2017 K-Z Manufacturing Escape
2017 K-Z Manufacturing Escape
This road trip is from Orlando to Niagara Falls and the entire journey is just over 1,700 miles. It should take around seven days to complete, and there is a lot to do on the way. However, if you wanted to extend it further you could go from Washington DC into New York City and add the sights of the Big Apple to your plans.
Our carefully planned Orlando to Niagara Falls road trip would be an excellent choice for anyone with a passion for history or geography, combing educational experiences with outdoor recreation in some of the most beautiful examples of wilderness in America. After spending time at some of the most famous landmarks and attractions in the country, this road trip is bound to end with a splash! It would be well suited to a couple, a group of friends or a family with older children and teens. Whether you opt for a motorhome, trailer, or RV camping, there are public campgrounds highlighted throughout the route. As always, we advise that you check the weather forecast and make any necessary reservations in advance.
To finish off your journey with some thrills and excitement, you could consider a stop at Cedar Point. Consisting of 364 acres, this epic amusement park is situated on the Lake Erie peninsula in Ohio. This is the second oldest amusement park in America and one of the world's best; in fact, it has been voted Best Amusement Park in the World consecutively for over a decade.
There are over 70 rides here, including a staggering 18 rollercoasters and two water rides. From mini coasters to keep the kids entertained to some of the biggest and fastest in the country including their signature Millennium Force Giga- coaster.
This amusement park is no stranger to setting world records. For example, the Steel Vengeance was the tallest, fasted and longest hyper hybrid roller coaster when it was first debuted. Cedar Point is open May to October, but during peak seasons it can get quite busy. If you are visiting in the summer, you could bypass long queues with a Fast Lane Pass with a limited number of these being sold each day.
Set amongst 183 wooded acres, the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo is home to a wide array of wildlife species from around the world including the biggest collection of primates in North America. This zoo was first opened in 1882, and since then it has been providing a fun and educational experience to all that attend; with this popular year-round attraction welcoming more than a million visitors each year.
There is just about every type of animal you can think of here, and the two-acre enclosed rainforest is home to a wide array of tropical species. As well as providing the animals with a home away from home, the zoo also plays an important role in national and international conservation programs, which aim to protect endangered species.
Parking is free, even for your RV, and there is a frequent shuttle bus from the parking area to the zoo’s main entrance. There is also a ZooTram which will take you around the park for an additional cost. We advise you to book online in advance to get the best possible price.
This beautiful house in Pittsburgh was designed by the world-renowned architect Frank Lloyd Wright in 1935, and it is now classed as a National Historic Landmark. Guided tours available throughout the home but it should be noted that photography is not permitted. There is an information center, café, and a museum shop as well as restrooms in the pavilion.
If you are interested in the work of the architect, just a 15-minute drive away is the Frank Lloyd Wright’s Kentucky knob house. If you are looking to stay nearby, the 12, 747-acre Coopers Rock State Forest is a sprawling area of outstanding natural beauty. Legend has it the overlook first got its name after a fugitive hid out from the law there. You will definitely want to remember your camera- the view from here is truly phenomenal! There are two campgrounds at Coopers Rock, McCollum Campground and Rhododendron and sites should be reserved online in advance.
A visit to Washington DC would not be complete without a trip to the White House, the most popular and most visited residential home in the US. Built between 1792 and 1800, it is the current home of the US President and one of the oldest public buildings in the country.
If you are looking to tour the White House, you need to submit a tour request in advance. White House tours are free, and requests must be submitted through your Member of Congress. The rules regarding this are extremely strict and there is obviously a significant list of prohibited items. Plus, you will also be required to present a valid, government-issued ID.
Tours are scheduled first-come, first-served, and you will need to book up to three months in advance and no less than 21 days before. If you haven’t managed to book in advance, you can still visit the White House Visitor Center to learn more about it. This visitor center is fascinating on its own; containing more than 90 artifacts and providing interactive exhibits and a 15-minute movie about the history of the White House.
The Smithsonian American Art Museum and Renwick gallery is home to one of the largest collections of American Art in the country. This is a globally renewed museum and gallery, and the exhibitions are updated frequently. There are over 7000 artists represented here, including countless works from some of the best artists in America’s history such as Georgia O’Keeffe and Edward Hopper.
The SAAM also has the world’s largest African American art collections, including Mickalene Thomas’ 2010 Portrait of Mnonja. This fascinating and educational museum is free to enter, and it is open every day between 11:30 am and 7 pm, except Christmas day. You will need to check in any bags and purses before entering the gallery but there are coat rooms at street entrances F and G.
