Are you thinking about planning the best road trip ever?! Right now is a great time to plan a road trip!
This post will have lots of advice for how to prepare, great tips to consider, and even some sample road trips to inspire you!
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Best Travel Hacks
There are a lot of ways to make your road trip experience better. Being prepared before you begin is what these tips and tricks will help you achieve. Let’s get ready to plan a road trip!
Getting Your Car Ready for a Road Trip
Going on a road trip is such a great idea. But there are a few things you need to consider before you go. Getting your car road trip ready is essential!
Being prepared for an emergency while you travel in remote areas is really smart. Doing the necessary preparations before you start your trip is essential! Having a plan if something happens on your trip can be the best thing you can do before you start your road trip! So important as you plan a road trip.
Contributed By: Whenyouwander.com
Road trips are a great way to see the countryside. There is something about taking the road less traveled that is pretty exciting.
If you are thinking about how to save money on your next road trip, renting an RV may be the way to go. No need to find hotel rooms or put miles on your own car.
Renting an RV From RVShare is a really great idea! It is super easy and a great way to see if the RVing life is for you. Your road trips may never be the same again! This may be something to consider as you plan a road trip.
Road Trip Apps
Do you ever wish there were apps that could help you as you are on your road trip. For instance, would like to know where the lowest priced gas station is or what restaurants or hotels are located on the next exit?
Guess what there are lots of apps for road trips that can help you along your drive. Let’s make this easier as we journey to our next destination!
Contributed By: Happymomhacks.com
Tips For Making Your Road Trip a Breeze
Driving long distances can be tough. You may be second guessing your decision to drive instead of fly! But don’t worry there are a few things you can do to make your road trip a breeze.
From planning a special stop to trying something new or getting an audio book that will entertain the entire family on your trip. Planning ahead can really help as you embark on your long trip.
Contributed By: Statebystate.net
The Best Advice for Road Trip With Kids
Does the thought of a long road trip with the whole family packed in the mini-van stress you out? Traveling Tanya offers several tips that will help you survive your next road trip with kids.
The keys to a memorable and relaxing road trip are well-thought-out preparations and ensuring you have appropriate expectations. Keep the age of your children in mind, but all travelers have the same basic needs that need to be met in order to ensure a harmonious trip.
From snacks to entertainment to bathroom breaks, Traveling Tanya provides some sage advice that will have your clan enjoying the journey almost as much as the destination.
Contributed By: Travelingtanya.com
Remember Why You Wanted to Go on the Trip!
Traveling with kids can be tough! But one of the best piece of advice is to remember why you wanted to go on the trip in the first place. Always keep this in mind as you experience the hard times with your kids.
It really is the best sanity saving tip for road trips I can give you. You can do this!
Contributed By: Nohomenomadder.com
Starting your trip with a lot of patience will benefit you as you travel with your kids. One of my 10 hacks for making a road trip with kids a good experience is preparing before you go.
My favorite hack is to buy special treats from the dollar store to hand out as we drive across the country. This is a life saver! There are definitely extra things you can do as you plan a road trip and you have kids along for the journey.
Contributed By: Hessunacademy.com
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Plan a Road Trip on the East Coast
The Eastern United States is really one of the best road trips in America. What I love is that you can travel a short distance and be in a new state with new sites to explore. Let’s explore some of this area!
New York State
When you hear the words New York you may automatically think of the concrete jungle that sits on the Southern end of the state. However, if you take the time to look past the city, you will find that New York State has so much more to offer, from small, picturesque villages, natural wonders, wineries, culture, and history.
A road trip through the state is a great way to take in all of it!
Starting in Buffalo, be sure to spend some time exploring one of the world’s most well known waterfalls-Niagara Falls. Take in the roaring waters, go for a hike through the Niagara Gorge Discovery center, or opt for a family day at the Niagara Aquarium.
Be sure to stop and grab some spicy Buffalo Wings in their home city before continuing on to the Fingerlakes region. Here you will find an endless number of great wineries and state parks for exploring. If you are a waterfall chaser, be sure to check out Ithaca, home to over 150 waterfalls.
Next, continue on to Saratoga Springs and go on a hunt for the area’s various mineral springs and catch a horse race at the Saratoga Race Course.
Make a quick stop in Albany to see the state’s capitol building and continue on to the Catskills region, where you will find many hikes with simply stunning views.
New York City
Lastly you will find yourself in New York City, where you can explore some important sites such as the 9/11 memorial and Statue of Liberty, do some shopping in Time Square, or enjoy a picnic in Central Park.
Contributed By: Navigationjunkie.com
New Hampshire Road Trip
A road trip through New Hampshire’s White Mountains will bring you to grand views and many waterfalls. I’m a sucker for a waterfall. I try and plan all our hikes to waterfalls in fact. I love being able to take off my sneakers and cool off in the rivers that feed the waterfalls. Of course, we’ve been known to swim in these pools as well. They are quite refreshing.
