Long Road Trip Stops? NYC >Asheville>vCentral Pennsylvania
March 17, 2023 6:17 PM   Subscribe

I am demonstrating the magic of metafilter for a friend (solo guy, around 40) departing on a roadtrip next week between NYC, Asheville NC, Richmond VA, back up to central PA, before looping back to NYC. 2.5 weeks, so plenty of time, and happy to go a bit farther in any direction

interests include: creaky/haunted accomodations, spooky beaches, swamps, fish shacks, historical stuff, neat towns or nature to walk around. thanks Metafilter!!!
posted by wowenthusiast to Travel & Transportation around Camden, NJ (14 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite

Luray Caverns
posted by pyro979 at 6:59 PM on March 17 [3 favorites]

What part of PA? If it's Scranton/Wilks-Barre, he's going to want to stop by Sabatini's for lunch.
posted by Mayor West at 7:26 PM on March 17

Centralia, PA is classic.
posted by knile at 7:28 PM on March 17

Response by poster: my own suggestions:

great dismal swamp

pearl fryar topiary garden, Bishopville, SC
posted by wowenthusiast at 7:31 PM on March 17 [1 favorite]

I love the PA state capitol in Harrisburg, if you’re taking Interstate 81 you’re passing by. The Midtown Scholar is a nice bookstore in Harrisburg, if you wanna stop and get a coffee and a couple of books.

Since you’re driving down to NC that more inland route the Blue Ridge Parkway is a nice detour off 81 and beautiful drive. Lots of nice scenic lookouts.
posted by bxvr at 9:05 PM on March 17 [2 favorites]

dinosaur kingdom ii (off of 81 in virginia) opens for the season in early april for all your dinosaur/civil war needs.
posted by noloveforned at 9:43 PM on March 17 [1 favorite]

Gettysburg, Antietam, Harpers Ferry, and Monticello are all close to the direct route from NYC to Asheville. Batsto Village is perhaps more historical but a ways off the beaten path and best accessed via sand roads through silent forest.

Almost all of the Skyline Drive and Blue Ridge Parkway between Front Royal and Asheville pass through spectacular nature to walk around in. Everyone will have their own personal favorite spot, but for me the real standout was Mount Mitchell, its own world apart in the clouds.

I don't know if any of the small towns remain quite like I remember, but I would suggest to at some point take the slow road from town to town, like PA-16/116 or US-11 from Woodstock to New Market, to get a sense of the area's architecture and present-day culture. If you take I-78 to I-81, you might as well fly, which seems contrary to the intent of this question.
posted by backwoods at 10:08 PM on March 17

Altoona PA, for the Curve and the pizza.
posted by rhizome at 10:17 PM on March 17

I enjoyed Carlisle PA as a cute town to walk around, I wasn't there long enough to see any of the local historic sites. The Susquehanna is a very pretty river, and the Conowingo Dam has a neat 1930s hydroelectric plant as you drive across the top of the Dam. It's a good place to bird watch, too.

If into birds, Hawk Mountain is a good spot to watch them migrate soon.

There's some old oil and coal sites you can visit, I haven't been but would like to. You can also drive by Three Mile Island nuclear power plant (and several others in the state).

Staunton VA is cute, and nearby has a funny historic site with a bunch of relocated farm structures, the Frontier Culture Museum. My vernacular architecture history class went there so it is serious about the history part just also a building zoo.
posted by sepviva at 7:49 AM on March 18 [1 favorite]

Haunted Helen's Bridge in Asheville
posted by achrise at 8:43 PM on March 18

Virginia Creeper Trail. Rent bikes in Damascus, get taken to the top and cruise down.
posted by idb at 10:12 AM on March 19

It matches none of your criteria. I would still recommend the Pinball Museum in Asheville. I prefer to go early (like close to opening) unless you're cool with noodling around downtown waiting for them to call you ... there's limited "seating" so you just stick your name on a wait list and wait.
posted by adekllny at 12:02 PM on March 19

Cherry Springs State Park is one of the best dark sky preserves on the eastern seaboard
posted by cubeb at 3:01 PM on March 19 [1 favorite]

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