So I've been thinking about where to take my first-ever paid vacation, and I was hoping to road trip down to Atlanta for ProgPower 2014... Trouble is, that week is stupidly busy at work, so I'll probably be working like 80-100 hours that week while a major auto manufacturer scrutinizes everything I do. :D

But anyway. I convinced a cool online friend to meet up with me, as she's in the same general area as Atlanta kinda, and I fell in love with the idea of a road trip... Basically, the most direct route takes me through Niagara and Buffalo, then straight south from Erie, passing through Pittsburgh, West Virginia, Normal Virginia, Tennessee, North Carolina and South Carolina, as mapped here:

I'm thinking of taking 7-10 days to tour the Appalachians, and yes, I'm the only tourist that thinks that's a fun thing to do... Though I may go through Detroit on the way back home, just for the sake of diversity. I'm a huge fan of the natures, so I'll probably take several of those days to stop into some state/national parks for a hiking day trip.

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But my question is this - is there anything awesome worth seeing in that general "flightpath"? I've never really left Ontario (the furthest I've been is upstate New York, Michigan and Cleveland once), and I'm just kinda eager to see something new. I wanna see cool new landscapes and wildlife, I wanna stop into dusty old game shops in Cousinfuck, West Virginia, and I kinda want to be horribly cliche and just snag a bunch of postcards on the way.

If anyone has some tips or pointers for me, let me know. I think the only thing that's nearly set in stone is visiting aforementioned friend and stopping in at Table Rock State Park, which was suggested on a few hiking sites I looked up. Aside from those, everything is wide open. Let me know! Thanks.