The halfway point of our journey brings you to the world’s largest living history museum, Colonial Williamsburg. This 18th-century city is one of the most popular attractions in the county, with demonstrations, performances, museums, shops and more. Travel back in time and check out the must-see attractions, like the Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Folk Art Center, the College of William and Mary and the pre-revolution Governors Palace.
The Apprentice program is a great way for kids aged 4-12 to choose a trade and see demonstrations. Alternatively, thrill-seekers and fans of the supernatural may prefer one of their evening ghost tours- you may just spot one of the Castillo’s former residents!
There are several places to grab a bite to eat, with alehouses, coffee shops, and restaurants. If you are planning on enjoying a historically accurate tavern meal, it is advised that you book ahead to reserve a table. You can opt for a single or multi-day ticket and there is a free shuttle bus from the parking lot that is also included in your ticket admission.
The Hanging Rock State Park is an 8605-acre park in Stokes County, NC, and it is an ideal spot to relax and unwind among picturesque natural beauty. There are over 20 miles of hiking trails across the park, some of which provide access to the beautiful waterfalls in the region. There are several falls to choose from, including the Hidden Falls and the Upper and Lower Cascade Falls.
The lower falls are easier to get to, but the upper cascade falls are truly photogenic and promise an insta-worthy picture at the top. If you are traveling here in the summer, this would be the perfect opportunity to stretch your legs and cool down with a swim in the lake. Each of the 73 campsites here has a picnic table and grill, but only some of them can accommodate RVs; none have electric or water hook-ups. You should book your campsite in advance to ensure a spot. As well as hiking, there are lots of things to do in the area, including world-class fishing year-round and access to the Dan River for boating and tubing.
The NASCAR Hall of Fame in Charlotte, North Carolina, is a high tech museum dedicated to the NASCAR drivers, crew and owners who have made the company world-famous. Although this would be an awesome stop for any motor fan, it promises to be entertaining for just about everyone.
Check out the many racing simulators, practice a pit stop and see if you can reach the speeds of the professionals, or you could even consider one of the personalized racing tours. With four floors containing over 1000 artifacts, there is so much to see here. Plus, fans of the Pixar film Cars will also love the chance to spot Lightning McQueen and the rest of his pals.
This is a high-speed day of non-stop fun and action that is open every day except Tuesday. There is a restaurant on-site, as well as a gift shop if you would like to pick up some NASCAR souvenirs.
This beautiful city park is located in downtown Savannah and it spans over 30 acres. The Forsyth Fountain is particularly well known. This is located in the north of the park and it is one of the most photographed spots in the city. Savannah is a great place to explore and this park provides a central location to get and about in their Victorian district.
You should definitely check out one of the trolley tours to get better acquainted with the city. Plus, there is a wealth of restaurants nearby, providing the opportunity to sample some delicious Savannah cuisine. Tybee Island is just 20 minutes’ drive away if you fancy a day by the coast, or visit the Cathedral of St John the Baptist for some stunning architecture.
This is an attraction that is rich in history, and the Castillo de San Marcos is the oldest and the largest fortress in continental America. The 20-acre site was originally built to protect Spanish claims in the New World. It is an educational stop that has something for the whole family, and it is particularly well suited to anyone with a passion for history or warfare. If you are visiting at the weekend, they even have live cannon firings and weaponry demonstrations in traditional uniforms.
If you are looking to spot one of the castle’s more spooky residents, the candlelight tours are popular, with some visitors even supposedly managing to take photographs of the long-deceased pirate Andrew Brandon. If you are looking to spend the night in this area, you could opt for Cedar Creek located in the Matanzas State Forest or you could go for the St. Augustine Beach KOA Holiday Park, which has a wide variety of facilities and amenities.
After driving across the country and through several States, your final destination of Niagara Falls promises to be worth the drive. This iconic group of waterfalls is one of the most famous landscapes in the world, and undoubtedly one of the most impressive. Located on the US/Canadian border, the Falls are open 365 days a year, and there is much to do there.
Check out the Cave of the Winds to experience the Falls from the Hurricane Deck, learn more about the area at the Discovery Center or enjoy a one of a kind dining experience at the Top of the Falls Restaurant with panoramic views. Plus, if you are spending the night here, many campgrounds in the vicinity offer RV camping!