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East / South East USA Road Trip incl.Florida, help needed !

Bernay, France
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East / South East USA Road Trip incl.Florida, help needed !

I am currently trying to plan a road trip for next summer (August , one month) for myself and teenage daughter (17).

We are interested by history, old mansions, plantation, beautiful landscape, beaches & attractions.

We were thinking about landing in Philadelphia.

So our road trip will look like this :

Philadelphia

Charlottesville (I skip Washington DC that I visited a few years ago)

Blue Ridge / Roanoke

Asheville

Charleston

Savannah

Ste Augustine

Miami

Key West

Orlando (we'll end in Orlando for 8/9 nights renting a villa)

so the road trip by itself could be 19 nights.

I really need help regarding the lenght of stay at each stop , and suggestions for other stops may be considering our interests.

Many thanks for your help !

Bellifontaine

Atlanta, Georgia
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1. Re: East / South East USA Road Trip incl.Florida, help needed !

I will give you insight in the areas that I am most familiar with-

Asheville- 2 days- mountains- Biltmore House, downtown area

Charleston- 3 days- plantations, historic area, Ft. Sumter, Market Street, nearby beach, great food

Savannah- 2 days- historic area, St. Bonaventure cemetery, river front, Tybee Island, great food

Amelia Island (my suggestion)- 1-2 days- great beach, historic downtown, good food, Ft. Clinch SP

St. Augustine- 2 days- historic area, old fort

Hope this info helps!! Enjoy your trip planning.

Bernay, France
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2. Re: East / South East USA Road Trip incl.Florida, help needed !

Yes that's so helpful, thank you !! Amelia Island is a great suggestion ! I would not have thought about it, I am just looking at its website now..

Ohio
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3. Re: East / South East USA Road Trip incl.Florida, help needed !

agree with Peachbelle's suggestions.

Southern end of Amelia Island before you cross into Jacksonville is an old plantation- Kingsley Plantation. Some of teh slave quarters are still there. Really enjoyed it.

Take A1A down the coast from St Augustine to Ponce Inlet. Ponce Inlet has a beautiful lighthouse complex.

From Philly, head to Front Royal, Va Drive down the Blue RIdge Mts along Skyline Dr to Waynesboro, then head east or continue on to Roanoke.

Lewes, United...
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4. Re: East / South East USA Road Trip incl.Florida, help needed !

Hi Belli

I see you've another USA driving trip planned! Good for you!

PB and Wings have started the ball rolling with the first part of the trip.

From St Augustine, in terms of places of interest as you head south, there's much less by way fr historic or old places. The Atlantic seaboard just has beach resorts one after the other, and in my personal view (I'm not the beach type) they all look pretty similar. Daytona is the only one I'd rate, but if you wish to shop, Ft Lauderdale is popular.

Miami is different - for lots of reasons, but in itself isn't really a tourist destination. Miami Beach is where I'd suggest you head, with the art deco buildings along the seafront is great for a stroll, and lively in the evening, but I'm still looking for something worth doing otherwise when I visit family in the city!

However, once past Miami heading down to Key West, it becomes much prettier and less developped so much nicer. You can drive in 1 day from Miami to Key West, as long as you don't do it - in either direction - from a Friday lunchtime to a Monday lunchtime as that single lane highway can be very congested then. However the upper, middle and lower keys are all slightly different. The upper keys have a few nice state parks around Key Biscayne area, the middle has fewer and smaller communities, so around Isla Morada is it more relaxed, and Key West is a funky, bustling area with lots of character and more of general interest, plus some museums. If you plan an offshore boat ride as maybe a museum, you might want 2 nights here as well as one on the way up or down. Be sure to see the cute but hugely endangered manatees at one of the reserves. BTW, the nicer beaches along the keys are mostly on the gulf, sheltered side, to the west. The east side tends to have stronger currents and steeper shelving, narrow beaches.

As you can't drive from Key West to Orlando in one day, if you're short of time, maybe have the additional stop on the Keys on the return route at the north end. Then, if you need to, you should get to Orlando in one via the (toll) turnpike.

Have a great trip,

SWT

Edited: 20 January 2012, 13:23
Uden, The...
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5. Re: East / South East USA Road Trip incl.Florida, help needed !

Hi Belli.

Great to see you're coming back again.

You've got great answers and not much to add but just give you another option like from Philly to Cape May, take the ferry to Lewes, Ocean City, Assateugue, Chincoteague via Chesapeake Bay Bridge tunnel Williamsburg to Outer Banks-Wilmington and to Charleston. There are some beautiful option on this route as well.

Also don't miss Everglades NP south of Miami. Just that you know, you are coming in Hurricane season and it will be hot and humid at most places.

Tet

Bernay, France
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6. Re: East / South East USA Road Trip incl.Florida, help needed !

One month holidays won't be enough for all these great destinations !

that's going to be another challenge to pick the ones we'll finally go...

Thanks for all these informations ! very useful.

Belli

7. Re: East / South East USA Road Trip incl.Florida, help needed !

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