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#1 of 14 Old 05-10-2013, 04:43 PM - Thread Starter
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If you were planning a four point trip around the US - NYC, Grand Canyon, San Francisco, and then Niagara Falls before going back to NYC what would be your choice of travel? I'm trying to work out a plan for summer 2014 and a road trip sounds the best to me but my husband thinks the driving would be too much. I want to drive at least some of it because I like taking side trips to interesting spots. 

 

If you were taking such a trip with your husband, partner or friend and two kids, how would you do it?


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#2 of 14 Old 05-10-2013, 04:55 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Cynthia Mosher View Post

If you were planning a four point trip around the US - NYC, Grand Canyon, San Francisco, and then Niagara Falls before going back to NYC what would be your choice of travel? I'm trying to work out a plan for summer 2014 and a road trip sounds the best to me but my husband thinks the driving would be too much. I want to drive at least some of it because I like taking side trips to interesting spots. 

 

If you were taking such a trip with your husband, partner or friend and two kids, how would you do it?

 

I love road trips! I would probably opt for the car as well. I've flown with my son before (I was by myself though, so it was super hard) and I just feel like car would be much easier, and probably cheaper. That way you  get to see all the cool things along the way. Then you guys will always have all your stuff with you too and you can make it as home-like and entertaining as possible. 

 

Maybe you could compromise and choose routes to drive that you want to, but plan to fly to at least one place from somewhere? I think driving would only be too much if you were in a rush and trying to do a long drive straight through, but if you can do it at a leisurely place it would be much easier


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#3 of 14 Old 05-10-2013, 05:09 PM
 
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We've done a road trip before we had kids. It was great! We drove from TX up through NM, UT, Idaho, wyoming, South dakota and down through colorado and back home. it was 5000 miles and we went to 8 national parks and did some hiking and climbing along the way. the trip was almost 3 weeks. How much time do you have? If you have a month or longer, i would go for it. if you have less time, i would fly out to say the grand canyon and drive around to sites from there. If you go to the north rim, you can also visit zion and bryce national parks. we did that itinerary once and used las vegas as a base. Then on another road trip you can visit CA. Niagara Falls can be a weekend trip from the city. Have fun!

Ryan 08-28-08  & Julianna 5-3-11
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#4 of 14 Old 05-10-2013, 05:38 PM
 
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Depends on how much time you have and how reliable your vehicle is.  The driving will take longer, and even though it looks cheaper on the surface, you will have to pay for food, hotels, & gas on the way.  It also will add lots of mileage to your car, unless you are renting which is another cost.  Driving from Houston to San Fran is 3 days of driving with minimal stops (i.e. wake up, eat breakfast, on the road, stop for lunch and an activity, stop for evening at dinner time, with an activity and hotel night).  I personally would rather fly, and spend the time in the city for that long of a trip, but drive (and have access to my own vehicle) for a trip that is only a one day drive.

 

You could also do a mix of train, bus, flying, & rental car.  Southwest Airlines & Frontier Airlines both do a lot of one way flights, so you would not have to do round trips.  San Fran & NYC have great public transportation, so you do not need rental cars there.  I know there is both bus & train travel to N. Falls from NYC, so that could be an option as well.  

 

I guess it also depends on the age of your kids, how much time you have, and how you like to travel.  I like to be able to stop wherever I want and explore on a road trip, but DH likes a road trip schedule, so we do not rode trip well together.  DS is content any way we travel, we are going to do a trip by train just for the novelty of it (he is also asking for a trip on a double decker bus).


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#5 of 14 Old 05-10-2013, 07:34 PM
 
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We love road trips, so that's my short answer, but your itinerary poses a few challenges. All of the those places are pretty far apart. And they all could be serious destinations in and of themselves. We've been to the Grand Canyon and San Francisco, and we could happily spend two weeks straight in each one. I guess my question would be - how much time and money do you have for the trip? That almost dictates mode of travel for you - if those things are no object, you could do a car or train trip. If you've got only two weeks or less and a budget, I'd recommend choosing just one or two of those destinations to tackle this year. Like Rick Steves says - always assume you will go back. 


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#6 of 14 Old 05-10-2013, 08:38 PM
 
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Depends on how much time you have. We did a trip like that in an RV. It was great!
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#7 of 14 Old 05-11-2013, 10:22 AM
 
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How strongly does your DH feel about it being too much driving? Since he'll presumably be sharing the driving duties, I'd give his opinion as much weight as yours. Maybe split it into an eastern road trip and a western road trip?

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#8 of 14 Old 05-11-2013, 03:54 PM
 
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If I had the time, I'd use rail as much as possible.  We did a week in San Francisco a couple of years ago (DH, DS1, and I were on the east coast):  I flew out to DS1 in Portland, Oregon, and we took the train down.  DH and DS2 flew out to Vegas and took a road trip through Death Valley in a rental car.  Once we met up in San Francisco, we got rid of the rental almost right away and got around very comfortably during our almost-week there.

 

Happy travels, it sounds like a phenomenal trip!
 


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#9 of 14 Old 05-13-2013, 03:29 PM
 
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I'd skip NYC and Niagra Falls and just fly to AZ or SFO. The drive from SFO to AZ would be more than enough for me!

Good luck- have fun!

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#10 of 14 Old 05-15-2013, 06:12 PM
 
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I like car trips and have done plenty of them, but the one you have planned wouldn't be for me. I would pick either Grand Canyon OR San Fran and just fly there. Then I would get a rental car and see lots of other stuff in area -- tons of cool things near both places. (Grand Canyon -- Sedona, red rock country, Zion and Bryce National Parks in Utah, Mesa Verde, Durango, Dinosaur National Park etc in Colorado. San Fran -- wine country, Sequoia, etc). 

 

Otherwise, it's just a tour of America's Interstate System, which is a wonder, but not something to plan a vacation around.
 

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#11 of 14 Old 05-15-2013, 06:20 PM
 
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When I was 8 or 9 my parents took my sister and I out of school and we drove from Rochester, NY to San Diego on the southern route and back on the Northern. Some of the best childhood memories - EVER.

We did it all in a 1975 Ford Station Wagon.
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#12 of 14 Old 05-16-2013, 05:51 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Linda on the move View Post

I like car trips and have done plenty of them, but the one you have planned wouldn't be for me. I would pick either Grand Canyon OR San Fran and just fly there. Then I would get a rental car and see lots of other stuff in area -- tons of cool things near both places. (Grand Canyon -- Sedona, red rock country, Zion and Bryce National Parks in Utah, Mesa Verde, Durango, Dinosaur National Park etc in Colorado. San Fran -- wine country, Sequoia, etc). 

 

Otherwise, it's just a tour of America's Interstate System, which is a wonder, but not something to plan a vacation around.

 

Couldn't have said it better myself. :-) 


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#13 of 14 Old 05-16-2013, 06:49 PM
 
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I while back I did a trip ( 2 1/2 months ) using mainly Amtrack. Amtrack doesn't run everywhere, and depending on times of the year, the tracks are closed. ie Yellowstone, North and South Dakota in late winter, so you may want to check on that, if you do decide to go by train. It can be pricey if you want to get a sleeper car, but the seats are more than tolerable. I did not do the trip with kids though.

 

I do think that it may be better to concentrate on one side of the U.S., if you are planning on driving/ doing it by train.

I absolutely loved Arches National Monument. Amazing!!!


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#14 of 14 Old 05-18-2013, 01:43 PM
 
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Arches was one of my favorite parks too!

Ryan 08-28-08  & Julianna 5-3-11
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