This post is the second in a series of blogs about our honeymoon trip to New England and New York City in October 2014. This time I go on about useful planning resources, sharing pics whilst you’re away and honeymoon gift lists. See all New England road trip posts.
Having booked our trip we could then begin the real fun (for me anyway!) of researching the places we were visiting. I am a holiday research obsessive so a 17 night road trip around New England which I had always wanted to do (with bonus New York!) was an exciting research prospect for me. I ordered information brochures, read blogs, visited a lot of tourist information sites, borrowed guidebooks from the libraries, spoke to friends who had been (including our friends Kerry and Lee who were planning their honeymoon to New England at the same time as us!), read trip advisor forums and more.
I read a lot of individual blogs too but here are the main resources I used for New England:
Google Maps – search for the places you’re going and zoom in to see what restaurants and other places are showing as near your hotel. Also make a custom google map of where you’re going to keep track of your ideas/places/travel routes.
Roadtrippers – input your trip and this website/app will give you suggestions of cool things to do near to your route. It also estimates your mileage and fuel costs which is really useful.
Discover New England – great resource of suggested drives, things to do and useful hints and tips for visitors. The site covers all the New England states.
Yankee Magazine – Great articles about visiting New England including recommendations for drives and diners.
Tourist Board websites – Google the places you’re visiting for their official tourist information site. I found the Massachusetts one particularly useful.
New England Trip Advisor forum – read recommendations given to other people on a variety of topics. You can also post information about the trip you will be taking and forum experts can advise you on the best routes to take, places to visit and more. Visit individual forums for Massachusetts, Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Connecticut and Rhode Island
Guardian Twitter Baltimore – Bar Harbor road trip – the Guardian sent some journalists on a roadtrip around New England driven by real time suggestions by readers. Through this I discovered the Thirsty Pig in Portland. It also gave more insight into what a road trip would be like.
Travel guide books
We mostly looked online for information for our trip but we did find the following travel guides really useful too:
New England’s Best Trips – the perfect guide for a New England road trip. This guide recommends a selection of themed drives as well as short walking tours around the region’s towns and cities. Amazon.
Top 10 guides – I love these Top 10 guides and always buy them when I go away. The ones for New England, Boston and New York were really useful and thin enough to take with us. Also the included maps were great for carrying around. Top 10 Guides on Amazon: New England, Boston and New York.
Sharing your trip whilst you’re away
We didn’t want to be constantly posting updates on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook whilst we were away so we used the Tripcast app which let us share photos with only those people who we had invited to it. We decided it would be perfect for our families to be able to see what we were up to but not to have to go and check Facebook all the time.
Honeymoon gift list
We were able to have such an amazing honeymoon because of our wonderfully kind and generous friends and family who contributed to our trip for wedding presents.
I’d been to a few weddings where they had done online honeymoon gift lists with specific experiences you could contribute to. We loved the idea of paying for them to do a specific experience whilst away that we decided to do it for our own wedding gift list as we’d been living together for four years so didn’t really need any things for the house and above all we were looking forward to getting married then having an amazing trip in New England.
We used Honeyfund and we asked for the money in person/post or online bank transfer rather than using Paypal (which would cost us and/or our guests)
Our guests seemed to like being able to contribute to experiences and we had lots of fun using all our research to come up with experiences that we wanted to do.
I would recommend Honeyfund for online gift lists. Here’s a screenshot of part of our list: