Here are five mini road trip ideas from major cities across the United States. The day after Thanksgiving, pack the kids in the car and explore your big backyard.
From Boston head south for Coastal New England: Seaside beaches, wide sandy beaches, and fishing harbors dot the coastline stretching along Massachusetts, Connecticut and Road Island, all easily reached from Bean Town. Check out the famous spot where the Pilgrims landed in Plymouth, Mass.; tour opulent mansions in New Port, R.I.; and take in the charm of Mystic, Conn., where a pizza restaurant inspired the beloved film Mystic Pizza.
- Bed down at the Best Western Plus Cold Spring in Plymouth, Mass. and the Best Western Olympic Inn in Groton, Conn.
- For more stops along the way visit DiscoverNewEngland.org.
From Washington D.C. hit the Historic National Road: America's first federally financed highway that was once the gateway to the West for settlers starts in nearby Baltimore. Take a few days to explore historical spots and the landscape along the Maryland section: take a hike in Casselman River Bridge State Park, stop by Maryland's only remaining toll house in La Vale, take a canal tour in Cumberland, walk Fredrick's 50 block historic district, walk the narrow streets of Elliot City and browse for antiques in New Market.
- You can walk to the beach from the Best Western Naples Inn & Suites and you're right on the beach at the Best Western Plus Beach Resort in Fort Myers.
- For tips on stops along the way go to VisitFlorida.com.
From Denver climb the Peak to Peak: The beauty of Colorado biggest city is that you can be in some of the world's most spectacular mountains in less than an hour. This drive takes you along the states oldest Scenic Byway passing through Rocky Mountain National Park. From Denver you'll head for Central City and then continue onto Estes Park. Don't miss Golden Gate Canyon State Park, the picturesque mountain town of Nederland, the Mount Meeker Scenic Overlook and the Enos Mills Cabin Museum, once home to "the father of Rocky Mountain National Park."
- Book a room at the Best Western Plus Silver Saddle in Estes Park.
- To help you plan your trip, visit MyScenicDrives.com.
- For more information on stops along the way go to VisitCalifornia.com.
- You'll find lovely accommodations at the Best Western All Suites Inn in Santa Cruz, Best Western Plus Carmel Bay View Inn, and the Cavalier Oceanfront Resort in San Simeon.
Photo: Morgue File