Etiquette Hell

A Civil World. Off-topic discussions on a variety of topics. Guests, register for forum membership to see all the boards. => Time For a Coffee Break! => Topic started by: ladyknight1 on April 10, 2013, 07:46:09 AM

Title: Traveling to the Mid-Atlantic Region
Post by: ladyknight1 on April 10, 2013, 07:46:09 AM
We will be traveling to West Virginia, Virginia, DC, North Carolina, South Carolina and Georgia in late July. Any tips or suggestions would be welcome!
Title: Re: Traveling to the Mid-Atlantic Region
Post by: bopper on April 10, 2013, 08:11:15 AM
We took a Segway Tour (through Segs in the City although there are others) in Washington DC to see the memorials.  It was quite fun!
Title: Re: Traveling to the Mid-Atlantic Region
Post by: Ygraine on April 10, 2013, 08:24:31 AM
For Virginia - do not miss Colonial Williamsburg. 
Title: Re: Traveling to the Mid-Atlantic Region
Post by: Luci on April 10, 2013, 08:37:40 AM
Even the kids were impressed with Monticello (Thomas Jefferson), Ash Lawn (James Monroe), and Mt. Vernon (George Washington).

For scenery, try to travel part of the Blue Ridge Parkway - North Carolina thru Shenandoah National Park in VA. Any part of the drive is great!

The most impressive thing to me is Arlington National Cemetery.

You are giving me travel lust again!
Title: Re: Traveling to the Mid-Atlantic Region
Post by: readingchick on April 10, 2013, 08:48:29 AM
In DC take the twilight tour; it's done by Tourmobile and while the only downside is that it's dark when you get to the FDR memorial it's still pretty cool. Stay at the Hotel Harrington, it's within walking distance of almost everything in the city. A visit to the Holocaust Museum is a must--it's emotionally draining but so worth it.
Title: Re: Traveling to the Mid-Atlantic Region
Post by: cicero on April 10, 2013, 09:11:43 AM
I was recently in DC and went to mt Vernon - beautiful place. apparently you can also take a boat tour/view in the nicer weather (when i was there it was too cold/raining).

a bit further away in baltimore you can visit fort mchenry which is very nice, and gives the story of the battles and the star spangled banner. plus, downtown baltimore is very cool. we also visited anapolis which is very cool to walk around, and there is the state capital and the naval yard.

I second the suggestion to drive through shenandoah - it's really nice.
Title: Re: Traveling to the Mid-Atlantic Region
Post by: ladyknight1 on April 10, 2013, 10:57:23 AM
Thank you and keep them coming.

DH and DS will be attending the national Scout jamboree in WV. We decided to have an eight day vacation tacked on to the end. DS and I have never been to DC or anywhere else on our itinerary. We are very excited.

Our current plans, I will drive through from Florida, stopping overnight in NC, then pick them up and head to DC. We have hotel reservations in Alexandria, VA. We also booked the capitol tour through our representative. We stay in the DC area for 5 days, then head to Chinocteague reserve, Raleigh, Charleston, and Savannah before heading home.
Title: Re: Traveling to the Mid-Atlantic Region
Post by: Hillcatlady on April 10, 2013, 11:06:26 AM
For Georgia, you may want to check out Stone Mountain. Some call it the Rushmore of the East. I can't remember how far from Atlanta it is however.

In South Carolina, Charleston is lovely with a couple of plantations and other historical houses open to tourists. Sweetgrass baskets made by the locals are one of the things sold to tourists and some of them are real works of art. You'll find less touristy prices if you drive along route 17 north, heading towards Myrtle Beach.

As for Myrtle Beach, I haven't been there in a VERY long time so I can't recommend it.

In North Carolina, if you are into kitsch check out South of the Border on rte 95 at the border of North and South Carolina. SotB has existed for at least 50 years in the same spot and is a bit of a tourist trap.

