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Author Topic: Wanted: east coast travel tips for dutch family  (Read 4490 times)

elsinga

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Wanted: east coast travel tips for dutch family
« on: March 04, 2013, 05:43:32 AM »
Hi all!

we are a dutch family of 4 (45m/41f/15f/12m) and planning a 3 week RV trip on the US east coast for july 2014. I've done some research but can use some more input from seasoned RV'ers, since we never used an RV (but go camping with our car and caravan around Europe each year).

So far this is what I planned:
- fly to New York City or Washington DC, for some sightseeing and shopping, stay in hotels
- rent an RV from NYC (Moturis RV & Camping World: Familie-camper V-31S slide-out is our #1 at this moment, mainly for the price and large beds, I'm 6"6')
- the first part of the route is mostly planned: stay away from the I95/coast, travel south along the Appalachian Mountains (Shenandoah Valley, Blue Ridhe Parkway, Smokey Mountains)

This is where I got stuck.... we either will go further south and go see the Gulf of Mexico/Key West/Atlantic Ocean part of Florida and return the RV in Orlando or we go NW from Smokey Mountains and up to Niagara Falls, returning the RV in NYC again. Here is where I can use some advice from you. ;)

Questions:
- go south or NW? And why?
- any tips regarding things to see or do? We plan to see an amusement park along the way, want to see beautifull scenery and meet american people (hence the RV, lots of opportunities at campsites)
- how to make the most of our trip? Any tips & tricks, websites, anything.

Thanks in advance for answering one or more of our questions.

Robert

SeilerBird

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Re: Wanted: east coast travel tips for dutch family
« Reply #1 on: March 04, 2013, 05:56:10 AM »
You absolutely and positively do not want to go to Florida in the summer. That is hurricane season, mosquito season and it will hot and humid.

Here is what I would do if I were you. I would land in Washington DC and spend some time there. Then head down the coast line until you get to Savannah Georgia. At that point I would head over to the Blue Ridge Parkway and head up to Niagara Falls. From there head on over to New York City to end the trip.
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catblaster

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Re: Wanted: east coast travel tips for dutch family
« Reply #2 on: March 04, 2013, 07:04:55 AM »
Tom's got some good points...BUT...that part of the adventure. We have air conditioners, bug repellant, and hurricane parties. You probably could only spend one week out of the three in Florida so if you saw a hurricane coming just turn the wheel the other way. Personally I wouldn't miss a good hurricane party for nothing when I was younger.

Will and Jane
95 Winnebago Luxor

elsinga

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Re: Wanted: east coast travel tips for dutch family
« Reply #3 on: March 04, 2013, 08:21:20 AM »
Well, hot is one thing, hot and humid another. ;) We might just go for the upper half of the east coast, as suggested. Thanks so far!

Steve & Linda

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Re: Wanted: east coast travel tips for dutch family
« Reply #4 on: March 04, 2013, 02:26:36 PM »
I wholly agree with Tom about heading South to Savannah, GA then turning North. Please keep in mind that your travel period (July)is prime family vacation time in the US, so many coastal campgrounds and historical sites will be very crowded. You may want to plan your trip out in some detail, figure how far you want to go in 1 day of driving and scout out campgrounds ahead of time. We did this trip last Fall, and I've heard that camping within 30 or miles of Gettysburg, in particular, is almost impossible around the 4th of July week. Others may chime in here. I'd really like you to have a good experience while touring the East Coast and of our country. You might want to look on website rvparksreview as you plan your trip.  Have fun and welcome!
Steve & Linda
2012 Fleetwood Discovery 40X
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Home: South Carolina
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muskoka guy

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Re: Wanted: east coast travel tips for dutch family
« Reply #5 on: March 04, 2013, 08:50:28 PM »
Go to Niagara Falls. One of the seven wonders of the world. Then continue on to Toronto. Canadas wonderland is an amusement park that rivals the best in North America. I have been to Disney and Busch Gardens in Florida. They dont come close to Wonderland. Lots of great camping a few hours north or east of Toronto. Then head back into upstate New York. Great camping in the Apalations. Carry on to Maine if you have time. The east coast is awesome.

elsinga

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Re: Wanted: east coast travel tips for dutch family
« Reply #6 on: March 05, 2013, 03:16:11 AM »
Niagara Falls is on the list, Canada is not currently. We probably go north from NYC into the Catskills, onto Niagara Falls, south to the Shenandoah Valley, Blue Ridge parkway, Mount Mitchell and then to the coast and up north again to NYC in the end.

