5 Best Road Trip Destinations in the USA on A Budget
The United States has always been a nation of road trippers and will remain so for a long time. It is impossible to imagine a better way to explore the vast array of picturesque coastal views, breathtaking valleys, rugged cliffs, lush forests, and limitless desert terrains than driving the open road.
Many of us tend to forget that there are many beautiful places in the US when we’re swooning over Asian travel destinations or European holiday spots on Pinterest. You’re not alone, though. Discovering new places in one’s own country is completely ignored by most travelers.
The USA has some stunning national and state parks and winding roads stretching for miles and miles. Take advantage of the situation by taking a road trip across the country to an unknown destination.
Do you enjoy road trips? Is domestic travel more appealing to you than international vacations? If so, here are the best road trips in the USA to satisfy your wanderlust.
1. Blue Ridge Parkway – Virginia
This 469-mile (755-kilometer) drive connects Shenandoah National Park in Virginia and Great Smoky Mountains National Park in North Carolina, making it a road trip like no other. This scenic drive features a 45 mph speed limit, no billboards, no commercial traffic, and no commercial towns, so you can truly appreciate one of the USA’s finest scenic drives.
Begin your adventure from either Boone or Cherokee and make your way to the Blue Ridge Parkway Road for five and a half hours of breathtaking landscapes, waterfalls, wild turkeys and birds, scarlet sourwood trees, and deep red and yellow fall colors to an array of spring flowers that bloom orange, white, pink, purple and red.
Regardless of the season, it’s an unforgettable trip you can enjoy all year round. Just be sure to pack all your necessary items carefully on your f150 roof rack.
2. State Highway 82, Colorado
The state of Colorado is known for everything outdoors, including road tripping. State highways are perfect for exploring and traveling during the summer season. Independence Pass is a must-see when you’re on the road. Independence Pass stretches over 32 miles of the region’s mountainous terrain and is a fantastic driving route for those who enjoy driving.
With endless twists, turns, rises, sloped corners, and breathtaking scenery for days, State Highway 82 in Colorado may be one of the best driving roads in the US. You can also stop to admire the view at dozens of places. In winter, the roads close, so the only time you can explore this route is late spring (weather permitting), summer, and fall.
3. The Big Five in Utah
This is one of the best road trips for those interested in fiery geography in the USA. Due to its wealth of national parks, the Southwestern part of the country is a well-liked destination for both domestic and foreign tourists.
The area is called “The Big Five” since it is home to five national parks. These include Capitol Reef National Park, Bryce Canyon, Canyonlands, Arches, and Zion National Park. Each of these parks is equally beautiful and well-liked.
You may not be aware that the park receives more than 1.5 million visitors annually. The Delicate Arch is undoubtedly the main draw of the national park. This landmark is so iconic that it appears on the state’s license plates.
4. Route 66
Route 66 is likely something you’ve heard about but maybe never experienced. As this journey is long, you can break it up into smaller parks if you’re not up for too much adventure or take it all in one go if you like.
There are multiple states that the road passes through. The states include Illinois, Oklahoma, Texas, New Mexico, Missouri, and California. Thus, if you’re looking for the best road trips from Chicago, here is one you won’t want to miss.
It’s a great time to travel during the winter season. Each year, Chicago hosts the Winter Wonderfest in December. It offers a variety of seasonal attractions and entertainment. Due to the event’s indoor location, you won’t have to worry about the cold. You’ll also find more than 500 Christmas trees, snow slides, and carnival rides at the festival.
5. Olympic Peninsula Loop, Washington
The Olympic Peninsula Loop, part of Highway 101, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. For that reason alone, traveling across the region for a short time will be worthwhile. Be sure to walk through the Hoh Rain Forest while you’re there.
If you enjoy little adventures, you can also enjoy the Loop’s coastlines and hiking paths. The scenic drive, however, makes the journey so thrilling. There are plenty of wildlife sightings along the route, a massive mountain range, and a heart-warming waterfall.
You won’t want to blink once the journey begins. You can complete the course in three days if you do it quickly. However, if you want to explore the area, stay a little longer and try to stop at each site along the route.
Some of the best road trips in the USA for families and solo travelers are highlighted here, along with a few lesser-known ones. No matter what you are looking for, whether you enjoy the beat of the sun, the chill of the desert nights, or the sound of crashing waves against a rocky shore, you’ll find it here.