Memorial Day Weekend New England Itinerary?

May 20th, 2018, 11:46 PM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: May 2018
Posts: 3
Memorial Day Weekend New England Itinerary?

Hi everyone,

Iím a total Newbie to the East Coast in general and I just moved to Long Island, NY over the winter. I have not really set out and experienced New England or much of the East Coast at all yet. I have 2 trips to Boston planned later this summer so I would consider there off my list at the moment in the context of this discussion.

If I had to sum up my interests for travel in a nutshell it would be scenery, art, craft beer, and food.

Iím also a pretty ďhigh motor vacationerĒ in the sense that Iím happiest when I get to see and do a lot in a day and I think nothing of planning 2-3 activities for one day. I want to explore not relax on vacation.

I basically want to do a good road trip outside of NYC or Boston for Memorial Day Weekend. The problem is, Iím kind of overwhelmed on where to start. Cape Cod, Vermont, Maine?

Iím looking for suggestions in that regard.

For example,

If I wanted to end up in Cape Cod is there a city in CT and RI Iíd want to spend time in along the way?

Or if I wanted to end up in Portland, Maine where would I want to stop along the way in VT or NH?

I should also mention that since I'm doing this all last minute and not on a huge budget I'd be open to not staying directly in some of these cities and take up a cheaper hotel room outside of them. For instance I'd have no desire to pay for a room in Cape Cod on a holiday weekend!
contradiction is offline  
May 21st, 2018, 02:30 AM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 24,541
It's a good time to visit Maine before the high tourist season begins. You could aim for Portsmouth to Portland. There are some beer tours you can take which keeps you safe from DUI issues. Look for lodging any place in that area and it will be easy enough to visit different places. I always recommend the boat trips out of Portsmouth and for driving, Rt 1B from Strawbery Banke/ Prescott Park area takes you thru charming Newcastle. Rt 1A is a drive past private mansions in Rye. Chowhound will give you some ideas of restaurants in Portland and Bite Into ME food truck parked in Fort Williams park is next to great views of Casco Bay.

It will take you longer but if you want a scenic drive, from Hartford CT head north on I91 thru western MA to Brattleboro VT (stop at the farmers market in Brattleboro if it's a Saturday) then to Keene NH and then east to Concord NH where you can go north on I93 to I393 to Rt 4 and over to the coast. Do not take GPS recommendations for Rt 101 instead of Rt 4 because it's a boring limited access highway.

Tip to routes: heading north on either I89 or I93 gets prettier and prettier as you go north. Very scenic for interstates. I like I91, too.

You might want to save a NH trip until August when The League of NH Crafts holds their annual 10 day fair in Sunapee.

I tried looking for RI air b&b for Memorial Day weekend because Sakonnet Gardens are open to the public then but couldn't find what I wanted and decided I need to work in my own garden instead of traveling. Last fall friends and I stayed in Warren RI which gave up an easy drive north to Providence for the food tour (highly recommend) and south to Newport for two mansion tours. Food in Warren was great. We went to a tapas place at night and great breakfast place in the morning. When we first traveled to RI we stopped in Fall River MA (Sagres) for a Portuguese lunch.

I'll have to let someone else recommend the Cape since I'm not a fan of the weekend traffic. There are lots of micro and nano breweries in VT, NH and ME and there's also some apple orchards making their own hard ciders.

Concord NH would be off most people's weekend trip radar but if you landed there, the seacoast is within an hour or you could be in the mountains in an hour. Perhaps list some breweries you might want to visit to help decide your base. Concord's farmers market is ok but not as varied and as big as the one on the seacoast. I'm a big fan of the one in Norwich VT, music and crafts as well as yummy prepared food. The Lake Winnipesaukee area is getting busy but it's quieter if you go a little inland. Tamworth has a new distillery. You should find some galleries in Wolfboro and possibly Meredith. There is also a League shop. There's a free weekly newspaper with a website: Hippo Press which might help you choose a location based on activities/events. It has good coverage of southern NH, Concord, Portsmouth. Not so much further north in NH but some coverage.
dfrostnh is offline  
May 21st, 2018, 03:19 AM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Posts: 5,831
If you are new to the area, you might want to head east on Long Island to Orient Point. Take the car ferry to New London, CT. 15 miles or so east is Mystic (in the town of Stonington). See if you can get lodging there or in Stonington burroughs. Mystic Seaport is a maritime museum with tall ships, and a village of the kinds of buildings with actors showing how things were in the late 1800s. The Burrough is a place with interesting architecture and many original homes from the 1700s and 1800s as well as the last fishing fleet in CT. In Groton there is the submarine museum where you can go on the Nautilis, first atomic submarine as well as a small museum.

