Road trip Pennsylvania,Maryland,and DC

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hoops777
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Road trip Pennsylvania,Maryland,and DC

Post by hoops777 » Mon Jun 18, 2018 3:43 pm

We are going on a trip September 26 and need to be in DC on Oct 2,leaving on Oct 7.So since the 26th will be lost because of flight time from Ca,we have the 27th to Oct.2 to see Pennsylvania and Maryland.I am debating between flying in to Pittsburgh or Philadelphia.We like driving through unique small towns and basic sightseeing.Want to see Amish country for sure.It is cheaper to rent car in Pittsburgh and drop off in DC vs.renting in Philly.The 5 days in DC are pretty much covered.Thanks
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drawpoker
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Re: Road trip Pennsylvania,Maryland,and DC

Post by drawpoker » Mon Jun 18, 2018 3:55 pm

Confused here. If your ultimate destination is D.C., why would you use either Pittsburgh or Philly airport?
Why not Dulles or BWI?
If you fly in to Pittsburgh, you will have a long drive to the Amish country of PA which is centered around Lancaster County, far to the east. Same with if you wish to see some of the historical stuff around Maryland.
A lot of the carriers serving CA thru either Dulles or BWI have some pretty fantastic prices if you book ahead.
Last edited by drawpoker on Mon Jun 18, 2018 3:58 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Gr819406
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Re: Road trip Pennsylvania,Maryland,and DC

Post by Gr819406 » Mon Jun 18, 2018 3:55 pm

hoops777 wrote:
Mon Jun 18, 2018 3:43 pm
We are going on a trip September 26 and need to be in DC on Oct 2,leaving on Oct 7.So since the 26th will be lost because of flight time from Ca,we have the 27th to Oct.2 to see Pennsylvania and Maryland.I am debating between flying in to Pittsburgh or Philadelphia.We like driving through unique small towns and basic sightseeing.Want to see Amish country for sure.It is cheaper to rent car in Pittsburgh and drop off in DC vs.renting in Philly.The 5 days in DC are pretty much covered.Thanks
If you want to see Amish country it makes more sense to fly to Philly. Also Philly is closer to MD and the towns you'd want to visit most likely. Lancaster is where most of the Amish country is which is about 1.5 hours from Philadelphia. I live just outside of Philly and not sure where you are looking to visit, but you can drive pretty much anywhere around Lancaster see the Amish driving around in their horse n buggies. Kitchen Kettle Village(http://www.kitchenkettle.com/index.asp is a cool spot near Lancaster if you are looking for things to see. There are also a lot of farmer's markets in the York, PA area. Also if you are looking for more historical things to see there is much more on the Philadelphia side in my opinion . Just outside of Philly is Valley Forge Park. Close to NJ is New Hope, PA which is also a neat little town(http://www.visitbuckscounty.com/towns-m ... bertville/.
Last edited by Gr819406 on Tue Jun 19, 2018 9:15 am, edited 1 time in total.

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GoldStar
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Re: Road trip Pennsylvania,Maryland,and DC

Post by GoldStar » Mon Jun 18, 2018 4:01 pm

Avoid Pittsburgh - why lose half a day to driving?
In case you didn't realize it:
It's about a 5 hour drive (without traffic) from Pittsburgh to Philly and about 4 hours from Pittsburgh to DC (Without passing through Amish country).
With Philadelphia and Maryland - I might have other suggestions but don't know your parameters (do you like history? Are you traveling with young kids? Etc.). There is a lot to choose from (Hershey, Philly-area history, etc.).

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Re: Road trip Pennsylvania,Maryland,and DC

Post by UpperNwGuy » Mon Jun 18, 2018 4:11 pm

I would fly into either Philly or BWI for easy access to the Amish country, Gettysburg, and Hershey. Philly will get you closer to New Hope and to the Brandywine Valley. (I don’t recommend Dulles Airport as it will add an extra hour to your road trip north into Pennsylvania.)

hoops777
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Re: Road trip Pennsylvania,Maryland,and DC

Post by hoops777 » Mon Jun 18, 2018 4:14 pm

Ok,let’s skip Pittsburgh.I thought there might be a lot of stuff to see driving to Philly.
We are adding a week to an already planned trip where we originally flew in to DC on Oct 2.
We have never seen Maryand and the Philly area.I was also considering going to Delaware only because we are on a quest to see all 50 states.I cannot see much reason to go there other than to scratch it off the list.
No kids,just my wife and I.If there are a lot of unique twins close to Philly and in Maryand that should keep us busy :happy
Also we will be flying out of Reagan,DCA. and as of now we are staying in DuPont Circle during our DC time.
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Re: Road trip Pennsylvania,Maryland,and DC

Post by shunkman » Mon Jun 18, 2018 4:23 pm

You may also want to consider flying into Harrisburg, PA (MDT). MDT is a very low stress airport compared to PHL, IAD, or BWI. Not to mention fewer delays. HIA (MDT) is now served by Delta, United, and American, but yes, flight choices are limited. Frontier is starting service in July.


