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The 6 Best Road Trips In The South
The 6 Best Road Trips In The South
The 6 Best Road Trips In The South

Published on: 07/10/2024

Description

The South has some of the greatest road trip scenery and destinations in the county. Pictured here is the iconic historic district of Charleston, South Carolina.
The South has some of the greatest road trip scenery and destinations in the county. Pictured here is the iconic historic district of Charleston, South Carolina. (Shutterstock)

Looking for an unforgettable vacation this summer? Get your kicks — not on Route 66, but on roads across the South! From the sunny beaches of Miami to the music scene of Nashville, here are six Southern road trips to inspire your travels.

In 2022, the Atlanta metro became the largest city center in the South, surpassing the Miami metro area in population for the first time in decades. Atlanta is famous for its many attractions, including the World of Coca-Cola, the Georgia Aquarium and the Atlanta Zoo and Botanical Garden, not to mention its world-class restaurants and burgeoning art scene.

When heading into the Atlanta metro, the morning and evening rush hours can bring significant traffic. Consider traveling during off-peak times, including weekends and holidays, or taking alternate routes through the metro.

Once you make it into Atlanta, catch a show at the historic Prohibition-era Fox Theatre, or grab some drinks on the rooftop of Hotel Clermont. Art lovers won’t want to miss the High Museum of Art — which is not only a gem of culture in its own right, but is also just a few blocks away from high-end shopping at Colony Square and lauded breakfast spot The Nook.

2. Richmond, VA

Founded before the Revolutionary War, Richmond is one of the most historic cities in the country. It’s beautifully set against the backdrop of the banks of Virginia’s James River, and centrally located between Washington D.C., Norfolk and Virginia Beach.

Congestion in the D.C. and Richmond area can be heavy at times, especially during peak rush hours. Keep an eye on the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT)’s Virginia 511 map, which offers real-time traffic information.

Richmond offers plenty to see for history buffs, from Church Hill’s cobblestone streets to the Civil War cannons at Malvern Hill Battlefield. However, this historical city boasts a strong creative culture, too. Indie breweries, mom-and-pop Southern home cooking and the famous Hippodrome theater await you in this too-often-overlooked state capital.

A special mention for the literarily inclined is the Poe Museum. Founded by researcher James Howard Whitty and his associates to commemorate Edgar Allan Poe in his hometown, the Poe Museum began in 1906 as the Poe Memorial Association. Later, it became a proper museum and memorial garden with the help of preservationists Archer and Annie Jones.

3. Nashville, TN

Known as the country music capital of the world, Nashville is known for its rich history and vibrant cultural scene.

The capital of Tennessee is home to the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum as well as the National Museum of African American Music. A short drive away from the museums, you’ll find the famously delicious The Catbird Seat, which offers an intimate and interactive dining experience.

For a glimpse of history, head to Andrew Jackson’s Hermitage or the Nashville Parthenon. The latter, located in beautiful Centennial Park, was originally the site of the 1897 Tennessee Centennial Exposition. End your evening with a show at Grand Ole Opry, where new and established country artists alike share the stage.

To help you time your travels in and out of the city, Channel 5 News Nashville keeps a live feed of traffic conditions and accident updates.

4. Charlotte, NC

Nicknamed the Queen City for its namesake, Queen-Consort Charlotte of Great Britain, Charlotte is the largest city in North Carolina. It’s nestled at the base of the Blue Ridge Mountains, a couple hours’ drive from alpine tourist haven Asheville and another few hours from Atlanta.

Adventure-seeking families can spend a day at Carowinds, the famous amusement park and waterpark. For those looking for history and culture, tour the Levine Museum of the New South, catch a show at the Blumenthal Performing Arts Center or sign up for a haunted “Booze and Boos” tour of the city.

If the road trip itself didn’t scratch your itch for burnt rubber, stop by the NASCAR Hall of Fame or Charlotte’s Motor Speedway for some more action. Alternatively, if you need a break from driving, hop onto the Charlotte Area Transit System and take a ride to destinations like arts district NoDa.

5. Miami, FL

Whether it’s for your Miami Vice-themed summer getaway or to take in the Everglades, Miami and the path down I-95, are a must for any Southern road trip. On your way there and back, Florida 511 can help you avoid bumper-to-bumper intermissions.

Once you’ve arrived in Miami, don’t miss the Design District, which includes museums, exhibitions and even fitness and yoga studios. Those seeking a more traditionally sunny, outdoorsy Miami experience will want to take in the green spaces at Bayfront Park and the stunning view from the Skyview Observation Wheel.

Other attractions to consider include (but certainly aren’t limited to!) the Miami Children’s Museum, the Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden and the Wynwood Walls street art museum.

6. Charleston, SC

Founded in 1670, Charleston is one of the oldest European settlements in the Western Hemisphere. Historic sites like the Fort Sumter National Monument and the Magnolia Plantation and Gardens offer a glimpse into the area’s past.

A short drive from the Fort Sumter National Monument, you’ll find several eateries where you can refuel. Two popular spots include Church and Union, an American eatery housed in a former church, and The Obstinate Daughter, a Southern restaurant with French-Italian-Spanish influence.

Like the other historic cities on this road trip list, there’s also plenty of modern-day culture to enjoy. The Gibbes Museum of Art is a must for any art aficionado, or you can attend an interactive theatre performance at The Black Fedora. The South Carolina Aquarium is also a fan favorite, especially for families.

Avoid inbound or outbound by keeping an eye on the South Carolina Department of Transportation (SCDOT)’s 511SC, which offers live traffic views of the entire state.

The freedom of the open road demands freedom of thought and action. Let your curiosity and your intuition be your guide as you take on the South by car this summer!

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News Source : https://patch.com/us/across-america/6-best-road-trips-south

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