Touristy tips for some penny pinching brits, family of three. No motorcycle content :-(.

Discussion in 'Northeast - Greater Flugistan and home of the carp' started by toastmuncher, Dec 31, 2017.

  1. toastmuncher

    toastmuncher I be new round here! Ello

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2009
    Oddometer:
    703
    Location:
    Chepstow, South Wales, UK
    Okay, next year 2018, my wife, 13 year old son and I are planning to come over for a bit of a tour of the North East. Initial plan is fly into New York, three days in an air B&B, greyhound bus up to Vermont somewhere, spend 4/5 days exploring, hire car maybe, before bussing/training across to Maine, then after three days, Bus/train down to Boston for a few days, then fly back to UK.
    We had a big road trip around the perimeter of Ontario a few years back, but spending three weeks in a hire car felt a bit anti social. I DID want to engineer a short section of the Appalachian trail but my 13 year old has just been diagnosed with a spinal issue. Until this is fixed or addressed for him, that's not gonna happen for the foreseeable future.
    We hill walk here in wales, he was always very active but now struggles with much more than a modest meander.
    #1
  2. toastmuncher

    toastmuncher I be new round here! Ello

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2009
    Oddometer:
    703
    Location:
    Chepstow, South Wales, UK
    IMG_5458.JPG A bit ,more detail, we will be on a tight budget, looking for things we should/MUST go and see, cant afford crazy accommodation either so tips ref that also welcome, if anyone knows of a cabin for rent for short stays during our visit etc?? Guzzis, Hacks/sidecars and our old 181 Trekker/Thing fill the workshop here in Wales, any kinda old auto museum suggestions also welcome.
    We are very sociable, hence the bus/train idea rather than sitting in a hire car and not mixing much. We will be there for the last two weeks of August 2018.
    Just so you know who you're talking to, heres us, if FACEBOOK is your thing, youll find me as Alan Toastmuncher, Thanks for any input or help in advance. Family-35.jpg .
    #2
    McDuff, ogklx400, tjzondrz and 3 others like this.
  3. BigOgre

    BigOgre Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2012
    Oddometer:
    113
    Location:
    Long Island
    You mention Vermont and old cars and Hemmings naturally comes to mind. Never been (hmm . . . you just gave me a destination ride for next year) but maybe something to check out.

    Another thought is that while you mention New England generally, listing New York, Vermont, Maine and Boston casts quite the wide circle. It seems Vermont is synonymous with New England, and it is something to see, but it also wouldn't be terrible either if you bypassed it, angling more to the east and into New Hampshire instead. The White Mountains are gorgeous in their own right and offer many levels of trails should you wish to get out at whatever pace works. Mount Washington would be a good day destination and also offers its Cog Railway which sounds like it could be appealing to you. I believe there's also a scenic railway running out of Conway too. From there it's not bad going across to Maine (Bar Harbor? Booth Bay Harbor?) and then finding your way down to Boston.

    Negatives? Along with watching how much time you have I'm wondering what the availability of public transportation is. Also seeing you're aiming for August, availability and cost of lodging might be another issue as I believe that's a busy time of year tourist-wise. I would think the sooner you can lay this out the better it'll be for you. I also think there's many here with much more in-depth knowledge of those areas so I'd have to imagine there'll be some excellent suggestions forthcoming. Best of luck with it all. Oh, and Happy New Year.
    #3
  4. toastmuncher

    toastmuncher I be new round here! Ello

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2009
    Oddometer:
    703
    Location:
    Chepstow, South Wales, UK
    :thumbThanks Ogre, I read a bit from Bill Bryson, he has a lot of good things to say about that area too. When planning holidays we try and get in among folk, also trying to visit areas that may, one day, provide a venue for our retirement so Ill get some homework done on that too. The wife, the prettier one in the picture, likes the sound of 'marthas vineyard', any input on that area would be great. :thumb

    If there are any 'County Fairs/Fayres' near that time and location, let me know, that would be a great thing to build in.