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Re: Road trip Pennsylvania,Maryland,and DC

Post by bondsr4me » Mon Jun 18, 2018 4:35 pm

shunkman wrote:
Mon Jun 18, 2018 4:23 pm
You may also want to consider flying into Harrisburg, PA (MDT). MDT is a very low stress airport compared to PHL, IAD, or BWI. Not to mention fewer delays. HIA (MDT) is now served by Delta, United, and American, but yes, flight choices are limited. Frontier is starting service in July.


http://www.flyhia.com/
+1 on Harrisburg.

My wife and I go to Lancaster Amish country several times a year...enjoy every minute of it.
There is a visitors center with lots of info.

Hope you enjoy it.

craimund
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Re: Road trip Pennsylvania,Maryland,and DC

Post by craimund » Mon Jun 18, 2018 4:43 pm

hoops777 wrote:
Mon Jun 18, 2018 4:14 pm
Ok,let’s skip Pittsburgh.I thought there might be a lot of stuff to see driving to Philly.
We are adding a week to an already planned trip where we originally flew in to DC on Oct 2.
We have never seen Maryand and the Philly area.I was also considering going to Delaware only because we are on a quest to see all 50 states.I cannot see much reason to go there other than to scratch it off the list.
No kids,just my wife and I.If there are a lot of unique twins close to Philly and in Maryand that should keep us busy :happy
Also we will be flying out of Reagan,DCA. and as of now we are staying in DuPont Circle during our DC time.
In terms of Maryland, you would definitely want to check out the Baltimore Inner Harbor. You should also visit Annapolis and the neighboring U.S. Naval Academy.

As other have stated, flying into Philly would be the better choice. You could drive through Delaware on your way down 95 from Philly - may be out of your way if you plan on visiting Amish country. Delaware does have some great beach towns, though (Rehoboth Beach and Dewey). Would be off-season so no crowds. The eastern Shore of Maryland is also worth checking out, particularly St. Michaels. Can take the Chesapeake Bay Bridge from Annapolis.

Have a great trip.
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hoops777
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Re: Road trip Pennsylvania,Maryland,and DC

Post by hoops777 » Mon Jun 18, 2018 4:56 pm

shunkman wrote:
Mon Jun 18, 2018 4:23 pm
You may also want to consider flying into Harrisburg, PA (MDT). MDT is a very low stress airport compared to PHL, IAD, or BWI. Not to mention fewer delays. HIA (MDT) is now served by Delta, United, and American, but yes, flight choices are limited. Frontier is starting service in July.


http://www.flyhia.com/

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Re: Road trip Pennsylvania,Maryland,and DC

Post by adamthesmythe » Mon Jun 18, 2018 5:22 pm

> Ok,let’s skip Pittsburgh.I thought there might be a lot of stuff to see driving to Philly.

Well there's SOMETHING. But there is a great deal to see within a short drive of Philadelphia. Stick near the coast

eddot98
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Re: Road trip Pennsylvania,Maryland,and DC

Post by eddot98 » Mon Jun 18, 2018 6:58 pm

After flying into Philadelphia, visiting the historic sites there and going to the Amish country around Lancaster, consider driving through the DelMarVa peninsula to Chincoteague, VA. Chincoteague is quite unique. https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chincoteague,_Virginia
Then you can head back to Annapolis and Baltimore on your way to DC.
That way, you can cross Delaware off your list also.

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c.coyle
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Re: Road trip Pennsylvania,Maryland,and DC

Post by c.coyle » Mon Jun 18, 2018 7:16 pm

Pennsylvania Dutch Country is a tacky, overrated tourist trap. Lancaster County is over-developed and traffic is a nightmare. Flying into Pittsburgh, a great city, pretty much locks you into driving to Philadelphia on the Pa, Turnpike, unless you want to go way out of the way. The Turnpike will take you by the 9-11 memorial and Frank Lloyd Wright's Falling Water, both of which are worth seeing. Otherwise, it is mostly rural until you get to Harrisburg and Hershey. Just keep going past Lancaster. Plenty of interesting things around Philadelphia.
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Re: Road trip Pennsylvania,Maryland,and DC

Post by KSOC » Mon Jun 18, 2018 8:28 pm

Philly is a great walking town. Lots to see. Parking a car in Philly will run you about $30 a night.
I'd fly into Philly. Take train right from airport to Center City Marriott or Home2 Suites right across from The Reading Terminal Market. All the foods you ever want to eat are there. Walking distance to all the Historical Attractions. When you are done in Philly rent a car from Center City. Marriott has a car rental place right in their lobby. Hertz is a block away. You can bring car back to Philly airport if desired or DC or BWI. I've done this and had a great trip.

