Your Next Vacation: Take a “One-Tank Trip” in the Northeastern United States
Although Northeasterners often head south or west for summer vacation, there are plenty of hot spots in their own backyards. Here are some road trips and close-to-home staycations reachable within a tank or two of gas.
1. Spend time by the water
The Northeast United States boasts a wealth of spots to boat, fish and swim or just relax on a beach. Among the region’s major bodies of water are the Atlantic Ocean, St. Lawrence River, Lake Ontario, Lake Erie, Hudson River and Finger Lakes. Two ideas for water-centric road trip destinations:
- Niagara Falls: Expect plenty of attractions on and off the water. The falls are spectacular during the day. Illuminated at night, they’re even more breathtaking. For something up close and misty, book a ride on the Maid of the Mist. What about the landlubber in you? Stretch your legs by exploring the surrounding parks and wander around the city.
- Jersey Shore: Soak up the sun and float by the numerous resorts and beach communities that line the eastern coast of New Jersey. And it wouldn’t be the Shore without strolling the boardwalks.
2. Play in the mountains
The Northeast’s mountains are perfect for avid outdoors types. The four seasons provide exciting backdrops year-round. Enjoy warm summers and crisp falls for hiking and leaf watching; in the winter, try skiing and snowboarding. Consider:
- Adirondack Mountains: Ski the Adirondack High Peaks for an experience that rivals any Western mountain chain. During the summer, the hiking is exhilarating, and the many ponds nestled in the mountains offer a refreshing swim. At day’s end, meander the likes of Lake Placid, Saranac Lake and other quaint spots.
- Lakes and Mountain Region of Maine: Western Maine is home to mountains ideal for hiking and camping. The White Mountains challenge climbers with Mount Katahdin, Crocker Mountain and Old Speck Mountain.
3. Sample wineries
If you’re a wine lover, tour one of the region’s many wineries during your next staycation. They tempt visitors with tastings, tours and dinner. Two premier spots:
- Finger Lakes: These five spindly lakes have created an environment ripe for winemaking. Sample some of New York State’s finest wines in and among quaint historic towns.
- Cape Cod and Martha’s Vineyard: The Cape, the Vineyard and Nantucket are home to a number of wine-producing operations with great wine, unmatched views and atmosphere.
4. Tour major cities
Let’s not forget the big cities of the Northeast. Let your one-tank trip take you to:
- New York City: No matter where you live in the region, Manhattan is less than a day’s drive away. Entertainment options are virtually limitless year-round. Summer? A Yankees’ game or cruise around New York Harbor. See the Rockettes at Radio City Music Hall or take in a show on Broadway in fall and winter. And with so many legendary restaurants, you’ll find cuisine to satisfy every palate.
- Boston: Take in a blend of modern achievement and American history at every turn. Follow the Freedom Trail walking tour of see landmarks like the Paul Revere House and USS Constitution. Be awed by whale watching or stop into a local tavern for fresh clam chow-dah. Take in a game at historic Fenway Park or just walk around stately Harvard University. You won’t be bored in this walking city.
- Philadelphia: Like Boston, Philly merges the historic and the modern. Tour museums featuring subjects as varied as modern art, science and medical wonders. Visit Historic Philadelphia, one square mile of historical treasures, including the Liberty Bell, Independence Hall and Franklin Court. Catch your choice of professional sports and, of course, grab an authentic Philly cheese-steak.
5. Go international
Another alluring feature of the Northeast is its proximity to Canada. Multiple border crossings throughout New York, Vermont, New Hampshire and Maine put your family within easy driving distance of pastoral, rustic outposts and cultural urban centers. Consider these destinations when you’re planning a road trip:
- Toronto and Montreal: See what urban life is like on a Canadian scale. These dynamic cities are hubs of culture and art. The blend of residents and visitors makes for a varied landscape built on global influences. Tour these cities to see historic landmarks alongside modern shops and exciting sporting events.
- Niagara-on-the-Lake: This gem on Lake Ontario is packed with wineries, historic hotels, small boutiques, beautiful parks and a world-renowned theater festival – the Shaw Festival. Spend a summer day here getting lost in it all.
Get driving safety tips and insurance before you hit the road
With so many destinations so close, all you need is a map and some fuel to make your next vacation in the Northeast memorable.
Before you go, make sure your car insurance coverage is what you need and up to date. Get a free online auto insurance quote from Nationwide Insurance® and learn how features like Roadside Assistance could make for happier travels. Also, pick up some driving safety tips so you reach your destination without a hitch.