks (and other similar natural attraction) that I want to see but obviously won't have the time. So I was hoping I could get some input as to which of these parks are worth it, or which are similar to others and therefore I should only see one, etc.
Yellowstone (I'm not sure if I'll go, as I'll have to drive an extra 700 or so miles)
Rocky Mountain NP
White Sands NM
Great Sand Dunes, CO
Any help would be much appreciated. I am really struggling to plan my trip to see as much as possible, but on the other hand not be so rushed that I won't be able to appreciate what I see. Thanks!!
Last edited by AZBuck; 03-27-2008 at 12:58 PM.
Reason: Combined New Post with Previous Advice