If you’re ready to hit the road again and see the sights – no plane or passport required – check out this “best of the best” list for some of America’s greatest road trips and scenic routes.
West: In California, gaze upon beautiful poppies in Antelope Valley or catch the sites of Big Sur and Hearst Castle along Pacific Coast Highway. Glimpse scenic waterfalls on Oregon’s Columbia River Highway. Take in the greenery from rainforests to apple orchards along Washington’s Cascade Loop. Visit Glacier National Park on Montana’s Going-to-the-Sun Road. Photograph the Grand Tetons along Wyoming’s John D. Rockefeller Jr. Memorial Parkway. Stop by ghost towns from the gold mining days on Colorado’s San Juan Skyway. Or tour red rock country on Utah’s Route 12. Travel and Leisure’s “America’s Best Road Trips” includes all these Western treasures, plus more.
Midwest: Spend several days exploring the Great Lakes of Minnesota, Ontario, Wisconsin, and Michigan on what Midwest Living calls the “Great Lakes trip of a lifetime.” The 1,200-mile Lake Superior Circle Tour will take you along beautiful lake scenery – lighthouses included – with plenty of opportunities to visit fun towns, cute inns, sample local cuisine and take sightseeing cruises.
Southwest: Sunset magazine offers what it hails as the “best in the world” 1,000-mile road trip through the Southwest. The journey begins in picturesque Sedona, Arizona, carries on to Gallup, New Mexico, and into Utah, outlining places to stay, eat and visit along the way, including several National Parks.
Southeast: You can’t talk about road trips in the Southeast without mentioning the beautiful Blue Ridge Parkway: 469 uninterrupted miles from Waynesboro, Virginia, in the Shenandoah Mountains, to Cherokee, North Carolina, in the Great Smoky Mountains. The drive is breathtaking year-round, but if you love fall colors, then you’ll want to plan your drive for autumn. See National Geographic’s “Amazing Road Trips” for more.
Northeast: Rand McNally’s Best of the Road for the Northeast includes a trip to the Cape Cod National Seashore in Massachusetts, complete with six protected beaches and fun seaside towns, a chance to hop out of the car and walk through Buffalo, New York’s architecture and sip ice wine. A visit to Vermont will include stops for famous local ice cream, a visit to Burlington’s Church St. Marketplace, and the Rokeby Museum; plus much more.
Clearly, the great American road trip is alive and well. Check out the links below to begin planning your next journey!