The Most Scenic Highways in the Lower 48 States
Nothing is more fun than taking a road trip in your Jeep. You get to explore beautiful places and see new things all from the comfort of your vehicle. Many highways in the US can take you to some of the most beautiful places in the world. You can visit sparkling lakes, vast oceans, towering mountains, spacious deserts, looming forests, and much more during your travels in the US. If you don’t know where to go, look at this list of some of the most scenic highways in the lower 48 states. Hopefully, you can discover the best views that the United States has to offer with this list.
Pacific Coast Highway, California
The Pacific Coast Highway is one of the most beautiful drives in the US. It’s a pleasant, winding route that takes you right along the California coast and the stunning Pacific Ocean. You’ll also pass by the famous Golden Gate Bridge and Big Sur, which is well-known for its stunning scenery and natural features. Additionally, the weather in California is usually pleasant all year-round, so you can take the top off your Jeep and enjoy the sun on your face and the wind in your hair.
State Route 89A, Arizona
Arizona is well-known for its desert landscapes, large rocks, mountains, cacti, and extremely hot weather. If you take your Jeep on State Route 89A during the summertime, remember to leave the top on since the weather can reach over 110 degrees. State Route 89A will take you from Prescott to Flagstaff, allowing you to see some of the most beautiful parts of the state, such as Sedona. Arizona is also a great place to go off-roading in your Jeep, but before you take on some difficult desert terrain, add some Jeep JK parts and accessories to your vehicle.
Blue Ridge Parkway, Virginia
If you travel to Virginia, you need to visit the Blue Ridge Parkway. This drive takes you through the Appalachian Mountains, which offer spectacular, birds-eye views of the surrounding forest. Additionally, you’ll drive through Shenandoah National Park and the Great Smokey Mountains National Park. If you want to watch the leaves change to bright orange, auburn, brown, and red colors, then you need to visit during the fall. Virginia is home to many different types of trees, so you’ll see plenty of colorful fall foliage along the way.
Overseas Highway, Florida
For some clear ocean views, drive on the Overseas Highway in Florida. The Overseas Highway, also called Route 1, will take you from Miami through the Florida Keys. This road is one of the most unique routes in the world, and people often feel as if they are floating above the sea as they drive this route. The weather in Florida is usually warm, so if you don’t mind the high humidity, you can drive with the top off and enjoy the beauty of the ocean.
State Route 12, Utah
To truly see the desert landscape in Utah, you’ll need to take State Route 12. This route passes through many popular state parks in Utah, and there are hardly any signs of civilization along many parts of this highway. On the road, you’ll see stunning rock formations, desert brush, and towering mountains. For a relaxing and carefree road trip that allows you to connect with nature, visit State Route 12.
The Trail of the Mountain Spirits, New Mexico
Who wouldn’t want to drive on a highway called “The Trail of the Mountain Spirits?” This highway, located in New Mexico, will take you to old Western towns, copper mines, and cliff dwellings. When you drive on this highway’s winding route, you’ll notice the beautiful scenery with tall, green trees and hills as far as the eye can see.
Million Dollar Highway, Colorado
One of the best routes for a winter road trip is the Million Dollar Highway in Colorado. During the wintertime, white, sparkling snow covers the mountainous terrain and dense forests. During your trip on this highway, you’ll climb through the San Juan Mountains and the Red Mountain Pass. However, keep in mind that driving on snow and ice is dangerous, so remember to be aware of your surroundings. In fact, the name “Million Dollar Highway” comes from many travelers who would claim, “You couldn’t pay me a million dollars to drive that again!”
Bluebonnet Trail, Texas
In the summer, gorgeous flowers called bluebonnets cover many areas of the Lone Star State. When you visit Texas, travel on the Bluebonnet Trail. It’s best to visit between March and May since the flowers will be in full bloom at that time. The Bluebonnet Trail will take you from Austin to Houston, and you’ll pass by lovely lakes, forests, and rolling hills.
Highway 101, Oregon
The coast of Oregon is mostly undeveloped and has plenty of natural vistas to admire. Highway 101 will take you along the Oregon coast, allowing you to admire the beach, ocean, cliffs, hills, and surrounding forests. You can easily drive this highway during the summer or winter since Oregon’s weather remains around 40 degrees during the winter months.
North Shore Drive, Minnesota
Minnesota is known for its thick forests and shining lakes. If you take North Shore Drive, you’ll drive along the shoreline of Lake Superior. This route will take you from Duluth toward Two Harbors, and you’ll have a stunning view of the lake itself and the surrounding forest. However, this route becomes extremely cold during the winter, so if you aren’t fond of the cold, remember to visit during the summertime.
Before you go on your next road trip, keep the most scenic highways in the lower 48 states in mind when choosing where you’ll go. There are many gorgeous highways, from North Shore Drive in Minnesota to Overseas Highway in Florida. When you travel on these roads, you’re sure to have a fun adventure and see beautiful oceans, towering mountains, rocky deserts, dense forests, and much more. So prepare your Jeep and get ready for the best road trip ever.