Vegas to Houston - sights and motel worries
Me and the girlfriend (fiance, my mistake!) are flying over from not-so-sunny Britain on Monday (10th March) to spend a few nights gambling in Las Vegas before hiring a car and spending three weeks driving to Houston, via Austin to visit my brother who's studying there.
Was just wondering what the best route to take is - I was thinking the I 40 to Amarillo then down to either Dallas or San Antonio depending on time but am a bit worried about motels along this route ie will be there be many and how busy will they be at this time of year?
Also, we're definitley planning on seeing the Petrified Forest and Painted Desert but is there anything we absolutely must see on our way? Obviously, we've got a bit of time so we can make detours but part of the reason we gave ourselves three weeks was so we could 'chill out' on some days and not have to drive
Thanks in advance for all your help
Ben & Susie
My two cents
Are you taking three weeks for you whole trip? Or just for the driving portion with more time for Vegas and Houston?
I would recommend the route that takes I -40 through Arizona and New Mexico to Amarillo. Then you would take Highway 287 into Fort Worth. It merges with I-35 and you can take that south to Austin.
Your other option is to divert from I-40 in Santa Rosa, New Mexico and head towards Lubbock, Texas and then catch I-20 and head into Fort Worth that way.
Either route shoud be fairly easy. And I know, in the Texas portion at least, there will be plenty of places to stop and stretch your legs. You should not have trouble finding gas, food, or lodging. The towns may be spaced apart, but they are there.
You will have to drive over the Hoover Dam (which spans the state line between Nevada and Arizona). Make sure you stop and take the tour. It would be a shame to drive right over it and not even look. You should also make time to stop at the Grand Canyon. You'll be very close. And I-40 runs parallel to Route 66. You can always switch to that and see what there is to see. You can divert to Roswell, New Mexico if you are interested in that - where aliens supposedly landed at area 51.
That's all I can think of at the moment. Hope it helps.
We've given ourselves three weeks driving time but we're considering spending a little more time in Houston at the end
Thanks for your suggestions, think we'll definitely check out Roswell and try to bring home an alien! We did the Grand Canyon and Hoover Dam in a trip a couple of years ago but may well do the Canyon again on our way out of Vegas.
Roswell is a hoot.
I would suggest that you take I-40 and stop at some of the many vestiges of the glory days of Route 66.
Gallup, New Mexico, and the El Rancho Hotel (hotel of the stars when this area was used for many films)
Albuquerque, New Mexico...especially Old Towne. And take the tram up the plateau.
Santa Fe and Taos, New Mexico - lots of old Spanish architecture and arts.
Clines Corner, New Mexico - just a funny tourist stop that has been there for decades since the glory days
Tucamcari, New Mexico - many Route 66 era places of interest. Check out the Blue Swallow Motel.
If you go to Roswell, you might enjoy a swing down to Carlsbad Caverns and over to White Sands.
You have a LOT of time to explore because you can make this trip in just 2-3 long driving days. So have fun meandering around and taking rest breaks in any areas that intrigue you!