General Question

hopscotchy's avatar

Where should I stop on an East Coast road trip?

Asked by hopscotchy (552points) February 27th, 2011

We are starting in Texas, first day straight to Augusta, GA. After Augusta we are going to take our time meandering through SC, NC and Virginia before we end up in Baltimore and then on to NYC. Any suggestions on places to stop (especially in the SC, NC, VA portion of the trip) What are the best beaches in the area? Any cute little towns or natural areas? We’ll be car camping the whole way so any camping spot suggestions would be welcomed.

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14 Answers

lucillelucillelucille's avatar

I would check out the Outer Banks of NC.
There are beaches from Whalebone Junction to Hatteras where you might be the only ones there.Very nice! :)

somalia4ever's avatar

Jones Beach in Long Island! Although there’s not much else to see in LI except the beaches ;)

marinelife's avatar

North Carolina is much cuter than South Carolina (saner too). It is off-season in the Outer Banks so you should be able to find good deals.

I love the green part of North Carolina. The area around Rocky Mount is beautiful. It is worth a stop here just to eat at Gardner’s BBQ.

Virginia is a beautiful state. If you’re into history, there is colonial Williamsburg (kind of touristy though) and Jamestown. For beaches, there are a lot of them some remote.

I prefer Maryland, which has Annapolis, a little dollhouse of a town. Great crabs too although if you are traveling soon, they would not be in season.

Washington D.C. has loads of free museums, the Library of Congress, and other really neat historical stuff all free although it is an expensive area.

birdland33's avatar

Once you get to Baltimore, if history interests you, the stretches to Manassas and Gettysburg are within 90 minutes. If you get to Gettysburg, heading east through PA you can see Amish Country in the Lancaster, PA area, then keep heading toward NYC.

I have camped in Central PA. I was amazed at the fireflies. We have fireflies here in New England, but I cannot express how the night skies light up in PA.

If sports, especially baseball, interests you, there are lots of minor league baseball parks along these same routes.

hopscotchy's avatar

Yes, thank you all! Keep them coming. I should add that we’re doing this trip at the end of May.

marinelife's avatar

@hopscotchy Oh, good, you will be in crab season then. I highly recommend the Eastern Shore of Maryland. Very unspoiled.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

I was going to suggest a few places in the Adirondacks but you do not want to go there at the end of May. The black flies will eat you alive. Go at the end of June. They’re gone then.

blueiiznh's avatar

What are your interests? Blue Ridge Mountain Parkway, Ashville NC, DC, Deleware shore, etc etc

mrentropy's avatar

I don’t see how you can make that trip without stopping at South of the Border.

It should blow your Texas friends’ minds.

bolwerk's avatar

if you’re avoiding cities (may not be a bad idea with a car in the northeast):

North Carolina: Outer Banks is nice, but a heck of a trip if you’re in a rush. Requires at least two days to enjoy.

Virginia: camp in Appalachia. Good way to spend a night.

Maryland: eastern shore of the Chesapeake. Try to go boating.

Delaware: beach near Lewes (nearby is a ferry to Cape May, New Jersey).

New Jersey: the Shore is the best beach option.

New York: has some of the best wine country in the USA; the beaches are okay, but they’re better further south; great railroad tourism around NYS too.

For cities within that range, the Smithsonian in DC is very much worth a visit. Great museums, and they’re all free try to visit the Baltimore Aquarium and waterfront. Philly is nice, but my experience with it is limited to the Americana exhibits.

NYC is definitely worth visiting, but can be rough on the budget and the stress level with parking. It’s probably the art capital of the world, and many of its museums probably trounce the already very good ones you find in D.C.. This may have changed since I last visited, but keep in mind that many of the better museums look like they’re charging you, but the charge is really a “suggested donation.” If you’re on a budget, try getting a hotel in Jersey City that’s near the PATH train.

jca's avatar

I say it depends on how much time you have allotted for each place, and if you like to be busy or just hang out. Williamsburg VA is great, especially if you love history, and you can spend one day or one week there.

Anything Vanderbilt is great – NC has a house, NY has a house (Dutchess County) and RI has a house (Newport).

NY Hudson Valley has lots of great towns that you might enjoy hanging out in, soaking in the atmosphere, having coffee, antiquing, if that’s your thing.

bradman70's avatar

Definitly hit Charleston, SC. Very cool small city. lots of history there. Folly beach or Kiawah Island are not very far from downtown charleston. Check out East Bay Street in charleston and the battery, rainbow row, patriots point.

amazingme's avatar

There is always something to do in the DC metro area for a low price. I totally recommend going to the Kennedy Center because they have free concerts there everyday. I would stop by the zoo in DC, it’s free also. If you’re into history, definitely stop by Mount Vernon Plantation, Williamsburg or Jamestown.
All museums that are part of the Smithsonian are free. I totally recommend the Newseum. It cost around 15 dollars (Don’t quote me on that, lol, check the site), but it is so worth it. It’s obviously based around the news. There is a part of the Berlin Wall and a death tower with it. There is a whole section dedicated to 9/11 and the newspapers around the world about it.There is a section dedicated to first amendment rights and trials, sections on g-men… There’s soo much there!
If you’re into art, go to one of the art museums.

jca's avatar

A fun little museum that is part of the Smithsonian is the Postal Museum. It’s small, everyone can identify with it and it has some fun exhibits on philately and the history of mail delivery.

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