Our trip will start after the 4th of july, unfortunately.

Steve & Linda

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Re: Wanted: east coast travel tips for dutch family
« Reply #7 on: March 05, 2013, 08:35:29 AM »
The Blue Ridge Pkwy is a beautiful drive. Just be aware it is a 2-lane road with many narrow turns and some tunnels. The size and height of your rig could impact getting through some of the tunnels and the speed limit, I think is about 45-55. There are some great campgrounds on or very near the Pkwy. Enjoy your travels!
Steve & Linda
2012 Fleetwood Discovery 40X
Toad: Ford F150 Platinum
Home: South Carolina
Members: FMCA, Monaco America and Georgia Funseekers

elsinga

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Re: Wanted: east coast travel tips for dutch family
« Reply #8 on: March 05, 2013, 10:23:00 AM »
Since the height and widt of most C-class RV's is about the same (12" high, 9" wide), only the length will impact the ride, I guess. How difficult is it to manouvre the Blue Ridge Pkwy with a 30" RV? I don't want to go fast, safe is more important (and then I can enjoy the view while driving). ;)

Steve & Linda

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Re: Wanted: east coast travel tips for dutch family
« Reply #9 on: March 05, 2013, 05:56:38 PM »
I have only done the Blue Ridge Pkwy in a personal vehicle so others may have to give input about RV height, but the Pkwy was built for cars and pickup trucks, not for the RV per se.  I do not know the exact height in some of the tunnels but the Pkwy does have a website that probably can provide that info.  I'm sure someone on the forum can also give more input. We drive a Class A and tow a full-size pickup. I'm not worried about the length of our unit but more concerned we wouldn't make it through the tunnels due to our height.  You will NOT be disappointed with the views!
Steve & Linda
2012 Fleetwood Discovery 40X
Toad: Ford F150 Platinum
Home: South Carolina
Members: FMCA, Monaco America and Georgia Funseekers

elsinga

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Re: Wanted: east coast travel tips for dutch family
« Reply #10 on: March 06, 2013, 01:59:19 AM »
I found the website and it mentions the tunnel clearances her: http://www.blueridgeparkway.org/v.php?pg=87

Summary: all over 10.1' (which is the lowest minimum clearance at Bunches Bald). Max clearance is over 19'in all tunnels. So an RV should be okay at most tunnels, although you should probably stay more in the middle of the tunnel at Bunches Bald, Lickstone Ridge and Big Witch (where the minimum clearance is under 13 feet). So, no worries. :)

Chet18013

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Re: Wanted: east coast travel tips for dutch family
« Reply #11 on: March 06, 2013, 06:21:57 AM »
We have traveled the Blue Ridge Parkway with a 40' motorhome and towing a Jeep with no problems. You just have to drive carefully and be conscious of the traffic and all the curves. There are plenty of spots to pull off and enjoy the views. Be sure and check the tunnel clearances. I believe all the low tunnels are on the very southern part of the parkway. You will have to exit the parkway to find a campground, but there are many adjacent to east and west side of the parkway.
Chet18013
Full time in a 45' '04 Monaco Signature
towing a 2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee diesel

elsinga

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Re: Wanted: east coast travel tips for dutch family
« Reply #12 on: March 06, 2013, 06:29:39 AM »
Thanks for the confirmation, Chet. It looks like we will travel (almost) the full lenght of the Blue Ridge Parkway. Do I need to reserve a place on the campsites there or can I just take the gamble and not reserve a place (which gives us more freedom to travel)?

