suggestions please: family holiday from UK

Jul 26th, 2004, 09:14 AM
  #1  
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suggestions please: family holiday from UK

I am still hoping for some suggestions of possible destinations for myself, my husband and our two sons (aged 10 and 7) to spend maybe 4/5 days next Easter prior to flying on to Orlando for a further week or so to do the Disney thing! We have been to other parts of Florida before and have also toured California/Las Vegas. Boston is a possibility (no desire to go to New York) but I am wondering if we would enjoy somewhere nearer Florida; Georgia/South Carolina/North Carolina/Virginia/Alabama/Mississippi - a contrast maybe to the parts of the USA that we have already seen. Maybe a scenic coastal region, somewhere that might also hold some interest/activities for the children. We would be happy to hire a car and tour - maybe fly into one airport from the UK and fly out of another to Orlando? I know I have mentioned lots of States covering a huge area but I don't know anyone who has travelled in these regions and so Fodors is my first attempt to narrow down some options. I read that Houston and Atlanta are not particularly worth considering so where might we find some beautiful scenary and interesting towns/cities. Or maybe we should do the usual touristy thing and head to Boston or Washington? What do you think? Thanks and, no, I'm not a troll!
hedgehog is offline  
Jul 26th, 2004, 09:21 AM
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Savannah, Georgia and Charleston, SC are both fun beautiful places.

Have you been to the Florida Keys before? It is visually stunning and very similar to being in the islands.
 
Jul 26th, 2004, 09:25 AM
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How about DC or Williamsburg? Great place for the whole family then travel to Charleston or Savannah, then onto Disney.....or you could do Boston. Or you could do St Augustine....lots to do and choose from IMO.
Judyrem is offline  
Jul 26th, 2004, 09:26 AM
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Go travel...great minds, yes?
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Jul 26th, 2004, 09:58 AM
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With only 4 or 5 days before traveling to Florida, you'll have to restrict your initial destination somewhat if you plan to drive to Orlando to get to Disneywelt. If you don't mind flying, though, I think Washington DC is a great idea - more kid-friendly than some of the other cities mentioned (Charleston, Savannah, etc.) which, while wonderful places, are really more adult-oriented than DC with its monuments, museums, and all that. Plus, spring is the ideal time to visit DC.
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Jul 26th, 2004, 10:30 AM
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All the suggestions are places that I've either been to (and would return) or wish to visit. However, many Europeans, with cities rich in history & culture, often seem to enjoy our vast natural areas.

I'd suggest a drive inland, along/thru part of the Appalachian / Smokey Mountains, taking in Blue Ridge Parkway/Skyline Drive. Luray Caverns comes to mind. Whatever your decision, Welcome (again) and enjoy your visit.
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Jul 26th, 2004, 10:37 AM
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How about a flight into Atlanta, a drive up to Asheville for an overnight and some time in the NC mountains and a short trip on a section on the Blue Ridge Parkway. Then interstate highway down to the coast, maybe stopping in Charleston or Savannah (My favorite is Savannah). Then a day on the beach in NE Florida and then on to Orlando for Disney and flight out of Orlando.
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Jul 26th, 2004, 10:48 AM
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As I recall, hedgehog is actually looking for a destination to fly into from the UK to reduce the cost of airfare (evidently the flights into Orlando at Easter are understandably very pricey). I agree with Savannah, Charleston, Williamsburg etc., but realistically I guess you'd have to fly to Washington, D.C. and then drive or fly from there. Sounds like a lot of trouble for a just a few days. If you haven't been to NY I can't imagine why you wouldn't want to visit. There are many discount flights available to Orlando from NY including Jet Blue, Spirit and Song airlines.

I also agree with GoTravel on the Fla keys if you haven't been there. Fly into Miami, rent a car & spend a few days exploring a few of the keys. They either fly or drive to Orlando.
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Jul 26th, 2004, 11:04 AM
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Hi, I live in the DC area and highly recommend it in spring -- you may be lucky and hit the city while the cherry blossoms are in bloom. In addition, there are great museums for children, such as the Smithsonian's Natural History and Air & Space museums. You have three airports to pick from for good airfares to Orlando. For discounted arifares, check out Ted and Song, to name a few.
Have fun!
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Jul 26th, 2004, 11:48 AM
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If I'm not mistaken in 2005 Easter falls during the last part of March. That is still winter in Boston and also in the mountains of Virginia. I know since I live around Boston and I grew up in southwestern Virginia. You could very well have a few nice days in Boston during that time but you could also be in a snowstorm. Having said that I can assure you that Boston and Orlando are nothing alike so you can have two very different experiences. I'm assuming you will be flying on to Orlando and you shouldn't have any trouble getting a direct flight from Boston, assuming you book relatively soon since you are traveling there over Easter and flights could fill up. I think it's less than a 3 hour flight.

Boston certainly has activities to occupy your time and for your children as well. If you wanted to tour the coastline you will find the New England coast very different from the California and Southern coasts. New England doesn't typically have the long expanses of wide open beach like you find elsewhere. What it does have is a varied coastline of jagged rocks, big sand dunes and inlets everywhere. Fishing is still a big part of life so you'll find a lot of small fishing villages. You'll also find a lot of history here, most of it having to do with your country.

Even though I'm sure you would enjoy your visit to Boston, and if you just planned to stay in Boston and not drive around I would still suggest you give serious consideration to visiting here. But because of the time of year you might think about a more southern itinerary. It's no fun driving around in bad weather.
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Jul 26th, 2004, 11:52 AM
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The reason I think the Keys are a good idea is because they are one of our natural wonders.

The Keys are also decent driving time from Orlando. You can be in Key Largo in three hours.


Europeans are surrounded by old beautiful cities that ours can't hold a candel to.
 
Jul 27th, 2004, 08:44 AM
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You've received some very good opinions so far. Here's mine. Fly into Washington DC. It is simply a wonderful place. With the monuments, seats of government, and museums, DC embodies the American ideal--everything we aspire to be as a nation is represented in DC. I think you could easily spend 4 days there.

But as you are willing to drive a bit and then fly from another airport to Orlando, you could spend 2 days in DC and then drive along the coast for 2 or 3 days. Along the coast, your best possibilities are perhaps the Chesapeake Bay area of Maryland & Virginia, the Outer Banks of NC (nothing quite like it), and the South Carolina low country in and around Charleston.

You could end your coast drive at an airport such as Myrtle Beach (if you spend a lot of time in Maryland or Virginia and don't have time to get as far south as Charleston) or Charleston, either of which would give you flights to Orlando. I think my preference would be to hit the NC Outer Banks and the Charleston area. (By the way, I have to disagree that kids would not find Charleston that great a place--there's a new aquarium and a collection of WWII ships that can be boarded and toured at Patriots Point.)

With an itinerary such as this, you will have three distinct experiences (before you get to Disney). Wherever you end up, have a great time!
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