2014 Dutchmen Aspen Trail
2014 Dutchmen Aspen Trail
New Orleans is undoubtedly one of the top travel destinations in the United States, but did you know that it is also one of the best places to start a solo RV road trip? With a history that dates back to the 1700s, the city has been through a lot over the years, but it has survived and thrived on tourism, festivals (such as the Mardi Gras), and professional sporting franchises that have united the city.
The Big Easy is a must-visit for any solo traveler during their life since the city has a crazy nightlife, amazing food, and vibrant culture that you won't find anywhere else in the world. Since the city is located on the Gulf of Mexico there are also plenty of water-based activities to enjoy, including kayaking through the swamps and plenty of natural areas where you can go fishing, boating, and wildlife viewing.
From New Orleans, you have multiple travel routes available, including heading north to the Canadian border. Heading north will give you the chance to see many different landscapes and cities along the way, including multiple forests and state parks, the Great Smoky Mountains, and interesting cities along the way.
Buffalo is the second-largest city in the state of New York and is the perfect place to end this epic solo RV road trip. Located on the shores of Lake Erie, the city has plenty to see and do that will put a cherry on top of your trip. Whether you are into art, history, or want to spend some more time in the great outdoors, Buffalo will be an interesting conclusion to your trip.
Going on a solo RV trip means that you don't have to compromise on what to see and do, and in New Orleans, that means you can do so many things depending on what you are into. Bourbon Street is a notorious party destination where you can see local music, the swamp tours can result in an up-close and personal interaction with an alligator, and the New Orleans Museum of Art is a must for fine art fans.
If you are a sports fan you will know that the New Orleans Saints are the lifeblood of the city, but even if you aren't an NFL fan, it's still worth attending a tailgate before one of their home games at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. The most dedicated fans arrive the night before and have their cars, vans, or even RVs stocked full of food that they will grill up prior to the game starting. Traffic can be diabolical during game days, so keep that in mind before deciding whether to bring along your rig or park it and tailgate on foot. The most popular places to tailgate are on Champions Square, Loyola Avenue, and South Rampart Street and around here you will find plenty of places to eat and drink.
As you hit the I-59 and make your way out of the deep south, you will have many different options to visit during the first few days of your solo road trip. If you are craving some water-based recreation and want to keep your drive time to under five hours for the day, Lake Lurleen State Park is the ideal place to check out.
Located near Tuscaloosa and only a few miles away from the University of Alabama, the main attraction to the park is its namesake, Lake Lurleen. The park is built for rest and relaxation with the lake being a great fishing, boating, and swimming destination during the summer months thanks to the 250-acre surface area. Off the water there are plenty of activities to fill out your day, including the opportunity to hike on over 23 miles of trail, visit the nature center, or do some bird-watching.
Paying a visit to Lake Lurleen State Park also means that you won't have to travel anywhere else to find a place to stay for the night. The park has a campground suitable for RVs up to 40 feet in length and there are full hookups available.
After experiencing a day by Lake Lurleen you may be craving some city sights before heading back out into nature as you continue your journey towards the southeast. Located around 218 miles northeast of Lake Lurleen State Park, Chattanooga sits on the Tennesse River and along with Knoxville is one of the largest cities in East Tennesse.
The city is a great place to park your rig and head indoors since it is the home of the Tennesse Aquarium, Creative Discovery Museum, and the Tennessee Valley Railroad Museum, but there are also some wonderful parks and caverns not too far outside of the city limits. Some of the most popular outdoor activities include viewing Glen Falls, Sunset Rock, and exploring the commercially-run Ruby Falls. This is the biggest tourist attraction in the area and contains a series of underground waterfalls combining to be 145 feet in length.
One of the highest-rated RV campgrounds in Chattanooga is the Chattanooga North / Cleveland KOA Journey. With sites that can accommodate rigs up to 103 feet in length, you can enjoy the luxury of full hookups and WiFi connectivity during your stay in Chattanooga.
Change will be in the air as you make your way from Chattanooga into eastern Tennesse. The environment around you will be the complete opposite of how your trip started as now you will be surrounded by incredible mountains and forests as far as the eye can see.
You would think that Yellowstone National Park, Yosemite National Park, or the Grand Canyon National Park would attract the most visitors in the country, but you would be mistaken. The Great Smoky Mountains National Park is around 108 miles northeast of Chatanooga and is the most popular national park in the United States, making it an absolute must-visit on your solo RV trip.
