Roadtrip USA – Coast to Coast in 3-4 Weeks: Part 3

USA Road Trip

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Santa Monica: 34.019454, -118.491191
Los Angeles: 34.052234, -118.243685
Las Vegas: 36.169941, -115.139830
Zion National Park: 37.298202, -113.026300
Grand Canyon: 36.106965, -112.112997
Monument Valley: 36.997865, -110.098567
Horseshoe Bend: 36.880054, -111.510270
Antelope Canyon: 36.861910, -111.374330
Santa Fe: 35.686975, -105.937799
Roswell: 33.394266, -104.523024
Carlsbad Caverns: 32.147855, -104.556714
Luckenbach: 30.181505, -98.755760
San Antonio: 29.424122, -98.493628
Austin: 30.267153, -97.743061
Sam Housten Jones State Park: 30.300346, -93.263756
New Orleans: 29.951066, -90.071532
Graceland: 35.047691, -90.026049
Memphis: 35.149534, -90.048980
Nashville: 36.162664, -86.781602
George Washington & Jefferson State Forest: 37.625165, -79.513024
Washington DC: 38.907192, -77.036871
Philadelphia: 39.952584, -75.165222
New York: 40.712784, -74.005941


Roadtrip USA! Part 3

Welcome to week 3 of my coast to coast USA roadtrip. This week we head north east into Tennessee, Virginia, Washington DC, Philadelphia and New York. Join me as work our way to our final stop – New York City!

Week 3 – The NORTH EAST

The route:
Graceland – Memphis – Nashville – Virginia – Washington dc – Philadelphia – new York.

So last time we finished at New Orleans, with a travel time of 5.5-6 hours to our next stop:

17. Graceland

Roadtrip USA Graceland

I can honestly say that standing “down in the Jungle Room”  – and wandering around the rest of Elvis’s estate – was one of the highlights of my coast to coast roadtrip. Grab the audio tour and learn about Elvis’s extraordinary life as you walk around his home, the gardens, his record collection, costume hall, car exhibit and private jet! A fun few hours which will have you feeling nostalgic for a time when rock and roll music was at its peak and Elvis stood triumphantly as its king. Stay at the Heartbreak Hotel for the ultimate Elvis escape!

Highlights: The Jungle Room, The Costumes – The Audio tour – Everything!

Next Stop: Memphis – Travel Time: 10 minutes!


18. memphis

Roadtrip USA Sun Studio

Just a quick hop across from Graceland is the iconic music hub of Memphis. Home to the legendary Sun Studio and the recording greats such as Johny Cash, BB King and, of course, Elvis. Memphis is also home to great barbecue and soul food and Beale Street is a great spot to combine the two. Ultimately, after visiting Graceland and Memphis you’ll never listen to ‘Walking in Memphis’ in the same way again.

Aside from great food and music, Memphis is also home to the National Civil Rights Museum, housed in the infamous Lorraine Motel, where Martin Luther King Jr was assassinated. It is worth taking a few hours to learn (or refresh your memory!) about his work and  legacy that continues to inspire many.

Highlights: Beale Street, National Civil Rights Museum, Sun Studio

In The Area: Shelby Farms Music Museums

Next Stop: Nashville – Travel Time: 3-4 hours


19. nashville

Roadtrip USA Nashville

Image courtesy of TripAdvisor

Another musical stop on our USA Roadtrip and the home of country music. Welcome to Nashville! Grab a stetson and don your favorite cowboy boots – or pick up a pair from any of the local stores – and hit the streets of music city. Immerse yourself in music history at the Country Music Hall of Fame and the Grand Ole Opry, stop in any bar along the main street for some great live music or head to the Opry Mills for some great outlet shopping. There’s something for everyone in Nashville!

Highlights: County Music Hall of Fame & Cowboy boots

In The Area: Jack Daniels Distillery, Music City Walk of Fame Park, Nashville Framers Market, Rayman Auditorium, Opry Mills, Belle Meade Plantation, Opryland Amusement Park.

Next Stop: George Washington & Jefferson National Park – Travel Time: 8 hours


20. George Washington & Jefferson national forests

USA Roadtrip Park

An overnight stop suggestion – which can be combined with beautiful walks and great scenery.

Next Stop: Washington DC – Travel Time: 3-3.5 hours


21. Washington dc

Roadtrip USA DC

Enjoy the serenity and culture of DC which combines amazing museums and beautiful memorials in addition to 3 stunning buildings that house the USA’s federal government’s 3 branches – the Capitol, White House and Supreme Court. Don’t just visit them during the day though – daylight doesn’t do them justice! A better time is to visit them on an illumination walking tour and add in the Lincoln Memorial, Washington Monument and the Vietnam’s Veterans Memorial.

Head over to the neighborhood of Georgetown for a stroll around eclectic shops and great restaurants.

Highlights: Illumination Walking Tour (self-guided), National Museum of Natural History,  Pool of Reflection.

In The Area: National Archives, National Postal Museum, Holocaust Museum, World War II Museum, Korean War Memorial, Newseum, Botanic Gardens.

Next Stop: Philadelphia – Travel Time: 2.5 hours


22. Philadelphia

Roadtrip USA Liberty Bell

Visit the Liberty Bell and Independence Hall and see where the Declaration of Independence and American Constitution were signed; eat an authentic Philly Cheese Steak and jog up the ‘Rocky’ steps singing ‘Eye of the Tiger.’

