WEBSITES FOR RVers (and other travelers)
To us the logical sequence of planning a tour is to first have a prime destination, Americana;
then add want'a sees Along the way; next do the
tweaking that refines the plans to the reality of time and personal preferences;
plus the Miscellaneous things that you may consider at the planning stage
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|Trip planning... We believe these sites can help RV travelers plan their trips. It is only after we
decide what we want to see as tourists that we consider our route. After a route is developed
lodging, dining, recreation, and entertainment fall into place.
I've played with numerous map sites and continue to rely on the old printed maps and sometimes
use Streets and Trips and seldom use the GPS feature. For this reason you won't see map sites
listed unless there are other interesting features.
Americana What makes America so marvelous?
...It's the effects of civilization -- the history, workplace, cities.
...It's the excitement of the people who make it work!
tourists -- others are the quirks that make it unique. You won't see it all -- just a slice.
National Historic Landmarks
National Parks, monuments, battlefields, etc.
National Register Listings
many places that are significant. Hundreds of interesting places are presented.
Campers and RVers will be interested in camping information.
The story of our presidents is a vital part of the American Heritage. Travelers
can visit many locations -- homes, museums, libraries, etc. Travelers should refer to
each of these sites, plus others, as each has locations that are not in the other.
locations of importance. Adding to this is ..
Presidential Museums a non-government site. Maps help history buffs locate
places relating to our presidents.
Recreation This US government site describes facilities operated by agencies that
provide diverse recreational opportunities from camping to climbing to off highway
vehicles to wild life viewing and more. Represents US Army Corps of Engineers, USDA
Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management, National Park Service, and others.
number of locations.
perspective, outline auto-routes to trace the routes (though in many cases the
routes have been obscured by "civilization").
first cross country route.
Ghost Towns (Click on the top bar to access locations by state or
province) Good info on sites including the GPS coordinates, history, type
of road access, photos of remains.
Route 66 & ghost towns Another comprehensive rundown of bygone
Legends of America Mentions many places of historic interest
Civil War The sesquicentennial of the Civil War is underway. These sites cover
details of the war as well as scheduled events commemorating this 150th anniversary.
seventy locations that relate to the war.
civilwartraveler.com A detailed, but well organized for purposes of planning a
trip to the battlefields, museums and events.
second. The AAA TripTik Travel Planner® is a map program with provision to locate
attractions as well as services. Importantly, there are brief descriptions of many
attractions. This material seems as comprehensive as the printed material. Maps also
show location of accommodations, gasoline stations with prices. I appreciate the ability
to modify the route by dragging a dot without the map becoming cluttered with markers
indicating the changes. This is an excellent overview of cities as well as the
intermediate points of interest. Cities have such diverse activities that an overview is
welcome. Importantly, has links to road conditions and suggested trips.
Fodors.com Descriptions of many places, including cities, can give helpful
information. This site is definitely worth checking.
year's trip. (We like to say that these left-overs give us a reason to return.)
Here's the place to learn where lighthouses are situated and whether they're open for tours.
Factory tours USA Have you wondered how it is made? Over 500 factory locations are
listed. Now you are invited to visit motion picture studios, furniture factories, autos, more...
Covers planning and reports of trips by auto and RV. At least worth checking out.
that cross America. It is comprehensive and well researched. We were particularly interested
in the detail of sections on "Route 66" and "Oregon Trail" (just click on the left sidebar for
details). It is a commercially oriented site, to sell their book, but this does not detract from its
usefulness as a planning resource.
Roadside America For tourists who want to visit the offbeat places as diverse as the
George Washington Masonic National Memorial and Museum of Pez Memorabilia this is the
place to check out.
Tweaking the route. Knowing what you want to see and having a pretty good idea of where
you'll go, you now get to working up the route.
planning aid if you are concerned about the roads, altitude, etc. You are able to "fly" along
your planned route and in some cases "drive" the route. It even provides coordinates as well
as route mapping .
byways.org Descriptions of the 150 official byways noted for archaeological, cultural,
historic, natural, recreational, or scenic qualities. Routes are clearly presented. Worth a look.
avoid unpleasant surprises.
National Traffic and Road Closure Information What do you want to know?
Construction sites, weather closures, traffic cams -- it's all here for hundreds of cities
and major highways.
information on the time for the rising or setting of the sun and moon or tide conditions.
Knowing the time of sunrise and sunset in advance lessens the chance of having to
drive in the dark before reaching the destination. It's remarkable how much sunset can
differ in just a day's travel, especially in the northern part of the US and Canada.
Weather Underground This is one of our favorites for trip planning. After entering a
location you get the current weather and going down a couple of screens you click
"seasonal averages". This provides the high/ low temperatures - with a graphic display
of day by day average and extremes for a year -- an excellent way to anticipate the
weather for your visit, even if it's next year as you get a sense of daily variations.
assist the traveler. For instance, maps of fall foliage as the fall color progresses from
north to south, weather at National Parks, suggested scenic drives, pollen and other
heath conditions related to the weather.
Canadian residents) should expect as they cross the border into Canada, required
documents, rules and restrictions, etc. Might as well get the straight scoop instead of
hear-say that's out of date. Keep in mind, this does not cover requirements of the US
government for people who are re-entering the US from Canada.
US Government Customs This site tells us everything (and more) that we need to
know to enter the US. It seems as though the regulations are always changing so
here's the way to be sure you're up to date.
statistically profiles communities in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. I'm
inclined to look at statistics more than most people, so I just had to mention this one,
which is one of the easier to access.
at them to see what appeals to you. There are so many good websites for RV travelers that
we can only mention a few. Many have thoroughly researched specific interest areas so they
should be reviewed to learn the depth of information available.
thousands of threads that can be followed on subjects as diverse as beginning RVing to
full-timing as well as technical subjects, routing, campgrounds, pets, etc. This is
strengthened with articles on even more subjects.
www.rversonline.org Totally non-commercial. You'll get completely involved in the
thousands of pages of useful information at this site. There are a number of articles on
solving problems plus valuable information on purchasing RV units, travelogues, links to
manufacturers, etc. We have enjoyed some of the places mentioned in Stephanie's
folksy snapshots that tell of their activities -- where they've gone, what they've done.
We frequently check this site because of its usefulness. (Updates to the site have been
temporarily suspended -- however, there's still much of interest that is timeless.)
that describes nine summer road trips. This high energy family has taken 3½ week
trips to 49 states, many National Parks -- and more. They describe their trip planning,
places visited, and more. They provide both a description and travelogue of the many
places visited. It appears to be rigorously researched. We used the write-up of their
Alaska trip in planning our own trip.
useful. Because I have seen some highly misleading comments I prefer ratings by
professionals using a standard rating system. It's sort of like a GPS, usually right but
sometimes off-target. Astute campground operators monitor these reviews to attack
since they retired in 2000. It is presented in an interesting manner with photos of trips
they took in 2004 and later.
This is the site that will help you anticipate problems of below-normal bridge clearances.
or not RV overnight parking is permitted.
counter) to confirm that overnight parking is permitted, and if so the area where
units should be parked. These are private parking lots and RVers should not
give the appearance of "camping", i.e. no levelers, no extended awnings, no slide-
outs, no disconnected trailers, no grills, no chairs, etc. Abuse of these common
sense practices has led some communities to prohibit overnight parking.
present time some states are closing rest areas, so they are subject to change.