Chet18013

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Re: Wanted: east coast travel tips for dutch family
« Reply #13 on: March 06, 2013, 06:36:40 AM »
Thanks for the confirmation, Chet. It looks like we will travel (almost) the full lenght of the Blue Ridge Parkway. Do I need to reserve a place on the campsites there or can I just take the gamble and not reserve a place (which gives us more freedom to travel)?

When we have driven the parkway (twice) we gambled and did not have any trouble finding a campground. In addition to the commercial campgrounds, some of the towns along the parkway also have municipal campgrounds, which are usually well maintained and often less expensive.
Chet18013
Full time in a 45' '04 Monaco Signature
towing a 2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee diesel

Chet18013

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Re: Wanted: east coast travel tips for dutch family
« Reply #14 on: March 06, 2013, 06:41:38 AM »
I would recommend that you plan to spend one full day and visit Biltmore in the mountains of Asheville, NC.

http://www.biltmore.com
Chet18013
Full time in a 45' '04 Monaco Signature
towing a 2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee diesel

Marsha/CA

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Re: Wanted: east coast travel tips for dutch family
« Reply #15 on: March 06, 2013, 11:13:41 AM »
There is a road atlas map you can buy which list all the low bridges and restricted roads in the US, Canada and Mexico.  You can find it at any truck stop; it's called Motor Carrier's Road Atlas also called a "Trucker's Atlas".  My husband loves to go off the beaten path and take scenic 2-lane roads, so I quickly grab the atlas and make sure there are no low bridges, restricted bridges or other limitations.

Have fun!
Marsha~
2017 Heartland Mallard IDM231 Travel Trailer....Small but mighty.

elsinga

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Re: Wanted: east coast travel tips for dutch family
« Reply #16 on: March 06, 2013, 01:10:46 PM »
Marsha, good tip! I will look into that road atlas once we are in the US for sure. My Garmin GPS doesn't list low bridges, neither do the rental GPS'es.

robertusa123

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Re: Wanted: east coast travel tips for dutch family
« Reply #17 on: May 07, 2014, 07:21:53 PM »
Your going to want to head inland from NYC to interstate 81 if you want to experience the mountains.    I95 runs along the I and the only mountains you will see are the potholes in the road..   also uou r not going to find a Rev rental in NYC. 
1996  26ft. 3 kids 2 dog and the wife too

Great Horned Owl

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Re: Wanted: east coast travel tips for dutch family
« Reply #18 on: May 08, 2014, 06:56:12 AM »
You might find the North Carolina Outer Banks interesting and worth a few days.

Joel
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HappyWanderer

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Re: Wanted: east coast travel tips for dutch family
« Reply #19 on: May 08, 2014, 08:01:09 AM »
Keep in mind the distances involved, especially since you're limited to 3 weeks. Plan too ambitious a trip and you'll see a lot of highways and not much else.

halfwright

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Re: Wanted: east coast travel tips for dutch family
« Reply #20 on: May 08, 2014, 09:25:56 AM »
I would come in at Baltimore and rent an RV there. Then, spend 3-4 days at Greenbelt National Park and see Washington DC (or as much as I could).  Then The Smoky Mountains and Shenandoah Valley. Drive the Natchez Trace Parkway National Park. 

I am currently one of the camp hosts at Greenbelt and we get many foreign  tourists here to see DC.
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gc1966

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Re: Wanted: east coast travel tips for dutch family
« Reply #21 on: May 08, 2014, 09:29:42 AM »
You have to go to Myrtle beach with those 2 teenagers
1999 Winnebago 33b

catblaster

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Re: Wanted: east coast travel tips for dutch family
« Reply #22 on: May 08, 2014, 01:38:22 PM »
has anyone noticed that this thread started over a year ago, their trip may be over by now...just sayin ???
Will and Jane
95 Winnebago Luxor

 

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