Also in North Carolina I would recommend The Biltmore in Asheville and Chimney Rock near Lake Lure. If you are into poetry, Carl Sanderberg's house is south of Asheville and is open to the public for tours. The blue ridge parkway also runs through there as well and you can find the NC arboretum and the arts and Crafts center on the parkway.

There are a TON of caves along rte 81 in Virginia - Lurray is the most famous of them. For a bit of fun, you can visit Foamhenge ! Also there are several civil war sites along the highway as well.

Can you tell I travel in the area a lot? ;)

Good luck and have fun!
Title: Re: Traveling to the Mid-Atlantic Region
Post by: siamesecat2965 on April 10, 2013, 11:17:40 AM
There's plenty to do and see in DC> you could spend your whole time at teh various Smithsonian museums!  I also recommend the National Zoo, if you're into that, and something not as "fun" but definitely worth seeing, the National Holecaust Museum, again, if that is something you might be interested in. Its free to get in, but I believe you have to get tickets for specific times, ahead of time.
Title: Re: Traveling to the Mid-Atlantic Region
Post by: ladyknight1 on April 10, 2013, 11:21:19 AM
National Zoo is on our list, the Natural History museum, Air & Space museum, and the national botanical gardens. We would like to see all of the monuments and memorials we can, without getting overloaded. The Holocaust memorial is on our list.
Title: Re: Traveling to the Mid-Atlantic Region
Post by: Promise on April 10, 2013, 11:23:26 AM
In DC take the twilight tour; it's done by Tourmobile and while the only downside is that it's dark when you get to the FDR memorial it's still pretty cool. Stay at the Hotel Harrington, it's within walking distance of almost everything in the city. A visit to the Holocaust Museum is a must--it's emotionally draining but so worth it.

I agree about the nighttime tour. Seeing the memorials at night feels like you are in a movie. It also puts you in a contemplative state of mind. You view the war memorials with a heightened sense of empathy.
Title: Re: Traveling to the Mid-Atlantic Region
Post by: siamesecat2965 on April 10, 2013, 11:26:56 AM
National Zoo is on our list, the Natural History museum, Air & Space museum, and the national botanical gardens. We would like to see all of the monuments and memorials we can, without getting overloaded. The Holocaust memorial is on our list.

The Holecaust Museum will take several hours to go through; but well worth it. Actually, most of what you have listed will take the better portion of a day, so it sounds like you will be quite busy!  And while I don't live there, I have visted, and I'd recommend parking the car and taking the Metro as much as you can. Much easier and even though its pricy, i'm betting still cheaper than battling traffic, hunting down and paying for parking.
Title: Re: Traveling to the Mid-Atlantic Region
Post by: anniehawks on April 10, 2013, 11:27:47 AM
If you like adventure on your vacation, that part of West Virginia is the place to be:  http://www.adventurewestvirginia.com/site/adventure-resort.html   
Title: Re: Traveling to the Mid-Atlantic Region
Post by: Twik on April 10, 2013, 11:32:00 AM
If you're in Georgia, see if you can go to Savannah. A lovely city, quite small and relatively unspoiled in the downtown area. Food is wonderful.
Title: Re: Traveling to the Mid-Atlantic Region
Post by: ladyknight1 on April 10, 2013, 11:32:03 AM
Our hotel in Alexandria has a shuttle that connects to the Metro. I imagine the car will remain parked most of the time.

I desperately need restaurant recommendations, as I would prefer to avoid chain restaurants as much as possible. We would like to have one splurge meal, and the remainder under $20 per person. Breakfast is included with our hotel.

Thank you to all the posters!
Title: Re: Traveling to the Mid-Atlantic Region
Post by: Luci on April 10, 2013, 11:34:01 AM
On the coast of Georgia very near the border with Florida is a Turtle sanctuary on Jekyll Island. I am a sucker for sea turtles. They have the hospital open for self tours, and you can see the lab notes on each one.

It is a very short stop. One of my favorite places when we travel the coast.
Title: Re: Traveling to the Mid-Atlantic Region
Post by: o_gal on April 10, 2013, 02:17:41 PM
For Georgia, you may want to check out Stone Mountain. Some call it the Rushmore of the East. I can't remember how far from Atlanta it is however.

