TAKE THE SCENIC ROADS TO FLORIDA

It is not only the destination that counts, but also the road to get there. Here is an article inspired by all the lucky snowbirds who flee winter to Florida or elsewhere, and who, I hope, have the luxury of time and the opportunity to fully experience their journey to the warm southern sun.

Via Route 81

Thousand Islands, New York

Why not start your journey by taking the Thousand Island Scenic Drive. Those who leave Quebec in the fall will be able to enjoy the region's sublime colours. This 53 miles, easy to navigate route, offers views of the St. Lawrence River and Lake Ontario. To reach it, you will have to take the Johnstown/New York exit and join Highway 37 NY.

Skyline Drive, Virginia

The famous and beautiful Skyline Drive is a scenic 105 mile route through Shenandoah National Park. It begins near the town of Front Royal and ends near Rockfish Gap. Rather windy and mountainous, Skyline Drive can be traveled by RV, but it is advisable to be careful if you are thinking of venturing into it with large equipment. The road offers 75 view points over the Shenandoah Valley. Keep an eye out for deer, black bear, wild turkey and other animals that regularly cross Skyline Drive in their daily movements.

Blue Ridge Parkway

Blue Ridge Parkway is the longest scenic road in America. It takes several days to cover its 469 miles. It is possible to drive all or part of the 205 mile Blue Ridge Parkway segment between the cities of Rockfish Gap, VA and Fancy Gap, VA. This road offers much more than sublime landscapes. On your way, you will find vineyards, microbreweries, picturesque villages, restaurants, farm kiosks and, of course, several campsites where you can stop overnight.

Via Route 87

Albany River Road, New York

This very short 9 mile route begins in Annandale-on-Hudson and continues along Route 9G and 103 to Rhinebeck, NY, a historic city founded in 1686. This route is a beautiful combo of history and nature with a fabulous view of the majestic Catskill Mountains.

Alternative route via the Chesapeake Bay Tunnel Bridge

While the majority choose to take a straight path to their destination, others may choose a memorable but considerably longer route. If you choose to use the famous Chesapeake Bay Tunnel Bridge, stop at Sea Gull Island to watch the ships pass and admire Chesapeake Bay. The salt marshes and dunes of Fisherman's Island are also worth a visit if time allows.

You can use the Chesapeake Bay Tunnel Bridge with your recreational vehicles. The maximum height of the vehicle is 13′-6. Propane must be closed at the outer valve before crossing.

The Tidewater, Virginia and North Carolina

The Tidewater Road is part of the Old Ocean Highway linking New York and Florida. This section of U.S. 17 winds its way through the lush plains and historic cities of Virginia and North Carolina. It begins in Portsmouth and ends in New Bern crossing several wetlands such as the Great Dismal Swamp National Wildlife Refuge.

Cape Hatteras National Seashore, North Carolina

This magnificent route runs along the pristine coastline of the delicate succession of islands separating the Atlantic Ocean and the inland coasts of North Carolina. It offers sublime landscapes, historic sites, museums and lighthouses. The scenic drive begins in the town of Points Harbor and ends in Ocracoke.

To travel the entire route you will need to use 2 ferries. The first ferry between Hatteras and Ocracoke. It is free of charge and the journey takes approximately 60 minutes. To reach or leave the island barrier, you will need to take another ferry between Ocracoke and Cedar Island. The trip is about two hours and the price varies depending on your equipment and could range from $30 to $45 for a large RV.

Easy detour from I-95.

Sea Island, Georgia

The Sea Island Scenic Drive begins in Savannah and ends in Jekyll Island. Given its proximity to Highway 95, you can easily choose to travel all of its 81 miles or choose the sections of this route that interest you.

Sublime beaches, wild marshes, picturesque coastal towns and historic plantations, this route is lined with typical and emblematic landscapes of the South.

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