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  1. #1
    reachag Guest

    Default Road Trip: Harrisburg to Charlotte

    I am new to this forum and found great information. thanks to every one.

    I will be driving to Charlotte (NC) from Harrisburg (PA) this weekend and coming back on Dec 18th. Planning to take 81 south and on the way check out Skyline drive and also the Luray caverns. Are there any other places to see?
    I will have about 3 days of time while i am in Charlotte to go around. Wondering if there are any places to see.

    How about Outerbanks? Is it a good time to go there? Any other places that are nice to see around this time of the year.

    Ruby falls (Chatanoga) is about 280 miles from Charlotte. Is it worth?

    i dont have kids. Two of us (wife) will be driving. Both of us love seeing places and no problem if i need to do some driving for it.

    Appreciate if you can suggest some places. Thanks in advance.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default Re: Charlotte (with apologies)

    Welcome aboard the RoadTrip America forum.

    This will be a good time of year to get out of the northeast and into some warmer weather, that's for sure. Unfortunately, Skyline drive and the Blue Ridge Parkway are not maintained (plowed) through the winter, so getting to use them is iffy at best. I have gotten on them in the past only to get several miles in and find the road blocked with snow, leaving no recourse but to turn around and backtrack. Just be forewarned. You will be able to get to Luray Caverns in any event as they're on a major highway (US-211) off I-81. The Outer Banks are a little far for a day trip from Charlotte, but otherwise I would think that this would be a good time to explore them (if you don't mind foregoing swimming). There should be almost no crowds making it a particularly good time to see the museums, parks and lighthouses. Many of the restaurants may be closed, however.

    Other stuff you might want to think about is poking around in some of the older towns of Virgina, such as Lexington and Charlottesville, that get dolled up for the holidays. Also, if the Outer Banks prove to be a little farther afield than you'd want to go, Great Smoky Mountains National Park isn't that far out of Charlotte, and is actually on the way to/from I-81.


  3. #3


    I made a similar trip last year. Skyline Drive and the Blue Ridge Parkway are prime driving routes (although they can get a little monotonous at times). Stop at Skyland for lunch or dinner! In addition to Luray Caverns, be sure to see the Natural Bridge in VA. Also very nearby is a full-scale replica of Stonehedge called "Foamhedge", one of the more odd attractions the area has to offer, I'm sure!
    Being a racing fan I spent most of my time touring the many race shops, tracks, and auto museums the Charlotte/ Concord/ Mooresville area has.
    If you decide to head to Chattanooga TN for Ruby Falls you might also want to check out Rock City and The Lost Sea in that area. You could consider getting there via Asheville NC, through Cherokee Indian lands, and the Great Smoky Mountains. There really are a lot of spectacular stops on this trip, it all depends on your schedule and your budget!

    Like AZBuck mentioned, be aware of the weather conditions in the area during this time of year. As a fellow Pennsylvanian, I'm sure you already have plenty of practice driving in inclement weather :) I got caught driving my RWD sports car in a wintery mix that blew through the area around President's Day a few years ago and it was a white knuckle ride I won't soon forget!

  4. #4
    reachag Guest

    Default Thank you PSU 98, AZ Buck.

    Thanks a lot for the information. This really helps.

    Yes i am used to driving in snow. Will check out the weather and based on that will decide either to go to Blue Ridge Parkway or not.

    Will definetly visit Great Smoky mountains and also the nascar race tracks in NC.

    Need to do some planning before i start...have just one day.

  5. #5


    If you're a NASCAR / racing fan I would recommend Trisha offers an excellent tour.

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