From there you could head north, either take 395 to190 to 495 (to avoid the Boston area) to 95 for Maine and New Hampshire or take 95 north to 38 to Newport or 95 to 195 east etc. to Cape Cod.

There is plenty of lodging and everything is open in the Mystic area, but it might be a little tight on the Cape and some things won't be open in Maine yet.

It is also black fly season in Maine.
emalloy is offline  
May 21st, 2018, 03:21 AM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Posts: 5,831
If you are new to the area, you might want to head east on Long Island to Orient Point. Take the car ferry to New London, CT. 15 miles or so east is Mystic (in the town of Stonington). See if you can get lodging there or in Stonington burrough. Mystic Seaport is a maritime museum with tall ships, and a village of the kinds of buildings with actors showing how things were in the late 1800s. The Burrough is a place with interesting architecture and many original homes from the 1700s and 1800s as well as the last fishing fleet in CT. In Groton there is the submarine museum where you can go on the Nautilis, first atomic submarine as well as a small museum.
From there you could head north, either take 395 to190 to 495 (to avoid the Boston area) to 95 for Maine and New Hampshire or take 95 north to 38 to Newport or 95 to 195 east etc. to Cape Cod.

There is plenty of lodging and everything is open in the Mystic area, but it might be a little tight on the Cape and some things won't be open in Maine yet.

It is also black fly season in Maine.
emalloy is offline  
May 21st, 2018, 06:07 PM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 13,852
Craft beer lover? Vermont is filled with them.
HappyTrvlr is offline  
May 22nd, 2018, 02:38 AM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 24,541
Yes, it's black fly season but unless you are in the woods or grassy areas, they aren't a problem. I wouldn't plan on hiking but just about any other activity is fine.
dfrostnh is offline  
May 24th, 2018, 06:42 AM
  #7  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: May 2018
Posts: 3
Thanks for the suggestions everyone! Looks like the weather will not be on my side this weekend unfortunately so my plan right now is to get to Dartmouth and stay the night at a hotel there on Friday so I'm close to the Cape in the morning and then I will spend the day there and overnight and see how the weather holds for Sun. morning.

I may move on to Mystic, CT for Sunday figuring that I can do the museums emalloy mentioned then if it's not a good time to be outside really.

Knowing that I'm pretty much thinking of staying close to the North Shore of the Sound is there anything that you would recommend for Monday if I wanted to visit a 3rd city after the Cape and Mystic?
contradiction is offline  
May 24th, 2018, 08:30 AM
  #8  
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 509
You might consider Newport, RI in between Cape Cod and Mystic.

https://www.discovernewport.org/

When I'm on vacation (I'll be in Ogunquit, ME this weekend) my motto is: "There is no bad weather on vacation, just poor wardrobe decisions."
Bette is offline  
May 24th, 2018, 10:08 AM
  #9  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 24,541
We did Beneath the Breakers Newport RI tour last fall, it was fascinating. There's also an interesting Native American museum next to Foxwoods Casino in CT. It's a separate building. Mashantucket Pequot Museum and Research Center

Bette, love your philosophy. When my husband thought he was going to get out of going to the state fair one rainy Saturday, I told him it was a great time to go … not too hot, not too dusty and not too crowded. One rainy weekend had a fun time on a canal boat singing Stephen Foster songs with the boat guy (park ranger?) outside Washington DC. It was just us and a group of Japanese tourists. Never thought 5th grade music lessons would come in handy.
dfrostnh is offline  
May 24th, 2018, 10:19 AM
  #10  
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 15,925
My husband and I really enjoyed a long weekend trip to Fair Haven and New Bedford MA last fall. We visited the museums in New Bedford and toured Fair Haven which has amazing public buildings financed by Henry H. Rogers of Standard Oil. (some of the buildings are probably closed over the holiday weekend)
Vttraveler is online now  
May 30th, 2018, 06:22 AM
  #11  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: May 2018
Posts: 3
Thanks for the suggestions everyone. I found that Cape Cod gave me more then enough to do. I enjoyed the drive out around the cape, ate at some seafood places, visited a couple light houses, did the Dune Shacks hike to the beach, and saw a ton of art galleries. All in all a good trip. The only negative I can say is I want to spend about a week there now!

I'll keep the other NE suggestions you gave me in mind for future trips too.
contradiction is offline  
Related Topics
Thread
Original Poster
Forum
Replies
Last Post
asdaven
United States
19
Jan 9th, 2012 07:28 AM
LakesideChick
United States
48
Jun 1st, 2010 05:52 AM
traveler123
United States
4
Jul 24th, 2007 03:11 PM
Firecracker
United States
11
May 11th, 2005 04:11 AM
NE
United States
13
Apr 9th, 2002 07:40 PM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy -

FODOR'S VIDEO

All times are GMT -8. The time now is 04:13 PM.