Mapping the Great American Family Road Trip

trip map2In my first post of the year, my 2015 Bucket List, I let you know that a cross-country road trip with my kids was among my must-do’s for the year. It still is though the jury is definitely still out as to whether this is a good idea or a wacky idea given it will be just me and the kids for four of the seven weeks.

I’m certain there will moments along the way when I’ll want to leave one or more of my children by the side of the road (middle school daughter of mine, I’m talking to you). So, if anyone has any good tips or reads on exercising patience and  flexibility, as well as how not to let your buttons get pushed, please send them my way. I’m going to need them.

It’s hard to believe that our cross-country journey is just over four months away. There’s still so much to do, but for now, I think I have a pretty good driving plan (I hope). We live in Northern Virginia, so we’ll take off from here and here’s where we plan to stop along the way:

Pigeon Forge, TN / Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Chattanooga, TN

New Orleans, LA

Galveston, TX

San Antonio, TX

Carlsbad, NM / Carlsbad Caverns National Park

White Sands National Monument (NM)

Albuquerque, NM

Grand Canyon (AZ)

Las Vegas, NV

Los Angeles, CA

Sequoia & Kings Canyon National Parks (CA)

Yosemite National Park (CA)

San Francisco, CA

Redwood National Park (CA)

Bend, OR

Boise, ID

Yellowstone National Park (MT/WY)

Grand Teton National Park (WY)

Steamboat Springs, CO

Denver, CO

Dodge City, KS

Kansas City, KS

St. Louis, MO

Mammoth Cave National Park (KY)

Charleston, WV

We’re only spending one or two (sometimes three) days in each location. Seven weeks seems like a long time, but there’s still so much I’d like to see and do that we won’t even be able to fit in (like visiting any parts of Utah and Washington).

I did a three-week road trip with the kids last summer, though my husband was with us the entire time. This time, I don’t even know what to expect from a longer trip minus a second parent and driver most of the time. I’m sure it will be an adventure no matter what.

Hit me up with your best family road trip tips either by email or in the comments section below, and let me know about any best bets in any of the cities or parks we’ll be visiting. Thank you in advance! 🙂

Image Credit: VassiSlavova