Adventure Calls: 117 Things to Add to Your RV bucket list

04 Aug

Hail, ye fellow Road Warriors! Adventure is calling – but where to go first? Whether hitting the pavement as a first-timer or as an asphalt veteran, it’s time to get inspired by this big and beautiful country we live in. Check off these 117 must-see locales while you’re cruising in your “road house” before you kick the bucket.

    1. Experience the first rays of sun before anyone else in America. In the fall, drive or hike up Cadillac Mountain on Maine’s Mt. Desert Island.
      • Travel Tip: Stay and enjoy Acadia National Park at the Mt. Desert Narrows Campground, whose sister campground, Narrows Too, is Big Rig friendly.
    1. Determine which coastal New England town hosts the best crab cakes.
    2. Ride the oldest working carousel in the country. Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts.
      • Travel Tip: Martha’s Vineyard Family Campground is the only campground on the island.
    3. Buy a lobster off a lobstering boat in a coastal marina.
    4. Cruise the winding roads of Maine, Vermont and New Hampshire when autumn is in full swing.
    1. Drive down Pennsylvania Avenue in Washington DC. Deck out the RV in patriotic decorations: flags, streamers, ribbons. Play the national anthem as loud as you can. Wave to children.
      • Travel Tip: The closest RV Park/Campground to Washington D.C. is Cherry Hill Park. College Park, Maryland.
    2. Spend a peaceful evening listening to the loons in the Adirondacks.
    1. Eat a pizza in Mystic, Connecticut.
    2. Take a picture next to each of Saratoga Springs’ 34 horse statues. Saratoga Springs, New York.
      • Travel Tip: Whispering Pines Campsites & RV Park is picturesque and minutes away from Saratoga Springs.
    3. Have a paper airplane throwing contest on North Carolina’s Outer Banks in honor of the Kitty Hawk.
    4. Cook a gourmet meal in your RV.
    5. Get drenched at Niagara Falls.
    1. Go whale watching off Cape Cod, Massachusetts.
    2. Pick blueberries in the eastern-most town in the United States: Lubec, Maine.
    3. Drive over the highest vehicular bridge in the Americas: New River Gorge Bridge near Fayetteville, West Virginia. Don’t look down!
    1. Discover why New Jersey is called the Garden State. Drive through southern New Jersey and along the Appalachian Trail.
    2. Roll the dice in Atlantic City, New Jersey.
    1. Meander down Ashley River Road through Charleston, South Carolina.
    2. Collect some blue grass in Kentucky. Press it in a journal or book.
    3. Invite Mickey and Minnie to dinner in your RV. Or at least get their autographs.
      • Travel Tip: Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort is a boat ride away from the Magic Kingdom.
    4. Look for a green light at the end of a dock where The Great Gatsby was filmed. Rosecliff Mansion, Newport, Rhode Island.
    1. Camp on the beach. Edisto Island, South Carolina.
    2. Time your West Virginia road trip to coincide with a meteor shower. Drive until there are no lights and stay up all night.
    3. Savannah, Georgia is voted Top 50 Most Romantic Cities in America. Go there. Go on a date.
      • Travel Tip: Stay for a night or two in Fort McAllister Historic Park – Richmond Hill Campground.
    1. Take a winter Vermont trip! Ski the bunny hills (or double black diamond runs) at Stowe, indulge in free ice cream samples at the Ben & Jerry’s factory near Waterbury, walk down Church Street Marketplace in Burlington.
    2. Time your stay on Chesapeake’s Eastern Shore with the migration of the birds south for the winter. Many pass right through the Atlantic Flyaway.
      • Travel Tip: Chesapeake View Campground is the perfect place to put up your feet after a long day of bird watching.
    3. Try spelunking – or just going for a walk – in Mammoth Cave, the longest cave system known in the world. Central Kentucky.
    1. Touch the one-of-a-kind rock formations in Tishomingo State Park driving along scenic Natchez Trace Parkway, in Tishomingo County, Mississippi.
    2. Sell some trinkets in the World’s Longest Yard Sale – the 127 Corridor Sale – in early August. 654 miles, starting in West Unity, Ohio and ending in Gadsden, Alabama.
    3. Drive the Blue Ridge Parkway from Virginia to North Carolina.
    1. Park your rig at the 411 Drive-In for a night of old-fashioned movie fun. Leesburg, Alabama.
    2. Vote on your favorite float for Mardi Gras in New Orleans.
      • Travel Tip: Looking for a place to stay? Try Riverboat Travel Park, only a few miles from the French Quarter.
    3. Eat a peach while touring the Martin Luther King Jr. historic site. Atlanta, Georgia.
    4. Count the wildlife you see in the Everglades. Be wary of alligators.
    5. Take a picture on the observation tower at Clingmans Dome, the highest point in Great Smoky Mountains National Park on the border of Tennessee and North Carolina.
      • Travel Tip: There is no entry fee to the park – one of the only National Parks in the country without one.
    1. Glue some rhinestones to the soles of your shoes and tour Graceland. Memphis, Tennessee.