Oh, while you're in Philly, Amtrak will take you right to Penn Station in NYC for about $40 & and 1.5 hours of your time. Get up early to New York, spend the day come back at night for cheaper hotel rates. Fun side trip.
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drawpoker
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Re: Road trip Pennsylvania,Maryland,and DC

Post by drawpoker » Mon Jun 18, 2018 9:30 pm

eddot98 wrote:
Mon Jun 18, 2018 6:58 pm
........ consider driving through the DelMarVa peninsula to Chincoteague, VA. Chincoteague is quite unique. .
Yes, Chincoteague and the whole National seashore area would be good in early October, all the summer crowds gone. But, after seeing the wild ponies , art galleries, fishing boats - not much left.
But, If you make the trip to Chincoteague, you will also go right past the NASA facility at Wallops Island. This is the place that has pretty much replaced Cape Canaveral for launching all the rockets now. They are getting to be so frequent now we hope and pray for a clear night so we can see the thing zoom up in the sky from here. When they are not launching rockets into space the visitors center is very, very interesting, not just for kids but adults.
Don't overlook Eastville, county seat of Northhampton County. The courthouse and debtors prison buildings, dating to 1731, are open to the public. Even more amazing, the county records that have been preserved date back to 1632, making them the oldest continuous record for courthouses in the entire U.S. If you and your wife enjoy re-visiting history you will enjoy this viewing.
If you get this far, might as well continue on to Onancock, VA. A picturesque, quaint town of its own. From there take the ferry to Tangier Island. This will really take you back to the 17th century as you step off the ferry and hear the dialect spoken by the natives. Besides excellent seafood, a small but thoroughly interesting maritime historical museum, and tram tour of the entire island, Tangier Island is famous for 2 other things:
The producers of the hit movie "Message in a Bottle" chose Tangier Island as first choice for location filming; offered the local gov't a really good financial package to make it happen, didn't happen. The locals decided they did not want those "Hollywood types" anywhere around their beloved island paradise. Too corrupting, bad influences, etc. Turned down all that money, never looked back. (Maybe not the makings of Bogleheads, eh)
2nd claim to fame with Tangier - Like a lot of other things in the Chesapeake Bay, um, it is sinking at a rather alarming rate. Then, um, there was that certain phone call to the mayor from that certain, well, y' know the rest.

hoops777
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Re: Road trip Pennsylvania,Maryland,and DC

Post by hoops777 » Mon Jun 18, 2018 9:55 pm

Wow.Great suggestions.I have a lot of Marriot and Sheraton points so will look at that.
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Re: Road trip Pennsylvania,Maryland,and DC

Post by Steve723 » Mon Jun 18, 2018 10:31 pm

If you are into gardens and vast, ornate grounds, I have two recommendations: The first is Longwood Gardens in Kennett Square, PA. It is one of the most beautiful places I've ever been to. Vast, vast gardens. I've never been there in the fall, but I'm sure it's nice. They do such a great job there.

After that, a 20-25 minute drive southeast will get you to the Nemours Mansion in Wilimington, DE. Both of these places have roots with the DuPont family.

For food, Longwood has a very nice restaurant on the grounds. Nemours is right in Wilmington, so there are some nice places to eat near by.

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Re: Road trip Pennsylvania,Maryland,and DC

Post by dougger5 » Mon Jun 18, 2018 10:56 pm

Steve723 wrote:
Mon Jun 18, 2018 10:31 pm
If you are into gardens and vast, ornate grounds, I have two recommendations: The first is Longwood Gardens in Kennett Square, PA. It is one of the most beautiful places I've ever been to. Vast, vast gardens. I've never been there in the fall, but I'm sure it's nice. They do such a great job there.

After that, a 20-25 minute drive southeast will get you to the Nemours Mansion in Wilimington, DE. Both of these places have roots with the DuPont family.

For food, Longwood has a very nice restaurant on the grounds. Nemours is right in Wilmington, so there are some nice places to eat near by.
+1 on all accounts :beer

The drive from Longwood to Nemours would likely bring you down Rt 52, through a series of small towns with 18th and 19th Century buildings lining the road.

And if you do venture further south into DE...there's the Dogfish Head Brewery down in Milton. Free hour-long tour of the operation, which includes a flight...if you're into beer.
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PhilosophyAndrew
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Re: Road trip Pennsylvania,Maryland,and DC

Post by PhilosophyAndrew » Mon Jun 18, 2018 11:33 pm

I second the recommendation to visit Gettysburg National Military Park, especially if you can hire a licensed guide — they are outstanding in my experience.

http://gettysburgtourguides.org/

Andy.

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c.coyle
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Re: Road trip Pennsylvania,Maryland,and DC

Post by c.coyle » Tue Jun 19, 2018 6:17 am

Minor correction: Easton, not Eastville, is the seat of Northampton County. Set your GPS for "Eastville" and you will end up way out of the way.
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Re: Road trip Pennsylvania,Maryland,and DC

Post by ponyboy » Tue Jun 19, 2018 7:16 am

Theres not much in PA...I wouldnt even put it on the list. I live in northeast PA...trust me. Philly is a wreck...pittsburgh is decent but too far away from DC...again, not much to see in pitt. Amish country is lame imo.

You'll just want to focus almost all of your attention on DC. We used to live there for 12 years. Stay in Arlington/rosslyn area a night or two. You can walk over to georgetown, theres roosevelt island, national cemetary. That will consume a day. Hit up all the museums and monuments on the mall for a day or two. If you like aircraft stuff drive out to dulles VA. Massive museum by the airport that people forget about. Its 10x better than the air and space on the mall. They have a space shuttle in there, sr-71, the enola gay, etc etc. Its huge. While you're out there you can hit up wine country in leesburg...its nice. Hit up outlets out there if you need some down time.

As far as maryland goes...you could hit up great falls and ride bikes. Harpers ferry in WV is nice...hike up to the overlook...its cool.

