Road Tripping A Route Fantastic: New York To California

Road Tripping A Route Fantastic: New York To California

Thursday, May 23rd, 2013

Interested in travelling around the USA? Then think twice about getting that Greyhound pass or Amtrak ticket. If you’re seeking the quintessential experience of real America, a road trip is the only way to go.

Whether you camp and drive, rent a campervan or stay in hostels, seeing the US means having the time of your life. Consider it a journey among friends and share in the driving. Road-tripping US style is all about seeing the sights and keep on going!

Covering more than 4,600 kilometres, you could say New York to California is quite the distance. All you need though is three weeks, a few like-minded companions, rental car and cheap flights to your start point. When you’ve got to fly, there are always deals available on comparison sites like momondo.com, leaving you with extra money for America’s all-famous attractions. So… is it time to drive or what?

Leaving New York 

Before you hit the road, spend several nights at the YHA hostel in Manhattan. Catch a ferry to see the Statue of Liberty, grab a hot dog from a vendor in Central Park, and see the iconic Chrysler building – soaking up the vibe of NY is a must!

Next, arrange rental pick-up from New Jersey. Why? Because there’s far less traffic congestion and you can conveniently bus there from Penn Station. Leaving from Jersey means you’ll be right on the I-80 (the direct route to San Francisco) and ready to motor!

Bear in mind, this cross-country trip is not the kind you can make overnight. Allowing 10 days for driving gives you more time to appreciate the sights along the way. Averaging 290 miles (approximately five hours a day), you’ll be left with days to explore San Francisco. Awesome or what?

Crossing The Country 

After Jersey, it’s time to head out through Pennsylvania, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Iowa, Nebraska, Wyoming, Utah and Nevada, and find nightly accommodation on your epic trip. Hostels and motels are popular options for less restrictive budgets. Tidy accommodation can be found in Salt Lake City at the Utah International Hostel, at $40 for a private room with free parking. US cities such as Des Moines (Iowa) and Omaha (Nebraska) offer low to mid-range motel chains, like the Comfort Inn and Motel 6.

U.S. Route 101
Road-tripping USKay Gaensler / Foter.com / CC BY-NC-SA

Staying in a cabin or campervan at a state park is just as great. Many RV parks are situated close to the I-80, like the Indian Head Campground in Bloomsbury, Pennsylvania, near America’s largest free amusement park. Reasonably priced, these parks are the cheapest places to stay on a road trip. Cooking your own food will also give you best value for money. Still, sample the local cuisine. America is the home of big burgers so enjoy at least one!

Arriving in California 

With the sunshine state of California appearing on the horizon, there’s no better place to end a holiday than in San Francisco. With trendy cafes, art museums and laid-back atmosphere, who needs to go home to just yet? The sun is shining and you don’t have a care.