We are fortunate to be living in a country of beautiful landscapes and diverse cities. Summer road trips are great for taking advantage of this luxury and seeing more of the country as you get from destination to destination. Here is our list of the best US road trips for you and your family to try out this summer.
Blue Ridge Parkway
From Shenadoah National Park, Virginia, to the Great Smoky Mountains of North Carolina, enjoy a scenic tour of cultural history, including Appalachian and Cherokee arts and traditions. Catch the natural beauty of some of the world’s oldest mountains, waterfalls and gorges along this National Parkway.
Starting Point: Shenadoah National Park, Virginia
Black Hills of South Dakota
This road trip has been an established route since Lewis and Clark first passed through. The Lakota territory of the Black Hills will take you through a variety of distinct scenes, from the Badlands to the mountains to evergreen forests. There are many attractions along the way, including Mount Rushmore, Crazy Horse Memorial and the deadwoods.
Starting Point: Rapid City
Check out the best of Maine—maybe the best of the east coast—along Route 1. From Kittery to Fort Kent, this road will take you along the quaint fishing villages of New England and of course to the best lobster and clam shacks around. Theatres, museums, weird and wonderful landmarks will provide lots to do along the way for the family, and frequent breaks to enjoy your trip together.
Starting Point: Kittery
Pacific Coast Highway
Head on over to the west coast for this classic Californian trip, lined with cities that are bursting with fun activities for the entire family. Start out in San Francisco at the Golden Gate Park and watch as you leave the Golden State Bridge behind or start with a trip to Alcatraz Island and finish off at Balboa Park or the Cabrillo National Monument in San Diego. Activities along the way could include swimming in Monterey Bay, visiting the magical Hearst Castle in San Simeon, and touring Universal Studios in Los Angeles.
Starting Point: San Francisco or San Diego
This 2,500 mile road trip may be a long one, but is packed with roadside attractions that will delight the kids. They will love seeing the World’s Largest Catsup Bottle in Oklahoma, the Cadillac Ranch in Texas, and The World’s (second) Largest Rocking Chair in Missouri. End your trip on the Santa Monica Pier for one last celebration of all the fun you’ve had on the trip.
Starting Point: Chicago or Los Angeles
Take the scenic route along Florida’s Emerald Coast to see the white sand beaches and dune lakes that will provide hours of endless summer fun between the beachside towns of the Florida coast. There are many free concerts and fireworks all summer at Rosemary Beach, Alys Beach, Seaside and Gulf Place, as well as hiking along the Timpoochee Trail, Sandcastle competitions and Children’s plays performed along the 30A by The REP. For more ideas of what to do along this beautiful stretch of highway, check out this site.
Starting Point: New York