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Re: Road trip Pennsylvania,Maryland,and DC

Post by fizxman » Tue Jun 19, 2018 7:44 am

For what it's worth, I live and work just across the Susquehanna River from Harrisburg, grew up between Allentown and Philly, and have family living just outside Pittsburgh (plus I was just there last month on business).

1. Pittsburgh is a great city to visit with lots to see and do so at the very least, look into it.
2. Working your way east along the PA Turnpike, you could see Fallingwater, the Frank Lloyd Wright house.
3. Johnstown and learn about the Johnstown flood.
4. Gettysburg battlefield.
5. Hersheypark and Chocolate World.
6. Lancaster and Amish country.
7. Philly.
8. Swing south on I-95 and head to Baltimore, the aquarium, and the rest of Inner Harbor.
9. Then to DC.

I've done everything on this list and I wasn't disappointed by any.

If you decide to fly into Harrisburg (which is a small, stressless airport that I fly in and out of almost exclusively), I wouldn't do the first three just because it would require backtracking across the state. Then that would leave one day for numbers 4-8, which should be enough.

Faith20879
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Re: Road trip Pennsylvania,Maryland,and DC

Post by Faith20879 » Tue Jun 19, 2018 9:12 am

Hi hoops,

If you will be driving on any of the turnpikes, an EZPass (or the equivalent) can save quite a bit of time.

hoops777
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Re: Road trip Pennsylvania,Maryland,and DC

Post by hoops777 » Tue Jun 19, 2018 9:54 am

ponyboy wrote:
Tue Jun 19, 2018 7:16 am
Theres not much in PA...I wouldnt even put it on the list. I live in northeast PA...trust me. Philly is a wreck...pittsburgh is decent but too far away from DC...again, not much to see in pitt. Amish country is lame imo.

You'll just want to focus almost all of your attention on DC. We used to live there for 12 years. Stay in Arlington/rosslyn area a night or two. You can walk over to georgetown, theres roosevelt island, national cemetary. That will consume a day. Hit up all the museums and monuments on the mall for a day or two. If you like aircraft stuff drive out to dulles VA. Massive museum by the airport that people forget about. Its 10x better than the air and space on the mall. They have a space shuttle in there, sr-71, the enola gay, etc etc. Its huge. While you're out there you can hit up wine country in leesburg...its nice. Hit up outlets out there if you need some down time.

As far as maryland goes...you could hit up great falls and ride bikes. Harpers ferry in WV is nice...hike up to the overlook...its cool.
How far out of the way is West Virginia?Never been there.
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Re: Road trip Pennsylvania,Maryland,and DC

Post by craimund » Tue Jun 19, 2018 10:26 am

Harpers Ferry WV is about 1.5 hour drive from DC/Dupont Circle. You should be able to mostly avoid the horrific DC traffic if you make it a day trip and leave in the AM.

You should also consider visiting Mount Vernon (Alexandria, VA). Short trip from DC.
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c.coyle
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Re: Road trip Pennsylvania,Maryland,and DC

Post by c.coyle » Tue Jun 19, 2018 10:38 am

ponyboy wrote:
Tue Jun 19, 2018 7:16 am
. . . I live in northeast PA...trust me. Philly is a wreck... . . .
An incredibly dumb statement, and I'm being polite. Independence Hall (a UNESCO World Heritage Site), Valley Forge, the Liberty Bell, the Franklin Institute, Philadelphia Museum of Art, the Academy of Music, Chadds Ford (Andrew Wyeth), Longwood Gardens in Kennett Square, South Street, the Italian Market, Boathouse Row, 67 National Historic Landmarks, several outstanding universities.

And I'm a Pittsburgher.
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Re: Road trip Pennsylvania,Maryland,and DC

Post by jebmke » Tue Jun 19, 2018 10:42 am

If it were me, for 7 days I'd pick two places and stay put, except short trips to nearby sights. Otherwise you are spending a lot of time driving and checking into and out of hotels.
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Gr819406
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Re: Road trip Pennsylvania,Maryland,and DC

Post by Gr819406 » Tue Jun 19, 2018 10:55 am

loving all the if it were me posts - its not you and the OP asked for recommendations about a road trip in which he clearly plans to take before going to DC for his sightseeing.

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Re: Road trip Pennsylvania,Maryland,and DC

Post by mak1277 » Tue Jun 19, 2018 11:04 am

ponyboy wrote:
Tue Jun 19, 2018 7:16 am
Theres not much in PA...I wouldnt even put it on the list. I live in northeast PA...trust me. Philly is a wreck...pittsburgh is decent but too far away from DC...again, not much to see in pitt. Amish country is lame imo.

You'll just want to focus almost all of your attention on DC. We used to live there for 12 years. Stay in Arlington/rosslyn area a night or two. You can walk over to georgetown, theres roosevelt island, national cemetary. That will consume a day. Hit up all the museums and monuments on the mall for a day or two. If you like aircraft stuff drive out to dulles VA. Massive museum by the airport that people forget about. Its 10x better than the air and space on the mall. They have a space shuttle in there, sr-71, the enola gay, etc etc. Its huge. While you're out there you can hit up wine country in leesburg...its nice. Hit up outlets out there if you need some down time.

