A Road Trip from New York City to Myrtle Beach

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  • New York City
  • New York to Dover
  • Dover to Cape Charles
  • Cape Charles to Wilmington
  • Wilmington to Myrtle Beach
  • Fast route
  • Scenic route
  • Roadside assistance
Explore Delaware, Virginia, and North Carolina as you make your way down the coast on this New York City to Myrtle Beach road trip.
Beach trips are a quintessential driving experience—especially for those who yearn to leave behind the frenetic pace of the city for some sun, sand, and surf. This route bypasses all major cities once you leave New York so you can make the most of your getaway.
Summer’s always a great time to go to the beach and Myrtle Beach is a popular tourist destination. If you’re looking to skip the crowds, consider making the trip in early fall or late spring, when the temperature is high but the population density is low.
And before you go, make sure you’ve covered for anything that might go wrong. With cheap car insurance and roadside assistance from Jerry, you can be sure that a flat tire won’t throw (too much of) a wrench into your exciting road trip.
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Start in New York City

The Big Apple is the foundation of the American economy and is one of the largest and most iconic cities in the world. So as you can expect, there’s much more to do in NYC than can be accomplished in a day!
A sunset view of New York City taken from the Brooklyn Bridge.
New York City

Eat here

For the best authentic ramen and Japanese food outside of Japan, ICHIRAN Times Square is the perfect little gem in the middle of busy Times Square.
If you feel like splurging for a taste of fine French cuisine, Daniel is a great choice.
For something a little less fancy, visit Bleecker Street Pizza. This little pizzeria nestled below Greenwich Village offers up some of the best pizza you can find in NYC.

Do this

It may be impossible to see all of NYC in a day, but a guided city tour can help you explore the best of the city in a short amount of time.
If you want to explore yourself, here are some must-see spots:
  • Times Square: The most intersection in the world, center of NYC’s commerce and entertainment. Take in a Broadway show along the Great White Way.
  • One World Trade Center: Home now to the tallest skyscraper in the US and a monument to the victims of 9/11.
  • New York Catacombs: Explore New York’s mysterious catacombs beneath the Basilica of St. Patrick’s Old Cathedral by candlelight.
  • Central Park: No trip to NYC is complete without a stop in the world-famous Central Park, which alone has enough attractions to merit a full day’s visit, including a zoo, a nature sanctuary, and Belvedere Castle.
One World Trade Center as seen from a park in downtown New York City.
One World Trade Center, New York City

New York to Dover, Delaware

Driving time: About 3 1/2 hours
Dover may be the capital of Delaware, but it’s not the largest city—in fact, as far as cities go, it’s relatively modest. As a result, the social climate is more relaxed and less congested, making it a great pit stop.
An aerial view of the Legislative Hall in Dover, Delaware.
Dover, Delaware

Eat here

Most of Dover’s food scene revolves around American, and no one does it better than Restaurant 55. That isn’t to say you can’t still find great Italian food, though! Enter Vincenzo’s Pizzeria, serving up pizza, pasta, and more.
If Italian isn’t your thing, Indian cuisine is just around the corner at Flavors of India. They offer a broad menu of curries and classic Indian dishes.

Do this

There’s plenty to keep yourself busy with in Dover, including the following:
  • Dover International Speedway: One of the key tracks in the NASCAR circuit, “The Monster Mile” hosts at least one NASCAR Cup Series race each year and is a must-see for any gearhead.
  • Dover Downs Casino: Test your luck at Dover Downs, which features live table games, slots, and live entertainment. Just don’t gamble your food money!
  • Air Mobility Museum: A monument dedicated to the men and women who service and support the USAF and the USAAF. It features a broad range of military cargo and planes, including a Boeing Flying Fortress.
  • Biggs Museum of American Art: Biggs’ revolving exhibitions always feature something different from all periods in and aspects of American art history, including illustration, oil painting, and photography.
  • Rusty Wallace Racing Experience: The largest NASCAR driving experience in the world, perfect for fans of high-speed motorsport who want the opportunity to sit in the driver’s seat and experience NASCAR through the lens of one of its most famous drivers.
An employee at the Dover International Speedway pushes a dolly with racecar wheels down the track.
Dover International Speedway
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Dover to Cape Charles, Virginia

Driving time: About 3 hours
Cape Charles is a small coastal town near the mouth of Chesapeake Bay, just before the scenic Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel. While the town isn’t exactly known for its hustle and bustle, it’s a great rest stop and has its fair share of local history worth checking out.
On a beach, a sculpture made of items you'd find on a beach spell out "LOVE" on Cape Charles, Virginia.
Cape Charles, Virginia

Eat here

Skip dinner and go straight to dessert with fresh, homemade ice cream from Brown Dog Ice Cream. Expect a line.
The east coast is famed for its amazing seafood, and Hook @ Harvey knows exactly how to serve it best.
For east coast seafood with Italian flair, Ambrogia Caffe & Enoteca’s immaculately prepared Italian dishes will definitely satisfy.
And before you hit the road, hit up Cape Charles Coffee House for classic American breakfast and coffee.

