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10 Best Road Trips From Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

road trips from philadelphia

Philadelphia has lots of interesting things to see and do. Whether you are an outdoor enthusiast or the reserved type who would rather visit museums, party at night and sleep during the day, your itinerary will always be full if your next destination is beautiful Philly. In addition to having its gorgeous charms, the city’s location also puts it in close proximity to a plethora of top attractions. With either a road trip or a weekend getaway, you are always within striking distance of some of the region’s top attractions. If taking a break from Philly or using it as a base to explore the nearby attractions sounds like a good idea to you, scroll down to learn about the best road trips from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

1. Charleston, SC

Hollings Judicial Center in Charleston, SC IMG 4576
Source: Photo by user Billy Hathorn used under CC BY-SA 3.0

Philadelphia and Charleston are separated by a distance of about 670 miles (1,078.3 km), and if you were to drive non-stop, it could take over 10 hours. But what is the point of driving non-stop when you can make lots of stops to admire the natural scenery, beautiful land formations and the plethora of attractions between the two cities?

Upon reaching Charleston, you will find lots of interesting stuff to see and do, including a visit to the Fort Sumter National Monument, Historic Charleston City Market, Waterfront Park and the South Carolina Aquarium, among others.

2. Columbus, OH

Downtown Columbus OH
Source: Photo by user Ron Reiring used under CC BY 2.0

Columbus is about 380 miles (611 km) from Philadelphia and you can reach it in less than 6 hours. A road trip to Columbus from Philadelphia will not be tiring since you won’t have to spend a lot of time on the road and, apart from the scenic views you will enjoy along the way, you will be pleased by the range of attractions that await you. They include, but are not limited to, a visit to Franklin Park Conservatory and Botanical Gardens, Columbus Zoo and Aquarium, the Center for Science and Industry, Columbus Museum of Art and the German Village, among others.

3. Niagara Falls, New York

Niagara Falls, New York
Source: Pixabay

Niagara Falls is another easy road trip destination you can consider from Philadelphia. It is only 230 miles (370 km) from Philly and it will take you approximately 4 hours to reach it by road.

Once here, the most iconic attraction is the majestic Niagara Falls, but after you are done admiring its beauty and splendor, there are several other attractions worth checking out. They include a visit to the Cave of the Winds, Bridal Veil Falls, Niagara Falls Observation Tower and an excursion to the Goat Island, among others.

4. Knoxville, TN

100th Block Gay St Knoxville, TN - panoramio
Source: Photo by user yourmanstan used under CC BY-SA 3.0

To get to Knoxville, TN, from Philadelphia, you will have to cover a distance of about 630 miles (1,013 km), which you can comfortably do in about 10 hours if you were to drive non-stop. But what’s the beauty of not stopping when you have lots of attractions to check out along the way?

Upon reaching Knoxville, you will have a thrilling range of things to do and see and you will particularly love this city if you are an outdoors enthusiast. Some of the top attractions here include the Ijams Nature Center, Zoo Knoxville, Sunsphere, excursions along the Little River, a visit to the Knoxville Art Museum and a trip to the Market Square for a great shopping experience.

5. Tampa FL

I Tampa, FL 2
Source: Photo by user Elisa.rolle used under CC BY-SA 4.0

If you were to drive without stopping from Philadelphia to Tampa, FL, you will need at least 17 hours to cover the over 1,210 miles (1,931 km) between the two cities. However, doing so will beat the essence of a road trip because you will not only get tired, but also miss out on the plethora of interesting attractions along the scenic routes you will be driving through.

Upon arriving in Tampa, you will also have lots to see and do. The Florida Aquarium, Adventure Island, Henry B Plant Museum and the Tampa Bay History Center are just but a few of the attractions you shouldn’t miss during this road trip.

6. Dallas, TX

Downtown Dallas TX 2013-06-08 077
Source: Photo by user Thomas R Machnitzki used under CC BY 3.0

A distance of about 1,420 miles (2,285.3 km) stands between Philadelphia and Dallas, TX, and if you are to drive, you will need at least 20 hours to get there. Though such an experience may be grueling, you can break the journey into various parts over several days, so you get enough time to sample the plethora of attractions between the two great cities.

7. Myrtle Beach, SC

Myrtle Beach ferris wheel
Source: Photo by user The ed17 used under CC BY-SA 4.0

If you can conquer the 645 miles (1,038 km) between Philadelphia and Myrtle Beach, you will gift yourself a whole world of interesting fun opportunities. Whether you love having loads of fun on the beach, or you need some peace and serenity found in the parks, or maybe you would love to entertain your kids on the water, Myrtle Beach has more than enough options for you.

8. Iowa City, IA

Mann, Iowa City, IA, USA - panoramio
Source: Photo by user Chao W used under CC BY-SA 3.0

Iowa City is about 800 miles (1,287 km) from Philadelphia and, if you are to go by road, you will need at least 12 hours of non-stop driving. But since it is a road trip, you don’t have to do the entire trip at once. In addition to the magnificent scenery you will encounter on the road, some of the other interesting things you can do in Iowa City include a visit to Amana Colonies, a tour of Coralville Lake, a visit to the University of Iowa Museum of Natural History, a tour of the Gaslight Village and a visit to the Hickory Hills Park to encounter nature and enjoy the beautiful outdoors.

9. Savannah, GA

Troup Square Armillary Sphere Savannah GA - Close Up
Source: Photo by user Disc Wheel used under CC BY-SA 4.0

Philadelphia and Savannah, GA, are separated by a distance of 785 miles (1,263 km) and you will need at least 12 hours to cover the distance by road. But upon arriving in Savannah, you will be interested by an incredible variety of things to see and do, including a visit to Forsyth Park, the Old Savannah Trolley Tours, City Market, a tour of the Owens-Thomas House, Telfair Museum of Art and a visit to the historic Cathedral of St. John the Baptist, among others.

10. Portland, ME

Commercial Street, Portland ME
Source: Photo by user John Phelan used under CC BY 3.0

Portland, ME, is another great destination for a road trip from Philadelphia. The distance is only 485 miles (780 km) and, with a non-stop drive, you can access it in about 8 hours. Some of the attractions you may consider to keep you busy here include visits to the Tate House Museum, Portland Museum of Art, Casco Bay Lines, the Old Port, the Allagash Brewery, Peaks Island, the Eastern Promenade and the Historic House Museum – Victorian Mansion, among others.

Enjoy the epic road trips from Philadelphia

Liberty Bell, Philadelphia
Source: Photo by user Ben Schumin used under CC BY-SA 3.0

Whether you have exhausted all the road trips within Philadelphia or you just need a breather, venturing out of the city will not just give you a new perspective, but also expose you to incredible attractions within reach from Philly. Go through our recommendations above of the best road trips from Philadelphia and choose the ones you think will be most satisfying for you.

Disclosure: Trip101 selects the listings in our articles independently. Some of the listings in this article contain affiliate links.

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