As far as maryland goes...you could hit up great falls and ride bikes. Harpers ferry in WV is nice...hike up to the overlook...its cool.
Interesting comment. I enjoy Pittsburgh and Philly both more than DC.

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Re: Road trip Pennsylvania,Maryland,and DC

Post by cherijoh » Tue Jun 19, 2018 11:27 am

hoops777 wrote:
Mon Jun 18, 2018 4:14 pm
Ok,let’s skip Pittsburgh.I thought there might be a lot of stuff to see driving to Philly.
We are adding a week to an already planned trip where we originally flew in to DC on Oct 2.
We have never seen Maryand and the Philly area.I was also considering going to Delaware only because we are on a quest to see all 50 states.I cannot see much reason to go there other than to scratch it off the list.
No kids,just my wife and I.If there are a lot of unique twins close to Philly and in Maryand that should keep us busy :happy
Also we will be flying out of Reagan,DCA. and as of now we are staying in DuPont Circle during our DC time.
I would recommend adding Annapolis MD to the list. It is the oldest continuous state capital, home to the Naval Academy and on the Chesapeake Bay. It is a quaint walkable city although I think it has gotten more commercialized since I last visited. The Naval Academy offers guided public tours daily and the State House is open daily as well.

You can take a cruise around the bay or do an all-day cruise to St. Michaels. My brother lives in lower Anne Arundel county and although I haven't visited St. Michaels myself I know he has enjoyed visiting. Late September is a great time to get out on the water. I think you'll be there just before the Annual sailboat show (things get crazy then). But some of the sailboats may be coming into town during your visit.

You could also cross the Chesapeake Bay bridge and head over to into Delaware just to say you did it or you could take a longer route and hit Ocean City MD and Rehoboth Beach Delaware in the same visit. As a child we vacationed in Ocean City. My childhood memories were of a very rural area with tobacco farms and chicken packaging plants. Perdue started in MD and Frank Perdue used to do all their commercials on local TV. I'm sure it has changed a lot since then! :happy If you do decide to drive to Delaware you could also visit St. Michaels on the way (without doing the all-day cruise from Annapolis).

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Re: Road trip Pennsylvania,Maryland,and DC

Post by mattshwink » Tue Jun 19, 2018 11:32 am

hoops777 wrote:
Mon Jun 18, 2018 3:43 pm
We are going on a trip September 26 and need to be in DC on Oct 2,leaving on Oct 7.So since the 26th will be lost because of flight time from Ca,we have the 27th to Oct.2 to see Pennsylvania and Maryland.I am debating between flying in to Pittsburgh or Philadelphia.We like driving through unique small towns and basic sightseeing.Want to see Amish country for sure.It is cheaper to rent car in Pittsburgh and drop off in DC vs.renting in Philly.The 5 days in DC are pretty much covered.Thanks
I don't know if you are a baseball fan or not (looks like you like basketball) but seeing a game at Camden Yards is a great experience (and the O's aren't playing well so you can easily get tickets, even on game days). Camden Yards is what started the new Ball Park rennaisance and you will not regret seeing a game there. Lots of good food too: Baltimore inspired stuff like Crab Cakes, Boogs BBQ, and Pollock Johnny's Sausages. The Babe Ruth museum is their too. They end the season with a homestand against the Astros from September 27th-30th.

Come to the think of it, Citizen's Bank Park in Philly is great too (though I'm biased, Camden Yards is better :)) If you go get a Cheesesteak from Tony Luke's (even if you don't go to a game, get a Cheesteak from a Tony Luke's, they are better then Pat's or Geno's in my opinion). Wit and Whiz is the way I like them (and classic!). The Phillies end the season against the Brave's from the 28th-30th. The Phillie's and Brave's could be contending, so if you go buy tickets in advance.

In Baltimore, there are are lots of good hotels near the stadium that make it easy to walk to a game (just stayed at the Hilton Baltimore this weekend and went, park entrance is literally across the street). But there are Marriot's and a Sheraton within easy walking distance too.

Philly is harder, there isn't a lot near the stadium, though you should be able to find a hotel that is walkable.

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Re: Road trip Pennsylvania,Maryland,and DC

Post by criticalmass » Tue Jun 19, 2018 11:39 am

dougger5 wrote:
Mon Jun 18, 2018 10:56 pm
And if you do venture further south into DE...there's the Dogfish Head Brewery down in Milton. Free hour-long tour of the operation, which includes a flight...if you're into beer.
:sharebeer
The Dogfish Head Brewery tour costs $10 but you get a nice glass. It is interesting.

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Re: Road trip Pennsylvania,Maryland,and DC

Post by AllieTB1323 » Tue Jun 19, 2018 11:42 am

PhilosophyAndrew wrote:
Mon Jun 18, 2018 11:33 pm
I second the recommendation to visit Gettysburg National Military Park, especially if you can hire a licensed guide — they are outstanding in my experience.

http://gettysburgtourguides.org/

Andy.
Agree, hire the tour guide. It has been fives years and we still remark about Gettysburg. Btw, if you're a Civil War buff you may want to reserve two days at the battlefield.

mattshwink
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Re: Road trip Pennsylvania,Maryland,and DC

Post by mattshwink » Tue Jun 19, 2018 11:46 am

hoops777 wrote:
Tue Jun 19, 2018 9:54 am
How far out of the way is West Virginia?Never been there.
It of course depends on your itinerary:
Pittsburgh - Harpers Ferry is 200 miles, ~3.5 hour drive
Baltimore - Harpers Ferry is 70 miles, ~1.25 hour drive
DC - Harpers Ferry is 65 miles, 1.25 hour drive.

