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drive to atlanta from jersey

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austin tx
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drive to atlanta from jersey

we are planning to drive to atlanta next week from the newark area...we are moving to marietta...I get two different routes depending on whether I input marietta or atlanta into mapquest:

1 81S to 40W to 75S

2 81S to 77S to 85S

any suggestions as to which is best?

I will be driving this over the course of 3 days with 3 kids and a dog so I am taking my time!! Right now I planned based on the first suggestion:

Day 1 to roanoke (410 miles)

Day 2 to knoxville (260 miles)

Day 3 to Marietta (200 miles)

If this is the best route, do you have suggestions for hotels that are right off the highway in this area...with a pool!!

thanks for all help


Atlanta, Georgia
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1. Re: drive to atlanta from jersey

A lot depends on your preferences -- do you want to get there as quickly as possible, or maximize opportunities to do interesting stuff along the way? Big city stuff or scenic stuff?

Another route possibility that you don't mention, but that's only minutes longer (assuming no traffic delays, which of course wouldn't be the case) would be to head down I-95 to Raleigh/Durham, then I-85 through Greensboro and south to I-285 around Atlanta and up to Marietta. Obviously, driving down I-95 through Philly, DC, Raleigh/Durham, etc. would offer more major attractions, at the cost of additional traffic and hassles getting around the major cities. Going down I-81 offers fewer big-city traffic hassles and more opportunities for scenic drives and outdoorsy activities, but also fewer major attractions.

From a pure interest standpoint, I think the I-81 to I-40 to I-75 route would provide more to see and do than I-81 to I-77 to I-85. If you are planning to spend three days and take your time, I might even suggest getting off I-81 at I-26 and taking it south to Asheville, NC, then I-40 west to Knoxville, and then I-75 south through Chattanooga to Marietta. You could figure on that route taking up to 3 hours longer pure driving time, but you'd get to visit Asheville, drive past (or through, if you don't mind taking longer) the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, and visit Chattanooga -- plenty for the kids to do in Asheville and especially Chattanooga. Or you could take I-26 on down to the Greenville/Spartanburg area and then pick up I-85 south to Atlanta. Going along the I-81 route through Virginia would also give you the option of making part of the drive on the Blue Ridge Parkway (beautiful drive, great scenery, but will take much longer -- 45 MPH speed limit -- and may bore the kids).

If your kids are of an age and temperament where the historical sites in DC and Philly would be of interest, I think I might be inclined to go that way, especially if you're not sure when you'd get another chance to go. If not, then I'd probably lean toward I-81. You could, of course, mix and match, heading down I-95 through Philly to DC, and then taking I-66 west to pick up I-81, which would also give you a chance to visit Charlottesville.

I'm going to make some guesses -- Philly's probably close enough to Newark that you've either been or can go again, so let's say you bypass it and head to DC. You leave early morning day one, and you're in DC in time for lunch (~200 mi, less than 4 hours). See the Mall, the Capitol, White House, Monuments, etc., and get back on the road by 4-5 pm. Another four hours driving will get you to Roanoke as you'd originally planned. There's plenty of decent chain hotels along the freeway in Roanoke, I'm sure you can find one with a pool if you still need it at the end of a long day. If you've done the DC thing before, you could take essentially the same route but keep going to Charlottesville and tour Monticello.

Next day, another relatively early start would get you to Chattanooga (~360 miles, roughly 5.5 hours, taking I-81/I-40/I-75) with enough time to do the Tennessee Aquarium, see the Chattanooga Choo-Choo hotel (maybe even stay there in one of the train car rooms), See Rock City, etc. -- tons of great family things to do in Chattanooga. You could even get up late the third day and do some more stuff before heading out -- you're only a couple of hours from Marietta once you're in Chattanooga.

Roswel, GA
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2. Re: drive to atlanta from jersey

I'd probably take the NJ Turnpike to Delaware Memorial Bridge, then take 295S to I-95 to I-85.

I81 to I77 is more scenic.

Atlanta, Georgia
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3. Re: drive to atlanta from jersey

Wow, Rackensack, what a great and thorough answer!

Mumbai (Bombay...
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4. Re: drive to atlanta from jersey

I am planning to do the reverse route i.e from Atlanta to Jersey City.

I would have just about 30 hours for it. Can someone suggest a route that comprises of maximum scenic and popular attractions.

Some places i have been researching on - Charlotte, Richmond, Raleigh, Roanoke

Any suggestions are welcome.


Atlanta, Georgia
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5. Re: drive to atlanta from jersey

I don't blame you for breaking your tirp up into three days. That is one heck of a drive. Years ago when I was younger and more energetic, we drove from Atlanta to NJ in one day. It was exhausting.

I can't help with Roanoke but I do know Knoxville. If you take 75 South, it goes right by it. You can find a number of decent hotels in W. Knoxville (I wouldn't stay in any other area). The Turkey Creek area has a number of good ones and the its chock full of new restaurants/shopping. Not sure about pools, however. You might ask around in the Knoxville forum, they're nice folks.

Good luck!

6. Re: drive to atlanta from jersey

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