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  1. #1
    jandujar Guest

    Default First timer needs advice

    My family will be driving from San Diego to New Jersey this summer in our SUV (one driver). We know the Grand Canyon will be our first stop. After that the only "must sees" on our list so far are Busch Gardens in Virginia and Washington DC. I'd rather stick to the Interstates and plan on giving ourselves 10-12 days for the trip. I would love to get your thoughts on the best route to take (I-40?) and suggestions for other sites in between the ones I mentioned.
    Thanks very much!

  2. #2

    Default You got it!

    The most direct route is I-40, I-44, I-70. My recommendations for stops are the Gateway Arch and Westward Expansion Museum in St Louis, Abraham Lincoln's home (and related sites) in Springfield, IL. Also, if you are an aviation fan, the Air Force Museum at Wright Patterson AFB in Dayton, OH is an excellent way to spend an afternoon. When are you going? If Memorial Day, try to get tickets for the Indy 500!

  3. #3
    jandujar Guest


    Thanks Bob! I hadn't even thought of the Gateway Arch! Great idea! We'll miss the Indy; not going till mid summer! Appreciate the advice.

  4. #4
    imported_Robert Guest

    Default must sees?

    What about Bryce & Zion national parks? They're in Utah, and to my way of thinking, well worth while.
    Rocky Mountain National Park is in Colorado. Also good. You didn't way which Interestate you'd be taking.
    Since it's during the summer, you might like to go through South Dakota and see Mt. Rushmore, and Crazy Horse monument. 10-12 days would be great. I'm jealous.
    Enjoy the trip.

  5. #5
    jandujar Guest


    Thanks for the response. I would love to see Mt. Rushmore, but am thinking of taking the 40 across. Rushmore may be too far out of the way.

  6. #6
    imported_David Guest

    Default I-40 suggestions

    I have recently completed a cross-country trip and spent Easter weekend at the Grand Canyon. I traveled much of the way on I-40.

    Going from San Diego to NJ, (I went from CT to Big Sur), I would suggest seeing Vegas (I don't gamble, but still had two fun days there), Hoover Dam (check on possible tours), the Grand Canyon, Painted Desert/Petrified Forest (eastern AZ right on I-40), the OK City National Monument, and Graceland and Beale St in Memphis. You may be travelling through the Smokies and possibly the Shenendoahs, wonderful terrain and a change from Southern CA.

    I came back east on I-70 and there was not much in the way of sights to see, but it was a wonderful drive across the heartland.
    It was raining and foggy when I got to ST Louis, so I passed on traveling up the Gateway Arch.

    Hope this helps. David

  7. #7
    jandujar Guest



    Thank you so much for your suggestions. The OK National Monument is one site we won't miss. I didn't have it on my list until now. Thanks again!

  8. #8
    imported_Kevin Guest

    Default I would stop and see Four Corners

    Then I would go up through the Rocky Mountains of Colorado, eventually catching I-70 East. Four Corners is a cool little place to stop, and the Rockies really shouldn't be missed.

  9. #9
    imported_David Guest

    Default OK City National Monument

    Glad to help ....This was a wonderful trip I just got back from.

    Since you asked....<G>, the OK City National Monument was a very special stop on my trip. I had intended a brief stop to see the memorial and offer a prayer, but I ended up there for several hours.

    The Monument is very well done; moving and respectful. I stopped in to the Museum next door thinking this would be a brief visit and was overwhelmed. The Museum is a real gift to the nation. It tells the story of the tragedy in a very powerful way. Be sure to give yourself some time to explore it and remember both the horror and the inspired response by a caring nation.

  10. #10
    jandujar Guest


    Sounds pretty powerful. I'm looking forward to visiting it.

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