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  1. Default chicago to tampa via washington dc

    my wifeand i are wanting to drive from chicago to tampa via washington dc have you any good routes that have places of interest along the way we like history

    regards mel williams

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default A String of Pearls

    Welcome aboard the RoadTrip America forum.

    I share your love of history, and think it's a great way to make a road trip into something even greater. I'm not aware of much in Indiana or Ohio along your general route, but you might want to make stops at the Auburn Cord Duesenberg Museum in Auburn, IN and/or the Neil Armstrong Museum in Wapakoneta, OH. Once you're past Pittsburgh, things start to pick up, particularly if you take US-40 into Washington. Along this road, the old National Road through Cumberland Gap, you'd hit Fort Necessity National Battlefield, Fort Frederick State Park (be sure to also take the time to get down to the old Chesapeake and Ohio Canal and the Potomac while there) and Antietem National Battlefield.

    Washington itself, of course, is full of more historic sites and museums than I could even attempt to name. Once on your way south from there, there's probably no better highway than I-95. Among the historical stops along it are the Fredericksburg and Spotsylvania National Military Park, Petersburg National Battlefield, Colonial Williamsburg, and Yorktown National Historical Park, all in Virginia; check out Halifax in North Carolina; a quiet bit of history that my wife and I really enjoyed, is Old Santee Canal Park in Monks Corner, South Carolina; and, of course, take the time to wander Savannah, as well as look into Fort King George State Historic Site in Georgia.

    That should make a good backbone for such a trip. I also like to poke into small town and county Historical Societies. You often come up with some gems describing the lives of the more ordinary citizens of the past, and I have found the attendants at these societies to be unfailingly friendly, helpful and informative.

    Now, when I first read your post, I failed to notice that you were going from Chicago to Tampa by way of Washington (even though it's in the title!), and had written a response assuming you were going more or less directly down. Rather than just throw that away, I'll give it to you here, you may be going back this way, or make this trip again. Who Knows?

    Although not a single highway, one possibility for your trip is to follow this set of highways (with some side trips):

    I-65 and US-41 south through western Indiana and see some of the sites of the early western frontier such as the Tippecanoe Battlefield and Vincennes.

    Continue down US-41 to Evansville and then use US-231 to cut over to Mammoth Cave National Park in Kentucky.

    Next use I-65 and I-24 to get to the Civil War Battlefields outside of Chatanooga, Tennessee.

    In Georgia, generally follow US-27 down the west side of the state to get to such places as FDR's Little White House and Andersonville Prison.


  3. #3

    Default chic to tampa - Ohio

    If you are coming across Ohio on I-90 - and, you like roller coasters, the best roller coaster park in the world (Cedar Point) is in Sandusky in northwestern Ohio. Also, in that area are the Lake Erie Islands that have b&bs, shops etc. (Put-In-Bay, Kelly's Island, Bass Island, etc).

    If you are anywhere near Sugarcreek/Millersburg area (I-77 & Route 39), its an Amish area that has developed into alot of shopping, b&bs and the like around the Amish community. Also in the area is the recreated Moravian mission/Indian Village, Schoenbrunn and the old utopian community of Zoar Village. (Amish in Ohio)

  4. #4

    Default chic to tampa - Northern Fla

    If you come down I-95 - (from your stop at Savannah? well worth it) --

    The drive down A1A from Amelia Island to Jacksonville Beach is one of the prettiest drives as its right along the ocean and the ST John's river jetties. There's little development - just natural beauty. Just before the ferry is Kingsley Plantation - the house and slave quarters are still standing and you can tour the house. Take the ferry ride across the intercoastal and into the shipping village of Mayport. Continue down through Mayport, Atlantic, Neptune Beach and into Ponte Vedra Beach -- then the ride to St. Augustine runs along the ocean is pretty as well.

    St. Augustine is either on your trip down A1A or an exit off of I-95. The old fort is still there and across the street is St. George Street with its shops and historical sites.

  5. #5
    travel_monkeys Guest

    Default Harpers Ferry

    If you like history, no trip from Chicago to DC could be complete without a stop in Harpers Ferry, West Virginia. It's an old town that basically looks the way it probably did 150 years ago. There's a huge amount of history there too, including a few small museums about the town's role in the Civil War. As a bonus it's only an hour west of DC, and it's in a beautiful location in the Blue Ridge Mts along the Potomac River.

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