New Hampshire has some great mountain trails that will give you the most magnificent views of the Mount Washington Valley. Whether you prefer to get to the top of the mountain by foot, car, bike, tram, cog railway, or ski lift you can find the way that is best for you. Just make sure to bring a picnic lunch to sit and enjoy the views once at the top.
Don’t forget to spend some time in the picturesque town of North Conway. A pedestrian-friendly town that has everything from your favorite General Store with penny candy to the adventure stores with the latest hiking and outdoor fashion for those who need to pick up some gear before heading up the mountains.
As you can see the White Mountain of New Hampshire is a great place for a family road trip.
Contributed By: Intheolivegroves.com
Florida Road Trip
Straight on for about three and a half hours, you will arrive in Key West, but you will miss so much if you don’t take the time to make some memories.
John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park
John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park (Key Largo, MM 102.5) is where you have your choice of water sports; canoe through the park’s waters, take a glass-bottom boat tour, snorkel or scuba.
Robbie’s (MM 77.5) is a must-stop for families in Isla Morada, the sports fishing capital of the world. Charter a fishing boat, snorkel trip, or parasailing adventure if you dare. Or purchase a bucket of fish and feed the tarpon from the docks.
Marathon Key is laid back and uber casual Stop at Aquarium Encounters (MM 53) for a hands-on experience with the sea, including feeding stingrays, giant grouper, and even sharks.
Cross the 7-mile bridge (MM47), and you’re almost there. But, one last stop for beaching, kayaking, and snorkeling in the clear blue water at Bahia Honda State Park (MM40 ‘ish).
Must Sees in Key West
- The Southern Most Point is a must for a photograph.
- Stroll Duval Street, full of artsy boutiques, restaurants, bars, and “people watching” (they are rather interesting down there).
- Visit The Ernest Hemingway Home and Museum and check out the six-toed cats.
- And be sure not to miss a taste of Key Lime Pie.
Finish your day sipping on a tropical umbrella drink and watching the sunset at Mallory Square. It is a perfect summer in Florida itinerary!
Contributed By: Travelingpartyof4.com
Plan a Road Trip to the Western United States
The Western United States is so beautiful and unique. Following the Coast from Washington State down through California maybe one of the best road trips in America! There really is something for everyone. Let’s explore a few places and plan a road trip!
Colorado Road Trip
Very few American road trips can contend with a Colorado road trip. Especially if you like incredible natural beauty, historical towns and soothing hot springs.
Our Colorado road trip was a 2 week affair beginning and ending in Denver. Although we would have liked to have stayed longer since there was so much to do along this route.
From Denver we traveled to Boulder where we discovered the city’s vibrant energy, craft beer scene and great shopping. Then we made our way to Glenwood Springs where you can soak in the area’s hot springs and explore nearby trails. Our favourite was Hanging Lake, located on the I-70 between Boulder and Glenwood Springs.
Next up at Grand Junction you can explore Colorado National Monument, a national park known for its spectacular canyons, red rocks, and sandstone towers. We discovered the charming town of Ouray, after, and learned there was more to the historic town than just friendly locals. The area is all about hiking and waterfalls.
Mesa Verde National Park
At Mesa Verde National Park, a World Heritage Site we learnt about the fascinating history and dwelling remains of the Ancestral Pueblo people and then headed to our final stop – Colorado Springs before completing our loop back to Denver.
At Colorado Springs you can visit Pikes Peak or the Garden of the Gods, home to crazy red sandstone rock formations that are as much as 300 million years old. All in all it was an incredible experience that is difficult to sum up in a few words.
A Colorado road trip should not be missed!
Contributed By: Drinkteatravel.com
Nevada Road Trip
Drive Along the Iconic Loneliest Road in America
The loneliest road in America is exactly what the name suggests – lonely. But what this route lacks in
civilization, it makes up with beautiful scenery, views you have only seen in old Western movies, fun
ghost towns, and incredible hot springs.
The loneliest road in America is also known as the Nevada portion of the transcontinental Highway 50, starting in Carson City and going all the way across Nevada to the Utah border.
A road trip on the Loneliest Road in America takes you back in time as you make your way from west to east, visiting some of the best sights in Nevada.
Start your road trip in Carson City on Lake Tahoe after spending a few days at the lake. Make your way east through Fallon and make sure you fuel up as it is the last bigger town on the way for a while.
Sand Mountain Recreation Area
Your first stop is Sand Mountain Recreation Area which is a beautiful sand dune in the middle of nowhere and perfect for any ATV enthusiast or anyone who loves romantic sunsets on sand dunes.
The next few days will take you through the Sierra Nevadas providing you with incredible mountain scenery, to Austin, NV, a cute ghost town which could be from a movie set, and to one of Nevada’s many “secret” hot springs.
Spencer Hot Springs
Nevada has more hot springs than any other state and more than 300 of them occur naturally. Spencer Hot Springs is right on your way along the Loneliest Road in America. Make sure to plan a stop and enjoy the peace and quiet while appreciating the view of the Sierra Nevadas.
Make sure you bring your camping gear along with you and relax in one of the campgrounds or live the wild life and camp on BLM land between days of driving. The entire road can take you from 1 to 3 days of driving, depending on how much you would like to see along the way. You can find more ideas here if for your Southwest USA and Loneliest Road in America road trip.
