Washington to Kansas

Olympia, WA(Zone 7b)

My husband and I, finally after six years of marriage, are planning on a road trip to Kansas to visit his grandmother there, probably during spring break in late March. Does anyone have any suggestions of things to see semi-on-the-way? Or, has anyone traveled by train? That's our other option. It's quick, but we can't stop on the way as easily. I've heard there's not a lot to do in Kansas (we're going to Garden City), so perhaps the drive there and back will be our "vacation." Thanks for any ideas!!

--Dana

Pittsburg, KS(Zone 6a)

You're right about "not a lot to do in Kansas". I should know, I've lived in the southeast corner of the state all my life. One place you might check out however. if you're interested in space, is the Cosmosphere, located in Hutchinson, Kansas. Hutch is located northeast of Wichita. They have some absolutely fascinating artifacts, but it's about a 3 hour drive from Garden City.

Olympia, WA(Zone 7b)

That sounds like a neat place to go. My husband and I were recently in Florida and went the the Kennedy Space Center and really enjoyed that. Thanks for the suggestion!

We may have had a big change of plans, and I'm pretty excited about this idea. My aunt, who lives in Louisiana, suggested thay we fly out to see her and drive to Garden City from there. It would be a much shorter drive, and we'd get to see a completely different part of the country. It would be like two vacations in one, because we'd also get to visit two different family members!

Denver Metro Area, CO(Zone 5a)

Hi Dana,

We took the train several yrs. ago. Drove two yrs. ago (actually, to Vancouver, BC). The train is one of our favorite ways to travel...very relaxing. The trip over the rockies by train is a treat beyond compare. Everyone should take the train for that perspective at least once in his life.

The drive isn't bad if you plan your stops. Salt Lake City is certainly worth a stop--neat place to tourist (we stopped there when we went by train, too)! Denver is a good place to stop (I'm a bit biased, I admit).

As for Kansas...it's got some surprises for you;) Lindsburg, KS is famous for being a "little Sweden" and we have purchased several dala horses, there (you know, the neat orange wooden horses you can have your name painted on to put in front of your house). It's truly worth your time to visit that lovely little town! I'll bet your family there will tell you other places they love, in the state!

We've done the drive from LA to KS, too. (OK--to Colorado, actually). It's an easy drive, really. We stop in Oklahoma. There are several casinos there if you're feeling lucky! :) I always spot something new each time we "do" that drive, too. (DH's family is in Louisiana and TX and my oldest cannot fly--cabin air quality is too poor before takeoff; she becomes hypoxic & seizes). We have seen most of the country by highway. Roadtrips are so much fun if you take along a AAA book (to research the areas you cross). An audio book mystery comes in handy to keep the driver alert, too!

Hope you have a terrific visit with family!
Mtnmama/Diane

Olympia, WA(Zone 7b)

Thanks for your input! I've never been to Colorado, but now my husband and I are thinking of flying into LA, driving to KS, continuing to Denver, and flying home from there. I've always wanted to see Colorado. :) Unfortunately our trip plans are on hold for awhile: my husband may not be able to get the time off during my spring break. We've definitely decided we need to do it though. His grandma is getting older and we're the only grandkids who haven't visited yet. I don't think she gets around much, so your suggestions are appreciated. Lindsburg sounds neat. (We have a little Bavaria here, called Leavenworth in central Washington-- it would be interesting to compare the themed cities.)

I think we'll drive this trip (since there's so much we want to see on the way and not much to see at the destination), but I like your input about the train too. We do a fair amount of travelling and haven't taken a train yet (in the U.S. at least), so we should certainly try it. :)

Denver Metro Area, CO(Zone 5a)

Hello again, Dana,
Let me know if you are coming to Denver...and how much time you might have to spend there, OK? Hope your DH is able to find a time that works for you both to do this. Life is too short; your grandmother will be so glad you came!
Diane/Mtnmama

Olympia, WA(Zone 7b)

Hi,

We'll definitely go to Kansas, probably sometime this year. I really hope we do the Louisiana to Denver plan: that sounds so perfect to me! I'll let you know what/when we decide. :)

Denver, CO

A few years ago Amtrak had a package that you could fly one way and train the other. Might be worth looking into.

Denver Metro Area, CO(Zone 5a)

Hi again, Dana,

When are you going to be taking your trip...do you have an itinerary? Let me know when you will be in Denver!

Diane/Mtnmama

Olympia, WA(Zone 7b)

We're hoping for September now. I'll keep you posted. :)

Dana

Denver Metro Area, CO(Zone 5a)

It's a deal...will wait to hear your plans:)
Diane

Lansing, KS(Zone 5b)

Dana, moved from WA to eastern Ks last summer with small children, so stops were a must. We visited several national parks along the way and my kids had a ball!. They said it was the best move ever! The gorge in WA was a bit hot, but beautiful. The drive through the National forest was gorgeous. We went to Cour d'alene, Idaho to a nice hotel on the lake. The floating boardwalk is the longest in the US, so I'm told. A cute college town and we picnic along the Falls as well. We visited Yellowstone National Park, Montana; Mount Rushmore,South Dakota, a Superman's exhibit and in Iowa. As well as the Corn Palace and Maze. Of course if you come through Oregon,( the route we took when we moved to WA) there's Portland with numerous gardens and activities along the Gorge there as well.Utah has the Devil's slide and the Devil's Tower as well. You'll probably go through Wyoming where we stop at a ranch, but was not as scenic as Utah and the lower part of Idaho. Of course Colarado had several nice places to visit as mentioned by others above. In Kansas, depending on where you land, there are many one day trips you ca sightsee as well. Abilene has the Greyhound (dogs) museum, Old Cowboy Town, Russell Stover Factory and Outlet Sales, Brookville Motel, a fried chicken family serve restaraunt that we drove 3 hours to dine there several times. Atchinson with Amelia Earhart's home, neat stores to window shop, a train depot museum, a river walk and some neat sandwich shops; Lawrence, a college town for window shopping and neat sandwich shops as well, Kansas City, the city of fountains, the Crown Plaza, Legends(shopping) several parks and museums that my kids really enjoy. Either way, have a great adventure and fun touring to Kansas.

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