One of the best things about the United States is that it’s so diverse. You can experience virtually any type of vacation you like: you can go to the beach, hang out in the mountains, explore cities, and just about everything in between. One of the country’s best travel destinations -- indeed, one of the best in the world -- is the East Coast, which is filled with gem after gem after gem, from world-class cities to historic nooks. If you’ve never been on a trip to the East Coast, then perhaps now is the time. Below, we take a look at a few imperative travel tips that’ll make your trip all the more enjoyable.
Making a Base versus Traveling
One of the reasons why the East Coast is so enjoyable to visit is because it’s so large and diverse! When it comes to traveling there, you have two options: either make a base and take side-trips from there, or travel hopping from one destination to the next. Both have their merits. You might feel more relaxed if you have a base for a couple of weeks, while moving from one space to the next will allow you to stay in the center of each town you visit, and enjoy the nightlife. If you’re going to set up a base, make it central but not too central: there’s little point in paying Manhattan prices if you’re going to spend some nights away from New York.
Off the Beaten Path
People tend to focus on the big hitters when it comes to the East Coast, and especially Boston and New York City. And without a doubt, you should spend plenty of time in these world-class cities. However, you’ll also want to look at exploring some places off the beaten path, which can offer a different side of the East. Some of the best food, for example, is found in smaller towns as opposed to the big cities. For a great meal, take a look at visiting the best place to eat in Medford, Italian food and healthy food in a beautiful setting. You’ll also want to journey up to the New England fishing towns, where you’ll be able to eat outstanding fish and shellfish based meals.
When To Go
As with many destinations across the world, your experience will depend a lot on what time of the year you pay a visit. Indeed, there isn’t really just one East Coast to visit; there are four. The mood, activities, and all-around experience of your visit will depend on what season it is when you visit. If you like those cozy, wrapped up warm moods, then take a look at taking a trip during the winter, when there’ll be snow on the ground and a chill in the air. Spring is generally recognized as the best time to go, as the temperatures are agreeable. Summer is also good, but you might find that the cities are a little too humid to be properly enjoyed.
What to Pack
Having said all that, the thing about the East Coast is that you can never really predict the weather. There are always going to be summer thunderstorms, so you’ll need to have some rainproof clothing packed in the bag. By far the most useful thing to pack, however, will be comfortable shoes. The East Coast, unlike the West Coast, is a region made for walking. In New York and Boston, you’ll walk mile after mile, while there are few things more enjoyable than a gentle stroll through one of the region’s old towns.
Amount of Time
The East Coast might not be as expansive as other areas of the world, but it packs a lot into the size! As such, you’ll need to think about how much time you’re going to spend in the area in general, and in each destination. To get the most out of your trip, it’s recommended that you spend 2-3 weeks exploring, though you can make that shorter if you plan on visiting again (as in, this isn’t a one-shot thing). But how do you divide that time? It’s best to split the time between the big cities and smaller towns. You could feasibly spend the entire time in New York, but the sake of this trip, four or five days will be enough.
One of the more interesting things about traveling on the East Coast is that there are many different ways to get around, which is somewhat unusual for the United States. There are countless options to get from, say, Boston to New York, for example. This is because the public transport network is comparatively developed in the East -- trains, for example, are pretty good. For the best trip, however, it’s recommended that you rent a car, at least for a portion of your time there. It’ll open up a lot of different places to visit (though make sure you avoid driving in New York unless you’re a pro city driver).
Modern Activities and History
One of the best things about the East Coast is that it effortlessly blends the historic with the modern. Indeed, some of the world’s best modern art, theatre shows, concerts, fashions, and more belong on this side of the states -- indeed, they belong just in New York. Make sure you’re taking the opportunity to sample some of the best that the world has to offer while you can. There are things you can do over here that you just can’t do elsewhere. You’ll also want to get stuck into history, too. You can visit Salem, the site of the witch trials, for example, or walking through Revolutionary War history by following the Freedom Trail in Boston.
Enjoying The Good Times
Finally, remember to throw yourself into all that the East Coast has to offer. Not everyone loves it at first glance -- they think it’s too busy and concrete -- but give it a chance, and you’ll find that there’s much to love once you dive under the surface.