Nothing beats cruising across the vast open spaces of the USA on a Harley or in an open top Mustang, but where do you go once you’ve already ticked off Route 66 and the Pacific Coast Highway?
Here are 5 reasons why Atlanta, Georgia could be the best place to set off on your next great American road trip.
1. You Can Fly There Directly from the UK and Europe
Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson airport is one of the country’s main transport hubs and currently holds the titles of ‘world’s busiest airport’. This means that, for those of us travelling to the USA from Britain or elsewhere in Europe, Atlanta is one of the easiest and cheapest airports for direct flights. If you book far enough in advance, you can fly direct from London to Atlanta from as little as £400, with a flight time of around 9 hours.
2. The Capital City of Atlanta is One of the Most Interesting in the States
Home to Martin Luther King Jr. and a wealth of Civil War and African history, Atlanta is one of the most culturally interesting cities in the USA and its many museums continue to attract homegrown and foreign tourists. There are also plenty of great restaurants and natural beauty spots to explore before you hit the road.
3. It’s Perfectly Situated for Exploring Some of the Greatest Destinations in the South
Seriously, have a look on a map – Atlanta is boxed in by North and South Carolina, Alabama, Tennessee and Florida. This is prime road trip territory. Here are a few famous routes you can explore.
Birmingham, Alabama (146 miles from Atlanta)
Ready for a cruise along the Mississippi? Take the iconic Great River Road and you can hug this beautiful feat of nature through no less than ten states. End your grand tour in Louisiana and treat yourself to proper meat feasts and jazz in New Orleans.
Providence Canyon State Park, Georgia (147 miles from Atlanta)
Home to what many refer to as “The Little Grand Canyon”, Providence Canyon State Park is 1,000 acres of rocky canyons and spectacular natural beauty. The perfect tour for those who like stopping off for day hikes and picnics.
Asheville, North Carolina (208 miles from Atlanta)
Located in the mythical Blue Ridge Mountains, Asheville is one of the hippest cities in the US and home to some of the most scenic landscapes in the country. Pull over for days filled with mountain biking, trendy food markets and local brews.
Nashville, Tennessee (250 miles from Atlanta)
Better known as “Music City USA”, Nashville is a mecca for music lovers. Spend your days traversing the great lakes that dot Tennessee, and spend your nights supping bourbon and line dancing the night away. Yee-haw!
4. It’s Way Cheaper Than Road Tripping from LA or New York
Those of you who have already set off on road trips from California or New York will be aware of the inflated prices for accommodation and dining. But road tripping in the south is an absolute bargain in comparison, with plenty of affordable motels to stop off at along the way and plenty of good ol’ fashioned diners to keep your belly happy.
5. You Can Carve Out Your Own Adventure
Cruising iconic roads like Route 66 is of course a cool thing to do, but in a way it’s becoming a little passé. For travellers who don’t want to follow the herd and make their own adventure, it makes sense to take the less beaten path.
Make it Happen
Get there: British Airways, Delta, Swiss, Alitalia and Air France all operate regular flights to Atlanta from the UK and elsewhere in Europe.
Get around: There are countless car, motorcycle and RV rental companies in Atlanta. If you’re planning to stay for a little longer then you’ll also find a host of affordable finance centers and service departments where you can pick up your own vehicle (and sell it back after a few months).
When to go:Atlanta has a temperate climate with our distinct seasons. Winters are typically cool and crisp with occasional snowfall, while summers are typically hot and humid, so be sure to get a car with AC.
Where to stay: As with the rest of the US, there are countless options when it comes to accommodation. From basic motels to luxury resorts, you can book it all quickly and easily as you go with Booking.com, and also benefit from free cancelations if you find you can’t reach your desired destination (or if you end up realising you can cover more ground).
What to do in and around Atlanta: You can find and book local tours and experiences in and around Atlanta with a few swipes and taps at www.getyourguide.com/atlanta.