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Old 10-31-2015, 12:15 PM   #15
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Jodi-Lynn,

There is no planned itineraries that I know of out there but there is a lot of information available on the Internet. For travel days I would plan on driving no more than 5 hours during the 8-10 hour travel days that gives you time to stop and see things. Next I would go to Google Maps then pick the furthermost location I would like to see from LA and plot it out. For example Grand Canyon Trailer Village is really nice and only just over seven hours from LA which is two days traveling. You could easily stay there four nights and see it all. Plenty of free transportation around the park.

Try this Plug in Google Maps (https://maps.google.com) theses Cities: Los Angeles, CA, Grand Canyon Village, AZ, Albuquerque, NM, Las Cruses, NM, Tucson, AZ, Phoenix, AZ, and then Los Angeles, CA which you get a round trip of 1,889 miles. Divide by 300 miles/day (5 hrs @ 60 mph) and you have a minimum of 7 travel days leaving 20 extra nights. Now zoom in on the Google Map and look for things to see most attractions will show up when zooming in along the route. There is a load of parks in the area and odd ball things to see. Next figure the area where you want to stay, i.e., half way between two towns, 300 miles, near a site you want to stop at and zoom in slightly and then "X" the search box and put in "rv parks and campgrounds" hit enter and all the rv parks and campgrounds show up as red dots click on them to find more info. Most RV Park website will have information about local sightseeing, public transportation, etc. in addition to rates, etc. A simple email to them might gain you more information about traveling in the area.

As you say you are eager to explore the US I take that you are flying in from out of the country so you are not necessarily looking to see California. While California has a lot of nice places to see it is a bit more pricey in terms of gas and other items. If you are on a tight budget perhaps avoid it for now. For comparison see GasBuddy.com - Find Low Gas Prices in the USA and Canada it is 50 to 75 cents/gal cheaper in New Mexico and Arizona. There are websites for everything - for odd ball stuff visit Roadside America - Guide to Uniquely Odd Tourist Attractions or if you watch the food channels and want to stop at one of those featured visit Restaurants on TV, Diners Drive-Ins and Dives, Man vs Food, Best Thing I Ever Ate & more. Here is another website that chronicles a families RV trips over the last 17 years 17 summers of RV road trip travels across the USA and Canada | Lolo's Extreme Cross Country RV Trips you might find some tips there.
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Old 10-31-2015, 05:36 PM   #16
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Sounds like you and your family are not that much different than our (except our "kids" are now 40 and 38 years old). We loved to hike and immerse ourselves in local culture.

Catalina State Park has already been referenced. Great place to hike and enjoy nature.



Nearby is Biosphere, this was and is a lab that conducts environmental studies.

Saguaro National Park is a favorite of ours for hiking and just solitude. Sabino Canyon has great hiking. We enjoyed an afternoon visiting an old Titan Missile Silo and a very old church (San Xavier....it is 200 years old....just a baby in terms of your homeland but special just the same).

If you could swing it financially, I whole heatedly suggest the Arizona Sonora Desert Museum. It is a zoo of sorts, but the animals and plants are from the local area. This is a place that my wife and I go every time we head to Tucson.

There are several botanical gardens in the area. I would also suggest that you look into renting bikes for the day. There is a rather extensive bike path around Tucson.

If you run out of thins to do and see in Tucson, there is a place a half a day's drive away. It is so very unique in terms of topography. Below is a link to that site. It is at 7,200 feet, so watch the weather, but on average it should be doable for you.

Chiricahua Chiricahua National Monument (U.S. National Park Service)

On other very unique location is Sedona, AZ. Plenty of interesting rocks and hikes there. If you go, head up to the airport at sundown and enjoy the light show as the sunlight changes the colors of the surrounding hills. This one is free. Sedona is farther north of Tucson, and at higher elevation, so be sure and watch the weather here.

Where ever you chose to go, be aware of the local reptiles. They are part of the ecosystem and can be enjoyed (from a distance) just as well. Just part of life in the Southwest.

By the way, if you overnight in the San Diego Area, I suggest that you spend a day in Balboa Park. It is historic, relaxing, and roaming around is free.

Hope that you have a wonderful time.
All great suggestions but Just a FYI- There won't be any "reptiles" in Tucson in December. They'll have long gone to sleep for the winter.
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Old 10-31-2015, 06:44 PM   #17
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So true! My error.


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Old 11-02-2015, 04:36 AM   #18
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Wow! Thanks for all the great information! If anyone else has ideas for great places to visit with kids, we'd love to hear them

And I can't say that I am disappointed that we won't be seeing many reptiles.
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Old 11-04-2015, 08:41 AM   #19
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Robmat,
The website about oddball attractions is great!

The information you wrote is excellent help.
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Old 11-04-2015, 09:06 AM   #20
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I recommend Joshua Tree National Park, and Anza-Borrego State Park as you head east. Also, you may get in touch with the Mali Mish crew. They have been out in Borrego Springs in December with their kids before, and they usually attract other kids. They camp in the desert FOR FREE, so that'll stretch your budget

Mali Mish Anza Borrego: New Years 2015.

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Old 11-04-2015, 04:37 PM   #21
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Jodi-Lynn I would strongly recommend you sign on to Good Sams Trip Planning. Won't cost you anything to do it. Then put together a route that will keep you away from snow and ice. (Note: not sure how much ice and snow you've driven in or on but a motorhome AIN'T the place to try it out). After you input a route you can select Things To Do along the side. There are a dizzying amount of options there to help you plan and to provide more info. I am sure there are other on line planners but I use GS as a great start point.
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Old 11-04-2015, 06:13 PM   #22
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As a non resident, Aussie, I can add a few suggestions.
Firstly there are many state park campgrounds on highway 1 as you head up the coast.
These are on the beach and shouldn't be busy at that time of year (locals may confirm)
So with Disneyland and some of the other attractions mentioned, I'd be staying coastal all the way to San Francisco.
There is some nice wine country, and some nice Rv parks like Pismo Beach, that you could spring for occasionally if funds are tight.
I know it's tempting to preplan the whole trip because you are not local, but as you are outside the busy season you could check with a few of the parks to confirm you don't need to book.



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Old 11-04-2015, 06:57 PM   #23
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Robmat,
The website about oddball attractions is great!

The information you wrote is excellent help.
Glad to help - here are a few other websites that might be helpful.

Here is a website full of online trips where you can get some travel tips by people who have been there and done that. The journals have location tags to them so you can read only the ones in the area you are looking at.
United States - Journals | Blogs | WebSites - MyTripJournal

This one someone else recommended in another thread and I find it pretty good. You click on the state and then many different routes show up. Pick the one that you might be traveling on and click on it. It opens to a post of mile by mile information and photos. Road Trip Planning for USA, Canada and Mexico

Lastly with all the mentions of weather visit this website for historic weather data. You pick the dates and location and you'll get percentages from data over the past 20 years what type of weather to expect. Nice for packing the right clothes. Trip Planner | Weather Underground
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Old 11-05-2015, 04:26 PM   #24
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Gosh San Diego Are RV haters they changed the law and there is no where to boondock without getting a $80.00 ticket. They forbid parking anything over 27' on the street. Sorry to post negative but, that's how it is. We traveled from NH across the US everything was great till we arrived in San Diego 😕
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