As you make your way from New York to Nashville, you'll be treated to a road trip experience that takes you through the historical cities of Baltimore, Philadelphia, and Washington, D.C., as well as some of the most spectacular national parks in the country, such as the Great Smoky Mountains National Park and Shenandoah National Park. Exciting points of interest also await in each city where you'll explore Edgar Allen Poe's House, view the room where the Declaration of Independence was signed at Independence Hall, and enjoy a genuine Southern hot spot at Market Square in Knoxville.
Including a few national parks to your road trip itinerary from New York to Nashville is a fantastic way to immerse yourself in American history and marvel at the natural beauty of some of America's most protected land.
Independence National Historical Park
At Independence National Historical Park, you'll explore over 55 acres of historic terrain located near the shores of the Delaware River. Check out the Benjamin Franklin Museum, which features interactive exhibits, personal artifacts, and a viewing of the famed steel "Ghost House." More special places to explore at this park are Liberty Bell Center, Independence Hall, the National Constitution Center, and the Independence Visitor's Center. Not far from the park are Washington Square and the Museum of the American Revolution. Be sure to include these significant sites on your walking tour before you leave the area.
Shenandoah National Park
Shenandoah National Park is right along your route as you begin your drive through Virginia and is sure to be one of the highlights on your New York to Nashville road trip. With over 500 miles of trails to hike, you'll have endless opportunities to view the local wildlife and explore many of the top attractions this 200,000-acre park has to offer. Make your way over to Luray Caverns, a massive cave system that's home to the Great Stalacpipe Organ, mirrored pools, flowstone, and mudflows. Then, get lost in the nearby Garden Maze at Luray Caverns with twists and turns that take you past lovely fountains and through hidden tunnels. More places you'll want to experience are Old Rag Mountain, Dark Hollow Falls, Stony Man, Little Devils Stairs, and the Veritas Vineyard and Winery. There's an incredible number of things to see, do, and explore here, making it easy to enjoy this park for three or more days.
Great Smoky Mountains National Park
Great Smoky Mountains National Park is a must-see that's just 50 minutes south of Knoxville. Get started at Clingman's Dome, the highest mountain in the park and in Tennessee. A ride on the Great Smoky Mountains Railroad takes you on a 32-mile round trip train ride from Bryson City to Dillsboro through scenic countryside. While you're here, check out Ole Smoky Moonshine, Little Pigeon River, Hillbilly Golf, Ghost Town in the Sky, Smoky Mountain Winery, and Grotto Falls. This is another fantastic park to spend a few days exploring, so plan on staying for at least two to three days.
If you're looking for a perfect place to rest and relax on your New York to Nashville RV road trip, consider adding some less populated state parks to your itinerary.
Bellevue State Park
On your way through Wilmington, stop at Bellevue State Park located on the prior estate of William du Pont. This park features a tennis center with eight clay courts to play on, a fitness track that surrounds a stocked pond perfect for a day of fishing, and Wellspring Farm, an equestrian facility that offers private and group lessons.
Claytor Lake State Park
You'll find Claytor Lake State Park not far from the city of Roanoke. The main attraction here is the 21-mile lake with a full-service marina that offers boat rentals and a snack shop. A visit to the historic Howe House treats you to interactive exhibits about the ecology of the lake and neighboring areas. Bike rentals are also available as well as plenty of hiking trails, a pier to fish from, picnic benches, and two gift shops.
Frozen Head State Park
Frozen Head State Park is a short hour drive northwest from Knoxville. Explore over 24,000 acres of dense forest with more than 50 miles of hiking trails to enjoy. Be sure to take a ranger-guided tour of the Stonecipher-Kelly House, a local historic landmark. Camping, biking, birding and fishing are more fun activities to add to your day.
Statue of Liberty National Monument
Before you leave New York, head over to the Statue of Liberty for a lesson in American history. Take a guided tour for a fully immersive experience, and plan to spend at least five to six hours on Liberty Island snapping photos, reading the informational plaques, and enjoying the spectacular view of Manhattan.
A visit to Independence Hall in Philadelphia is a must on your road trip from New York to Nashville. At this location, you'll walk down historic corridors and view the room where the Declaration of Independence and the United States Constitution were signed. Free tickets are available at the Visitor Center, but arrive early; tickets are given on a first-come, first-served basis.
Edgar Allen Poe House and Museum
Step into the home of one of the most famous Gothic authors in literary history at the Edgar Allen Poe House and Museum in Baltimore. Here, you'll explore fascinating exhibits located throughout Poe's house that explain his life, his work, and his mysterious death in 1849 while perusing a unique variety of special artifacts.
The White House
A stop in Washington, D.C., wouldn't be complete without a tour of the White House. On your self-guided tour, you'll have access to public rooms in the East Wing that include, the Red, Blue, and Green Rooms as well as the China and State Dining Rooms. Beautiful views of the White House Rose Garden are also included. Requests for a public White House tour must be submitted in advance to your Member of Congress prior to admission, so make sure you plan ahead to be included on this exciting free tour.
Explore the sights, sounds, and tastes of Market Square as you make your way through Knoxville, Tennessee. You can do a little shopping at the many shops that line the streets, then stop for a bite to eat at Ruby Sunshine, if you're into brunch, or Myrtle's Chicken and Beer, if you have a hankering for a good old fashioned Southern lunch. Enjoy the largest farmer's market in the city held on Saturdays at this location before you hit the road.
On your road trip from New York to Nashville, you'll pass through the historic city of Philadelphia. Plan to spend at least a couple of days exploring a few popular attractions, such as the Liberty Bell, Franklin Square, the Betsy Ross House, Philadelphia's Magic Gardens, and the Eastern State Penitentiary. Local campgrounds make extending your stay here easy, and there are dump stations nearby to help you keep your RV clean.
Another fantastic historic city to enjoy is Baltimore. Here, you can visit the harbor and view four historical ships and then check out Fort McHenry National Monument, the famous "Star-Spangled Banner" fort. If you're in town during baseball season, catch a game at Oriole Park and visit Babe Ruth's Birthplace and Museum. More places you'll want to check out are the B&O Railroad Museum, the National Aquarium, the George Peabody Library, and the Top of the World Observation Level for panoramic views of the city. Beautiful campgrounds around the area are available if you plan to extend your stay. Some include dump stations for your convenience.
A stop in Washington, D.C., requires a visit to a few must-see historical sights. Some of the locations you'll definitely want to include on your itinerary in this city are the Lincoln Memorial, Washington Monument, the U.S. Capitol, the Thomas Jefferson Memorial, and the National Mall, which features a variety of free museums, shopping, and a food court. For a super fun experience, swing by the International Spy Museum for the interactive espionage exhibits. To enjoy more of this city, consider staying at a lovely campground close by. Several dump stations are also available in neighboring cities.