A Seattle to Orlando To New York and back Odd-A-See
My wife, 5 year old daughter, 12 month old son and I have 8 weeks to make this long and arduous journey. Obviously time is not a problem. We plan to camp and stay in a few hotels along the way. We will stay with some friends for 2 weeks in the Berkshires (MA) and take day trips from there. We have driven I-5 to San Diego countless times and feel it's time to head east! Any advice of stops along the way, points of interest, places to stay clear of, etc. would be greatly appreciated.
where to start!
Not sure which states /route you prefer, but here are various suggestions (not necessarily in any geographical order)...
YELLOWSTONE National Park & Grand Tetons, Wyoming. (I assume you're taking a stroller?) Your 5-yr-old & parents alike would enjoy Yellowstone. You could easily spend a couple days minimum here. Reminder - lodging is often booked a year in advance.
MAMMOTH CAVE National Park, Kentucky
You can look up the many national parks and scenic byways that fall along your route at:
Baton Rouge to New Orleans --- historical plantations & houses/buildings
New Orleans (Lafeyette area just outside the city) -- great SWAMP TOUR!
Take a "regular boat" tour; not air boat. The airboat noise would scare the youngsters (& you'd think it would give advance warning to all the "critters" that you're coming!) In the boat, the guide can talk to you along the way & tell you lots of neat "stuff".
Texas / Oklahoma area -- find a rodeo! They are on all over the place.
Oklahoma City - see the bombing memorial.
MT RUSHMORE National Park - South Dakota
BADLANDS National Park - South Dakota
CUSTER STATE PARK - South Dakota (your 5-yr-old would like the driving closeup amongst the bison)
WALL DRUG "tourist trap" - souvenirs & neat memorabilia / historical facts & photos - just outside the western entrance to Badlands. Interesting place - covers a whole "block".
KENTUCKY HORSE PARK Lexington
BILTMORE ESTATE - Asheville, North Carolina
(the children might be bored by this -- but mommy would sure want to have a look see!)
Charleston, South Carolina -- historic plantations & houses
WASHINGTON, DC !!! - Smithsonian (everything's free!!)parts the children would enjoy:
- The National Zoo (lots of walking - I think you can get use of strollers there)
- National Museum of Natural History (lots of neat exhibits kids would oooh & aaaah at)
- National Air and Space Museum
- Holocaust memorial museum (for perhaps daddy only - don't take the kids in there -- p.s. you need to line up first thing in morning to get a free ticket for timed admission into the "main" part of this. Other than that, there are still lots of exhibits /sections to see without the timed ticket)
Butterfly conservatory at American Museum of Natural History, NYC
(or find a butterfly conservatory anywhere along the way for the kids)
Drive through GREAT SMOKEY MOUNTAIN National Park or at least some part of Blue Ridge Parkway.
Whew! Lots of researching now to plan your route... that's half the fun!
how could I forget?
NIAGARA FALLS !!!! (Canadian side!)
Have you considered driving through Canada a bit on way back?
Montreal, Toronto have lots to see & do.