North-East Winter 5-Day Road Trip
Replies: 11 - Last Post: Dec 18, 2012 5:24 AM Last Post By: nrclibn
Dec 17, 2012 2:20 AM
North-East Winter 5-Day Road TripHey everybody.
First up, huge thanks for all the posts people have contributed over the years. This place has been the source of many an inspirational travel idea on past trips.
My question is... to those of you well-versed in the North-Eastern parts of the US, what places would you recommend as must-sees for anybody in the area during winter?
Our itinerary basically involves picking up a car in Boston on new year's day, and then we have five days to explore before we need to get to Montreal on the 6th of January. I've never been to the area before (outside of trips to NY and Boston a while back), and not really sure what to expect in winter.
Budget is not massive but we can splash out if there's anywhere special that folks recommend, and any recommendations on hotels or places to stay are also hugely welcome. Part of the excitement of a trip like that is the unknown, but having a list handy to fall back on is always useful I find.
EDIT: Realised I should probably put something in here about what we like to do, which is pretty much anything really!
Happy spending time exploring outdoors, going on walks, finding scenic spots, exploring towns, going to galleries, visiting historical sites, snowboarding, sports events, shopping, wandering around cities, relaxing; all that stuff.
Cheers in advance.
Edited by: general_garcia
Dec 17, 2012 2:56 AM
1If I were driving from Boston to Montréal, I would certainly visit the White Mountains (and this includes Mt Washington - the highest point in the Northeast). We've driven to the summit in late October, and it was petty exciting - in January it might be more so. But even if the summit is unmanageable in your time-frame, the whole region is very attractive (including the Mt Washington Hotel at Bretton Woods), and from there on to Burlington Vermont, Lake Champlain, and then in to Montréal.
Dec 17, 2012 5:24 AM
2The first thing to understand is that Boston to Montreal is normally a two-day trip. It could be done in one day, but it would be really rushed, so the usual travel time is two days. I suspect but am not entirely sure (you'd need to check) that Mt Washington won't be accessible when you're there. Its bell shape quintuples the velocity of winds at the base; 20 mph becomes 100 mph, and so on. Winter winds tend to be stronger in New England, plus it's cold, plus there might be snow.
Near Burlington, VT there is the Shelburne Museum, an eclectic, extensive, unique, amazing and delightful collection of Americana. Your ticket entitles you to two days admission, and you need it, at least in the summer time. I'm not sure about the winter. I suspect it's still open, but that parts are closed and that they'd recommend warm clothing to walk around the grounds.
All of which leads to something else: Vermont, and Montreal, are cooooooooold in January. Be prepared. Burlington typically has some of the lowest temperatures anywhere in New England. If you have the clothing and the energy, a great thing to do in New Hampshire and Vermont is cross-country skiing.
Dec 17, 2012 5:26 AM
3Old Bennington, Vermont, is picturesque and historic in the winter. Rolling hills/mountains with horse farms and large, white Colonial houses dating to the 1700s. Some still have original carriage houses/stables. Vermont is a winter wonderland with many ski resorts. There are also opportunities for antiquing in the quaint villages. Burlington is just over the border from Montreal. I have driven the excellent highway between Bennington and Burlington. Shelburne Museum is near Burlington along another highway. Of course, Ben and Jerry's Ice Creamery is worth a visit even in the dead of winter.
Dec 17, 2012 6:08 AM
Dec 17, 2012 6:40 AM
5Thanks for the suggestions, plenty to research there. I'll try and spend a fair chunk of the five days in Vermont then, we both love winter weather and quaint towns, so it sounds perfect.
The other question I had about that area regards the coast, up into Maine.
As we'll be setting off from Boston I thought it might serve us well to drive up the coastline for a while and take in the scenery, but I was just wondering if there were any specific coastal towns or areas that folks would recommend up there? We're happy to travel up as Northerly as we can during our timeframe, as long as we can now shoehorn Vermont into the route as well.
Dec 17, 2012 7:37 AM
Dec 17, 2012 7:38 AM
7"The first thing to understand is that Boston to Montreal is normally a two-day trip. "
It takes five hours driving straight through in good weather.
Coastal towns north of Boston:
In winter most are very quiet. Do some research for retaurants, sights in these...
Nubble Light in York
Dec 17, 2012 12:56 PM
8#7, mea maxima culpa. OP, please disregard what I wrote about it being two days if direct. #7 is correct. I wrote my post #2 in the middle of the night, thinking about how I did the drive, which was with plenty of stops along the way. I'd still want to take more than a day, but MapQuest says about six hours not including rest stops. Doesn't look like they allow much time for the border crossing, but I'm not sure if there are the long delays there that we see in some spots.
Dec 17, 2012 5:05 PM
9If this is a roundtrip back to Boston, drive north along Highway #95 into Maine and stop at recommended sites. An additional site along the Maine coastline is Acadia National Park/Mount Desert Island, which is directly east from Bangor. There are year-round residents especially near Bar Harbor and the biological laboratory nearby. There are several fishing villages on Mount Desert Island, which will be quiet during the winter. Gorgeous views of the Atlantic Ocean. There is an excellent highway between Mount Desert Island and Bangor, then transfer to another excellent highway straight north to Quebec City. Take the Transcanada Highway west to Montreal, and complete the loop after sightseeing by crossing the USA border to Burlington, Vermont, then south and east back to Boston.
Dec 18, 2012 12:02 AM
Dec 18, 2012 5:24 AM
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