    HAPPY NEW YEAR TO Y'ALL!!!! 4.5hours left
    #4
  5. Racer111v

    Racer111v Long timer

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2011
    Oddometer:
    1,875
    Location:
    Hudson, NH
    Unlike UK/Europe buses and trains are the slowest and most expensive way to get around, especially in the northeast. Renting a car is you're best option. Just do your homework on insurance/liability etc... Many campgrounds around here have cabins or campers (caravans) onsite for rent. They have bedding and often a fridge and stove. More fun and cheaper than a hotel. They do get reserved early, so you may need to plan ahead. Acadia National Park on the Maine coast is a great place to visit for a couple days, but it is one of the most popular parks, so you will need to plan ahead for that. It has a good bus system in the park to see the sites. There is a lot more, but that will get you started. What months are you looking at staying?
    #5
    levain likes this.
  6. toastmuncher

    toastmuncher I be new round here! Ello

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2009
    Oddometer:
    703
    Location:
    Chepstow, South Wales, UK
    last two weeks of august, busiest time of year and most expensive I'm sure.
    The bus thing will be for the new York to the midpoint, then get a car for 5 days to a week, then bus onto Boston for the last bit. The greyhounds look pretty reasonable and the bus/train idea is more as a means of mixing more rather than sitting in a tin box in isolation. I haven't been to the US since the Daytona Bike Week in 1996. I still wear the shirt. It appears to have shrunk a bit though.
    #6
    slowfall likes this.
  7. Racer111v

    Racer111v Long timer

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2011
    Oddometer:
    1,875
    Location:
    Hudson, NH
    Not the worst time. It can still be pretty hot. July is probably the busiest. Historic Boston can be fun. Duck Boat tour, the Constitution warship, A nice aquarium. The lakes region of NH (Laconia NH) offers a lot of fun. The Mount Washington cruise on lake Winnipesaukee is a nice thing to do there. I spend a lot of time riding in VT and love the place. But as far as a car trip it is a little boring if you're not hiking or fishing/boating. The White Mtns in NH are a little more tourist oriented. Driving up Mt Washington is quite a thrill. They also have a cog train and tour vans to the top if you don't want to drive to the top. The Mt Washington Hotel is pretty cool.
    #7
    toastmuncher likes this.
  8. shakeybone

    shakeybone Long timer

    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2010
    Oddometer:
    1,842
    Location:
    Weare NH
    You mentioned auto museum, Owls Head Transportation Museum in Maine http://owlshead.org sounds like it might be something you want to see.
    #8
  9. loph917

    loph917 Beard Bros Racing

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2010
    Oddometer:
    5,518
    Location:
    state of pain and confusion
    you say "New York". if that means NYC you might be better off taking Amtrak (train) up to Vermont as opposed to Greyhound. Greyhound is certainly not "luxury" and the train will be far more comfortable (most have bar cars!) and most likely quicker as there isn't as many along-the-way-stops.

    while in the NYC (if) there's the motorcyclepedia museum in Newburgh.

    i took an Amtrak from Pittsburgh to New York City (about 9 hours) and it was quite tolerable. for reference that same drive by car is approximately 7 hours or more based on fuel/food stops and the highly unpredictable but always present traffic.

    going east-west by train on the east coast may be challenging (i haven't looked into those routes too much). north-south should be much easier especially in/out of the big cities.
    #9
  10. Schmokel

    Schmokel I got peed on today.

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2015
    Oddometer:
    12,889
    Location:
    Up. And to the right.
    I'll run the option of you folks staying at The Homestead with us by the missus. We're deep in the woods surrounded by touristy stuff. We're about as secluded you can get in this area. Can you handle a chainsaw? Hehe
    #10
  11. TengaiJohn

    TengaiJohn Long timer

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2006
    Oddometer:
    3,483
    Location:
    Tappan, NY
    Take the MegaBus up to Boston, super cheap and they have a doubledecker (make you feel at home.... hahaha).

    Good luck!
    #11
  12. szurszewski

    szurszewski Long timer

    Joined:
    May 26, 2010
    Oddometer:
    2,135
    Location:
    Olympia, WA
    I'll second the idea of the train vs greyhound. Megabus also works if you plan to go the routes they do. The difference is Megabus, which also operates in Europe, goes just to the main points, and is variable in cost starting at VERY cheap if you book early, whereas Greyhound stops EVERYWHERE and will often require several changes of bus, often at weird times in very out of the way places, to get where you're going; cost is more fixed, but certainly not cheap. Since there are frequent stops and transfers on the Greyhound buses, I've found you're more likely to make friends on the Megabus routes (or Bolt buses here on the west coast -even if they are run/own by Greyhound), but also that you're likely to be surrounded by tourists- Greyhound does seem to be more "locals" traveling to see friends/family (or going home after a prison stint ;) ).

