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Southeast US vacation ideas for family with young kids

Southeast US vacation ideas for family with young kids

Apr 27th, 2005, 10:49 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Apr 2005
Posts: 8
Southeast US vacation ideas for family with young kids

Hi. Im hoping I can get some suggestions for vacation spots for my family. We live in FL, and are interested in a vacation spot we can drive to (mid-July time frame). We have 2 children who will be 3-1/2 years and 9 months at that time. We are looking to get a little relief from the heat of South Florida in the summer time, but understand that we are pretty much looking at a destination somewhere in the Southeastern US, as we really dont want to spend too much time driving. Weve considered the beaches, mountains, you name it.just want to get some input from those whove had great vacations with their little ones in the same age group as ours. Well have a week or so to spend at our destination. Ideally, it would be someplace where we could keep the 3-1/2 year old occupied but have somewhere to cool off a bit too. Weve been to the NC mountains (several years ago pre-kids) and loved it, but Im not sure how appropriate it is for vacation with our little ones.any advice that anyone has would be great! Thanks!
momof2gr8kids is offline  
Apr 27th, 2005, 11:48 AM
Join Date: Mar 2005
Posts: 263
How about Chattanooga TN? There is Rock City and Ruby Falls, the aquarium and the Choo-Choo. All might keep the interest of a 3 year old but not too much to do with a baby. Also a little cooler than Atlanta or other SE cities.
ausc59 is offline  
May 11th, 2005, 01:09 PM
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 2
Chattanooga was voted the 3rd best family budget vacation by Southern Living readers- behind DIsney and Orlando! We have a lot to offer. Check out this Inn- atop Lookout Mountain- it is usually 5-10 degrees cooler in the summer up there.

cmac2 is offline  
May 11th, 2005, 04:00 PM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 179
1) Jekyll Island
Why- affordable.. beautiful.. each side of the island has different water...some is VERY kid friendly... south beach ocean creates shallow pools of water fun to puddle around in... hermit crabs and shells fun...dolphins can be found during high tide in the river...and seen from river or from a dolphin ride... Family priced places too. Quick drive to St.Simons Island, google search for Brunswick and the Golden Isles or Jekyll Island,GA. Still hot in summer, but not a far drive and may be worth it.

amandaamanda is offline  
May 11th, 2005, 04:15 PM
Join Date: Oct 2004
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I grew up spending vacations in the North Georgia mountains and lots of Floridians head this way for summer vacations. Black Rock Mountain State Park is at 3000 feet elevation, jacket/ sweatshirt weather at night, and they have rental cabins. There are private rentals as well. You could rent a pontoon boat one day and spend a wonderful day on a mountain lake (Lake Burton or Rabun). Go on a day hike in lots of places, including Tallulah Gorge. Fish in streams or lakes. Go for a horseback ride - but your kids are probably too young. I have a 3 1/2 year old that visits in the mountains and doesn't do anything special - but loves being up there. Great cool weather. It's an idea anyway.

If you want more hustle and bustle you could go further north and take the kids to Dollywood.
starrsville is offline  
May 11th, 2005, 04:54 PM
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I have to laugh at some of this.

Mr.GoTravel was born and raised in Asheville and my in-laws still live there so we spend quite a bit of time in Asheville in the summer.

It may be the mountains and it may cool off a little more in the evening than the coastal and peidmont areas but you are still talking about July in the southeast.

If you can or will drive further, I'd consider upstate New York, New England, or Canada to cool off.

Either that or wait until September. Asheville and those areas surrounding will have a big temp difference by then.
May 11th, 2005, 05:04 PM
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 17,226
Laugh away. I wouldn't expect otherwise. I'll tell the Floridians I spend the summer with that we have no idea what we are talking about. I'm sure they'll be ready to sell their homes immediately (most owned for decades) now that they have been corrected by GoT.
starrsville is offline  
May 11th, 2005, 07:07 PM
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 1,137
LOL thats right Starrsville, GoT knows everything.
Except about the beautiful mountains of the Blue Ridge Parkway, around Montreat and the beautiful, cool Pisgah National Forest, where my folks have ownde a cabin for years, you can find cool(er) relief in the summer.
Its an amazing area with something for everyone.
And one of the coolest places we've ever been in the summer.
My kids favorite is Sliding Rock, a natural 60ft waterslide.
Fishing,boating, mountain biking, hiking, The REAL Cold Mountain, horseback riding, oh and that mini estate known as Biltmore mansion.
Yes there is alot to do in the area and last I checked being in the mountains was a much cooler place to be in the summer.
But golly gee wiz maybe my folks will have to sell their place along with yours and your friends Starrsville
wanderluster is offline  
May 11th, 2005, 07:32 PM
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LOL, wanderluster!

And darn, if weather.com doesn't back me up. We're going to have to correct them too!

I checked the monthly averages (highs and lows) and according to weather.com the lows (nighttime perhaps?) are 15-20 degrees cooler than South Florida AND Charleston. Would 20 degrees qualify for more than "a little more"? Given, my place is usually 5 to 8 degrees cooler on the mountain than the town's temps used by weather.com, I promise you that evenings are more than "just a little cooler" than South Florida (or Charleston).

