When the weather outside is frightful…grab your road trip planner and go antique hunting! Once the Holidays are safely behind us, what lies ahead are about 18 weekends where you’ll most likely be warmer indoors than outdoors but that doesn’t mean you’re restricted to the confines of your home. On the contrary, this is an excellent time to check out other interiors, if only for the money-saving deals. Hotels routinely offer off-season rates. Restaurants, especially those in popular summer destination-zones, offer winter specials. Stores also offer deep discounts on inventory that didn’t sell over the holidays.
So really, any winter weekend is a good time to go shopping, but to make it a road trip worthy of your road trip planning, make it a treasure hunting weekend getaway by choosing towns and cities known for their antiques and collectibles. Visit some of the best towns to find those treasures that excite you, from antique jewelry and country collectibles to handmade quilts. The places listed below will take you to those “tucked in the corner” gems as well as entire malls devoted to antique aficionados.
Fredericksburg, Virgina - A 40-block national historic district embraces the city’s downtown area and contains more than 350 buildings dating to the 18th and 19th centuries. Your road trip planning will be rewarded here as you’ll find plenty of shops in this historic town.
Hartwood Gardens in Pittsburg, Pennsylvania – There are actually six Allegheny County Parks, but the Hartwood includes a magnificent 16th century-style Tudor mansion filled with original English and American antiques. Check out this link for the awesome photos.
Mount Dora, Florida – Enjoy staying at an award winning B & B and spend some time exploring the Amish Cupboard & Country Stuff, which has a wide selection of antiques and collectibles in an Amish-themed store.
Quechee Gorge Village in Vermont - This village features a country store, an antique mall, craft center, toy and train museum, and a diner. This makes for a particularly easy road trip to plan and one that gives you the bonus of driving in a section of Vermont known for its scenic beauty and Quechee Lakes, a private community located on the border of Vermont and New Hampshire.
San Diego, California – Known more for its splendid beaches and summer fun, San Diego also has Antique Row. Located in the heart of downtown San Diego, this spot offers a variety of vintage gems in several specialty shops like jewelry, hats, clothing, and rare records and soundtracks.
Savannah, Georgia - Savannah's has a charm built on the city's respect for its past and well worth your road trip planning. Nowhere is this more evident than in the many small neighborhoods, which often seem more like pictures from a storybook. The Old South permeates throughout and you’re sure to find antiques with interesting stories behind them.
St. Louis, Missouri – For an interesting theme change, try Cherokee Street Antiques Row. This is an old neighborhood shopping district that's become known for its antique shops. It attracts people looking for antiques of all kinds, from books to furniture to jewelry and certainly what is best termed as "one man's junk is another man's treasure". This district includes 5 blocks of shops, open daily (though some close on Mondays).
So, as Winter makes itself known with bluster and rain and snow, a road trip planner knows she can be warm indoors and enjoying the thrill of the treasure hunt.