What's between DC and Albuquerque?

Jan 21st, 2007, 11:18 AM
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What's between DC and Albuquerque?

You guys have helped me out (a great deal) with 2 previous US road trips (I'm in England), for which I've been very grateful- and I hope you can help me a bit with this one!

For reference, the 2 trips we've done were (1) Phoenix-Petrified Forest area-Sedona-Grand Canyon-Page-Utah (Bryce and Zion)-Vegas-LA-Sequoia-Yosemite-San Fran - and (2) Seattle-Mt Rainier-Mt St Helens-Columbia River Gorge-Grand Coullee-Missoula-Yellowstone-Cody-Great Falls-Glacier-Calgary-Banff-Kelowna-Vancouver-Seattle

So we have done a lot of the parks (and loved them all). Anyway, our next trip is going to be a little bit different - because (we always promised ourselves this!) we want to drive across the country - probably NY to LA - and, as my hub is 60 next year, we thought we'd best do it while we are still (a little) fit. We would love to start at Boston, but time doesn't allow - so we'll pencil that city (+ Cape Cod) in for a visit another year. We have 21-25 days to do the trip (leave from work being the big problem - but, also, budget). We'll start out in NYC (3 nights) and then down to Washington (only 1 night ...) from there, we've decided on the southern route, to see places we've never seen before. The end part of our trip will be Albuquerque-Monument Valley-Moab-LV-Death Valley-Palm Springs and (either, not sure yet - anybody have an opinion on this?) Santa Barbara or San Diego (3 nights). The end part is more-or-less set in stone as these are places (Mon Vall, Arches, Death Valley) that we've missed on our previous trips. However, it's what's between DC and Albuquerque which I need help on! It's easy enough to pick out places to stop overnight. I have (at the moment), DC-Wytheville(chosen at random as the location seems handy!)-Nashville-Memphis-Fort Smith-Tulsa (want to see the Oklahoma! show!)-Amarillo-Albuquerque. We don't want to drive more than 300 per day, if possible, because we'd like some time to stop along the way. My problem is that I am looking at a map and the big towns/cities shout out to me, but I fear we might be missing something wonderful along the way! Any advice here would be most appreciated. Thank you.
wildblueyonder is offline  
Jan 21st, 2007, 11:23 AM
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I would imagine that hitting a few backroads between DC and Nashville would provide some great scenery, country cooking, and perhaps a tour of a whisky distillery or two.

Not far from Tulsa is the Will Rogers memorial / museum. Good way to get out of the car and spend a couple hours. Gives you a glimpse of the man, but a great flavor of the local area and people as well. Oklahoman's are rightly proud of Rogers.
Hazelmn is offline  
Jan 21st, 2007, 01:13 PM
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The following is not the most direct way from D.C. to Nashville, but certainly one of the most interesting: http://www.thecrookedroad.org/
MoonGirl is offline  
Jan 21st, 2007, 02:25 PM
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(I'm ashamed to admit this!), but I just had to look Will Rogers up!!! I had heard of him, but couldn't quite place him! My husband would love to visit his birthplace, for certain! I think we are to look up Davey Crocket's house, somewhere in Virginia!
Thanks very much, I will most certainly keep this in mind!
wildblueyonder is offline  
Jan 21st, 2007, 02:26 PM
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MoonGirl - thanks very much for the great link. The only problem is time - otherwise this is the kind of route we love. Thanks!
wildblueyonder is offline  
Jan 21st, 2007, 05:49 PM
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Thankyou for the Crooked Road information. We've lived in VA for forty three years and were not aware of it.
ronkala is offline  
Jan 21st, 2007, 06:04 PM
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(Side note to Ronkala: mountain music has been alive and well in that area for a very long time, but I think it is only in the past few years that the various towns and venues have gotten organized to present themselves as a single tourist destination, and chose the name "Crooked Road." I discovered this area by accident when I was looking for a mid-way meeting point between D.C. and Nashville. Among other things, we went to a Saturday evening show at the Carter Family Fold that was truly wonderful. There is also good hiking and biking in the area. There is an annual fiddle festival in Galax every summer -- June or July, I think -- and I am hoping to go someday.)
MoonGirl is offline  
Mar 8th, 2007, 11:46 AM
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In Tulsa, visit the Philbrook Museum of Art. While the art is excellent, it's the Italianate mansion it is housed in, as well as fabulous gardens, that make it a must-see. In Tulsa, Discoveryland is the official "home" of the musical Oklahoma!, where it is shown all summer in an outdoor ampitheatre. Also, this year is Oklahoma's Centennial, and Lyric Theatre in Oklahoma City will be presenting the Centennial production of Oklahoma! this summer.