Highlights: LOVE Park, Rocky Statue

In The Area: Eastern State Penitentiary , Philadelphia Museum of Art

Next Stop: New York – Travel Time: 1.5-2 hours


23. new york

Travel Photo Tuesday New York

What a way to finish! There is so much to see and do in New York that a little mention here will not be enough! Spend a few days picking out your own highlights from the extensive list below and live it up as you celebrate traveling coast to coast across the USA in the city that never sleeps.

(My) Highlights: Statue of Liberty, Ground Zero, Times Square, Central Park

In The Area: Rockefeller Center, 5th Avenue, Ellis Island, New York Stock Exchange, Chrysler Building, Empire State Building, Metropolitan Museum of Art, Grand Central Station, High Line, Brooklyn Bridge, Battery Park.

Roadtrip USA New York Stock Exchange

And there we have it, the third and final week of my coast to coast roadtrip across the USA. I hope you have enjoyed it – let me know if you would add anything else to the final week – I know its a bit heavy on the driving so if you can add in any more great destinations, I’d love to hear from you!

If you liked this article please pin & share – I’d really appreciate it 🙂

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21 thoughts on “Roadtrip USA – Coast to Coast in 3-4 Weeks: Part 3

    • Vicki says:

      Hi Brooke – thanks for stopping by. I loved everything about Tennessee – the music, the food, the history – there is just so much to do in the one state! Happy Travels 🙂

  1. Lyndall @ Seize The Day Project says:

    Wow Vicki, so many iconic sites in one post! What a fabulous road trip you’ve been on – inspiring indeed.

    • Vicki says:

      Thank you Lyndall, it was my first real ‘travel’ experience and one very close to my heart – and I do like to get a good bang for my buck when I’m traveling! Happy Travels 🙂

    • Vicki says:

      Thank you Jan – I hope you get to see the forests for yourself one day – if you haven’t already! Happy Travels 🙂

  2. Connie Reed says:

    What an awesome road trip. I love your photo of the national forest. You chose the right time to visit.
    You are inspiring additional road trips for me. I’ve been to Nashville a few times, but never to any of the other places you mention on this leg of the trip. (With the exception of business trips to Washington D.C. and Philadelphia but no time to explore either city.)

    • Vicki says:

      Hi Connie, thanks for stopping by. The national forests really were stunning – as are all of the USA’s National Parks! And as for Tennessee – what a great state with so much to see and do. I hope you get time to explore some of the places I mentioned – Business trips without exploring do not sound like much fun. Happy Travels 🙂

  3. Corinnec says:

    Vicki, What fun! Jim and I were just talking about how we’ve never been to Nashville, because it seems all the travelers (not from the US) always list is as someplace they want to go. I guess we’d better get off the procrastination wagon and check it out ourselves! Happy travels in 2016!

    • Vicki says:

      Hi Corinne – isn’t it interesting what non-native travelers pick as highlights?! I love hearing what other people what to see in Australia as I’ve often overlooked things that are in my own backyard! Get yourself down to Nashville – I absolutely loved it! Happy Travels 🙂

  4. Anda says:

    This was quite a road trip! I’ve only been in DC from your list, but I’d love to visit all the other places. The Jefferson National Forest looks very appealing.

    • Vicki says:

      Hi Anda, thanks for stopping by again 🙂 Glad you liked to roadtrip, it really was a wonderful adventure and the National Forest was beautiful – well worth spending a few days walking round. Happy Travels 🙂

  5. Linda Bibb says:

    I’ve been to every spot on the list, with one exception: Despite having visited Memphis twice, I have yet to visit Graceland. (Okay, I saw the gates.)

    Of course you couldn’t have fit it into your plans, but I can’t recommend Great Smoky Mountains National Park highly enough. It America’s most-visited national park. You can drive through the park from Gatlinburg, Tennessee to Cherokee, North Carolina (tribal lands). The views are astounding! In North Carolina, take a detour to Franklin and hunt for rubies and sapphires in the mines, then continue on to Asheville, where you can visit the Biltmore Estate, largest private home in the U.S.

    • Vicki says:

      Hi Linda, that’s fantastic that you have been to all the places (with the exception of Graceland – poor neglected Elvis ;-)) and thank you for suggesting the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. It was probably a bit of an error on my part to leave it out – especially as its America’s most visited NP! Thank you for sharing and giving my readers another amazing destination to visit in the US!
      Happy Travels 🙂

  6. Angela says:

    What an amazing trip! We are doing Route 66 next year (Chicago to Los Angeles) not quite coast to coast, but we are really excited for it! We visited Graceland too and LOVED it. We aren’t even huge Elvis fans, but really enjoyed the tour and learning about his life.

    • Vicki says:

      How exciting! Your trip sounds great! I bet you’ll have the best time – roadtripping is one of my favorite ways to get around the USA!

  7. Nivedita Visbwanathan says:

    This trip sounds amazing ! How much would you recommend this trip to first time visitors to the US? Me and my husband are planning a 3 week trip to the US in April- May .
    Or may be this could be split into two road trips and one domestic flight in between.Any suggestions would be appreciated.
    Thanks !

    • Vicki says:

      This road trip is a great way to see the country – and depending on what bits are most important to you, you can cut sections/cities out and fly to the next place. It’s entirely a personal preference and how much driving you are wanting to do! I hope you have an awesome time whatever you decide!

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