The Best Road Trip Destinations in the U.S.
When it comes to planning a vacation, many don’t consider taking a road trip. However, driving is the best way to experience all the beauty the United States has to offer. For your next vacation, consider immersing yourself in America’s most stunning settings.
The United States has such a unique landscape, and many try to see it all at least once in their lifetime. However, this can prove to be a long journey. Since there is so much to see, we have narrowed down the options—check out the best road trip destinations in the U.S.
Historic Route 66
Route 66 is one of the most historic road trips one can take—this list would not be complete without it. Route 66 has been around since 1926 and provides travelers with a great way to explore middle America. It begins in Santa Monica, California, and goes through other popular cities such as Los Angeles, Albuquerque, Oklahoma City, Tulsa, St. Louis, and commencing in Chicago, IL. According to the Route 66 website, “The current length of Route 66 is 2,278 miles (3.665 km),” so you will have plenty of time to stop and explore along the way.
Pacific Coast Highway
The west coast has a lot to offer travelers. The best way to take it all in is the Pacific Coast Highway—it runs along the shores of San Francisco all the way to San Diego. As such, it is a great way to explore the Golden State and visit cities such as San Jose, Malibu, and Los Angeles along the way. The route takes up to 10 hours with no stops, trekking over 600 miles of scenic surroundings.
Looking to spend some time in the western mountains? Then the Going-to-the-Sun Road is the route to take. Located in the Glacier National Park, this trip gives you the incredible opportunity to view waterfalls, mountains, and you may even come across wildlife. Consider driving this road during the winter months for a completely different experience.
Blue Ridge Parkway
There is so much to discover on the Blue Ridge Parkway, making it one of the best road trip destinations in the U.S. The drive spans across Virginia and North Carolina, connecting two national parks in the process (Shenandoah and the Great Smoky Mountains). As far as the experience itself, the Blue Ridge Parkway will take you through the ridge, plateau, highland, and Pisgah regions—each offering their own incredible scenery.
The northwestern part of the United States is another great location to catch some breathtaking views. There are a few incredible destinations you will drive by on the trip, including the Cape Flattery, Olympic National Park, the Hood Canal, and the Dungeness Spit. “Driving the loop” of the Olympic Peninsula will take you on a 300-mile journey. You will get to see sites such as the Whale Trail, Geotours, Twilight filming location, and other amazing places worth stopping at.
The Columbia River Highway
Another great northwest trail to check out is the historic Columbia River Highway. This drive is popular among tourist, giving travelers another way to see the heart of the Pacific Northwest wilderness. On the highway, there are a few different routes you could take. One option is taking the Corbett to Dodson section, or you could go from Mosier to Rowena—each possibility will give you something new and exciting to discover.
Alaska has a reputation for being one of the most beautiful states in the country—come see for yourself with a trip on the Alaska Highway. Throughout the drive, you will come upon massive glaciers and sprawling forests. This picture-perfect road trip starts in the Canadian province of British Columbia and continues for 1,459 miles.
US Route 1
US Route 1 is a massive highway that travels north-south for 2,390 miles. It will take you from Key West, Florida, to the Canadian border in Maine. While driving, you will experience a drastic change in scenery as you journey forward from tropical climates to lush forestry. Due to this wide range of environments, they are plenty of activities to try out during your drive
The “Road to Hana” is one of the most unique destinations on this list. Located in Hawaii, this 52-mile roadway provides unbelievable scenery, showcasing the state’s best attributes. Places you can stop at along this trip include national parks, rainforests, waterfalls, and more locations that will leave you in awe.
I-90 Cross Country Trip
If you are looking for the ultimate road trip, travel 3,000 miles across the entirety of the United States on I-90. Many travelers begin the voyage in Boston, travel through Chicago, and then head up to Seattle. This trip will give you the chance to visit many American staples along the way, including Washington Park Beach, the Sears Tower, Corn Palace, and Mount Rushmore.
There is a lot of value that comes from taking road trips. Not only do you discover underrated hallmarks of the country, but it is an affordable option for the whole family. Whether you’re a native or an international visitor, traveling by car is the best way to get a complete look at America’s landscapes.
To ensure your safety, you’ll want to equip your vehicle with the proper tools. To start, you’ll want to have a spare tire and an emergency kit packed in the event that you become stuck somewhere. Additionally, since you will be on the road for a long time, take your car in for a quick inspection beforehand. Since many of these road trips require driving through cities and countryside, a mechanic may suggest additional car modifications to promote smooth travels through all different environments.
For all the Jeep Wrangler owners out there, AM Off-Road has everything you need to make your car the ultimate form of transportation. From JK light mounts to body armor to mud flaps, we can help you prepare for your upcoming road trip. Take advantage of your Jeep and explore the sprawling land of the United States.