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  1. #1

    Default Roadtrip honeymoon- East and South

    Hey there!
    We are newbies here on this site and we are looking for advice. Neither one of us have drove past the midwest! My fiancee and I are taking a road trip for our honeymoon to many of the places we have never been, and that we would like to go. All of our previous road trips have been primarily in the Western States. We want to head East this time.

    We are hoping you could give us information about free/really cheap camping areas along our route, insider's perspective about where to/not to visit, or anything. We are also looking for places to swim for free. We are both curious about skydiving (as our wedding gift to each other) and white water rafting.

    We are both really interested in music, so if you know of any "dive" bars which has great live music, we would really appreciate any tips or helpful information. We are very into country bars, with local bands (country, blue grass, country bar dancing music). You know the kind that is open until closing-regardless of how many patrons, and many of the local old patrons refuse to adhere to the smoking ban. Real American bars. For example, if you have ever been around Missoula, MT, places like the Union Club, Charlie B's, the Rhino, or The Lumberjack (outside of Lolo)...or around Bozeman, MT, places like the Bar-muda triangle...

    We are also interested in local brews. So any local brewery/brew pubs worth visiting. We will be bringing a couple of our many growlers with us.

    The route we have planned here:

    We are constantly updating the information. We don't really want to use big cities as a reference, but that was the best way to get google maps to create a map for us. We will most likely be camping 25-100 miles away from the "big cities"
    Last edited by jenna_b1984; 03-22-2010 at 08:46 PM.

  2. #2


    There are a few things I can add...

    First, if you are into baseball Cooperstown, NY is on your route through upstate New York.

    Second, you may have to bypass New York city to find a lot of camping areas. You also stated that you did not want to use cities as a reference point so here is a suggestion to bypass the cities between areas "G" through "L" on your route. I suggest to go down I-81 or I-380 in the Poconos. There is a great national park there at the water gap (I-80) and you will be able to camp. With that said the west is full of great national parks and by buying the park pass for all of the national parks you will be able to enter for one rate. The mods can clarify.

    By by passing New York you can head down 81, (although the Del Water Gap national park would be out of your way, you can decide to backtrack a bit on I-80. I-81 isn't far from the Water Gap, maybe 30 or 40 miles) through the mountains of PA into Harrisburg. This stretch has great scenic mountain views. It's one of my favorite interstate routes through PA. You can continue on 81 through the George Washington Natioal Forest in Virginia and into the Smokey Mountains before heading west into Tennessee as your trip was originally routed. You bypass the I-95 traffic (which is known to be extremely heavy) between New York City and Washington D.C.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin

    Default a few ideas

    Welcome to the RTA Forum!

    The best way I've found to find campsites fairly close to cities is to simply pull out a good paper atlas and scan the map. That will usually give you an excellent starting point for state parks and other good camping oportunities. It certainly won't show everything, and smaller places like county parks or private campgrounds won't be included, but its a method that's worked quite well for me.

    A few specific places on your route that I have visited and or can recommend.
    Minneapolis - there are actually quite a few places, especially if you start to research county parks, but the one I've used on many occations is Willow River State Park in Wisconsin. Its just a mile or two off I-94, so its an easy 30-45 minute drive back into St. Paul/Minneapolis.

    Chicago - There are two nice state parks north of Chicago, Illinois Beach and Chain O' Lakes. The nice thing about both of these is that they are both pretty close to Metra Rail stops, for an easy commute into Chicago. The downside is that when you're looking to leave, you'll have to go all the way through the city and its traffic so you'll need to plan for extra time for the inevitable traffic.

    As you get farther east, it will get a little more tricky to find camping spots, but I've found some state parks in New Jersey close to Philly, and in Maryland fairly close to Baltimore that were much more rural than you might think.

    I will also say that just in general, you might consider skipping places like Colorado or Yellowstone for this trip, considering you've already done some traveling in the West, and they appear to be close to your home for easy access during a future trip. That would give you a little more time to work with out east. Nothing you've listed is impossible by any means, but its a pretty fast paced trip, and you may decide - especially after the stress of a wedding - that having more time to relax will be a good thing!

  4. #4

    Default First Trip East and South East

    Thank you both for the excellent advice! We are hoping that our K1 (I 129F) visa will go through before our wedding, so this trip can happen for us. Immigration laws have made our wedding and honeymoon plans tentative. We would like them to be more set in stone. But, even if this trip gets set off a year... advice always helps!!

    The more I think about it, the more I think this is too fast paced.
    We are looking for advice in other sectors as well. If anybody has advice such as:

    - an insider's perspective about where to/not to visit,
    - places to swim for free/cheap-natural nice swim holes (hot springs are the best)
    - skydiving (as our wedding gift to each other) and white water rafting
    - "dive" bars which has great live music, we would really appreciate any tips or helpful information
    - local brews. Any local brewery/brew pubs worth visiting. We will be bringing a couple of our many growlers with us

    Thank you all for the advice and support!

  5. #5


    For brewpubs close to your route, you could check out the ones on this link.

    Victory Brewing is close to Philly - about an hour west in Downingtown, PA. Dogfish Head is in Rehobeth Beach, Delaware, which also seems not far off the route posted in your first link. I would also consider check out Bell's Brewery in Kalamazoo Michigan, not sure what kind of facility they have. All three of those brewerys make excellent beers. There are probably lots of good brewpubs in Colorado. I'm getting thirsty for beer just thinking about it.

    Looking at your route, I noticed you don't really go to the ocean at all. If this is a summer trip, I would definitely consider going to visit some of the beaches in the mid-atlantic, whether the Hamptons or Fire Island on Long Island, the Jersey Shore (Long Beach Island, Cape May, etc.), Delaware beaches like Rehobeth, Maryland Beaches like Ocean City or maybe Assateague Island. Also, you might want to check out the Eastern Shore of the Chesapeake. In the summer, people on the east coast spend a lot of time at the beach so it may be crowded and expensive but definitely worth a visit.

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