Road Trip Across America

Story by: Victor Oluwagbemi     Date: 24 April 2022    Image by: Canva | surfleader

7 minutes reading time United States

The good old golden ages of motor travel have long blown past, thanks to the technological liftoff that has seen the mainstream adoption of air travel.

However, the Great American road trip is a culture that remains alive and kicking (even) in modern times. Road-tripping across the United States, untold vastness will reveal picturesque landscapes, bizarre roadside realities, and town games highly likely to crack you up all night.

Yearning strongly for a road trip across this side of the Wild West? You would undoubtedly not regret campervanning or RVing through these routes would up the experience.

Road Trip San Francisco

From San Francisco to Utah

Bringing your journey to a start in California‘s most relaxing metropolis, ensure to experience the urbanity before revving into the broadways. Then, you can do some cycling across the much-loved Golden Gate Bridge, from whence you would get breathtaking views of the bay area.

If you are down for more adventure, visit the prison island of Alcatraz. Hipster cafes in San Francisco’s Hayes Valley offer the city’s best coffee; you might want to sit for a worthwhile sip.

Upon exiting the city, you will be driving towards Lake Tahoe, backdropped by the mountains of Sierra Nevada. While some like to stop for fishing, hiking, cycling or kayaking, others head straight for Yosemite, home to towering waterfalls and humongous sequoia trees.

Yosemite leads to Death Valley, a particularly rocky scenery adored by photographers. The road continues into the desert, which brings you to Las Vegas, also known as Sin City. In Vegas, you can explore the uniqueness of Utah, from the bizarre hoodoos of Bryce Canyon National Park to the must-see Monument Valley.

Road Trip Las Vegas

Looping Las Vegas

In Western America, the red rock is the scenery that will guide you through a Las Vegas loop. The go-round takes you through the Monument Valley, the Grand Canyon, Arches, Bryce Canyon, Canyonlands, and Zion National Park.

From the bright lights that decorate the strip of Las Vegas, drive across the empty Arizona-Utah desert right into the heart of the American Wild West. Depending on what you have geared up for, there is the avenue to bike or hike the national parks and style through the unconventional landscape while brushing up on the local Navajo culture.

Bear in mind that the Monument Valley is not an American National Park but a Navajo Tribal Park. As such, there is a need to respect the local traditions and customers. While photography is not prohibited in these parts, it is often wiser to seek permission because contributions are often requested.

Enjoy the sunrise of Canyonlands’ Mesa Arch, the sunset above the Arches’ National Park’s Delicate Arch, hike Angels Landing in Zion National Park and top off the rendezvous with a limo ride back into the strip of Las Vegas.

Road Trip Chicago

Chicago To New Orleans

The Chicago-New Orleans drive traverses the heart of America, from top to bottom. For die-hard fans of the CW series The Originals, this road trip is a chance to visit the place where the spellbinding movie was shot.

More interestingly, it takes a music-themed route through 6 different states. Starting from Chicago, the route leads you into St Louis, the birthplace of Abraham Lincoln, from where you will head for Memphis.

The cradle of rock’n’roll, blues, and jazz, Memphis is home to “the Elvis Graceland” mansion. Here, you can feel the southern charm and help yourself to some distinctly creole cuisine before proceeding to Natchez, just along the banks of River Mississippi.

From that point, it takes just 3 hours to complete the big route to the ever-alluring southside city of New Orleans, a jazz hub and foodie paradise.

Blue Ridge Parkway

The Blue Ridge Parkway

Snaking its way through the Appalachians from Virginia, the Blue Ridge Parkway goes down to California’s Smoky Mountains National Park. When it is Autumn, the edges of the road are embraced by golden-ish trees that twist and turn across the magnificent outlook of the Appalachian Mountains.

Along the way, there are waterfalls, hiking trails, and scenic views that are easily accessible from the road. Though there are many interesting destinations along this route, the drive [itself] is the highlight of the voyage. For one, the road was made purely to aid a smooth ride past the Virginian countryside.

A good number of people miss this part of the United States because it is not completely included in the count of the country’s major cities. Yet, it is surely a worthwhile area to road-trip through and grab a ton of Instagram-worthy snapshots.

The best time to cruise the Blue Ridge Parkway is during Autumn. More precisely, September and October are the perfect months to embark on this trip. With a speed limit of 45mph, it is obvious the road is meant to be leisurely driven over. So do take your time!

Miami Beaches

Miami To Key West

To drive from Miami to Key West, you have to cross 42 bridges built over oceans. More often than not, this connection is called the final link in the chain of Florida Keys. The nearly overwhelming views of the almost endless Atlantic Ocean make this experience unmatched by any other road trip.

A Miami-Key West journey typically has you frequently switching islands, so it is essential to confirm their names as you drive by. They are Ragged Key, Plantation Key, Fat Deer Key, Tea Table Key, and Sugarloaf Key. This string finally latches you on to Key West, right to the beach, where the lime cocktail is a sought-after staple.

The most exciting part of this road trip is how the road hops from one island to another, giving you the chance to pull in at other keys. Generally, it gives a trip a feeling more exhilarating than flying. With your windows lowered and sunglasses donned, crossing over the ocean is a blockbuster way to begin exploring Florida and the Keys.

Key West, Florida

You can drive from Miami to Key West virtually any time of the year. But between June and November, the hurricane season will have you excessively keeping an eye on the weather forecasts. To avoid this, it is best to visit the Keys In April or the early weeks of May. Things are at a high during the winter, so make sure to book possible appointments ahead.

Route 66, United States

Route 66

Starting from Chicago and ending up in Los Angeles, Route 66 is one of the most extensive classic American road trips. It [basically] lets you travel the long yet straight roadscapes across the country’s breadbasket, passing by old-fashioned motels and truck stops that once popularized the route.

Route 66 has a long historical background, and key sights document pieces of this information along the way. You would see them in the restaurants, museums, and towns that have become an integral aspect of America’s pre-modern history. Should you like taking a detour, bear in mind that you will be driving close to Las Vegas, Sante Fe, and the Grand Canyon.

Route 66’s fabletic drive-through is the stuff of American luminaries, as it is the best-known and most-traveled of all road trip routes. You will pass through towns you are unlikely to ever visit again, and the link is symbolic of the opportunity and prosperity that defines the native American spirit.

Final thoughts

This drive can be completed in 5 days. But those who have a penchant for living in the moment might take as long as 2 weeks to soak it all in. Of course, in a place like the United States—nearly as big as a continent—there is no shortage of road trips and unforgettable experiences.

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