I keep a supply of flannel shirts and sweatshirts ready. I warn everyone to bring something warm...but no one can believe how cool it gets up there. There is a fleece throw or blanket on every chair...inside and out of the house...and there has NEVER been a summer evening when someone is has not been wrapped in a throw or sweatshirt or both. And many days, guests are wrapped up for warmth during the day...IN JULY!!! Every 4th of July we wrap up to watch the fireworks on the lake.

I've spent the 4th on Cape Cod and I we are just as cool (or cooler) at 3000 feet elevation in GA as we are in the NE.

Not only will my friends from South Florida need to sell their cool mountain getaways - the Chamber of Commerce needs to change the motto "Where Spring Spends the Summer". I need to let everyone know its official - we are being laughed at by the Charlestonian expert.

starrsville is offline  
May 11th, 2005, 08:17 PM
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Cashiers is marvelous in the summer. You will need a jacket or sweater in the evenings. weather in the 70's.

GoT, why do they like to curse you so much? Must be a sign of your clear superiority \/
Tandoori_Girl is offline  
May 11th, 2005, 08:28 PM
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 17,226
Who in the world is cursing GoT?

Of course, we are acknowledging her ultimate superiority.

Yeah, right.

Be careful, Tandi. GoT is laughing at anyone that says it's cool on summer evenings in the mountains. She also informs the South Floridian OP that one needs to wait until September to go to Asheville because "Asheville and those areas surrounding will have a big temp difference by then."

One can only imagine that would be her advice for Cashiers as well. You are drawing her laughter to say it's cool enough for a sweater.
starrsville is offline  
May 12th, 2005, 05:35 AM
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 1,137
No one is cursing anyone.
We all have our opinions - hence the *IMO* preface.
Most respect others, realizing no one is right *ALL* the time.
(except myself, just ask my kids )

But there's no *IMO* for some, they're always right.
Same old same old here, its been discussed often.
Just glad I don't work for an individual with, as my psych 101 prof would say, delusions of grandeur?
wanderluster is offline  
May 12th, 2005, 06:06 AM
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Okay, let me rephrase if this seems to be bothering you so much.

In my experiences with Asheville, North Carolina (not Tennessee, Georgia, or other parts of NC), the temp drop at night is not enough for a sweatshirt. I've sat on my inlaws front porch many a night looking over the Blue Ridge Parkway and it has been too warm for a sweatshirt.

In my opinion, there is a bigger temp difference starting in September from South Florida to the mountains of North Carolina.

To the OP, my inlaws are in Asheville, and my sis and brother-in-law are in Miami so I've spent time in both during July.

Now, is that better?

TG, I have no idea. I know I've been accused lately of being not nice and I'm about done with this board.
May 12th, 2005, 06:10 PM
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 17,226
That is MUCH better. Thank you.

Your rephrasing is sharing your opinion, based on YOUR experiences.

Your rephrasing is NOT a correction of another poster's opinion - which is what you have been criticized for on this board.

How is the world you could think "I have to laugh at this" is not a condesending, obnoxious, not to mention, uncalled for comment is beyond my scope of imagination.

The implication is that ausc59, cmac2, and starrsville are completely out of their minds when they state their opinions.

My maternal grandparents and cousins lived on Lookout Mountain and my summers visiting them matches cmac2 - and I have to agree that Chanticleer is absolutely delightful. I stayed there in March.

Chattanooga was not the travel destination it is now (due to smog) but other relatives homes' seven miles south were always cooler than Atlanta - so my experiences match ausc59 as well.

BUT, if I did not agree with their statements I could find several options after reading them...but I would not choose to be so uncivil to say I'm laughing at their comments.

THAT's what some of us have a problem with. It's fine to provide differing opinions - that's what makes this board so helpful and entertaining. In my book it is NOT okay to mock another's opinion.

Thanks again for rephrasing. It makes a big difference.
starrsville is offline  
May 13th, 2005, 04:04 AM
Join Date: Apr 2003
Posts: 1,157
Can we get back now to helping out Mom? I was just reminded that in Dillsboro(NC) they have the train ride into the Great Smoky's and they do an afternoon lunch trip for "little conductors". Most kids are so into trains at that age. Also Cherokee might be interesting for the 3.5 yr old.
Find a cabin near a lake or a hotel with a pool...kids are so easy to please at that age...it's when they become teenagers that it gets much more challenging!
leahinsc is offline  
May 16th, 2005, 04:32 PM
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 264
Have you considered Myrtle Beach? There is lots to do for children including mini golf, amusement parks, etc. They also have Broadway at the Beach and Barefoot Landing, which are two big shopping complexes with such things as paddleboats, fish feeding, alligator farms, and an aquarium. They have Build-a-Bear workshops, ice cream parlors, and kid friendly restaurants. It is hot during the day, but you can go to the beach or pool or do some shopping. My sister has kids ages 6,5, and 2 and they enjoy MB.
kjenn is offline  
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