So it's doable in a day from both DC and Baltimore. Pittsburgh I would plan on staying overnight. It is hard to squeeze with your planned activities though, because it would be the furthest West. The closest airports are BWI and IAD (though DCA is possible too, just on the wrong side of the DC beltway, but still doable).

But it sounds like the best route for you is either Harrisburg/Philly to Bmore/Annapolis/DC. Harper's Ferry is a doable day trip from either DC or Baltimore, though. But you will "pass by" DC on your way. Harper's Ferry is really nice, and from being a little over an hour from DC/Baltimore is a world away. You could easily spend a day or two there exploring. So it just depends on what you on plan on doing in each destination. I think adding Harper's Ferry may stretch you a little, but I don't know how you like to travel (see everything or relax or something in between).

Enjoy your trip!
Matt

criticalmass
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Re: Road trip Pennsylvania,Maryland,and DC

Post by criticalmass » Tue Jun 19, 2018 11:47 am

ponyboy wrote:
Tue Jun 19, 2018 7:16 am
Theres not much in PA...I wouldnt even put it on the list. I live in northeast PA...trust me. Philly is a wreck...pittsburgh is decent but too far away from DC...again, not much to see in pitt. Amish country is lame imo.
I could not disagree with this comment more. It also contradicts itself (Pittsburgh is decent...not much to see in pitt.) :) There are tons of things to do and see in/around Philadelphia, and it has a lot of top notch restaurants as well that I prefer over some great ones in NYC, SF, and DC. We drive up from DC to Philadelphia often to enjoy. Northeast PA is quite a ways from Philadelphia so I would seek local expertise instead.
Last edited by criticalmass on Tue Jun 19, 2018 11:52 am, edited 1 time in total.

criticalmass
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Re: Road trip Pennsylvania,Maryland,and DC

Post by criticalmass » Tue Jun 19, 2018 11:50 am

There are various Amish settlements in different parts of Pennsylvania. I prefer the Amish communities in Lawrence County to the Amish communities in Lancaster County. But if you aren't going to Pittsburgh too, I would save Lawrence County for another time.

hoops777
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Re: Road trip Pennsylvania,Maryland,and DC

Post by hoops777 » Tue Jun 19, 2018 12:43 pm

Great ideas.
I think I want to check out Harpers Ferry now in addition to Philly and Baltimore.We are returning the rental car to DCA our first day in DC,so maybe we can see Harpers Ferry on the way in before we turn in the car.
K.I.S.S........so easy to say so difficult to do.

surveyor
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Re: Road trip Pennsylvania,Maryland,and DC

Post by surveyor » Tue Jun 19, 2018 12:52 pm

Eastern State Penitentiary in Philly near the art museum is cool if you have the time.

drawpoker
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Re: Road trip Pennsylvania,Maryland,and DC

Post by drawpoker » Tue Jun 19, 2018 12:57 pm

c.coyle wrote:
Tue Jun 19, 2018 6:17 am
Minor correction: Easton, not Eastville, is the seat of Northampton County. Set your GPS for "Eastville" and you will end up way out of the way.
You are thinking of Easton, MD, which is the county seat of Talbot County.


Northampton County, Virginia






"Northampton County is a county located in the Commonwealth of Virginia. As of the 2010 census, the population was 12,389. Its county seat is Eastville. Northampton and Accomack Counties comprise the Eastern Shore of Virginia." Wikipedia

furwut
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Re: Road trip Pennsylvania,Maryland,and DC

Post by furwut » Tue Jun 19, 2018 1:03 pm

Adventure Cycling - take the Great Allegheny Passage and C&O bike trails all the way from Pittsburgh to DC car free.

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hand
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Re: Road trip Pennsylvania,Maryland,and DC

Post by hand » Tue Jun 19, 2018 1:13 pm

Drive from Philly to DC is great - especially during rush hour, or construction, or bad weather, or holidays... Really gives you time to contemplate the realities of living in a large metro area. </Sarcasm>

Given the stated goals (except the driving preference), I'd fly into Philly, stay downtown and do the city sites (including the Barnes Museum!). Have an lunch at The Dutch Eating Place in Reading Terminal Market if you must do something Amish. There are ample opportunities to get outside of Philly proper via public transit or a spot rental of a car.

When ready for DC, take Amtrak or a low cost bus service instead of driving since there is really no upside to paying for a rental car, doing an annoying drive, and paying for DC parking when you can just as easily rent a car for a day outside DC if desired. You can stop in Baltimore along the way if a priority.