Stone Mountain is cool, but technically it's a memorial to the leaders of a nation that went to war with the USA. Some people are not bothered by this but others are, so just FYI. It's also something that you will need a car to drive out to visit (but it's not too far), but it sounds like you only plan to park your car when you have access to things like the Metro. The hike to the top is a little strenous but not bad, and you can do it at your own pace rather than waiting in line for the cable car to the top. The views at the top are great.

My DH and DS will also be at the Jamboree but I'll be at home enjoying peace and quiet  8)
Title: Re: Traveling to the Mid-Atlantic Region
Post by: ladyknight1 on April 10, 2013, 02:20:52 PM
I am picking them up, which involves driving on the property on the last day! I will enjoy peace and quiet during the one week DS is away and then the second week when they are both there. Can you send me a PM of which contingent they are with?
Title: Re: Traveling to the Mid-Atlantic Region
Post by: siamesecat2965 on April 10, 2013, 02:21:49 PM
Our hotel in Alexandria has a shuttle that connects to the Metro. I imagine the car will remain parked most of the time.

I desperately need restaurant recommendations, as I would prefer to avoid chain restaurants as much as possible. We would like to have one splurge meal, and the remainder under $20 per person. Breakfast is included with our hotel.

Thank you to all the posters!

All I can recommend and I'm not quite sure where it is, for yummy pizza, the Mellow Mushroom. its in the Adams Morgan section - 2436 18th St NW  Washington, DC 20009
 but i coudln't tell you where that is in relation to anything else.

They have funky pizzas; and other menu items and its not too pricy. you should be able to stay under your budget here.
Title: Re: Traveling to the Mid-Atlantic Region
Post by: magicdomino on April 10, 2013, 02:55:11 PM
When you are exploring the Mall museums, have lunch at the American Indian museum's cafeteria.  Based on native American foods, it's the best food on the Mall.  Like the museums, though, it closes at 5:00. 

http://nmai.si.edu/visit/washington/mitsitam-cafe/

Jaleo is fun.  They serve Spanish tapas, small plates like appetizers that you can share.  Figure two to three per adult.  I can't remember how far it is from the Mall though.  There is also a location in Crystal City.

http://www.jaleo.com/dc/menu

In that same general area is Teaism, sort of fancy fast food.

https://teaism.com/Restaurant/Home2.html



Title: Re: Traveling to the Mid-Atlantic Region
Post by: Syfygeek on April 10, 2013, 03:15:11 PM
In NC- 2 hours west of Raleigh is Old Salem Museums & Gardens in Winston-Salem.

Salem was settled in 1766 by Moravian Settlers who fled from Germany to Pennsylvania to avoid religious persecution. Their records are amazingly detailed, so the the historic buildings have been restored to the exact specifications they were originally built to, and are staffed by costumed interpreters.

There are historic gardens to see, along with the Historic town, and the Museum of Early Southern Decorative Arts houses objects dating from the 1600's through the mid-1800's that were made in the Southern regions.

Have a fun trip!
Title: Re: Traveling to the Mid-Atlantic Region
Post by: Twik on April 10, 2013, 04:04:23 PM
If you're in Alexandria, try some place that serves good she-crab soup, if it's available.
Title: Re: Traveling to the Mid-Atlantic Region
Post by: readingchick on April 11, 2013, 09:12:07 AM

I desperately need restaurant recommendations, as I would prefer to avoid chain restaurants as much as possible. We would like to have one splurge meal, and the remainder under $20 per person. Breakfast is included with our hotel.

Abbey Road in Virginia Beach (if you're doing a stop there btw). Quirky place with good food.
Title: Re: Traveling to the Mid-Atlantic Region
Post by: siamesecat2965 on April 11, 2013, 11:31:44 AM
I desperately need restaurant recommendations, as I would prefer to avoid chain restaurants as much as possible. We would like to have one splurge meal, and the remainder under $20 per person. Breakfast is included with our hotel.