The reason why the park is so popular is that it really is a biodiverse wonderland. There are incredible waterfalls, stunning mountain ranges, abundant forests, and it is home to more than 300 animal species. The elevation range is between 875 and 6,000 feet, which is a huge factor as to why the park is so diverse.
There are over half a million acres within the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, which means that planning is vital to get the most out of your visit. There are amazing hiking, tours, wildlife viewing, and white water rafting opportunities amongst dozens of other park activities, so there is no doubt visiting the Great Smoky Mountains National Park will be a highlight to remember.
If you are looking for something a little out of the ordinary to do on your solo RV road trip, you must check out the Monroe Moosnick Medical and Science Museum. The museum is located in Lexington at Transylvania University so it will be directly on the way to Buffalo. The contains of the museum contains medical gear and instruments from the 18th and 19th centuries that were mostly acquired in London and Paris.
These weird and wacky devices were once considered modern, but during your visit, you will see that they are a little horrifying. The most interesting piece in the collection is a wax figure of a woman that is made from castings of over 200 cadavers. How creepy!
If you wish to tour the Monroe Moosnick Medical and Science Museum you will have to book a reservation at least 10 days prior to your arrival. Once you have finished with your day out there are plenty of great campgrounds that you can stay at, including the Kentucky Horsepark Campground and Fort Boonesborough State Park.
Located 257 miles northeast of the Monroe Moosnick Medical and Science Museum, Malabar Farm State Park is a unique historical area that has plenty on offer for solo RV travelers. The park was formally the property of Louis Bromfield, who was a Pulitzer Prize-winning author. He was friends with many famous people, and the 32-room "Big House" that is still standing today was the venue for the wedding between Humphrey Bogart and Lauren Bacall.
During your visit to Malabar Farm State Park, there are many interesting things you can experience that are different from a normal park. You are able to take a guided tour of the Big House, explore the grounds of the 580-acre property on a farm wagon, and there are many festivals held here each year, including a Maple Syrup Festival.
There is a small 15 site campground on the grounds of the park so you can also spend the night here if you don't mind camping with no hookups.
Love to rock? One of the most iconic places in the city of Cleveland is the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame and for any music fan, it is a must-visit.
Located near the shores of Lake Erie 89 miles northeast of Malabar Farm State Park, the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame was opened in 1995 and ever since has been the permanent home of the Hall of Fame. The building is massive with seven stories that feature incredible memorabilia, include David Bowie's Ziggy Stardust tour outfit, the awning from the notorious New York club CBGB's, and Elvis Presley's 1968 Television Special suit. The building is also host to many exhibits that detail the history of rock music, legendary artists, and interactive displays.
Parking your rig and staying in Cleveland isn't too difficult since there are many campgrounds in and around the city limits, such as the Thompson / Grand River Valley KOA.
Welcome to the state of New York! As you enter New York and close in on the final destination of your RV road trip you can choose to stick close to Lake Erie or head inland for one last state park visit.
171 miles from Cleveland is Allegany State Park, which is a wonderful destination no matter what season that you are traveling in. This is one of the largest state parks in New York with over 65,000 acres within it, so there is plenty of room for exploring. Since you are heading to Buffalo it makes sense to hang around in the northeastern area of the park. In this area, you can check out the Tudor-style Red House, go hiking or biking on over five miles of trails, or go for a fish on the Red House Lake amongst other activities.
Allegany State Park has over 424 campsites so there are plenty of options on how you choose to spend your last night before making your final drive.
After a trip that has spanned over 1,200 miles, arriving in Buffalo will be a welcome relief. This is a blue-collar city located on the banks of Lake Erie that offers a great mix of affordability and nightlife with a thriving bar and food scene that is renowned for restaurants serving fantastic comfort food dishes.
During your time in Buffalo make sure to check out the Buffalo Wings at Anchor Bar as this is the place were Buffalo-style wings were originated. If you haven't seen them before, Niagra Falls is also well worth visiting with many tours available where you can get out and witness the falls up close and personally. If you would rather experience an incredible view of the falls, consider paying a visit to Niagra Falls State Park.
Thanks to Niagra Falls there are many comfortable RV campgrounds to call home at the conclusion of your trip, including the Niagara Falls / Grand Island KOA Holiday and Niagara Falls North / Lewiston KOA Journey. Now kick back, relax, and maybe even start planning your next getaway!