Meet me in [fill in the blank]!
November 2, 2007 10:29 AM   Subscribe

Where's a good place to spend the weekend halfway between North Carolina and New Jersey?

I live in Greensboro, NC and he lives in north Jersey, about a 9 hour drive apart. What are some good places to meet up for a weekend away? We're kind of cheap but willing to splurge if it's worth it. Budget is around $500 for two people for the weekend, including meals, lodging, and entertainment. We can do cabin, hotel, motel, B&B, etc. We like food, beer, shopping, camping, going out, and staying in (if you know what I mean).

Hotel, restaurant, city, and activity suggestions needed!
posted by kidsleepy to Travel & Transportation around North Carolina (13 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
posted by The World Famous at 10:34 AM on November 2, 2007

DC (x2)
posted by uaudio at 10:37 AM on November 2, 2007

If you're willing to say "fuck it" to your budget and REALLY splurge, you could fill in the blank with [The Inn at Little Washington].
posted by dersins at 10:57 AM on November 2, 2007

Yep, DC is great.

Perhaps Busch Gardens in Williamsburg? A little closer to NC than NJ, but still somewhere in the middle. You can also stop by Colonial Williamsburg, though I remember being really bored by it as a teenager. (Then again, I was a teenager.)
posted by Metroid Baby at 10:57 AM on November 2, 2007

again, DC. And to cut down on costs, bring your own food.
posted by Sassyfras at 10:59 AM on November 2, 2007

I have not been myself, but I always wanted to go wine-tasting in Virginia or out to Shenandoah.
posted by occhiblu at 11:06 AM on November 2, 2007

I was going to say, what about the Shenandoah valley? It means going a bit west, but otherwise it's about halfway; it's beautiful and it's going to be significantly cheaper than DC.
posted by mygothlaundry at 11:22 AM on November 2, 2007

My SO and I went to the Savage River Lodge in Maryland last year. It was great; really cozy. Not sure what is going on there this time of year, but they do have a very nice restaurant.
posted by Shebear at 11:37 AM on November 2, 2007

You'll have more fun in DC, but it's going to cost you, and you may end up spending more than you like.

You might be interested in a trip to Charlottesville, VA. It's about an hour outside of Shenandoah so you can still see the valley and hike if you wish, and you can go to Monticello* which is kinda cool. And if you go, you can go to the winery at Barboursville about 25 minutes away - excellent Virginia wines there. If you stay in Shenandoah, be sure to check out the Luray Caverns, neat stuff there.

If you're trying to go cheap in VA, I'd recommend Virginia Beach just because it's not tourist season anymore and you can find some cheap deals on hotel rooms or camp sites. Also, the Virginia Aquarium. Busch Gardens is closed for the year, but if this is an upcoming trip for next year that'd be a nice spot to hit. Colonial Williamsburg is a giant bore (at least to me) unless you're hitting the outlet stores. It's closer to you than it is to him, but the price might make the difference.

Also check out some places in Maryland, I remember having a good time there, although perhaps a resident would help you make a better informed decision about that.

*If you go, make sure to take careful note of the stain in TJ's sitting room. That's where I threw up on American history.
posted by sephira at 11:50 AM on November 2, 2007

Response by poster: Sephira- these are exactly the kinds of things I'm looking for! Thanks to you and everyone else for all of your suggestions so far. For those of you who said DC- where should we go/eat/sleep?

We'll probably meet up like this every so often, so suggestions for stuff that is out-of-season right now is fine too.

Keep 'em coming!
posted by kidsleepy at 12:15 PM on November 2, 2007

Don't let DC's heinous prices fool you - has hotels on metro lines in safe neighborhoods for $50 [you'll stay in VA, 2 miles out]

Cheap eating - Penn Quarter restaurants often have nice pre-theater dinners for about $30/person - Zola has one I particularly love. Adams Morgan has reasonable Ethiopian food. In general, go ethnic or eat a couple of small plates at the bar anywhere.

There are 8 billion small theater companies in DC - check out the post's website for details. Woolly Mammoth also has reasonable prices for balcony seats, but the theater is so small that it's definitely not a nosebleed situation. The Kennedy Center has seats behind the stage for orchestra performances, which are also cheap. has cheap day of seats all over town.

Best museums: National Building Museum, Hirschhorn, Natural History. is also a great resource, as is

I wouldn't even begin to rec a bar - there is something for every mood. I like bar pilar, the black cat, the atlas district, and poste, but that's me.
posted by beezy at 12:48 PM on November 2, 2007

Annapolis, MD.
posted by JohnnyGunn at 12:58 PM on November 2, 2007

Annapolis or DC. Since I've lived in both AND went to college in Greensboro (briefly) I feel well qualified to answer this question. Whatever you do, leave Greensboro as frequently as possible.

Come on up to DC for a good time in the nation's capitol. Don't listen to the $$$ talk. DC's expensive if you're a moron who likes double-decker bus tours. Otherwise, if you play your cards right, you can get through your whole weekend on $500 without a problem

The Smithsonian museum and all of the monuments are free and wonderful. I can walk around those museums forever and i've been in the district for years. Also, food is cheap if you know where to go.
I recommend my neighborhood, Adams Morgan. Head to Amsterdam falafel for the best damn falafel you've ever had at a bargain price. Or check out The Diner. On 18th street you'll find more bars (and the requisite fratties) than you'll know what to do with.

DC is awesome and 500 bucks will get you far if you're up for the museums and such. For other ideas on what to do, check out the washington city paper or, even better, come to the city and pick up THE ONION. There's a whole section specialized as to what's what in my fair city.
posted by willie11 at 5:41 PM on November 2, 2007

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