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Old Nov 1, 2012, 10:25 AM   #1
Blassy
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Default best route to drive to Florida

So - haven't driven there since university. For an end of November drive, what's the best route to take?
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Old Nov 1, 2012, 11:04 AM   #2
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Default Re: best route to drive to Florida

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So - haven't driven there since university. For an end of November drive, what's the best route to take?
We go every Xmas, the fastest way is through Buffalo, a little more traffic, you don't want to go through the Mountains at night or early morning for the risk of fog or snow, you should be ok for not running into any snow storms but you can never count on that.

The longer and scenic way is through Windsor, less chance of snow and a few hrs more, we will most likely go through Buffalo again as it was faster and is very pretty going through the Mts last yr, just time your driving,


Through Buffalo you also need to time your stops as there are a lot less places to gas up and to sleep, through the Windsor way you will never be without a gas station, hotels or food as they are all over the place.
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Old Nov 1, 2012, 11:38 AM   #3
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Default Re: best route to drive to Florida

I've driven all 3 ways (Windsor, Buffalo and Gananoque) and I enjoyed the trip through Windsor the most. Going straight down I-75 to Tampa was a good drive with little to no construction either time I've been and the mountains were a non-issue. Although I've only done it in the spring, I wouldn't imagine the roads wouldn't be a problem when you go. And there are so many places to stop for food and lodging!
Last year I made the trip in 18 hours from front door to my daughter's place. Most of it was the first day, driving to Knoxville before stopping for the night. I thought going through the middle of Atlanta early (8:00) on a Tuesday morning would be a nightmare, but it was less congested than 401 traffic and it kept moving at 35mph+. Once I crossed I-20 in downtown Atlanta, it was back to normal highway speed.
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Old Nov 1, 2012, 11:51 AM   #4
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Default Re: best route to drive to Florida

thanks.
Live in Niagara so Buffalo is certainly preferable.
It's going to be myself, wife and our 1 year old so trying to space it out over 3 days of driving. Figure 6 hours or so of driving each day lands us aroound west virginia and north carolina so hoping to find some Ok places to stay as those seem to be major hubs.
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Old Nov 1, 2012, 12:08 PM   #5
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Default Re: best route to drive to Florida

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We go every Xmas, the fastest way is through Buffalo, a little more traffic, you don't want to go through the Mountains at night or early morning for the risk of DEER, you should be ok for not running into any snow storms but you can never count on that.

The longer and scenic way is through Windsor, less chance of snow and a few hrs more, we will most likely go through Buffalo again as it was faster and is very pretty going through the Mts last yr, just time your driving,


Through Buffalo you also need to time your stops as there are a lot less places to gas up and to sleep, through the Windsor way you will never be without a gas station, hotels or food as they are all over the place.
Fixed that for ya for the REAL THREAT!!
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Old Nov 1, 2012, 01:02 PM   #6
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Default Re: best route to drive to Florida

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Fixed that for ya for the REAL THREAT!!
We saw more snow than deer!!! but they certainly are a real threat thats for sure, I like going through buffalo as it really cuts off a # of hrs off the driving
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Old Nov 1, 2012, 01:25 PM   #7
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Default Re: best route to drive to Florida

We drive the Virginia route every year. Based on the wanky weather so far this fall I think we will be taking I-75 this year.

Three days is a long time for driving down. I realize we are little crazy and do the drive non stop but even when the kids were babies there was only one year we did it with a stop. (and mainly because the Mr. and I were both struck with projectile nausea...thanks kids) Why not split it into two days vs three?

I actually found it easier to drive non stop when the kids were younger. A little bit of baby gravol and out like lights. Now the four of them are kind of annoying. (kidding...sort of)

Depending on how we feel we may do it in two days this year with a stop in and around Knoxville if we take i-75 or Charlotte if we do -95 route.
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Old Nov 1, 2012, 01:48 PM   #8
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Default Re: best route to drive to Florida

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We drive the Virginia route every year. Based on the wanky weather so far this fall I think we will be taking I-75 this year.

