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Southeast US Roadtrip Suggestions Needed

Wiskee

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  • Added on: May 20th, 2011
Hi there, I am road tripping with my girlfriend over 2 or 3 nights from Chicago to Miami. We were trying to decide on a route to take, and are open to any suggestions.

We are planning to camp near the car these nights.

If anyone has any interesting places to see or stop overnight in Tennessee, Alabama, Florida, or Mississipi, I would appreciate hearing them. I've lived in the US my whole life but really am not familiar with the region.

I was strongly considering Memphis for blues and BBQ, then possibly Montgomery Alabama? If we go the other way through it looks like the Smoky Mountains are a possibility, maybe down through SC and Georgia from there.

Thanks again.
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cinny2

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  • Added on: May 20th, 2011
I would suggest Highway 1 or A1A in Florida if you want the scenic route (at least for parts), especially around St. Augustine. The west side of Florida is mostly regular cities and regional tourist attractions/traps. If you do end up in Naples needing to go east, I'd suggest 41 rather than Alligator Alley (I-75), since you're more likely to see natural wildlife on 41.

As to the points north of Florida, I'm personally partial to the coastal cities, since they tend to be rich in history and scenic.

Bideshi

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  • Added on: May 20th, 2011
Is the 2 or 3 nights pretty rigid? If so, you're probably going to want to stay on the interstates most of the way in order to maximize your little bit of free time exploring a couple places.

I realize it isn't the most direct way, but going down through St. Louis, Memphis, then over to Birmingham and south through FL is what I would do. There is a campground in West Memphis, AR, which is right across the bridge from Memphis, TN. It's right on the river... forgot the name.

But as you pointed out, going down through Knoxville and following the Appalachian Mountains would be nice. Could include a stop in Savannah, GA maybe.

Or you could just gun it all the way there and spend some time in the FL Keys?

Lots of big decisions! Have a great trip!

busman7

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  • Added on: May 21st, 2011
How about Historic Route 66 to St Louis, lots of Lincoln history in Springfield IL.

Then a night in Memphis on Beale St for the Blues.

That leaves a night for whatever else strikes your fancy.
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Wiskee

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  • Added on: May 23rd, 2011
Thanks for the suggestions so far. The info about Florida is helpful, I don't know anything about the State other than Daytona and Universal Studios... kind of sad. Everglades would be cool. How are the mosquitos if we're camping??

Busman, my partner is from Springfield so we can't digest another ounce of Lincoln history and I've made that run to St. Louis several times. But any more suggestions on Memphis are helpful.

What's Savannah, GA like? What about Charleston South Carolina too? We could head out there after a night near Chatanooga and then to FL.

I know this is a rushed road trip but we are actually sailing around in the keys for 10 days... the roadtrip is just the appetizer.
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cinny2

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  • Added on: May 24th, 2011
Wiskee wrote: Everglades would be cool. How are the mosquitos if we're camping??


During the summer especially, the mosquitos are a pain. I've had mixed results with bug spray, since the heat/humidity combo encourages lots of sweating. If you're considering camping, you'll also need to take preventive measures against chiggers (nasty little buggers). At least you can see and kill mosquitos.

Also, I forgot to mention earlier, Florida is beginning to switch their toll roads from from pay-as-you-go (either via cash or the local "SunPass") to a system where cameras read license plates and send a bill. The cameras are mostly in Miami, from what I've seen, as they're just beginning to start it.



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