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-   -   Suggestions for a beachy road trip in the Southeast in July (https://www.fodors.com/community/united-states/suggestions-for-a-beachy-road-trip-in-the-southeast-in-july-1648935/)

persimmondeb Feb 21st, 2018 07:04 AM

Suggestions for a beachy road trip in the Southeast in July
 
We (myself, DH, and DS) are planning a beach oriented road trip in July. We currently have two midweek nights at Myrtle Beach booked, and our current thought is to head down 95 to whatever our southern terminus is, and then work north, possibly on 17 for a good bit of the way. We'll be originating in either North Jersey or the Philadelphia area, have about a week, and want to keep it as cheap as possible. We had been thinking either Jekyll or Amelia Island as the southern point (or both), and maybe Virgina Beach after MB. We'd be willing to drive as far south as Daytona (but not actually Daytona since we were just there in December), and DH doesn't really want to go to St. Augustine. DS is 22, and has very mild developmental disabilities/delays, so while he doesn't need to be supervised, he sticks closer to us than most young adults would, and is often interested in the kind of attractions that appeal to older children such as zoos/living history/botanic gardens, etc. He's also an avid fisherman, and some of the point of this trip is so he can fish (he's responsible for researching/paying for his own licensing requirements, fees, etc.).DS and I like wineries, and we all like history, beaches, antiques, amusement parks, etc. We don't want to do extensive city touring due to the time of year, and DH and I love a good pool.

emalloy Feb 21st, 2018 11:47 AM

Consider taking the Garden State Pky to Cape May then the ferry to Lewes DE. Head south through the DELMAVA and plan a night or two in Chincoteague VA where there are wild ponies in the National Park. Then continue south to the Bay Bridge/Tunnel which ends up very close to Virginia beach. This could be done in the opposite direction if that worked better for your overall plan.

Dukey1 Feb 21st, 2018 12:19 PM

I would not go all that way wanting "beaches" and bypass the North Carolina Outer Banks, especially if someone likes to fish.

Gretchen Feb 22nd, 2018 06:29 AM

Traveling at that time may require a lot of advance locked in reservations most probably at hotels--prime beach time. I know this sounds self evident but ....
There are far more attractive places in the vicinity of MB--Litchfield, for example. Brookgreen Gardens (small zoo, butterfly pavilion, art on steroids, gardens, plantation tour) is there, Fishing is available both in the surf, in the small lagoon on the property, and near Pawley's Island on the beach or the causeway. And uncrowded beaches on that property, amazingly so even in July. Across from Brookgreen Gardens is Huntington Beach State Park with nature trails and beach where he could also fish. It is one of the better shelling places on the coast.
North of MB there is Wilmington. South of MB is Edisto, Hunting Island preserve. Someone here mentioned a shrimp boat tour you could do near Charleston.
For two weeks I can't really see going as far south as you are mentioning. Near Hilton Head would supply plenty--and you would actually spend time being on and enjoying beaches.

persimmondeb Feb 22nd, 2018 11:57 AM

We had been thinking about the ferry option, but most likely in reverse on the way back up. Myrtle Beach is a definite, since it's booked and paid for. I'd been a little on the fence about the Outer Banks, although I know a couple of somebodies who would love Kitty Hawk. I really like the suggestion of Brookgreen Garden, and that might be a nice thing to do one day. We've actually only got a week or eight days, but DH thinks anything north of Daytona is a one day drive, so it won't eat too much into beach time. We had thought about Hilton Head, but I am not liking the prices.

Brian_in_Charlotte Feb 22nd, 2018 01:46 PM

Wow, that's an aggressive time frame for that many miles. It's a 14-hour drive from Philadelphia just to Jacksonville without stops. I'd not want to go any further than Savannah if I wanted to maximize beach time. Tybee may be an option or Hilton Head does have some less expensive lodging across the street from the beach (look at the Comfort Inn South Forest Beach). After MB I'd think Virginia Beach would be a good option price-wise and travel-wise but you're still looking at spending more than 1/2 of your day in the car.