Three days is a long time for driving down. I realize we are little crazy and do the drive non stop but even when the kids were babies there was only one year we did it with a stop. (and mainly because the Mr. and I were both struck with projectile nausea...thanks kids) Why not split it into two days vs three?

I actually found it easier to drive non stop when the kids were younger. A little bit of baby gravol and out like lights. Now the four of them are kind of annoying. (kidding...sort of)

Depending on how we feel we may do it in two days this year with a stop in and around Knoxville if we take i-75 or Charlotte if we do -95 route.
We leave about 7am Sat. morning and stop around 11pm with reservations we make ahead of time, we then get in hollywood late on Sunday around supper time, then I flake out around the pool for a few hrs the next day and golf in the pm if weather is permitting
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Old Nov 1, 2012, 01:56 PM   #9
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Default Re: best route to drive to Florida

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I realize we are little crazy and do the drive non stop but even when the kids were babies there was only one year we did it with a stop. (and mainly because the Mr. and I were both struck with projectile nausea...
Cheap Motel's have a cure for that!!!
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Old Nov 1, 2012, 02:14 PM   #10
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Default Re: best route to drive to Florida

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Cheap Motel's have a cure for that!!!

! goof

Hannah. Our best time driving has been 21 hours door to door from 'Sauga to Spring Hill (about a half hour north of Tampa) We usually leave around 2-3 am. That gets us through the mountains in daylight. Arrive at the folks around 10-midnight (depending on whether any speeding tickets have been obtained) We get a good sleep and are ready to go in the am.
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Old Nov 1, 2012, 02:37 PM   #11
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Default Re: best route to drive to Florida

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! goof

Hannah. Our best time driving has been 21 hours door to door from 'Sauga to Spring Hill (about a half hour north of Tampa) We usually leave around 2-3 am. That gets us through the mountains in daylight. Arrive at the folks around 10-midnight (depending on whether any speeding tickets have been obtained) We get a good sleep and are ready to go in the am.
That's about what it takes us, we stop a few times to stretch and mommy makes a lunch so we don't stop till supper time, a long drive but I don't like to fly
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Old Nov 1, 2012, 02:59 PM   #12
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Default Re: best route to drive to Florida

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That's about what it takes us, we stop a few times to stretch and kick the family out of my car so I can wash it. It's a ritual for me to stop and have my car detailed in each state, have to keep the virgin white nice and shiny!!!
Fixed....
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Old Nov 1, 2012, 03:12 PM   #13
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Default Re: best route to drive to Florida

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We drive the Virginia route every year. Based on the wanky weather so far this fall I think we will be taking I-75 this year.

Three days is a long time for driving down. I realize we are little crazy and do the drive non stop but even when the kids were babies there was only one year we did it with a stop. (and mainly because the Mr. and I were both struck with projectile nausea...thanks kids) Why not split it into two days vs three?

I actually found it easier to drive non stop when the kids were younger. A little bit of baby gravol and out like lights. Now the four of them are kind of annoying. (kidding...sort of)

Depending on how we feel we may do it in two days this year with a stop in and around Knoxville if we take i-75 or Charlotte if we do -95 route.
We have also did both routes...and stopped exactpy where you mentioned.

Made the trek from Orlando to Fergus in one stretch before, 19.5hrs. Wouldnt want to do that again...mind you II drove all the way myself.
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Old Nov 1, 2012, 05:05 PM   #14
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Default Re: best route to drive to Florida

Whoops....made a mistake. When I drove down I-75 last year I stopped for the night just north of Chattanooga. Very nice Best Western with a Waffle House 100 yards away for breakfast in the morning. I got a late start from here and didn't get there until close to midnight, but it was worth the effort (I had made reservations before leaving here). I left the Waffle House around 7:30 and I got to my daughter's place in south Tampa by 5pm. All very easy driving with no rushing.
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Old Nov 1, 2012, 05:13 PM   #15
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Default Re: best route to drive to Florida

I did the Toronto to Florida (Naples) drive this past Spring. I went with a couple who make the drive twice a year.

We went through Buffalo-i90-Erie-i79-19-i77-i95. Took us two days and about 22 hours in the car.

