Budget Travel

How to journey the Southeastern US on a tight budget in 2022

From North Carolina to Florida, experience the splendor from the mountains, immerse yourself in history and savor a taste of upscale comfort food on one of America's most scenic drives.

If you are looking for a car trip that gives some of the highest popular features of the Southeast, we've put together a peerless itinerary that can take you against the largest city in New york towards the oldest city in the usa, with lots of good eats, arts and natural splendor along the way.

Charlotte, North Carolina

Your Southeast journey begins with an idea of Charlotte, New york. The biggest city within the “First in Flight” State, Charlotte offers a menu of contemporary Southern cuisine like the exquisite BBQ at Midwood Smokehouse, several important art collections including the Bechtler Museum of contemporary Art and also the unique Levine Museum from the New South using its concentrate on events after the Civil War. A stop in the NASCAR Hall of Fame is a must for racing enthusiasts and newbies alike.

Boone & Blowing Rock, North Carolina

From Charlotte, you'll head north (don't be concerned, we'll depress you to Sc, Georgia and Florida eventually) for around 2 hours on I-77 and US 421 to the scenic Boone and Blowing Rock region. The epicenter of beauty here is the stretch of the Blue Ridge Parkway that passes through the region on its way from Shenandoah National Park in Virginia to Great Smoky Mountains National Park in North Carolina and Tennessee, boasting seemingly endless hiking trails and scenic overlooks. Don't miss the opportunity to witness living history using the costumed actors at Hickory Ridge Museum, and get to know the flora of the Boone area at its namesake Daniel Boone Native Gardens. In nearby Blowing Rock, spend your day at Ultimate Adventure park with zip lines along with other out-of-this-world pursuits. Rest your head at reliable lodging such as the Inn at Crestwood, in Boone.

Asheville, North Carolina

The drive from Boone to Asheville, under two hours south on US 221, goes into the heart of 1 of America's hippest small cities, brimming over with culinary delights (including a delicious and imaginative vegan scene), craft beer and vibrant local arts. But the great outdoors will most likely dominate your Asheville stay, including canopy tours, hot air ballooning and zip-lining. After hours, consider the affordable Residences at Biltmore, starting at under $120/night.

Greenville, South Carolina

About an hour and Fifteen minutes from Asheville on I-26 East and US-25 South, Greenville, South Carolina, beckons with an exceptionally walkable downtown that boasts cool shopping, artist studios and galleries, and great food (such as the Greenville BBQ Trail Tour). Start your morning having a cup of coffee at Falls Park before you decide to traverse the freedom Bridge, a 345ft-long span over the Reedy River. A number of comfy motels offer rooms at well under $100/night, and for a little over $100/night you can get a room at the Hyatt Place Greenville/Haywood.

Alpharetta, Georgia

From Greenville, head south on I-85 for around two hours and 15 minutes and discover Alpharetta, Georgia. Explore a lot more than 750 acres of parkland, try some of the 200+ restaurants like Cabernet Steakhouse or Chiringa using its coastal cuisine. Be sure to set aside your evening for music at one of the world's finest jazz clubs, The Velvet Note.

Savannah, Georgia

A four-hour drive from Alpharetta on I-75 South and I-16 East brings you to definitely the uniquely charming town of Savannah. Choose of activities, including strolling along Bull Street from square to square to Forsyth's Park discovering the city's decidedly European flavors; go to the Savannah College of Art and style with its exceptional SCAD Museum of Art; and for more art, both classic and new, go to the Telfair Museum, in Savannah's Historic District and the Jepson Center. Dining options include fresh oysters and shrimp at Bernie's. Bunk down for a night or even more at the Old Harbor Inn, with rooms under $1610/night and value every penny.

St Augustine, Florida

Once you flourish in bidding adieu to Savannah and its charms, head south on I-95 about 2 hours and 45 minutes to uncover the oldest city in the US. St Augustine, Florida, began in 1565 by Spanish settlers and delivers an event that feels a global from the beach towns and amusement parks we associate with florida. Explore the long-lasting Castillo de San Marcos, spend time understanding local history in the city's exceptional museums, and enjoy an assorted menu that reflects St. Augustine's native, colonial, and immigrant cultures (try Collage Restaurant for its international menu and romantic establishing the Historic District). Book a room at the utterly charming Villa 1565, starting under $125/night.

Safety recommendations and restrictions throughout a pandemic can alter rapidly. Lonely Planet recommends that travelers check with local authorities for up-to-date guidance before traveling during Covid-19.

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