    If you don't already know about the tent space thread here on ADV, look that up. I think most people use it for moto trips, so I'd be careful in contacting hosts to explain what you're doing and that you're not on bike...but you'll have some street cred traveling across the pond and all that, and you can probably get a good idea from offers there and the posts of the posters as to whether they'd be into meeting you.

    I'd also recommend couchsurfing - it's changed a lot since we first joined in 2004, but it's still a workable way to save money on your trip and meet locals.
    #12
  13. Schmokel

    Schmokel I got peed on today.

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2015
    Oddometer:
    12,889
    Location:
    Up. And to the right.
    Hit me up on exact dates. There is a week in August that I will be gone for. Otherwise, we have ~20+ acres of forest to camp out in as well as a whole upstairs with bedroom and shower with central air. :-)
    #13
  14. toastmuncher

    toastmuncher I be new round here! Ello

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2009
    Oddometer:
    703
    Location:
    Chepstow, South Wales, UK
    Will look that up, thanks man.

    Great, north then south it may be given todays research. Update below....

    Most generous, just got in from putting the stihl through some 350 year old oak as a tree fell in the village and blocked the road last weekend, the old folk in the village were amused at me out on the rain like chicks at a clothes sale, running back and fore with the wheelbarrow!! just split the last of it and stacked, tree was dead about 5 years after the horses 'ring barked' it.

    We have the megabus here, never used one, will look into it, thanks.

    Its tricky crashing in peoples houses because of our son, he has dyspraxia, kinda like dyslexia but with processing stuff like multiple instruction or noisy environments making it hard for him to converse, so hed be pretty self conscious. Camping is something I have suggested, bring the gear on a plane is the biggest hurdle, I have considered renting a minivan/people carrier type thing for the middle piece of the holiday and camping in that.
    #14
  15. toastmuncher

    toastmuncher I be new round here! Ello

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2009
    Oddometer:
    703
    Location:
    Chepstow, South Wales, UK
    #15
  16. nachtflug

    nachtflug deplorable

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2002
    Oddometer:
    52,602
    Location:
    Hells Kitchen
    [​IMG]
    #16
  17. toastmuncher

    toastmuncher I be new round here! Ello

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2009
    Oddometer:
    703
    Location:
    Chepstow, South Wales, UK
    Nachtflug, that would be great, for me anyway but maybe the boy and wife, not so much. Its the weekend prior to our arrival so I guess that saves me 'sweetening them up'. Shame, that would help give us a route.
    #17
  18. Scourge

    Scourge Long timer

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2014
    Oddometer:
    6,130
    Location:
    Lackawanna County, PA
    Ship it to a friend, UPS Store or hotel, etc for pickup when you are ready for it. You can also rent a small RV instead of a minivan and eliminate the hotel/motel costs all-together. Even if you can't locate a nice campground every day - you can always find a Walmart and they let RVs plug in in their parking lots for free. Many are open 24hrs with clean rest rooms.
    #18
    toastmuncher likes this.
  19. toastmuncher

    toastmuncher I be new round here! Ello

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2009
    Oddometer:
    703
    Location:
    Chepstow, South Wales, UK
    Thanks Scourge, just looking at that now, we did try and do this with out Canada trip a few years ago, three weeks RV hire was crazy dough back then, but if we have 6 days NVC Sat-Thurs, two day run up to Boston, 6 nights RV hire, then back with a couple of days in boston, that may work out okay. Fri 24th to Thursday 30th appears to be around $750. With accommodation for us three running around $100 a night, that works out okay. Camping?? I'm aware of the Walmarts but any clue on camping costs?? We had a 22ft RV here in the UK for a while so driving it will be fine I reckon. Blankets etc may be a drama, but three sleeping bags will be just one extra bag on the plane.
    Anyone have suggestions for RV camping venues west and north of Boston?? There is a uk site for 'Wild Camping', free areas in the woods, country pubs that allow you to sleep in the car park on condition you eat there etc, anything similar stateside??
    #19
  20. Racer111v

    Racer111v Long timer

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2011
    Oddometer:
    1,875
    Location:
    Hudson, NH
    Some of the campgrounds have cabins with bedding, or camper trailers that also have bedding. Saves dealing with camping gear.
    #20