    2. Blast “Coat of Many Colors” and cruise through Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, home of Dollywood.
    3. Get lucky in Kentucky. Bet on a horse at Churchill Downs. Louisville, Kentucky.
    4. Take a picture by the Southermost Point Buoy. Key West, Florida.
      • Travel Tip: Word of mouth is that, while hard to find at night, El Mar RV Resort is the most cost effective in this expensive region.
    5. Chase a tornado in Kansas. Or err on the side of caution and visit a local weather center.
    6. Ditch the RV and take a buggy ride through Amish Country. Shreve, Ohio.
      • Travel Tip: Think about staying at Whispering Hills RV Park. It’s a good thought, isn’t it?
    7. Wash your hair in the water fall at Ash Cave. Hocking Hills, Ohio.
    1. Bring the beer and burgers! Tailgate a Buckeye football game. Columbus, Ohio.
      • Travel Tip: The Schottenstein Center in the Buckeye lots is a great spot for Ohio State Tailgating.
    2. Hibernate under the stars at the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lake Shore, Michigan.
    3. Voyage through Voyageurs National Park in Minnesota.
    4. Be devilish! Skinny dip in Devils Lake. Baraboo, Wisconsin.
    1. Ride down the Magnificent Mile. Blast your favorite song and wave to all the shoppers. On your way out of the city, cruise down Lake Shore Drive. Chicago, Illinois.
    2. There’s no place like home! Wear sparkly red shoes and click your heels three times in Kansas.
    3. Park your RV for a day. Bike to the ferry terminal at Mackinac Island, Michigan, where no cars are allowed.
      • Travel Tip: Mackinaw Mill Creek Camping is close by and is a favorite amongst travelers.
    4. Take a tour of Abe Lincoln’s house. Observe the size of his home compared to your RV. Springfield, Illinois.
    5. Stroll through the Garden of Gods at dawn in Shawnee National Forest. Southern Illinois.
      • Travel Tip: Oak Point is a campground located right in the Shawnee National Forest
    1. Run the bases at the Field of Dreams. Dyersville, Iowa.
    2. Drive your RV under the St. Louis Arch and beep your horn. As much as you would like.
    3. Get all dolled up and see a Country show in Branson, Missouri.
    4. One hump or two? Trek through the West Texas Sand Dunes in Monahans Sandhills State Park on a camel. Watch out, they spit.
    5. Eat a hamburger under the World’s Largest Catsup Bottle. Collinsville, Illinois.
    6. Dance barefoot in a sunflower field in the Sunflower State (Kansas).
    1. Snap your RV’s photo in front of Carhenge. Create your own miniature Carhenge out of toy cars. Alliance, Nebraska.
    2. Spelunk at Wind Cave National Park. Hot Springs, South Dakota.
    3. Hang your shoes on the shoe tree off US 50 in Nevada.
    4. Read lines from Mark Twain’s Huck Finn. Follow the Mississippi from North to South in your car for one day and see how far you can get.
    5. Get your kicks on Route 66! Drive the historic route from Oklahoma to New Mexico.
    1. Go batty! View the World’s Largest Urban Bat Colony. Wear a hat. Austin, Texas.
    2. See the buffalo roam by taking the Wildlife Loop State Scenic Byway in South Dakota.
    3. Meet an extraterrestrial. Visit Roswell and Corona, New Mexico.
    4. Remember the Alamo? Attend an Alamo reenactment. San Antonio, Texas.
    1. Get lost. Find an unmarked road on your map and follow it for a few hours.
    2. Eat dinner with our Forefathers. Park your RV within sight of Mt. Rushmore and nosh on your favorite American cuisine.
      • Travel Tip: Hill City is a convenient place to park, plug in and see everything.
    1. Be bad! Drive your RV 5-miles over the speed limit through the Badlands Loop State Scenic Byway.
    2. Go crazy! Gallop a horse up to the Crazy Horse Memorial in the Black Hills of South Dakota.
    3. Stock up on supplies at Wall Drug. Wall, South Dakota.
    4. Have a photo shoot at Cadillac Ranch. Amarillo, Texas.
    1. Cruise the Las Vegas Strip in Nevada, windows down, and don’t stop until you spot an Elvis.
      • Travel Tip: The Oasis Las Vegas RV Resort is nearly as decadent as The Strip itself!
    2. For one whole day, avoid the interstate and take the back roads in North Dakota.
    3. Take your little house on the Prairie. Go on a pilgrimage from Missouri to South Dakota and stop at least 3 of the 8 Wilder Destinations – Independence, Kansas (Little House on the Prairie), Walnut Grove, Minnesota (On the Banks of Plum Creek) and De Smet, South Dakota. Don’t miss the Rocky Ridge Farm in Mansfield, Missouri, built by Wilder and her husband and where Wilder wrote the Little House books.
    4. Pretend you’re a cowboy or cowgirl for a day. Camp out in the Big Horn Mountains in Wyoming.
      • Travel Tip: Big Horn Mountains Campground claims to be the closet campground to the Big Horn Mountains.
    1. Ride the Million Dollar Highway in western Colorado.
    2. Salute the brave American pooches and their handlers at the West Coast War Dog Memorial outside of the March Field Air Force Base. Riverside, California.
