VA to AZ Trip
I am moving from Charlottesville Virginia to Tucson Arizona at the start of August and wanted to make a fun trip out of it with my boyfriend. I was thinking 5-7 days. Any advice or must see stops?
The More, the Merrier
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The first thing to keep in mind is that it is going to take you four days at a minimum to make the drive, making stops for only food, fuel, restrooms, and a couple of short R&R breaks each day. With five days you could make a couple of longer stops at a major point of interest, while with six or seven days, the time really starts to open up to enjoy this trip. So that's your first order of business - figure out how much time you can actually devote to the trip. BTW - I'm assuming that most of your 'stuff' is being moved for you and you'll just be driving your car. If you're driving a U-haul or other cumbersome vehicle, increase drive times by 20-25%.
So what are some of the major points of interest that you should check out as you plan? Again, that sort of depends on the time you have. With five days your stops are still going to have to be pretty much along the direct route: I-81 to Knoxville, I-40 to Little Rock, I-30 to Dallas, I-20 into west Texas, and I-10 to Tucson. Possibilities include Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Crater of Diamonds State Park (Arkansas), Dealy Plaza in Dallas, and White Sands National Monument in New Mexico.
As you can add more time, your route can start to vary more and more from the 'straight shot' on the Interstates and you can indulge your own particular tastes and interests more. But that also means we'd have to know how much time you have and what your interests might be. Let us know when you're a bit farther along in your planning and we'll be more than happy to help.
Question for you: are you moving in a car, two cars, or with a U-Haul? Making a moving trip into a sight-seeing trip becomes a lot more difficult if you are driving two vehicles or if you have a U-Haul. Here's why:
U-Hauls, as stated above, are more cumbersome. They take longer to get somewhere. Parking them can be "interesting" to say the least. Sight-seeing in one is not easy at all. They will give you so many miles and so many days with the rig, and that has to include your pack-it and unpack-it days. Maybe they'll give you 6 or 7 days, maybe 8. But the mileage will be set and chances are, it won't have much flexibility.
If you're driving a U-Haul and towing your car on a trailer, that makes it even less possible. The length will preclude much parking in sight-seeing venues and you will have to be content to do a windshield tour. Unless you've worked for U-haul and are in the know on how to do it properly and safely, taking your car off the trailer to go gallivanting around sight-seeing is a "no go".
If it's just you in one car, or even two cars, it's a lot more possible to make this trip more enjoyable with some sight-seeing. But not with a U-Haul (or any other moving type van).
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