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Help please for trip in May

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NSW
posts: 51
Help please for trip in May

We, (3 friends over 50) are flying to Boston and have 9 days before we need to be in NYC. We arrive late on the 1st May and are staying in Boston until the 4th. We are going to hire a car then have 2 nights with a relative in Manchester, MA.

We would then have 5 days/4 nights and would like to drive up through NH to Maine as far as Portland and come back a different route through Vermont to end up dropping the car at somewhere like Providence to catch the train to NY.

One option was to go from Portland to Bennington, stay the night and then on to Springfield and head towards Cape Cod. we'd like to do a bike ride there. Then drop the car off.

The other option was to go North Conway but we were not sure then the most scenic route back to Providence.

We have nothing booked for the last 5 days and would really appreciate some advice on the most scenic and feasible route. Thank you

Dallas, Texas...
Destination Expert
for New York City
posts: 13,083
reviews: 14
1. Re: Help please for trip in May

One way car rentals can be expensive. You may have a hefty drop off fee or a higher daily rate. Have you priced out that plan? You can easily do a circular road trip and return the car to Boston, then take Amtrak to NYC.

You are covering a lot of territory. Trying to include Cape Cod will be too much. I'd suggest either planning on focusing on northern New England, or head mostly south (Cape Cod, maybe Newport), but don't try to do both.

What are your interests? What are you hoping to do and see during your road trip? Are you aware that northern New England is somewhat chilly in early May?

Winchester...
posts: 5,679
reviews: 66
2. Re: Help please for trip in May

The distances are not great. It's a beautiful time of year. I would drive up to Bar Harbor then to Bretton Woods then to Burlington Vermont then back to Boston. Something like that. I wouldn't bother with cape cod but if it's something you feel you must see forget Maine, new Hampshire and Vermont and just go to the cape.

NSW
posts: 51
3. Re: Help please for trip in May

Thank you both for your advice. I tend to agree with you, about forgetting about Cape Cod and returning to Boston with the car. We really want to see the coast up to Maine and the countryside of New England. I've just been looking at driving from Portland to the White mountains across to Lincoln and then down to the Moandnoack area to see the covered bridges. Does this seem reasonable?

Thinking of the cold, we thought Portland should be our most northerly point. Although I presume the mountains will be quite cold. Is Bar Harbour worth the extra distance and time?

NSW
posts: 51
4. Re: Help please for trip in May

Also, is accommodation difficult to get if we don't book ahead? Thanks again for any advice.

Hollis, New...
posts: 3,925
reviews: 3
5. Re: Help please for trip in May

I don't think accommodations will be a problem at that time of year.

If you don't go farther up the coast than Portland, you can see some lovely coastal areas, but you'll miss the true "Down East" coast. Bar Harbor and Acadia National Park are exceptionally beautiful; that's why there's a National Park there. I won't try to decide for you whether it's worth it. You could stop your exploration before reaching Acadia and still see some gorgeous areas.

MA
Destination Expert
for New England
posts: 4,523
reviews: 151
6. Re: Help please for trip in May

If you return through the Monadnock region, Peterborough, NH is a nice place to spend the night. It is a small NH town with a very artsy vibe (home to a writers' colony). Harlow's Pub is a fun place to go at night with live music a few nights per week and an old-fashioned diner in the center of town for breakfasts.

Dallas, Texas...
Destination Expert
for New York City
posts: 13,083
reviews: 14
7. Re: Help please for trip in May

Boston accommodations should be booked in advance. Others locations not be difficult as it is not high season, but unless you want to always stay in roadside motels, you may want to look into identifying more charming options and booking them.

NSW
posts: 51
8. Re: Help please for trip in May

We have booked accommodation in Boston and I'll definitely look into other options for the smaller towns. We are definitely giving Cape Cod a miss and spending the time in just Maine and NH. Thank you all for your time and advice. Much appreciated.

9. Re: Help please for trip in May

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