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Enjoy the historic nature of Cape Charles before enjoying some live entertainment. Here’s how to fill your day:
  • Stratton Manor: One of Cape Charles’ two National Historic Places, Stratton Manor is a historic plantation in the outskirts of the town.
  • Cape Charles Historic District: A living snapshot of Cape Charles’ history and beginnings as a railroad and harbor town, with well-preserved original houses and buildings from the latter half of the 19th century.
  • Cape Charles Brewing Company: Take a break and grab a brew at this family-owned brewery, served up with local burgers set against live entertainment.
  • Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel: When you’re ready to head out, hop on one of the world’s only bridge-tunnels, a 17-mile stretch crossing the Chesapeake Bay.
The Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel stretches out and into the distance over the water.
Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel

Cape Charles to Wilmington, North Carolina

Driving time: About 5 hours
People think of Hollywood when they hear “film industry,” but Wilmington is actually a major center for film and television production. Wilmington has also played a role in almost every stage of American history, from the Revolutionary War to the Civil Rights movement.
A warm sunset descends over beach houses in Wilmington, North Carolina.
Wilmington, North Carolina

Eat here

Not only does Savorez offer great Central American cuisine in North Carolina, but they also have an extensive vegan menu.
If you’re looking for seafood, try Genki Sushi. Fish is easy to come by on the east coast, but Genki Sushi has turned it into an art form! If you prefer your fish a little more cooked, hit up Fish Bites for comfort foods like lobster bisque, clams, and other freshly caught (and fried up!) favorites.

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While in Wilmington, enjoy a nice mix of history, nature, and wine (yes, that’s right!).
  • Wilmington Historic District: This preserved area in Wilmington features some of the finest examples of antebellum architecture in the state, including the incredible Bellamy House.
  • Battleship North Carolina: The USS North Carolina, flagship of its class, saw service in World War 2 before her retirement. She’s now converted into a floating museum.
  • Noni Bacca Winery: Noni Bacca makes over 60 varieties of wine and has won over 179 international medals, which means there’s something for every palate when you’re looking to relax with a glass.
  • Masonboro Island Reserve: This reserve can only be reached by boat but offers up boundless local wildlife, including birds, fish, and turtles.
The USS North Carolina sits on the Cape Fear River with a dramatic sunset in the background.
USS North Carolina

Wilmington to Myrtle Beach, South Carolina

Driving time: About 2 hours
Myrtle Beach is one of the east coast’s most popular tourist destinations. If you visit during the summertime, expect crowds. There are miles and miles of sandy beaches, parks, and other recreational activities to keep you busy.
Beachgoers stand on Myrtle Beach, South Carolina with a pink sunset behind them.
Myrtle Beach, South Carolina

Eat here

If you enjoy contemporary American food, you’ll enjoy it even more with a pot of melted cheese to dip it in. True to its name, The Melting Pot specializes in a variety of fondues.
If you want to keep it down to earth with great grilled seafood and other classic dishes, visit 42nd Street Bar & Grill.
Or grab a plate of traditional Italian cuisine at Sole and finish off the night with a traditional tiramisu. Can’t go wrong with that!

Do this

Surprise, surprise—the beach is a must-do while you’re in Myrtle Beach. But there are a few other activities worth seeking out, too.
  • Broadway at the Beach: One of Myrtle Beach’s most popular attractions, Broadway at the Beach features live entertainment, shopping, dining, fireworks shows, and much more.
  • Waccamaw River Tours: For something a little more low-key, take a tour down the beautiful Waccamaw River and explore its National Wildlife Refuge.
  • Ripley’s Aquarium: You don’t have to go under the waves to see what sort of wildlife lives off the coast of Myrtle Beach. Take a tour through Ripley’s and check out local sea life on dry land.
The water of the Waccamaw River reflects the sky and clouds above.
Waccamaw River
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The fast way back

Take I-95 North for the shortest route back to NYC. But head’s up: this highway takes you through several major cities. Make sure you factor in potential rush-hour traffic when you’re planning your return, or this fast way back can easily turn into the slow way.

The scenic way back

For the more scenic view, take I-81 North. This route will take you further west and cut up through the center of Virginia and North Carolina. As an added bonus, it skirts major cities so you can focus less on traffic and more on the mountain scenery.

Why you need roadside assistance

The drive between New York and Myrtle Beach isn’t a quick trip; it covers a number of states and fairly diverse terrain that isn’t always populated. So it’s best to be prepared for the worst—and to make the worst as short as possible.
That’s where roadside assistance comes in. Jerry features an independent roadside assistance program that covers everything you need for a safe journey:
  • Emergency assistance
  • Towing
  • Fluid and fuel delivery
  • Winching
  • Mechanic advice
  • Rental reimbursement
  • and more!
And you get it all for just $6.99 for one car.
If you’re thinking it’s time to switch insurance carriers, Jerry can handle that, too! Jerry’s first job is finding you affordable insurance coverage tailored to your needs and budget.
It’s still easy and free to find the right policy, including ones that offer roadside assistance. Just sit back and let Jerry do all the work, so you can focus on planning your next road trip without worrying about shopping for coverage.
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