Thank you to all the posters!

If you want good restaurant recommendations, go to chowhound.com and get onto the Washington DC &Baltmore boards.  Lots of good stuff there.   I live close by, in Laurel, but I rarely go into DC nowadays, except for some festivals and Eastern Market.   I agree with the metro recommendations, though.  DC metro is really good and will get you there.  WMATA.com will give you maps and show you all the places you can get from the metro.   Just off the Green/Yellow lines, the U Street station, there are several really tasty Ethopian restaurants around there.

I've also had good luck with the trip advisor forums - you migh have to dig a little deeper as they cover everything, not just food, but my mom lives in a touristy area, and the recommendations I've seen there have been pretty good; also which ones to avoid!
Title: Re: Traveling to the Mid-Atlantic Region
Post by: oogyda on April 11, 2013, 11:44:06 AM
On your way between WV and DC, you should stop at Luray Caverns.  I would also recommend Natural Bridge and Natural Bridge Caverns.  Very cool.
Title: Re: Traveling to the Mid-Atlantic Region
Post by: jaxsue on April 11, 2013, 11:44:56 AM
Not as well known as Williamsbug, VA, but just as historical and charming: New Bern, NC. Actually, the coastline of NC is full of fun places to visit.
Title: Re: Traveling to the Mid-Atlantic Region
Post by: JenJay on April 11, 2013, 12:05:48 PM
In Virginia -
Our favorite things so far have been Virginia Beach, Colonial Williamsburg (which is very touristy BUT the church and attached cemetery are incredible!) and historic Jamestown (as in the archaeological site) is really neat (I didn't care for the larger tourist site, it's a lot like Williamsburg). I recommend a guided tour so you get a lot more info than what you can read on the markers. The plantations between Richmond and Williamsburg are wonderful, as is Monticello. It's surreal to stand in the homes of famous former presidents!

In DC -
Our favorite museum is the Air and Space museum's Udvar-Hazy center at Dulles airport. They've got about every type of aircraft you could hope to see including a space shuttle! We've also been through the Natural History museum 2 or 3 times. DC from sunset on is beautiful, everything is lit up.

Tripadvisor is awesome for restaurant recommendations!
Title: Re: Traveling to the Mid-Atlantic Region
Post by: ladyknight1 on April 11, 2013, 12:43:40 PM
I am using TripAdvisor already, but the restaurant reviews are so extensive, I feel like I get lost!

Any whitewater rafting in the VA, NC, SC areas?
Title: Re: Traveling to the Mid-Atlantic Region
Post by: siamesecat2965 on April 11, 2013, 02:31:38 PM
I am using TripAdvisor already, but the restaurant reviews are so extensive, I feel like I get lost!

Any whitewater rafting in the VA, NC, SC areas?

You can go on the forums and ask for specifics, and generally the resposne is good. price, type of food, location...
Title: Re: Traveling to the Mid-Atlantic Region
Post by: PastryGoddess on April 11, 2013, 05:11:56 PM
I'm not sure when you'll be in town, but I do full moon photowalks on the Mall.  If you are spending most of your days in DC, I would highly recommend eating along the Metro center corridor.  There are probably 30 restaurants around the confluence of E/Fst and 12/13th st.  Also 7th street has a ton of restaurants, they are a little more touristy though. Chinatown is right there and my absolute favorite place to eat is Eat First on 6th and H.  Matchbox, which is a pizza place is on the same side as Eat First.

If you'll be in Alexandria, there are some nice places to eat down by the waterfront and also over in the Del Ray section of the city.  If you have time to go to Luray, make sure to stop at Thornton River Grill in downtown Sperryville which is the intersection of 211 and 522.  They do close between 2pm and 5 I believe.
Title: Re: Traveling to the Mid-Atlantic Region
Post by: ladyknight1 on April 11, 2013, 05:23:12 PM
Wow, great information! I want to be there now!

We will be in DC 7/25 - 7/30, then start to slowly make our way south.