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Re: Road trip Pennsylvania,Maryland,and DC

Post by drawpoker » Tue Jun 19, 2018 1:18 pm

hoops777 wrote:
Tue Jun 19, 2018 12:43 pm
...think I want to check out Harpers Ferry now in addition to Philly and Baltimore.......
Be very careful if you venture into the Inner Harbor area of Baltimore. If you want to see the national aquarium, do so only in daylight and stay within crowds. Be gone by dark.
Crime is terrible in that area, tourists are targeted, there have been stabbing deaths. Due to the political mess, the police dept is in constant turmoil, so they can't get a handle on it.

bhsince87
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Re: Road trip Pennsylvania,Maryland,and DC

Post by bhsince87 » Tue Jun 19, 2018 1:23 pm

A couple things:
SouthWest has several non-stop flights from CA to Dulles, if that appeals to you (it does to me!)

A drive up Route 15 will take you through some scenic parts of MD before you get to PA in about 1.5 hours. You will also be heading directly to Gettysburg. Along the way it would be a very short diversion (15 miles) to stop in West Virginia, at Harpers Ferry.

From Gettysburg, Lancaster is about an hour and half drive. Pretty scenic if you take Rt 30. Then you could head over to Philly, and swing through Delaware.


Or if you REALLY like to see small towns and rural sights, you could fly into Pittsburg, and take Route 30 (The historic Lincoln Highway) all the way to Philly, That will take a few days. But you will pass through dozens of small/medium towns, including through Gettysburg and Lancaster.

My bucket list includes a driving trip on Route 30 from Atlantic City NJ to Astoria OR!
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ponyboy
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Re: Road trip Pennsylvania,Maryland,and DC

Post by ponyboy » Tue Jun 19, 2018 1:57 pm

c.coyle wrote:
Tue Jun 19, 2018 10:38 am
ponyboy wrote:
Tue Jun 19, 2018 7:16 am
. . . I live in northeast PA...trust me. Philly is a wreck... . . .
An incredibly dumb statement, and I'm being polite. Independence Hall (a UNESCO World Heritage Site), Valley Forge, the Liberty Bell, the Franklin Institute, Philadelphia Museum of Art, the Academy of Music, Chadds Ford (Andrew Wyeth), Longwood Gardens in Kennett Square, South Street, the Italian Market, Boathouse Row, 67 National Historic Landmarks, several outstanding universities.

And I'm a Pittsburgher.
Most of the highlights you mentioned arent anything special. I remember south street being a tourist trap. Independence hall/liberty bell werent exactly exciting. Its a dirty city. My wife went to school close enough that I was forced to spend a fair amount of time there. Then again...im pretty much jaded at this point. I spent 12 years in DC where they have anything and everything.

OP...Just head to KOP and tell your friends you made it to philly. Save yourself a lot of headache.

SelfEmployed123
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Re: Road trip Pennsylvania,Maryland,and DC

Post by SelfEmployed123 » Tue Jun 19, 2018 2:00 pm

mattshwink wrote:
Tue Jun 19, 2018 11:32 am
hoops777 wrote:
Mon Jun 18, 2018 3:43 pm
We are going on a trip September 26 and need to be in DC on Oct 2,leaving on Oct 7.So since the 26th will be lost because of flight time from Ca,we have the 27th to Oct.2 to see Pennsylvania and Maryland.I am debating between flying in to Pittsburgh or Philadelphia.We like driving through unique small towns and basic sightseeing.Want to see Amish country for sure.It is cheaper to rent car in Pittsburgh and drop off in DC vs.renting in Philly.The 5 days in DC are pretty much covered.Thanks
I don't know if you are a baseball fan or not (looks like you like basketball) but seeing a game at Camden Yards is a great experience (and the O's aren't playing well so you can easily get tickets, even on game days). Camden Yards is what started the new Ball Park rennaisance and you will not regret seeing a game there. Lots of good food too: Baltimore inspired stuff like Crab Cakes, Boogs BBQ, and Pollock Johnny's Sausages. The Babe Ruth museum is their too. They end the season with a homestand against the Astros from September 27th-30th.
+1 for a game at Camden Yards. Tickets would be easy to come by. It is one of the most beautiful parks in all of baseball.
drawpoker wrote:
Tue Jun 19, 2018 1:18 pm
hoops777 wrote:
Tue Jun 19, 2018 12:43 pm
...think I want to check out Harpers Ferry now in addition to Philly and Baltimore.......
Be very careful if you venture into the Inner Harbor area of Baltimore. If you want to see the national aquarium, do so only in daylight and stay within crowds. Be gone by dark.
Crime is terrible in that area, tourists are targeted, there have been stabbing deaths. Due to the political mess, the police dept is in constant turmoil, so they can't get a handle on it.
Baltimore really gets a bad rap, especially these days. Millions visit the Inner Harbor every year. There is a large police presence. If you want to do Baltimore properly then buy a pass to the water taxi. It's the best way to get around. You can check out all of the Inner Harbor sites, ride over to Fort McHenry, and check out other cool neighborhoods like Fells Point. Lots of late 1700s/1800s buildings and a lot of great restaurants. Lots cheaper than DC and well worth a day.
"Get what you can, and what you get hold, 'Tis the stone that will turn all your lead into gold." | -Benjamin Franklin

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KSOC
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Re: Road trip Pennsylvania,Maryland,and DC

Post by KSOC » Tue Jun 19, 2018 2:13 pm

ponyboy wrote:
Tue Jun 19, 2018 1:57 pm
c.coyle wrote:
Tue Jun 19, 2018 10:38 am
ponyboy wrote:
Tue Jun 19, 2018 7:16 am
. . . I live in northeast PA...trust me. Philly is a wreck... . . .
An incredibly dumb statement, and I'm being polite. Independence Hall (a UNESCO World Heritage Site), Valley Forge, the Liberty Bell, the Franklin Institute, Philadelphia Museum of Art, the Academy of Music, Chadds Ford (Andrew Wyeth), Longwood Gardens in Kennett Square, South Street, the Italian Market, Boathouse Row, 67 National Historic Landmarks, several outstanding universities.