In Oklahoma City you should see the Oklahoma City National Memorial, both the peaceful outdoor grounds and the indoor museum. Also the Art Museum houses the largest permanent collection of Chihuly glass, including his largest piece, a 60 foot tower in the foyer.

jbrown is offline  
Mar 9th, 2007, 09:59 AM
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The Abraham Lincoln Library and Museum in Springfield is open.
I've always wanted to stop there, but no road trip this year.
angethereader is offline  
Mar 9th, 2007, 03:08 PM
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My first suggestion is to take the Blue Ridge Parkway through Virginia. It is a scenic byway along the Shenendoah Mountains (including Skyline Drive / Shenendoah National Park). It is a very slow, but scenic drive and will get you from Front Royal (at the western end of I-66) as far south as Gatlinberg, TN with the option of gettign back to I-81 on a few occasions.

While you are in Memphis, visit the Peabody Hotel. It is in downtown Memphis and has a beautiful lobby with a fountain where ducks swim and play during the day (indoors). It is also a few blocks from Beale Street and all of the great blues clubs (like B.B. King's) and Sun Records (where Elvis made his first recordings). Graceland is nearby, too.

Unless you are taking some smaller roads, the trip to Tulsa will mean you have to retrace some of your steps to get back to your itinerary. It is a great city, though (I have family there). The garden at Philbrook is beautiful and Discoveryland's Oklahoma! is something to behold. If you want to go about an hour north of Tulsa to Barnsdall, you can see the world's only Main Street Oil Rig, where they have a working oil rig in the middle of Main Street (other than that, there isn't much to see, so it is probably not worth the trip, but good to know about, just incase).
You might want to visit the Cowboy Hall of Fame / Museum as you pass Oklahoma City. Here's the link http://www.nationalcowboymuseum.org

Have a great trip.
manduss is offline  
Mar 10th, 2007, 09:26 AM
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One other neat thing to do in Tulsa:
Visit the Tulsa Air and Space Museum. They have some nice displays and interactive exhibits. You can get your picture taken in an F-14 cockpit. They recently opened a state of the art planetarium, too.

Here is the link:
manduss is offline  
Mar 10th, 2007, 10:19 AM
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WBY, when are you taking this trip? I'm sure you realize that taking the southern route in the summer means one mighty hot time.

Not to take away from your planned itinerary, but maybe you should ask the folks what's their least favorite thing or part of this particular route?

I'll also mention this (but then I'm biased), Chicago is often cited as the most American of all the American cities. Any interest in coming to Chicago for a few days?
exiledprincess is offline  
Apr 20th, 2007, 12:54 PM
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Hi exiledprincess - I'm sorry I took SO long to reply! LOL - yes, in fact we now DO have plans to visit Chicago - though only for 2 nights, I'm afraid. We are not really city people, but I have heard such good things about Chicago and it looks amazing! So, now our itinerary is (sort of) New York - Cape Cod (taking in Boston, but not staying there o/n) - Albany/Syracuse - Niagara - Cleveland - Chicago - St Louis - Oklahoma/Tulsa - Amarillo - El Paso - Monument Valley - Vegas (ick) - Death Valley - Sequoia - and then, not sure whether to go down to San Diego (never been there) for a few nights before flying home (and visiting Mexico) - or to Monterey Bay and down the Big Sur (never done that either) to Santa Barbara. *Sigh* - there are so many places and so little time! And we are still doing 'hot' places (probably in June/July) and we're weaving across the country, rather than going straight!
What I want is to do things I haven't done before (so NOT Vegas! - I'd like to stay on a ranch and ride a horse - I'd like to stay in a 'typical' Cape Cod hotel/motel/B&B, with white painted panelled walls, blue unholstery, the sounds of seagulls and lobster pots on the walls! You get those places in San Diego ("typically Cape Cod"), but I haven't found one yet in Cape Cod - LOL! And I want to go line-dancing. And drink a marguerita (sp?)
I think maybe I should change the title of this thread!
wildblueyonder is offline  
Apr 20th, 2007, 12:56 PM
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Oh, and I want to see the Mississippi and stay in a bed and breakfast with a white picket fence!
wildblueyonder is offline  
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