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Old 06-13-2013, 02:51 PM   #1
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US circle tour - where to visit?

I am retired and DW has only a few years left before retiring. At the top of our bucket list, one of the things we want to do is do a circle tour of the US of A. Have been up and down the west coast of the US many times in the past 40 years (40?? yikes) and DW has seen that enough times so that is out. I've read a lot and seen a lot on TV about so many really interesting places in the US to visit. New Orleans, Wyoming, Texas, New England, Alabama, Tennessee, Route 66, and much more of course. New York City would be pretty cool, but I'm sure there's no cgs there plus the city is super crowded with vehicles. What about trying to see some of the popular events in various places? It would probably not be that easy to time many on a long trip I would think.

Has anyone got recommendations where to go and with an RV? Is there a good website or blog for touring with an RV? We've got membership access to C-C, RPI, Thousand Trails, etc. so finding a cg shouldn't be that hard (I *think*). I know it's not possible to take it all in, but there's got to be some must see places. We're towing a 29' trailer if that matters. With a trailer, we do have the ability to drive around locally with just the truck.

It's funny, I have no desire to tour Canada. The US is such an interesting place and has such a cultural attraction and diversity and there is a big geographic change as you travel around. I'd have moved there long ago except we'd lose things like our medical benefits.
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Old 06-13-2013, 03:06 PM   #2
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Hi myredracer,
Consider this:
1. circle tours not tour The first coach was in 1978. It takes us about 7 years to tour the 48 states. We've done it several times. With the kids, then the grand kids and by ourselves. This allows one to focus on different parts of the country each year.
2. For me, I'd start with the National Parks, Monuments, Historical places, etc.
3. You'll see stuff along the way that you can add to the itinerary.

Once you decide on a section of the country and how long you have for the trip, let us know and you'll will receive quite a few suggestions.
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Old 06-13-2013, 05:42 PM   #3
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Thanks Gary,

We're thinking at this point it'd be a 1 - 2 month leisurely trip.

DW is a management accountant and she likes to plan things to death before going anywhere. I like to throw a few things into the truck and trailer with only a general idea of where to go and for how long. Fortunately she's gotten more relaxed about it than when I first met her. I'm sure we're not the only ones like this!

I'm thinking as we travel, we'll probably end up in places that we would like to spend some time looking around. A pre-planned itinerary wouldn't work. It sounds like you may have the right approach. I don't want to get exhausted from having to keep moving on.... And I really want to be to explore more in some place if there's a lot to see and do.

Last year was the first year of going any distance pulling a trailer. We went through all 3 states on the west coast. You meet so many interesting people in campgrounds from all over the US that way. Met two couples that now travel around the country each summer together. One is from Florida and the other from Illinois (IIRC). They met at a cg years ago after retiring and decided to go travelling together ever since. It was very interesting listening to their travel adventures. Not sure what this has to do exactly with my original question, but it is such a blast meeting different folks from different places. No accent problems so far, and I throw in the occasional "ya'll" to fit right in. And when you really gotta go, it's a "restroom" not a "washroom".

Can't wait to see places like the deep south and New Orleans.
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Old 06-13-2013, 07:37 PM   #4
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1-2 months definitely will not be enough time for your circle tour! One year is more like it....the northern states in summer and the south in winter. We've full-timed for 16+ years and still haven't seen it all. The best you can do is keep reading these types of sites and get a feel for where folks are touring. If it interests you, jot it down along with places to stay that will be suggested to them. You've got plenty of time to get your own schedule according to things you like to do/see. Everyone is so different in that way. Get a good road atlas and highlight areas of each state you'd like to visit or special parks/historic areas. Then make your route and you'll see more of this beautiful country by staying off the interstates. For the national parks, try to stay IN them rather than outside. You'll have great experiences. You may not have hookups but your RV in self-contained so you really don't need them. .... and yes, you can easily 'do' New York City without driving into it. Many folks stay at Liberty Harbor RV in New Jersey and the ferry can be picked up right there taking you into the city. We've never done it - big cities don't interest us - but someone here might be able to give you more info on it. Have a great time planning your big trip... that's have the fun!
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Old 06-15-2013, 02:17 PM   #5
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We've been fulltiming for 7 years now and definitely have NOT seen it all. Why try to get it all in on one trip? Once you are retired, just go for a while in one direction and come back (assuming you aren't going to fulltime) on a route north or south of where you started out.

Things not to miss:

Corning Museum in Corning, New York
Gettysburg - stay AT LEAST three days and walk the different battlefields in order of the 3 day battle.

Andersonville in Georgia - it will stay with you.
Warm Springs Georgia and Roosevelts "Little White House"

Top of the bridge across the Penobscot River south of Bangor, Maine.

The "Graveyard" at Ben & Jerry's in Vermont.

Mammoth Cave in Kentucky.

The "Land Between The Lakes" south of Paducah, KY. Stay at the Corps of Engineers park on the canal between the two lakes.

Devils Tower, WY.

