Going on a Houston to Buffalo road trip can be a great way to explore the eastern United States. You can soak in the hot springs at Hot Springs National Park, go hiking at the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, climb the dunes at Indiana Dunes National Park, and witness nature close up at Cuyahoga National Park. Additionally, leave time to go diamond mining at Crater of the Diamonds State Park, go caving at Carter Caves State Resort Park, and see Niagara Falls at Niagara Falls State Park. There are also fantastic cities to explore along the way, like Shreveport, Nashville, Louisville, and Cincinnati. Consider this road trip itinerary from Houston to Buffalo.
Hot Springs National Park
Take advantage of a treatment at the only spa at a United States National Park when you visit Hot Springs National Park. Then, get a drink from the only brewery at a national park. Stop at the park ranger’s building to explore the history of Hot Springs. There is plenty of shopping fun to enjoy along Bathhouse Row, and you will also want to take a scenic drive into the nearby mountains and enjoy views of this national park from high above it.
Great Smoky Mountains National Park
Head east of Knoxville for about three hours to arrive at the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. It helps to have a plan before going into this park as it is the most visited in the United States. If you want to escape the crowds while making the most of your time, start by exploring Elkmont. This ghost town contains 19 historical buildings, including six that have been fully restored. Then, head to the park’s southern border to fish and canoe on Fontana Lake. While you are there, check out the ghost town of Proctor. Another great place to go fishing, tubing, and canoeing is Deep Creek. Depending on your schedule, think about taking the multi-day hike from Deep Creek to Clingman’s Dome, which is the highest point in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.
Cuyahoga Valley National Park
You will want to leave time during your Houston to Buffalo RV road trip to visit Cuyahoga Valley National Park. Wear some solid hiking shoes so that you can hike along the rock outcroppings that line Ledges Trail and see Blue Hen and the Brandywine waterfalls. Those looking for longer hikes will want to head out on the Towpath, which runs along the length of the former Erie Canal. Learn how the canal completely transformed Ohio’s economy by stopping at the Canal Exploration Center. A great way to see remote areas of this national park is by catching a ride on the Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad.
Crater of the Diamonds State Park
On your road trip from Houston to Buffalo, head northeast from Texarkana, Texas, to get to Crater of the Diamonds State Park near Murfreesboro, Arkansas. This is one of the few places in the world where the public can mine for diamonds. More than 33,000 diamonds have been found at this location, and you can rent the equipment you need from the friendly park staff. A gemologist is on hand to help you identify your finds. If you plan your road trip during the summer, cool off after mining at the Diamond Springs Water Park. Take the graveled pathway to the wildlife observation blind to look for deer, turkey, and other local wildlife.
Carter Caves State Resort Park
When you get to Cincinnati, head southeast to reach Carter Caves State Resort Park. This is an excellent place to go gem mining for quartz, topaz, sapphires, and emeralds. There are 33 miles of wooded trails to explore, and Smoky Valley Lake is the only Blue Ribbon trout lake in Kentucky. This lake is also an excellent place for a canoeing adventure. This county in Kentucky has the highest concentration of caves in the state, and several tours are available that leave from this state park.
Niagara Falls State Park
Once you get to Buffalo, go a few miles further to visit Niagara Falls State Park. Take a ride on the Maid of the Mist boat to see the Niagara and American Waterfalls. Get very close to the base of Niagara Waterfalls on a Cave of the Winds Tour. Enjoy a shopping adventure on Old Falls Street before dining on an upscale meal at Top of the Falls Restaurant.
Space Center Houston
Take the tram tour at the Space Center Houston to see where rockets often take off and land. Explore the Astronaut’s Gallery to learn more about the earliest astronauts. Learn about what steps are being taken to try to reach Mars and beyond. You can upgrade your visit with some special events, including dining with an astronaut.
Belz Museum of Asian and Judaic Art
See one of the largest collections of art from China’s Qing dynasty at the Belz Museum of Asian and Judaic Art. This museum is often called the Jade Museum because of its vast collection of life-size objects created from jade. The museum also features many pieces of Jewish art created by contemporary artists in Israel. The vast majority of the collection was given to the museum by Mr. Belz, who spent his life doing business worldwide.
Ohio’s Small Town Museum
The vast collection at Ohio’s Small Town Museum pays tribute to how people living in Ohio’s small towns have impacted the world. See a special exhibit about the Muppets, which were invented in the state. View the oldest traffic light in the state as well as a unique United States flag. Stopping at this museum is a great way to celebrate small farming communities that usually do not get as much attention.
The Museum of disABILITY History
Seek out the history of the fight for equal rights for people with disabilities by visiting The Museum of disABILITY History. Learn about the creation of state-assisted living facilities, see how people with differing abilities have been portrayed in pop culture, and learn about adaptive equipment. The staff here will answer your questions about the importance of understanding the history of disabilities in America so that you can be a bit more aware of current dilemmas and accomplishments.
Shreveport is a fun city where you may want to test your gambling skills. There are beautiful Shreveport campgrounds to stay in, including Pavillion RV Park, which offers late-night check-in, or the Cash Point RV Point, which is a great place to stay if you want to fish the Red River. There are many outstanding RV dump stations in Shreveport, including at Shreveport/Bossier City KOA and Cash Point Landing.
You may find yourself kicking up your heels at one of Nashville’s country music venues or yelling at a Vanderbilt basketball game when you visit this city. Take the kids for a swim when you stay at Clarksville RV Park, or if you are just passing through, consider staying at Anderson Road Campground as these are two outstanding Nashville campgrounds. It is not hard to find a Nashville RV dump station to dump your tanks before heading through the mountains. Try the ones at Nashville North KOA, Shutes Branch Recreation Area, or Edgar Evins State Park.
History, bourbon, fast horses, and a great culinary scene make Louisville a fine place to explore. Consider taking in all that this river city has to offer by camping in Louisville at Grandma’s RV Camping, where you are conveniently near major retailers, or at Louisville South KOA Holiday, which has a spacious playground for the kids. You can easily access Louisville RV dump stations at Charlestown State Park, Clark State Forest, and Buffalo Trace Park.
There are so many things to do in Cincinnati that it is easy to spend a day or two getting lost in the streets. Top attractions include the Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Gardens, Cincinnati Art Museum, and the Newport Aquarium. Consider spending a night or two at one of the top campgrounds in Cincinnati, like Winton Woods Campground, which is near the Trillium Trails Wildflower Preserve, or Steamboat Bend Campground with its easy access to the Ohio River. Find Cincinnati RV dump stations at General Butler State Resort Park, Kincaid Lake State Park, or Big Bone Lick State Park.
When you follow this road trip itinerary from Houston to Buffalo, you will enjoy historic locations and beautiful scenery along the way. If you want to travel in comfort and style, consider an RV rental from RVshare. From large motorhomes to compact campervans, there is a rig that will meet your travel and budget needs. Once you hit the road, you are protected by our renter guarantee and 24/7 roadside assistance. Find the perfect vehicle for your travel needs in Houston or Buffalo.