The USA stands out because it is easy to go around by car. Its dimensions are identical to those of both Australia and Europe. There are just as many unique places and things to do in the United States as on other continents. And when you travel the top US road trips north or south, first exploring one coast, then another, you'll be shocked at how much one country can change.
A road trip may be the exact essence of a vacation, allowing you to explore new areas, take in as much of the environment as you can, set the music to the scenery, and, if you'd like, refuel with a gas station food. Legendary music, vital movies, and great books memorialize the road journey. Here are the top US road trips to take if you're ready to hit the road.
Road trips are wonderful since they may be taken at any time of year. If you prefer to travel in the winter to some of the nation's top ski and snowboarding locations, you might choose to pack the car in the summer and plan your itinerary around amazing national parks and beaches.
Browse our top US road trips list to make your dream trip itinerary. These journeys provide breathtaking scenery and unforgettable experiences. These road trips will cover many ground and cross-off experiences from your bucket list. So keep reading to travel like a master. Additionally, continue to drive safely.
Route 66 | CA to IL
Any collection of the best road trips would be blasphemy if it didn't mention Route 66. One of the first routes included in the US Highway System, the fabled "Mother Road," travels from downtown Chicago to Santa Monica's pier. The ancient highway spans eight states and around 2,500 miles and is interspersed with flashes of kitsch and vintage Americana.
Highway 1 to Big Sur | CA
This show-stopping road may have just gained notoriety thanks to its appearance in the Big Little Lies opening credits sequence, but it has long been a favorite among drivers in the know. This iconic stretch of coastline in California is full of heart-pounding drops and dangerous curves, but it's all worth it for the breathtaking views you'll see along the way. Be ready: Some distances can be traveled for up to 40 miles without stopping at a gas station or restroom.
Blue Ridge Parkway | VA to NC
Ready for a slow, storied drive? If so, proceed to the Blue Ridge Parkway, where commercial vehicles are strictly restricted, and the posted speed limit is a pleasant 45 mph. The 469-mile road connects the national parks of Shenandoah and the Great Smoky Mountains by meandering across the Appalachian Mountains of Virginia and North Carolina. Visit in the fall when the foliage bursts in a dazzling display of crimson, auburn, and golden leaves for the best leaf-peeping opportunities.
Overseas Highway | FL
Play some Jimmy Buffett and head to the Overseas Highway for a getaway to the tropics. The 113-mile, sunny trip, which follows US-1, connects the Florida Keys. The continuous road, which was first built in 1928 and restored in the 1980s, links Key Largo with laid-back Key West. One of the longest bridges in the world, the Seven Mile Bridge, may be crossed while admiring imposing lighthouses, vibrant coral reef parks, and stretches of white-sand beaches.
Going-to-the-Sun Road | MT
Since its completion in 1932, this fantastic route has fulfilled its original objective of promoting tourism and encouraging people to visit America's national parks. The 50-mile highway cuts through Glacier National Park in Montana before ascending to Logan Pass and crossing the Continental Divide. Avoid this road in the winter when snowbanks can reach a depth of 80 feet, and be careful of blind corners and sharp drop-offs.
Santa Fe to Taos Loop | NM
Set out for the Santa Fe Loop in New Mexico, which is weaved between the Rio Grande and Sangre de Cristo mountain valleys, after packing a pair of cowboy boots. Tumbleweeds and all, this American road trip adventure looks like it belongs in an old Western film. This drive is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity because of the winding desert landscapes and the pueblo settlements of Ojo Caliente.
Texas Hill Country | TX
Driving is the most acceptable way to take in the limitless splendor of the Lone Star State. The Hill Country is distinguished between San Antonio and Austin by its gently rolling hills and picture-perfect bluebonnet blossoms. The captivating landscape is filled with award-winning wineries, quaint country roads, orchards producing countless delectable apples, peaches, and pomegranates each year. Hill Country is also overflowing with mom-and-pop barbecue restaurants for meat enthusiasts.
