Thanks to all the experts who have shared such wonderful information on this forum - I've been able to do much planning based on all the knowledge found here.
On 12/27 (so soon!), I will be driving with my boyfriend as we move him from Tampa, FL to LA. My flight back to Florida is on 1/5 and I'd like at least 2 days in LA to help him get settled. I know we want to see New Orleans, GCNP, Sedona, and Joshua Tree, but that leaves us with big gaps from NoLa through Texas. We are both in our late 20s and are very active with an appreciation for natural beauty and a bit of quirk. Neither of us have trouble with long days of driving, especially if there are fun, quick stops to make (we've driven from 15 hours from FL to DC numerous times).
We have a bit of time to do some exploring so I tried coming up with a basic itinerary, however, I'd love any advice on how to improve it as well as suggestions on areas where I should try to make hotel reservations in advance or where we might encounter bad weather:
12/27 Day 1: Tampa to New Orleans (my bf has never been here)
Day 2: Explore French Quarter and Magazine Street, depart early afternoon (should we stay another night? I'd rather spend more time near GCNP).
Day 3: This is where I need the most help - do we stay on I-10 or do we cut up to Shreveport and then to Albuquerque via Dallas? I ask because my boyfriend and I have already been to Houston and San Antonio. We honestly have no desire to spend much time in Texas except for a quick stop to sleep. The route to Albuquerque caught my eye because we've never been to New Mexico and I thought it might be fun to drive along Route 66 from Albuquerque to Flagstaff.
Day 4: depends on what we decide for day 3
Day 5: Flagstaff for the night so we can wake up early and get to the Grand Canyon. Spend the whole day at the Canyon and stay in Flagstaff again.
Day 6: Flagstaff to LA via Sedona to get back on I-10; would love to stop in Joshua Tree, and are open to camping if necessary
We understand this is aggressive and certainly involves a lot of driving. As I said, we're okay with that and are just looking to see more of this beautiful country as we make the drive out to California.
Thanks for your time!Edited: 23 December 2013, 13:35