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I'm 33, and about to be between jobs for a month. I'm living (well...) in New Jersey, and my new job's in Seattle. I've gotten kinda hipped on the idea of an old-fashioned road trip, hopefully all the way across without touching a turnpike. Motorcycles seem a bit more than me, but I'd like to buy/rent a convertible and do the backroads.


Are there any groups that have advice on that? What are the best ways to plan a trip for three weeks? How long should I allow for driving per day? What are good ways to meet locals along the way?

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That's an interesting tripod, TravelandNature, but you won't catch me on anything that potentially could launch me as a projectile at 60 mph.  And, unless you're very macho, you'll not enjoy yourself in bad weather.  So if you want to walk on the wild side, rent a convertible, or buy an older one, drive it for a month and sell it in Seattle (not exactly a city for convertibles, except on rare days).


Regarding on where to go and how to plan the trip, I'd make a point of going by my local AAA office (assuming you're a member) and talking to them.  The folks there are great at giving you maps and charting out a route that will meet your interests.  Without knowing more about you, it's hard to advice on on where to go.  If I were doing this trip, I'd focus it around the National Parks, in my opinion among the best the USA has to offer tourists.  I wouldn't drive to much in a single day, especially as you'll be on the road a month.  Take your time.  Maybe 4 hours of driving and 4 hours of exploring a day, before settling in and getting to know a few locals at a pub or coffee shop.  Others would focus on seeing big cities.


Let us know hour plans work out, and good luck with the move!

That is a very good suggestion to think in terms of planning your trip as a connection of national (and state !) parks.   The parks tend to be, by definition, in the scenic places, which are along the scenic drives.  What a coincidence !  How handy !


The champions of finding scenic drives off of the interstates and shunways are the RVers.   


Check the sites used by RVers  for ideas.  Here is a good one:


Hey, guys...thanks for a bunch of good ideas! I think the 3-wheel bike is not for me, but the idea of buying an old ragtop and then selling it appeals to me. Not even sure I'll need a car living in Seattle, but don't know yet (job is near the waterfront, but don't know where I can afford to live!)


National Parks idea sounds really good to me...I've loved the ones I've been to before.


Shunpiking? I didn't make that up! This is from Merriam Webster:


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