    3. Pack some extra sweaters and head up to Fairbanks come winter. Witness the Northern Lights in all their glory.
    4. Experience the sights and sounds of a concert at the Gorge in George, Washington.
    1. Visit the Seven Feathers RV Resort, said to be one of the finest RV resorts in the United State.
      • Travel Tip: Free WiFi, indoor swimming pool and spa, designer patios, and a casino resort complex all reside at the Seven Feathers.
    2. Embrace unobstructed views of ocean sunsets at the Doran Beach Regional Park just north of San Francisco, California.
    3. Ride the Alaska Ferry into Haines Hitch-Up RV Park and view the breathtaking scenery of the Last Frontier. Haines, Alaska.
    4. Take a ride down on of the most beautiful highways in the world – Highway 1. Visit the Hearst Castle. San Simeon, California.
    1. Enjoy the abundant wildflowers when you make your spring visit to Sequoia National Park. Near Visalia, California.
    2. Get blow away by the Old Faithful Geyser of California, which erupts every 45 minutes. Calistoga, CA.
    3. Go wine tasting through the vineyards of Walla Walla, Washington.
    4. See one of Arizona’s most remote and most beautiful state parks. Alamo Lake State Park, western Arizona.
      • Travel Tip: At the dead end of a 40-mile desert road, you’ll find of the most coveted spots for warm water fishing and green desert plant life.
    1. Visit one of the largest galleries of vintage coin operated mechanical music makers, strength testers and fortune testers at the Musée Mecanique. San Francisco, California.
    2. Go water skiing on Lake Coeur d’Alene at the ultra modern Coeur d’Alene RV Resort. Post Falls, Idaho.
    3. Camp just outside of Disneyland at the Anaheim Harbor RV Park and walk to the Magic Kingdom just in time for the opening ceremony on Main Street U.S.A. Anaheim, California.
    4. Take a boat trip down the Snake River through Hell’s Canyon. Baker City, Oregon.
    1. Camp at the historic United States fort in Fort Flagler State Park. Near Port Townsend, Washington.
    2. Stop by the National Salute to Bob Hope and the Military in front of the USS Midway in San Diego, CA.
    3. View the largest ocean of volcanic lava flows in the continental United States at the Craters of the Moon National Monument and Preserve. Arco, Idaho.
      • Travel Tip: There are no hookups or showers on site, but you can find large campsites 18 miles east of the preserve.
    4. Take a ride down a natural water chute at Slide Rock State Park. Sedona, Arizona.
    5. Experience the awe-inspiring fury of Yosemite Falls at the Yosemite National Park in east-central California.
      • Travel Tip: Make your reservations well in advance. While it is possible to camp at Yosemite National Park without a reservation, it’s best to make a reservation up to 6 months in advance with the National Park Service.
    1. Eat a breakfast burrito with “Christmas” chili at Tia Sofia’s. Santa Fe, New Mexico.
    2. Enjoy the Apple Blossom Festival in a Bavarian getaway. Leavenworth, Washington.
    3. Take a picture of the painted badlands from the Kachina Point Lookout. Petrified Forest National Park, Arizona.
    1. Sip on wine in the hidden Oregon vineyards of Rogue Valley.
      • Travel Tip: Take a side trip to Crater Lake an hour east or coastal redwood forest two hours west.
    2. Trek through the self-guided Lava Flow Nature Trail at Sunset Crater Volcano National Monument. Coconino County, Arizona.
    3. Go biking around the rolling coastline of the San Juan Islands, Washington.
    4. Join a snowball fight in July. Mount Rainier, Washington.
    1. Hike the Alpine Ridge Trail in the Rocky Mountain National Park. Northern Colorado.
    2. Go tubing down the Yampa River. Steamboat Springs, Colorado.
    3. Learn the difference between a stalagmite and a stalactite when you visit Carlsbad Caverns National Park. Near Carlsbad, New Mexico.
    1. Hunt for prehistoric fossils at the Dinosaur National Monument. Moffat County, Utah.
    2. Drive by the world’s largest thermometer. Baker, California.
    3. Say hello to the giant Apatosaurus and Tyrannosaurus Rex off I-10. Cabazon, California.
    1. Get stuck in the Le Brea Tar Pits. Los Angeles, California.
    2. Take a stop at Dinosaur Town, complete with volcano toilets. Granger, Washington.
    3. Venture into the Wild West when you pass through a historic (and haunted) ghost town. Garnet, Montana.
    1. Witness the Cathedral of the Bomb at Historic Nuclear Reactor B. Hanford, Washington.
    2. Retrace the steps of two famous explorers when you travel to the coast on the Lewis and Clark Trail.
    3. Venture through the only temperate rainforest in the world. Olympic National Park, Washington.
      • Travel Tip: Elwah Dam RV Park was rated “Best RV Park by a Dam Site” in 2003.
    4. Take a dip in the Boiling River – Yellowstone National Park’s most popular natural soaking area. Near Gardiner, Montana.

Once you check off this bucket list, start another one. See you on the road!


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