If you can avoid driving on Saturdays you'll avoid a lot of the Sat to Sat beach rental traffic. Good luck with your planning.

persimmondeb Feb 22nd, 2018 04:54 PM


Originally Posted by Brian_in_Charlotte (Post 16680968)
Wow, that's an aggressive time frame for that many miles. It's a 14-hour drive from Philadelphia just to Jacksonville without stops. I'd not want to go any further than Savannah if I wanted to maximize beach time. Tybee may be an option or Hilton Head does have some less expensive lodging across the street from the beach (look at the Comfort Inn South Forest Beach). After MB I'd think Virginia Beach would be a good option price-wise and travel-wise but you're still looking at spending more than 1/2 of your day in the car.

If you can avoid driving on Saturdays you'll avoid a lot of the Sat to Sat beach rental traffic. Good luck with your planning.

"Aggressive" is a good word for DH's approach to mileage. DS and I tend to stock up our Kindles. We're also good at napping in the car. We do it to Daytona/St. Augustine/Orlando with some frequency though, so I'm not too worried about it. It usually just means a long first day in the car. Comfort Inn South Forest Beach is still a little more than I'd like to spend, but definitely better than most of what I saw for Hilton Head and it looks nice. We love Savannah, but not in July. Tybee is kind of on my radar, although none of us have ever been to Jekyll Island. We're spending $57 a night in Myrtle Beach, and while I know that's not realistic for every stop, especially beachfront, and we could be tempted by a splurge, my target is really under a hundred a night.

Gretchen Feb 23rd, 2018 04:13 AM

Now that you have only 7-8 days if you go much below Charleston/Savannah you'll have a lot of i95 time and little beach time. Any reason not to just go to one or two enjoyable places to stay (MB if you must!!) and Virginia Beach and really have a nice time. You can even do day trips--from MB, Brookgreen Gardens and that area that I have mentioned.
In and out of a motel takes a half day, let alone the "getting there".
Look on hotels.com

persimmondeb Feb 27th, 2018 04:53 AM

Thanks for the responses guys! Current plan, possibly still open to revision is straight down 95 to Jekyll Island (DH is very comfortable with that as a single day's drive), two nights there, one night outside Charleston (to visit DH's cousin, so that might change if it doesn't work with her plans), two nights in Myrtle Beach, and then two nights in Virginia Beach.It does not take long to get in and out of motels on DH's watch either, and this is pretty close to our usual travel style, so I think it'll be fine. We all really liked the idea of Jekyll Island and I'm doing very well pricewise. We're thinking to save the outer banks for another trip, mostly due to traffic and cost concerns, although it is a great suggestion. We're going to avoid 95 on the way back up and do what DH calls "piddle and poke", ,mostly on 17.

starrs Mar 2nd, 2018 05:38 AM

I just saw this thread and was going to suggest Jekyll. So much to see and do but a very quiet natural island. It's my favorite along the coast.

persimmondeb Mar 13th, 2018 03:25 PM


Originally Posted by starrs (Post 16685947)
I just saw this thread and was going to suggest Jekyll. So much to see and do but a very quiet natural island. It's my favorite along the coast.

We took your advice! And we're booked. And yes, this is a lot of driving. We are probably adding the Saturday night on the front end (either near DH's cousin in Charleston or somewhere around the last exit in Georgia) and then we have Sunday night on Amelia Island, Monday on Jekyll, Tuesday and Wednesday in Myrtle Beach, and Thursday and Friday in Williamsburg, Va. We might add another night in Williamsburg too.

charsuzan Mar 13th, 2018 03:43 PM

Williamsburg is not the beach but it is one of my favorite places to visit. I'd also suggest a stop in Jamestown-very close to Williamsburg.

persimmondeb Jul 23rd, 2018 06:16 PM

We went, we're back, we had a great time, and I'm in the process of posting a trip report. http://www.fodors.com/community/united-states/seagulls-stole-my-socks-a-beachy-road-trip-report-1656047/


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