Some of our most memorable family holidays have been road trips, both in our car and in my parents motor home. We love how road trips allow us to be spontaneous, stopping at places that take our fancy and whizzing by places that don’t! We’ve been asked to share our family road trip ideas, as part of My Tyres summer tyres campaign. Below you will find several of our favourite road trips, in the USA, UK and along the French Riviera…
Family road trip ideas – USA
Charleston, South Carolina – Savannah, Georgia – St Augustine, Florida
I’m going to put my hands up here and admit we are very biased when it comes to this area of the USA, particularly Savannah, Georgia, where we lived for three years.
Charleston, Savannah and St Augustine are all beautiful walkable cities with lots of attractions, and are family friendly destinations in their own rights. Combined as a road trip however they offer the chance to truly experience the Deep South, mix with friendly locals, visit historical and kid friendly attractions, taste delicious southern cuisine and offer lots of opportunities for stops at stunning beaches.
Recommended family attractions – Charleston to St Augustine road trip
Charleston – I would allow at least a couple of days to explore Charleston, (recently named as the USA’s best small city by Conde Naste Traveller). Explore the cobblestone streets on foot or horse-drawn carriage, check out the residential areas (for serious house envy!) and browse the arts/crafts stalls in City Market. It’s also worth walking to the Waterfront Park from where you’ll be able to see the naval ships in Charleston Harbor and pop into the South Carolina Aquarium.
Savannah – My favourite thing to do in Savannah was stroll along River Street watching the container ships sail past and soaking up the atmosphere from a river side bar. I also loved walking along Bull Street past many of the city’s squares to Forsyth Park, a huge 30-acre park with playground and home to Savannah’s famous water fountain. For day trips a short distance from the city I can thoroughly recommend visiting Fort Pulaski, spending a day at Tybee Beach and stopping for lunch at the Crab Shack. (The seafood platter is to die for and it’s great fun to feed the alligators).
St Augustine – As the oldest city in America St Augustine has lots to offer families who love history, culture and pirates! I always used to enjoy strolling around the cobbled streets on foot, stopping to watch local crafts people at work, if this doesn’t take your fancy you can jump on and off the trolley bus. Check out the Pirate & Treasure Museum and visit the Colonial Quarter where you can see actors perform re-enactments.
Charleston to St Augustine road trip
This road trip is all about the destinations. The time spent on the road is not particularly exciting, mainly spent on the US-17 and tedious I-95.
On the Google map created below, I have included a stop over in Jekyll Island, one of the Golden Isles of Georgia barrier islands. If you are an outdoorsy family this undeveloped 5,700 acre island is the perfect place to enjoy fishing, biking, golf etc. The Georgia Sea Turtle Center is also worth a visit.
If time permits, Jacksonville, is also a good stopping point, particularly if you are a sporty or musical family. Check out the Jacksonville Jaguars to experience a game of American football or the annual Jacksonville Jazz Festival which is one of the largest jazz festivals in the USA.
Family road trip ideas – UK
Devon – Cornwall
Without a shadow of a doubt my favourite road trip in the UK is Devon through to Cornwall. The roads are not great. We have often got stuck behind tractors and experienced heavy traffic, especially when travelling over peak times, however it’s definitely worth it, as nothing quite beats the stunning beaches and quaint villages in Devon and Cornwall!
Recommended family attractions – Devon to Cornwall road trip
A few years ago we drove from Woolacombe Beach (I can highly recommend a visit!), to the seaside resort of Bude, before diverting slightly to visit the Eden Project and then heading down to the picturesque St Ives and finally Lands End, the westernmost point in Cornwall.
Devon to Cornwall road trip
I can throughly recommend this road trip itinerary as it includes several family friendly beaches and attractions and also hugs the coastline for part of the journey.
Family road trip ideas – France
Nice – Cannes – Saint Tropez
For stunning coastal views you cannot beat the drive along the Côte d’Azur. A few years ago we stayed at a campsite in Agay, we hired a car and explored the towns and villages along the French Riviera coastline. You can read our holiday review here – Road trip South of France.
Recommended family attractions – Nice to Saint Tropez road trip
This road trip is particularly interesting because it offers a diverse range of stops from the famously glamorous beach resorts – Saint-Tropez and Cannes, (great places to grab a coffee to people watch and drool over yachts!), to the less glitzy but nevertheless charming and unofficial capital of the Côte d’Azur – Nice, (the perfect stop off point for a coastal walk along the 4km Promenade des Anglais).
In between these three major towns/cities is the quaint and picturesque hillside town of Saint Paul de Vence. One of the oldest medieval towns on the French Riviera, which is worth diverting off the coastal road for to experience the stunning views. Another recommended stopping point is the laid back Port Grimaud, a village built on a network of canals and affectionately known as the Venice of Provence.
Nice to Saint Tropez road trip
The Google map below shows the coastal route from Nice through to Saint-Tropez. To reduce the journey time by 45 minutes you can leave the coastal road near Cannes and travel along the high speed A8… I’ll leave the decision to you, I know which route I would take if we were to return for a family road trip!
I hope my family road trip ideas have provided you with some inspiration for your travels in the USA, UK and France. For more European family road trip ideas check out Life In Our Van, written by an inspirational family who have travelled around Europe in their motor home for over a year.
Please share your favourite road trips below, we are always on the search for new areas to explore!
Disclosure: Compiled in association with mytyres.co.uk
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