Anchorage to Valdez | AK
On this quick but sweet drive, take in Alaska's breathtaking sights for yourself. You can travel along the 300-mile road that joins the Glenn and Richardson highways while passing sparkling glaciers and mountain ranges with a bevy of sky-high peaks, many of which have not yet been named. The colorful Spirit Houses of Eklutna Village and the Matanuska Glacier Scenic Turnout are just a couple of the Last Frontier's natural beauties that may be enjoyed by taking your time on the seven-hour hike.
Route 101 | CA to WA
This route comprises separate road segments that make up a continuous journey, like many other popular US road trip routes. You can drive from the US/Canadian border, just north of Seattle, down the US West Coast. You can also go to the US/Mexican border, just south of San Diego, by following Route 101. It then changes to California State Route 1, also known as the Pacific Coast Highway, or PCH, before briefly returning to Route 101 once more. This is the mother of all road trips.
Hana Highway | HI
Hawaii is most renowned for its lush scenery and underwater adventures, but the 50th state of the union is also the location of one of the best US road journeys. Sixty miles of breathtaking curves connect Kahului to Hana on this trip through paradise. Most people can drive there in three hours or less, although heavy traffic during rush hour can significantly lengthen travel times. Watch for swinging mango trees, impressive coastal cliffs, and colonies of monk seals lazing in the sun as you travel.
Olympic Peninsula Loop | WA
Another West Coast marvel that encircles Olympic National Park in Washington is the Olympic Peninsula Loop. This 330-mile route is unique due to the incredible variety of its landscape, which swerves, dips, and dives. The one-day excursion will allow you to see the rocky Pacific coasts, lush temperate rainforests, and the snow-capped Cascade Range. Another local specialty is fresh clams, so don't forget to try some.
Great River Road | MN to MS
The Great River Road, one of the country's longest scenic byways, travels along the Mississippi River for almost 3,000 miles. The beautiful route, which spans 10 states and connects northern Minnesota to the Gulf of Mexico, takes around ten days to complete. The route's distinctive green pilot's wheel road signs make it simple to recognize the well-marked path. Additionally, it is praised for the variety of natural, cultural, historical, and recreational sites that can be found there.
Volcanic Legacy Scenic Byway | CA to OR
Pack the car and go to the Volcanic Legacy Scenic Byway, which connects Lassen National Park in California with Crater Lake in Oregon, for absolutely unique and breathtaking sights. The 500-mile-long north-south path follows the Cascade Mountain Range's volcanically-created natural structures. The journey travels through the magnificent Shasta Valley and provides unimpeded views of Mount Shasta, the nation's second-tallest volcano.
Beartooth Highway | MT to WY
This 68-mile route, a National Scenic Byways All-American Road, takes travelers directly into Yellowstone National Park from southwest Montana through northwest Wyoming. This varied drive, which debuted in 1937, has been hailed as one of America's most breathtaking. Incredible alpine plateaus, forested valleys, glistening glacier lakes, and unforgettable wildlife are some of the journey's highlights. The route includes climbing Beartooth Pass, a beautiful section between Cooke City and Red Lodge, Montana, which is only open during the summer.
Lincoln Highway | NY to CA
The first road for cars in the entire US was the little-known Lincoln Highway. Carl G. Fisher, an entrepreneur from Indiana, came up with the idea in 1912 and officially launched it a year later. It originally crossed 13 states on its way from Times Square in New York City to Lincoln Park in San Francisco. It now passes through more than 700 cities, towns, and villages in 14 states and 128 counties, including New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Iowa, Nebraska, Colorado, Wyoming, Utah, Nevada, and California, as a result of a realignment that took place in 1928.
Since the creation of the Numbered Highway System, the Highway has been gradually supplanted by numbered designations, with the majority of the route becoming US Route 30 from Pennsylvania to Wyoming. However, just like other traditional cross-country road journeys, you can easily navigate the entire length of the original route with little research.
How much does it cost to make a US road trip?
It costs about 36 cents per mile to get across the state.
What is the best state for a road trip?
Cost is essential, as Wyoming was shown to be the country's most affordable road trip location and the top state overall among the 50 states.
What is the most scenic drive in the United States?
Washington's Olympic Peninsula Loop is The peninsula's only significant road and scenic route.
How long would a road trip across the USA take?
The coast-to-coast trip across the USA can be between 2,500 and 3,500 miles long, depending on your route.