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Old Nov 1, 2012, 05:19 PM   #16
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Default Re: best route to drive to Florida

Along Interstate-75 is a must buy if you're heading down through Windsor... covers every exit, alternate roads, attactions...
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Old Nov 1, 2012, 05:30 PM   #17
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Default Re: best route to drive to Florida

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I did the Toronto to Florida (Naples) drive this past Spring. I went with a couple who make the drive twice a year.

We went through Buffalo-i90-Erie-i79-19-i77-i95. Took us two days and about 22 hours in the car.
This route shorter but 75 has much more humanity. I can live with a couple more hours driving as long as I have more places to stop along the way. For us it was 22 hours from Missingsauga to Treasure Island, which is west of Tampa. Did this many times.

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Old Nov 1, 2012, 05:41 PM   #18
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Default Re: best route to drive to Florida

The other thing to consider on the Buffalo-Virginia routing is if an accident happens through the mountain passes traffic will be a nightmare. We got stuck two years ago behind an accident. We must have been sitting there for about 3 hours not moving. No exit anywhere nearby. It was brutal.
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Old Nov 1, 2012, 06:20 PM   #19
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Default Re: best route to drive to Florida

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I've driven all 3 ways (Windsor, Buffalo and Gananoque) and I enjoyed the trip through Windsor the most. Going straight down I-75 to Tampa was a good drive with little to no construction either time I've been and the mountains were a non-issue. Although I've only done it in the spring, I wouldn't imagine the roads wouldn't be a problem when you go. And there are so many places to stop for food and lodging!
Last year I made the trip in 18 hours from front door to my daughter's place. Most of it was the first day, driving to Knoxville before stopping for the night. I thought going through the middle of Atlanta early (8:00) on a Tuesday morning would be a nightmare, but it was less congested than 401 traffic and it kept moving at 35mph+. Once I crossed I-20 in downtown Atlanta, it was back to normal highway speed.
I don't know. I live closer to Windsor, but prefer the Buffalo route. I find the traffic very heavy on I-75 and too many trucks. The drive thru Erie, Pittsburgh, Hwy 19, I-77, Charlotte......is a lot more pleasant and relaxing. Plus, the border at Detroit is always a hassle for some reason. Buffalo is a breeze.
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Old Nov 1, 2012, 06:37 PM   #20
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Default Re: best route to drive to Florida

Drove Richmond Hill to Fort Myers last year, on the I-75 route. On the way down, one overnight at Atlanta. On the way back, two overnights, in Atlanta and Toledo. Did it with the wifey, two kids (2 and 4) and a nanny. Actual driving time is around 23 hours, +/-. Left at around midnight, crossed the border at 3:30 am, arrived in Atlanta at around 4 pm local time. The only things to watch out for: traffic jams around Atlanta, construction on I75, and highway patrols in georgia.
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Old Nov 1, 2012, 11:06 PM   #21
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Default Re: best route to drive to Florida

We did the Buffalo route twice, we got snow in the mountains the second year and it made it a tough drive at night and have gone I-75, Windsor, the last 5 times at Christmas.
I-75 is a better choice if there is any kind of weather, rain, snow.

Also, about 2 years ago there was a big accident and I was able to use the GPS and run paralell to the Interstate for about 50 miles and get out of the traffic jam.

We usually drive straight through, about 21-22 hours to Tarpon Springs, just NW of Tampa.
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Old Nov 2, 2012, 03:07 AM   #22
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Default Re: best route to drive to Florida

The best route involves going to over 35,000 ft.
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Old Nov 2, 2012, 03:30 AM   #23
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Default Re: best route to drive to Florida

IMHO - drive to Buffalo get on a plane - save yourself the stress its a bit more in cash
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Old Nov 2, 2012, 03:44 AM   #24
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Default Re: best route to drive to Florida

wish I could fly because I would - will be there for over 3 months so need my car.
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Old Nov 3, 2012, 03:30 AM   #25
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Default Re: best route to drive to Florida

I always drive down through Buffalo. Make sure you hit a stretch called US-19 in The Virginias. It's smaller rural highway but a good short cut that saves a lot of time. Many GPSs like Garmins points to the route. One year I missed going on that route and it took a couple extra hours.
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