"Fields of Dreams" in Iowa.

Drive across the "Mighty Mac" bridge and stay on either the north or south side so you can take a boat ride over to Mackinac Island.

Stay in the Niagra area and visit the Falls and also take a ride on a canal boat on the Erie Canal.

Find "Independence Rock" north of Rawlins, WY and look at how the pioneers came across in covered wagons and scratched their names in the rock while camped near the Sweetwater River.

Follow park of the Louis & Clark trail. Stop at Fort Union on the Montana - North Dakota border. It is a great national park that no one knows about.

Stay at Tom Sawyer RV Park in West Memphis, Arkansas and sit on the banks of the Mississippi and watch the barges go by.

Spend February down in Big Bend National Park in Texas and see the Douglas Fir trees growing at 7000 ft within the park.


Those are just a few of the places that we've been to in the past 7 years. Really to many to keep track of - which is why we have our blog.

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Old 06-15-2013, 04:10 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Barbaraok View Post
We've been fulltiming for 7 years now and definitely have NOT seen it all. Why try to get it all in on one trip? Once you are retired, just go for a while in one direction and come back (assuming you aren't going to fulltime) on a route north or south of where you started out.

Things not to miss:

Corning Museum in Corning, New York
Gettysburg - stay AT LEAST three days and walk the different battlefields in order of the 3 day battle.

Andersonville in Georgia - it will stay with you.
Warm Springs Georgia and Roosevelts "Little White House"

Top of the bridge across the Penobscot River south of Bangor, Maine.

The "Graveyard" at Ben & Jerry's in Vermont.

Mammoth Cave in Kentucky.

The "Land Between The Lakes" south of Paducah, KY. Stay at the Corps of Engineers park on the canal between the two lakes.

Devils Tower, WY.

"Fields of Dreams" in Iowa.

Drive across the "Mighty Mac" bridge and stay on either the north or south side so you can take a boat ride over to Mackinac Island.

Stay in the Niagra area and visit the Falls and also take a ride on a canal boat on the Erie Canal.

Find "Independence Rock" north of Rawlins, WY and look at how the pioneers came across in covered wagons and scratched their names in the rock while camped near the Sweetwater River.

Follow park of the Louis & Clark trail. Stop at Fort Union on the Montana - North Dakota border. It is a great national park that no one knows about.

Stay at Tom Sawyer RV Park in West Memphis, Arkansas and sit on the banks of the Mississippi and watch the barges go by.

Spend February down in Big Bend National Park in Texas and see the Douglas Fir trees growing at 7000 ft within the park.

Those are just a few of the places that we've been to in the past 7 years. Really to many to keep track of - which is why we have our blog.

Barb
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Old 06-15-2013, 06:09 PM   #7
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I have not been there, yet, but good friend went, and said see Alaska, it is a must!
Grand Canyon, North and South Rims, Carlsbad Caverns, New Mexico, Karchner Caverns, Az. Wow, so much to see and so little time, when retired I hope to get more traveling in!
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Old 06-15-2013, 07:56 PM   #8
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The best trip so far for me and the DW was our trip to the Grand Tettons, Yellowstone, Cody Wyoming and Boseman Montana. We did not plan to much but once you get into the area you should look to make reservations and stay a week in each area. Cody was not on my planned itinerary but when the Refer broke I had to go there for repairs and stayed a week. WE are going to the Smokies in 2 days and then to NJ. There are campgrounds that get you close to train routes into the city. You don't want to drive anything in NY. I'll be taking in a few Broadway shows this year. I know a guy who can get me great seats.
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Old 06-15-2013, 09:56 PM   #9
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WE are going to the Smokies in 2 days and then to NJ. There are campgrounds that get you close to train routes into the city. You don't want to drive anything in NY. I'll be taking in a few Broadway shows this year. I know a guy who can get me great seats.
Enjoy the Smokies - If you have time, climb Clingmans Dome - it was definitely worth it! And drive the Tail of the Dragon, but in a toad or on a motorcycle. The Cherahola (sp?) Skyway was awesome too! Hopefully the weather will be clear enough that you can see the mountains - they're called "The Smokies" for a reason

Where do you stay in NJ? I'd love to go back to NYC. I drove a car through there when I was 19 - that was enough for me!!!!!

And to the OP, add the above to the must see list. Also, Cherry Hill Park is the Closest Campground to Washington, DC :|: Cherry Hill Park has come recommended by several on this site as THE place to stay when visiting Washington DC and I'd put that on the MUST SEE list as well!
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Old 11-10-2013, 10:08 AM   #10
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In about 5 years, if all goes according to plan, I expect to start my "early" retirement. DW and I are planning to purchase a 5er and spend as much time as we can traveling the country. One of the things I've been putting together is a list of stuff that we want to see in each state - there are so many great spots, it's a daunting task but a lot of fun. When it gets a little further along I'll be adding it to our blog site and I'll share a link.

Thanks to all who contributed to this thread - I'm off to Google these places and update our list of destinations!
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