So, you're hitting up I-95, one of America's oldest highways, and wanna know what to do and see along the way. You've come to the right place, my friend! I-95 is the main highway that travels up and down the East Coast of America, pretty parallel to the Atlantic Ocean, so you're never really too far away from the beach on an I-95 road trip. Some of the major cities you'll pass through include Boston, New York, Philadelphia, Baltimore, Washington, D.C., Richmond, Savannah, Jacksonville, and Miami. Ready to hit the road? Here's some of the top attractions to see along I-95, from Florida to Maine.
Starting in southern Florida, just outside Miami, you'll stumble upon Coral Castle in Homestead. Built by an eccentric heartbroken man, entirely by hand, Coral Castle is full of mystery and wonder, and it's definitely an essential roadside attraction just off I-95.
2701 De Soto Blvd, Coral Gables, FL, US
Or, if you want the relaxation of a day at the beach minus the crowds, then hit up the Venetian Pool. The Venetian Pool was originally built to be for Coral Gables, one of the country's first planned communities back in the 1920's. The pool is filled with fresh water every day, straight from artesian wells. It's drained every night and refilled every morning, so you know that you're swimming in really clean water. And if you're worried about water conservation, fear not! They drain the water back into the aquifer and allow it to go back through the natural ground-filter process.
Ocean Drive, Miami Beach, FL, US
From there, hop back in the car and cruise to South Beach, one of the swankiest beaches along the East Coast. But, South Beach is way more than than playing in the waves and chilling in cabanas; the people-watching is second-to-none, and walking around the Art Deco district will transport you back in time.
3600 W Sample Rd, Coconut Creek, FL, US
Once you've had your fill of the city, head up to Butterfly World in nearby Coconut Creek. It's the largest butterfly park in the world, and has displays of bugs, birds, and, of course, loads and loads of beautiful flowers to enjoy as well. Natural beauty right off I-95; perfect!
2500 Jupiter Park Drive, Jupiter, FL, US
At the Busch Wildlife Sanctuary you can wander along trails featuring various wildlife habitats, and all sorts of different native animals, including eagles, panthers, crocodiles, snakes, and more. The landscape will change drastically as you drive up the coast, so soak up the sun and unique wildlife while you can!
1322 US Highway 1, Sebastian, FL, US
Mel Fisher's Treasure Museum is a great maritime museum that features exhibits that include archaeological treasures from 18th century shipwrecks. Mel Fisher is a real-life Indiana Jones who has spent more than 20 years recovering lost artifacts from Davy Jones' Locker. Here, you can see gold, gem-studded jewelry, old coins, and more.
Kennedy Space Center, SR 405, Titusville, FL, US
Then head over to Titusville to get a bus tour of NASA's Kennedy Space Center and if you have time, hit up the United States Astronaut Hall Of Fame. Come early, because the tours are always popular and fill up fast!
4931 S Peninsula Dr, Ponce Inlet, FL, US
The Ponce Deleon Inlet Lighthouse is the perfect place to get off I-95 stretch your legs, especially if you decide to tackle the 200+ step stairway to the top! But, the view is absolutely worth it. There's also a small museum onsite.
8635 A1a S, St. Augustine, FL, US
From Titusville, it's just a short drive to St. Augustine, America's oldest city, founded in 1565. Here you'll find one of the best preserved historic districts in the country, not to mention loads of great little restaurants and bars. From Castillo De San Marcos (which is a stunning fortress that's believed to be very haunted) to Fort Matanzas National Monument and the Fountain of Youth Archaeological Park, there's also plenty of historic places to explore here.
100 Red Cox Dr, St. Augustine, FL, US
If you're feeling up for a bit more climbing, stop at St. Augustine Lighthouse and Museum and ascend its 219 steps to the top of their 165 foot tall tower. The views of downtown St. Augustine and America's oldest port are amazing. There are also exhibits here covering the country's maritime history, and a gift shop.
If you're looking for a hotel in St. Augustine, the St. George Inn, the Carriage House Bed and Breakfast and Casa Monica are fantastic options!
1368 Beach Blvd, Jacksonville Beach, FL, US
Then, before leaving the Sunshine State, hit up Jacksonville Beach to soak up a little bit more sun and walk the boardwalk. Parking's usually easy to find if you get there early, and there are lots of restaurants and places to get a cocktail right on the beach, which is awesome.
1860 Starratt Rd, Jacksonville, FL, US
And if you want to visit some cute furry friends, the Catty Shack Ranch is a fantastic place to see lions and tigers and other big cats. Run mostly by volunteers and filled with cats that might not otherwise have a home, it's an attraction kids are guaranteed to love.
113 Saint Marys St, GA, US
For a fun little side trip off I-95, head to Cumberland Island National Seashore. The only way to visit Cumberland Island National Seashore is to hop on the ferry at St. Marys. While there's nowhere to buy food or supplies on the island (pack accordingly), you'll find campsites, hiking trails, and wild horses roaming around!
US Hwy. 17 South, Darien, GA, US
While in the Peach State, visit the Smallest Church in America (or so it claims), in South Newport. Built in 1949, this is a great little roadside stop, and a good place to stretch your legs before heading to Savannah, Georgia. It's also an adorable photo op, so snap a pic or two.
102 W Hall St, Savannah, GA, US
Savannah is one of America's most gorgeous cities. It's off the highway and seems like it's covered in Spanish moss as far as the eye can see. There are plenty of great places to eat and drink, and the downtown is also one of the largest historic downtowns in America. If you're just driving through, but want to get a quick taste of Savannah, head over to Forsyth Park for a walk around this iconic and drop-dead gorgeous public park, and then visit Bonaventure Cemetery (one of America's most beautiful historic graveyards).
Some nice hotels in Savannah include the Hamilton-Turner Inn, Ballastone Inn and The Gastonian.
30 Meddin Drive, Tybee Island, GA, US
If you have time to visit Tybee Island Lighthouse and Museum, you should definitely make the quick detour from Savannah. Tybee is a beautiful island, and a it's very popular destination for Midwesterners to road trip to during the summer months.
330 Bonaventure Rd, Savannah, GA, US
There are a few famous people buried at Savannah's Bonaventure Cemetery, but the real appeal is the beauty of the cemetery itself. It's full of graceful old trees covered in Spanish moss, and many of the gravestones are works of art themselves. Just remember this is still a functioning cemetery and some of the visitors are there to grieve, so keep it respectful.
301 Gervais St., Columbia, SC, US
You're not in Georgia too long while traveling on I-95, so without further ado, we come to South Carolina! Make your first stop the South Carolina State Museum in Columbia. This amazing museum is housed in a massive former textile mill, and features four floors with over 70,000 exhibits. There are some nice hotels in Columbia as well if you need to catch some Z's: Victorian Elegance Inn, Murrayfield and the Hilton Columbia Center are among the many places to book a room.
4004 Homestead Rd, Bowman, SC, US
Then, for something completely different, travel just under an hour to the UFO Welcome Center in Bowman. Built in 1994, this structure quickly became a popular tourist attraction in the town. The 42-foot-wide flying saucer is built out of wood, fiberglass, and plastic, and for a small fee, you can meet the owner and peek inside.
251 State Park Rd, Santee, SC, US
Stretch your legs at Santee State Park, which has an abundance of catfish in its waters. In addition to fishing, there's also plenty of hiking and camping is offered. You can also drive a little longer to the equally-awesome Woods Bay State Park.
95 ends at the Houlton–Woodstock Border Crossing, and the road continues on into Canada, where you can cross the border into New Brunswick. And there you have it! Pat yourself on the back, because you just visited all of the major attractions along I-95!