From the Boston Harbor to Independence National Historical Park in Philadelphia, there are wonderful opportunities to learn more about America's history on a Boston to Philadelphia road trip. Make details that you have only read about in books come to life as you journey across Southern Massachusetts, Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania.
One of the best ways to learn more about the United States, its history, and its environment is by visiting one of the country's many national parks on an RV road trip.
Adams National Historical Park
Join the trolly tour to explore Adams National Historical Park. See where the second and the sixth president of the United States were born. Then, tour the Old House at Peace Field, where four generations of the family lived from 1788 to 1927. End your visit by seeing the stone library containing more than 12,000 books collected by family members, including the women, which was unusual for the time, and strolling through the Victorian garden.
Blackstone River Valley National Historical Park
The Industrial Revolution brought significant changes to America, and you can learn about them by visiting Blackstone River Valley National Historical Park. Explore one of the best-preserved early 1800s company towns by taking the 1.25-mile self-guided walking tour at Whitinsville, Massachusetts. Then, head about eight miles east to Hopedale, Massachusetts, to see historical sites in this city founded using a joint-stock plan. Finally, head south about 20 miles to see America's first planned industrial village Slatersville, Rhode Island.
Valley Forge National Historical Park
When you reach Interstate 276, go southwest about 19 miles to get to Valley Forge National Historical Park. Special activities make this a great place to visit throughout the year. In the late winter and early spring, children can join the Continental Army by attending training events. Throughout the year, meet soldiers in period costumes and learn about their daily lives. Then, head to Washington's Headquarters to learn about the time he spent here during the cold winter of 1777 and 1778. Bike, drive, or take the trolly along the 10-mile Encampment Route featuring nine key stops. This park holds special events frequently.
First State National Historical Park
First State National Historical Park's headquarters is in New Castle, Delaware, which is 40 miles southwest of Philadelphia. This park was created in 2013 to celebrate Delaware as the first place in the U.S. to ratify the constitution. This park contains seven parts. Brandywine Valley offers over 16 miles of hiking trails. Tour Fort Christina, New Castle Court House, and Old Swedes Church, and learn about the first American Swedish community's history. William Penn established the Dover Green in 1683 so that Dover, Delaware, residents would have a place to discuss important issues, like the American Revolution. Tour the Dickinson Plantation where John Dickerson, who was nicknamed the Penman of the Revolution, lived. Finally, tour the Ryves Holt House, where the first Chief Justice of Delaware lived from 1745 to 1763.
Wompatuck State Park
See over 100 buried bunkers at Wompatuck State Park installed when this park was the Hingman Naval Ammunition Depot Annex by hiking on 12 miles of non-motorized roads. Aaron River Reservoir is a fantastic place to go hiking and fishing.
Black Rock State Park
If you love fishing, then make sure to stop at Black Rock State Park near Watertown, Connecticut, on your Boston to Philadelphia RV road trip. State officials stock the 25-acre lake at this park twice a year with trout, making it easier for young anglers and novices to catch their limit. The beach is a great place to go swimming. While the path can be strenuous, hike to the top of Black Rock to see incredible views of the Western Highlands.
Harriman State Park
Over 200 miles of trails running uphill and down through heavily wooded land, near lakes, and through the Hudson River Valley are available for hiking at Harriman State Park near Sloatsburg, New York. Anglers will love fishing in Askoti Lake for bass and trout. The two public swimming beaches are a great place to cool off after exploring this park.
Denny Farrell Riverbank State Park
Denny Farrell Riverbank State Park in New York City is in five buildings. If you love sports, you will want to include this stop on your Boston to Philadelphia road trip itinerary. Swim in the 25-yard lap pool, the Olympic-size pool, or wade in the wading pool. Play a game of horse on the four basketball courts or challenge a friend to a tennis game on one of the four tennis courts. Go ice skating in the winter. Check the schedule to see what is happening in the 800-seat cultural theater or the 400-seat Hudson River amphitheater. There are plenty of quiet spots to watch the Hudson flow by before ending your visit with a meal in the restaurant. If this is not the perfect choice for you, consider other New York state parks.
Boston Tea Party Ships & Museum
Before you leave Boston, stop and visit the Boston Tea Party Ships & Museum. Greet Samuel Adams in the Meeting Room to rally before the Boston Tea Party. Then, climb onto the 18th-century sailing vessels to throw tea into the harbor just like the protestors did on December 16, 1773. Go to Griffin's Wharf to learn about the ramifications of your decision. View the only known tea chest from the original Boston Tea Party. Watch the documentary showcasing how the events in Boston catalyzed the start of the American Revolution then end your visit with a cup of tea.
John F. Kennedy Presidential Library
Immerse yourself in President Kennedy's administration's history by stopping at the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library. See the Oval Office as it looked during his time in office. Explore his role in the Civil Rights movement and the Cuban Missile Crisis through hands-on activities. Follow President Kennedy from his childhood through his death.
Federal Hall National Monument
Tour the Federal Hall in Washington D.C., which served as the nation's first executive office, Supreme Court building, and home to Congress. Be sure to visit the Washington Inaugural Gallery to see artifacts from his inauguration, including the Bible he took the oath of office on.
Castle Clinton National Monument
Take a tour with a park ranger to learn how Castle Clinton in Manhattan has served as a military fort, entertainment center, immigration depot, and aquarium. Organizers frequently hold concerts here, and it is a great place to catch the Statue of Liberty ferry.
Liberty Hall Museum
Step back in time by stopping at Liberty Hall in Union, New Jersey. This museum on the campus of Kean University was the home of New Jersey's first governor. View letters written by Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Franklin, and other notable leaders. Stroll through the formal English parterre gardens, containing some of the oldest trees in the state. Enjoy a cup of tea on the glass-enclosed patio before continuing your road trip from Boston to Philadelphia.
If you love being close to nature, then you will enjoy the many campgrounds in Hartford, including White Pines Campsites, Gentile’s Campground and Moosemeadow Camping Resort. While you may have trouble finding RV dump stations in Hartford, consider the nearby options you can find East Hartford at the Meridan rest stop and Cabela’s.
New York City, New York
Camp Gateway is a historical campground in New York City, where you will want to stay and visit the Civil War fort and missile sites at this campground, along with seeing historic airplanes. Other options include Liberty Harbor RV Park and Beaver Pond Campground. There are many great Long Island campground choices that aren't too far from the city. You will also find many dump stations on Long Island. Find RV dump stations in New York City at Cleanout Express, Interstate Waste Services, and other New York locations.
Edison, New Jersey
There are many great Edison campgrounds where you may want to stay, including Turkey Swamp Park with a 17-acre lake and Allaire State Park, where the birdwatching is outstanding. RV dump stations are available at Cheesequake State Park, Liberty Island Marina & RV Park and other New Jersey locations.
When you follow this road trip itinerary from Boston to Philadelphia, you will enjoy historic locations and beautiful scenery along the way. If you want to travel in comfort and style, consider an RV rental from RVshare. From large motorhomes to compact campervans, there is a rig that will meet your travel and budget needs. Once you hit the road, you are protected by our renter guarantee and 24/7 roadside assistance. Find the perfect vehicle for your travel needs in Boston or Philadelphia.