I-95 is the main highway that runs along the East Coast of the U.S. Since it is almost parallel to the Atlantic Ocean, you're never too far away from the beach on an I-95 road trip. Some of the major cities you'll pass through include Boston, New York, Philadelphia, Baltimore, Washington D.C., Richmond, Savannah, Jacksonville, and Miami. Here's some of the top attractions to see along I-95, from Florida to Maine.
Starting in southern Florida, just outside Miami, you'll stumble upon Coral Castle in Homestead. Built entirely by hand by an eccentric, heartbroken man, Coral Castle is a unique structure carved from oolite limestone. Marvel at the wonder and the sad story at this roadside attraction.
2701 De Soto Blvd, Coral Gables, FL, US
If you want the relaxation of a day at the beach minus the crowds, then hit the Venetian Pool. The Venetian Pool was originally built for Coral Gables, one of the country's first planned communities in the 1920s. The pool is filled with fresh water each day, straight from artesian wells. It's drained every night and refilled every morning, so you know that you're swimming in exceptionally clean water. If you're worried about water conservation, fear not. The water is drained back into the aquifer.
Ocean Drive, Miami Beach, FL, US
From there, hop back in the car and cruise to South Beach, one of the swankiest beaches along the East Coast. But, South Beach is way more than than playing in the waves and chilling in cabanas. The people-watching is second-to-none, and walking around the Art Deco district will transport you back in time to a vibrant era.
3600 W Sample Rd, Coconut Creek, FL, US
Once you've had your fill of the city, head to Butterfly World in nearby Coconut Creek. It's one of the largest butterfly parks in the world, offering displays of butterflies, bugs, and birds, as well as beautiful flowers.
2500 Jupiter Park Drive, Jupiter, FL, US
At the Busch Wildlife Sanctuary, you can wander along trails featuring various natural habitats and displays of native animals, including eagles, panthers, crocodiles, snakes, and more. Plus, admission is free.
1322 US Highway 1, Sebastian, FL, US
Mel Fisher's Treasure Museum exhibits archaeological maritime artifacts from 18th century shipwrecks. Mel Fisher is a real-life Indiana Jones who has spent more than 20 years recovering lost treasures from the bottom of the sea. You can see gold, gem-studded jewelry, old coins, and more.
Kennedy Space Center, SR 405, Titusville, FL, US
Head over to Titusville to get a bus tour of NASA's Kennedy Space Center, but come early—the tours are popular and fill up fast. Other sites at the complex include the United States Astronaut Hall Of Fame, the Rocket Garden, and the Space Shuttle Atlantis.
4931 S Peninsula Dr, Ponce Inlet, FL, US
The Ponce Deleon Inlet Lighthouse is the perfect place to get off I-95 to stretch your legs, especially if you decide to tackle the 200-step stairway to the top. The view is absolutely worth it. Tour the a small museum to learn more.
8635 A1A South, FL, US
From Titusville, it's just a short drive to St. Augustine, the oldest city in the U.S., founded in 1565. You'll find one of the best preserved historic districts in the nation, not to mention great restaurants and bars. From Castillo De San Marcos—which is a stunning fortress that's believed to be haunted—to Fort Matanzas National Monument and the Fountain of Youth Archaeological Park, history comes to life here.
100 Red Cox Dr, St. Augustine, FL, US
If you're feeling up for a bit more climbing, stop at St. Augustine Lighthouse and Museum, and ascend to the top of this 165-foot tall tower. The views of downtown St. Augustine and the oldest port in the U.S. are amazing. There are also exhibits here covering the country's maritime history and a gift shop.
If you're looking for a hotel in St. Augustine, the St. George Inn, the Carriage House Bed and Breakfast, and Casa Monica are exceptional options.
1368 Beach Blvd, Jacksonville Beach, FL, US
Before leaving the Sunshine State, hit up Jacksonville Beach to soak up the sun while walking the boardwalk. Parking is usually easy to find if you get there early. Plus, many restaurants and bars offer exquisite views.
1860 Starratt Rd, Jacksonville, FL, US
The Catty Shack Ranch offers up-close views of lions, tigers, and other big cats. Run mostly by volunteers, this non-profit provides a sanctuary for rescued cats that might not otherwise have a home.
113 Saint Marys St, GA, US
For a fun side trip off I-95, head to Cumberland Island National Seashore. The only way to visit Cumberland Island National Seashore is to catch the ferry at St. Marys. You'll find campsites, hiking trails, and wild horses roaming around. There's nowhere to buy food or supplies on the island, so pack accordingly.
US Hwy. 17 South, Darien, GA, US
While in the Peach State, visit the Smallest Church in America—or so it claims—in South Newport. Built in 1949, this roadside stop offers a charming photo backdrop.
102 W Hall St, Savannah, GA, US
Savannah is one of the U.S.'s most picturesque cities. It seems like it's covered in Spanish moss as far as the eye can see. With one of the largest historic downtowns in the nation, Savannah has a bounty of charming shops and spots to visit, and the food scene is renowned.
If you're just driving through, but want to get a quick taste of Savannah, stop at Forsyth Park for a walk. This beautiful public park is an iconic oasis in the city.
If you are spending the night, consider the Hamilton-Turner Inn, Ballastone Inn, or The Gastonian.
30 Meddin Drive, Tybee Island, GA, US
A quick detour from Savannah to the Tybee Island Lighthouse and Museum is worthwhile. The barrier island is vacation destination, known for its iconic lighthouse, historic sites, and endless beaches.
330 Bonaventure Rd, Savannah, GA, US
There are a few famous people buried at Savannah's Bonaventure Cemetery, but the real appeal is the beauty of the Southern Gothic cemetery itself. Graceful old trees covered in Spanish moss create a canopy, and many of the gravestones are works of art. Just remember that this is still a functioning cemetery and some of the visitors are there to grieve.
301 Gervais St., Columbia, SC, US
Make your first stop in the Palmetto State the South Carolina State Museum in Columbia. This amazing museum is housed in a massive former textile mill and features four floors with over 70,000 exhibits. You'll find many nice hotels in Columbia, as well. Victorian Elegance Inn and the Hilton Columbia Center are among the many places to book a room.
4004 Homestead Rd, Bowman, SC, US
For something completely different, detour off of I-95 to visit the UFO Welcome Center in Bowman. Built in 1994, this structure quickly became a popular tourist attraction. The 42-foot-wide flying saucer is built out of wood, fiberglass, and plastic. For a small fee, you can meet the owner and peek inside.
251 State Park Rd, Santee, SC, US
Stretch your legs at Santee State Park, which has an abundance of catfish in the waters of Lake Marion. In addition to fishing, hiking and camping are popular activities. You can also drive a little longer to the Woods Bay State Park to soak in the natural beauty of one of the last Carolina Bays found along the Atlantic Coast.
I-95 officially ends at the Houlton–Woodstock Border Crossing. The route continues into Canada, where you can cross the border into New Brunswick. If you want to have an international journey after this epic tour of the East Coast, just keep driving.
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