Guest blogger Anna Bilbrough Skamarakas lives in Bellmawr, NJ with an interesting collection of children, pets, and a husband. When she’s not packing and unpacking suitcases, she can be found blogging at www.beautygirlsmom.com or studying at Rutgers University, Camden, NJ.
Traveling coast to coast can be an incredible experience that will give your family a lifetime of memories, but it’s definitely not something that you can undertake on the spur of the moment. A good plan and specific directions are crucial to make the trip rewarding.
Start your plan with the number of days you can take to do your trip. An aggressive, non-stop trip can be done from one coast to another in about four days, but if you want a pace that allows for unexpected stops at the Greatest Ball of Twine, give yourself an extra two days. A great resource is a program like Microsoft Streets and Trips, which allows you to build in time for stops ever couple of hours and adjusts your plan to include overnight stays and morning start times.
Consider your route based on the things you want to see. If you want to hit Jackson Square in New Orleans, you are probably going to miss the Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago – unless you do it on the return trip. Don’t plan to zig-zag, or you’ll spend way more time on the road than you want.
Lastly, don’t plan to eat all of your meals in drive through restaurants. You will need time to unwind, stretch your legs, and let your kids see something other than the back of the seat in front of them. Meals are a great opportunity to check out the local cuisine and recharge your batteries!