And I'm a Pittsburgher.
Most of the highlights you mentioned arent anything special. I remember south street being a tourist trap. Independence hall/liberty bell werent exactly exciting. Its a dirty city. My wife went to school close enough that I was forced to spend a fair amount of time there. Then again...im pretty much jaded at this point. I spent 12 years in DC where they have anything and everything.

OP...Just head to KOP and tell your friends you made it to philly. Save yourself a lot of headache.
To each their own I guess. I'm Pennsylvania bred and lived there most of my life. I think Pennsylvania is a treasure of history, culture & natural beauty. Great food, great sports & great folks. I also lived in Kensington & Silver Spring, MD & worked at a very big, well know federal building in DC. and job in Bethesda, MD. Nice area yes, lots to see & do in that area. Had family in Springfield, VA too. Loved the whole Baltimore/Chesapeake thing as well. Sorry you didn't have any positive, memorable experiences in the Keystone State.
Too soon old, too late smart.

drawpoker
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Re: Road trip Pennsylvania,Maryland,and DC

Post by drawpoker » Tue Jun 19, 2018 2:14 pm

SelfEmployed123 wrote:
Tue Jun 19, 2018 2:00 pm


Baltimore really gets a bad rap, especially these days. Millions visit the Inner Harbor every year. There is a large police presence. If you want to do Baltimore properly then buy a pass to the water taxi. It's the best way to get around. You can check out all of the Inner Harbor sites, ride over to Fort McHenry, and check out other cool neighborhoods like Fells Point. Lots of late 1700s/1800s buildings and a lot of great restaurants. Lots cheaper than DC and well worth a day.
It is a well-deserved bad rep.

The water taxis? OMG. City regulation there is as inept and incompetent as Baltimore City Police Dept and the mayor's office.
Don't you recall a few years ago when the water taxi operator ignored the storm warnings, and the tourists were killed when the boat capsized? In addition, NTSB found the boat was overloaded to begin with.
Granted, that was a summer thunderstorm. Since the OP is going in October, um, he is sure to be safe.

SelfEmployed123
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Re: Road trip Pennsylvania,Maryland,and DC

Post by SelfEmployed123 » Tue Jun 19, 2018 2:41 pm

drawpoker wrote:
Tue Jun 19, 2018 2:14 pm
SelfEmployed123 wrote:
Tue Jun 19, 2018 2:00 pm


Baltimore really gets a bad rap, especially these days. Millions visit the Inner Harbor every year. There is a large police presence. If you want to do Baltimore properly then buy a pass to the water taxi. It's the best way to get around. You can check out all of the Inner Harbor sites, ride over to Fort McHenry, and check out other cool neighborhoods like Fells Point. Lots of late 1700s/1800s buildings and a lot of great restaurants. Lots cheaper than DC and well worth a day.
It is a well-deserved bad rep.

The water taxis? OMG. City regulation there is as inept and incompetent as Baltimore City Police Dept and the mayor's office.
Don't you recall a few years ago when the water taxi operator ignored the storm warnings, and the tourists were killed when the boat capsized? In addition, NTSB found the boat was overloaded to begin with.
Granted, that was a summer thunderstorm. Since the OP is going in October, um, he is sure to be safe.
That was in March 2004. The company operating the taxis at the time went out of business. The water taxis are now run by a privately owned subsidiary of Under Armor, not run by the City.
"Get what you can, and what you get hold, 'Tis the stone that will turn all your lead into gold." | -Benjamin Franklin

PhilosophyAndrew
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Re: Road trip Pennsylvania,Maryland,and DC

Post by PhilosophyAndrew » Tue Jun 19, 2018 2:43 pm

drawpoker wrote:
Tue Jun 19, 2018 1:18 pm
Be very careful if you venture into the Inner Harbor area of Baltimore. If you want to see the national aquarium, do so only in daylight and stay within crowds. Be gone by dark.
Crime is terrible in that area, tourists are targeted, there have been stabbing deaths. Due to the political mess, the police dept is in constant turmoil, so they can't get a handle on it.
This concern feels exaggerated to me.

At least, I’ve walked around the inner harbor many time at night, both alone and with my family, and have never felt uncomfortable or in danger.

And I haven’t been stabbed to death even once. :happy

Andy.

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Re: Road trip Pennsylvania,Maryland,and DC

Post by c.coyle » Tue Jun 19, 2018 3:12 pm

ponyboy wrote:
Tue Jun 19, 2018 1:57 pm
. . . OP...Just head to KOP and tell your friends you made it to philly. Save yourself a lot of headache.
You're recommending a shopping mall? Seriously? You are beyond jaded.
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