If you’re looking for that last hurrah with your college friends, or you’re newlyweds looking for a fun and different way to spend your honeymoon, what could be better than a good old-fashioned road trip?  Sometimes the best trips are the ones that happen on your way to your destination, so how about naming several different destinations and taking a long drive?  Take in the sites, taste the fruit of America’s best roadside stands, and pose for a selfie or two with the best oddities the open road has to offer.  Pull out your maps, drivers, it’s road trip time!

All too often with modern vacations, we’re so focused on the destination that we don’t take the time to enjoy the trip there.  Let’s face it, when we get there, everyone is scattering to do their own thing, face down in their phone, and the togetherness ends up being the part we should’ve enjoyed on the drive.  Sure, a multiple destination road trip may not be your idea of hijinks if you’ve got a car full of kids that aren’t old enough to enjoy themselves, but maybe the last trip of your youth should be with your friends sharing the driving detail and DJ duties on a classic road trip.

The best road trips are the ones that start out as one thing, and end up taking you somewhere else, but let’s be real, we’ve got to have a plan.  No one in their right mind is just going to start driving without a destination in mind.  While you could map out your own route, like the entire eastern seaboard, or the pacific northwest, you’ll probably have better luck with a trip that is tried and true, so at least you’ll know partially what to expect.

  • PCH – The Pacific Coast Highway isn’t for the faint of heart, but if you want a breath-taking road trip, the PCH is where it’s at. Although the PCH is only an official 123 miles, Route 1 can extend your trip from California all the way to the Canadian border.  Mountains and oceans and scenery, oh my!  The PCH will be full of sharp turns, but the Monterey Peninsula alone, will be worth it.
  • US 1 Florida – With a trip down this highway, you will see the flatness of Florida give way to crystal blue waters as you island hop via the road you’re traveling. This one-hundred-twenty mile jaunt from Key Largo to Key West has plenty of stops along the way to get into the island way of life, and the drive itself is stunning!
  • Hana Highway, Maui, Hawaii – Unless you live in Hawaii, or are on vacation there, this isn’t a road trip you’re just going to decide to take one day. This one is going to take careful planning, and most likely, airfare, but to say it will be worth it is an understatement.  Through a harrowing fifty mile drive, you’ll be subjected to the most rigorous road conditions you’ve ever seen, but the reward will be the rich, lush scenery on this tropical highway.  Jam packed with waterfalls, red and black sand beaches, and enough roadside stands to keep you stuffed, every bit of this two hour to all-day road trip will be worth the trip.
  • Great River Road – When you’re planning to pack it in for the ultimate multi-state getaway, this is one way to get a generous cross-section of what the country has to offer. From Minnesota to Louisiana, this trip will hug the mighty Mississippi through ten states worth of prairie lands to major cities.  This is not the fastest route from the top of our country to the bottom, so if the road trip isn’t your intention, head elsewhere.  However, if you want to bask in everything the open road has to offer, head this way.
  • Going to the Sun Road, Montana – Out of all of the scenic pictures of mountain tops rising over glorious beautiful lakes you’ve seen in your lifetime, chances are that many of them have been taken in Montana. The Going to the Sun Road is 50 miles through the most beautiful scenery you’ve ever scene, designed to entice people to enjoy Glacier National Park in the safest way possible for both the park’s environment and the people traveling.  You’ll only be taking this trip outside of the winter months, however, because the road closes down when the snow starts to fall.  Fair warning; watch out for the mountain goats.

Whether you’re planning an outing for an existing vacation, or you’re simply looking to hit the road and take in the beauty that surrounds, the road trip is the perfect way to get out and really enjoy what your destination has to offer.  Pack up the car, get the tunes in order, and make sure you’ve got a camera, because you’re going to want to remember this!