Contributed By: Thenextrip.xyz
California Road Trip
Malibu to Monterrey
Starting in Malibu, is a great place to start your road trip. If you are from California or you just arrived and rented a car for this special road trip you will have a amazing experience.
If you need to take some time and enjoy the many beaches in Malibu before you hit the coastal highway.
From Malibu, you will have 100 miles until you reach Santa Barbara. Along the way you will see amazing beaches. Eating lunch in Ventura is a great idea to break the trip up. Once you reach Santa Barbara make time to enjoy the town. The beaches are so beautiful.
San Luis Obispo
Your next stop is San Luis Obispo where you want want to see this classic beach town. Pismo Beach is a must! One little secret is that wine in this area is incredible without the Napa Valley price.
Continuing on this amazing road trip you will hit Cambria and on to the Big Sur. You will want to spend most of your day exploring all the hikes and phenomenal photo opportunities.
This 17 mile coastal drive is the highlight of this road trip. After you take in all the beauty around you stop in town to shop and walk around. You will want to have plenty of energy to explore on your next stop Monterey!
The last stop on this epic road trip is Monterey. It is most known for its first rate aquarium. The sea life you will encounter is out of this world!
This is a perfect place to plan a road trip!
Contributed By: Familytravellifestyle.com
Washington State Road Trip
Washington State is a beautiful place for a road trip. There are so many must see stops that will leave you wanting more. We had an adventure as we traveled through Washington State.
Things to Do in Washington
In Seattle we stopped at Golden Park Beach and looked for sea glass. Stopping at Mt. Rainier which was a slight detour from getting to the coastal HWY was well worth it. We hiked all day and would recommend checking it out!
After, that amazing stop we headed to Mt. Saint Helen’s Volcanic Monument. Driving through the forest was delight. My final destination was Seaside, Oregon which led me to another adventure in Oregon and the Coastal HWY.
Washington State was one of the best road trips I have been on!
Contributed By: Thetreckingfamily.com
Oregon Coast Road Trip
As you plan a road trip to this area Cape Perpetua is a must! Cape Perpetua is at Mile Marker 167. On a clear day you can see 37 miles out to sea and 70 miles of coast line. Thors Well, Devil’s Churn, Cookes Chasm, and Cape Cove Beach are located at this National Forest scenic area.
Thor’s Well is a massive blow hole. As the waves come in, the powerful pull of the ocean makes the most incredible site you will ever see. We witnessed this at low tide but high tide is suppose to be even better.
I highly recommend making this part of your experience on the Oregon Coast. You will not be disappointed!
Contributed By: Whenyouwander.com
Plan a Road Trip to the Midwest United States
The Midwest is absolutely gorgeous. The scenery really can not be beat. Let’s check out a few places In the Midwest so you can plan a road trip in this area.
Michigan Road Trip
The Tunnel of Trees is a scenic, leisurely drive best done in the autumn. Skinny roads wind through this area just north of Petoskey, MI. The trees surround the road and meet above the road, creating a tunnel of beauty to enjoy.
Along the drive are small town gems, including a farm with activities and restaurant and a general store. This short road trip can easily be combined with other natural beauties in northern Michigan.
Contributed By: Alittlelifeofbeauty.com
Minnesota Road Trip
North Shore Scenic Drive Along Lake Superior
It’s a perfect Minnesota vacation or staycation itinerary with recommended stops for those who love hiking, lighthouses, chasing waterfalls and taking in the spectacular views of Lake Superior and its rugged shoreline.
This stunning scenic North Shore road trip starts about two hours north of Minneapolis / St. Paul in Duluth, Minn. on Highway 61 and hugs Lake Superior for nearly 150 miles until it reaches Grand Portage, Minn. near the Canadian border.
Your road trip with the top things to do on the North Shore features the following.
- Duluth, the gateway to Lake Superior, is where you’ll visit the iconic aerial life bridge where you can watch the ginormous ships come in from around the world.
- You’ll find lighthouses in Duluth, the historic Split Rock Lighthouse State Park and Two Harbors.
- If waterfalls are your thing, then you will not be disappointed. Nearly every Minnesota state park along the North Shore scenic drive has at least one if not two or three waterfalls. The same goes for hiking trails.
- You’ll find panoramic views from the cliffs of Palisade Head, the top of a 100-ft. fire tower you can climb as well as a gondola ride to the top of Moose Mountain.
So if you’re looking to stay stateside this summer or fall, this local recommends a road trip along Lake Superior’s North Shore. You will only be disappointed that you won’t have enough time to experience everything on your Minnesota North Shore road trip.
Contributed By: Kmfiswriting.com
Wisconsin Road Trip
Things To Do in Northern Wisconsin
Especially when you are an outdoor buff, Northern Wisconsin will be your happy place. Drive to some of the prettiest lakes in Wisconsin, hike in the Big Bay State Park, kayak along with the Apostle Islands and rent a romantic log cabin are only a few of the things that should be part of any Northern Wisconsin road trip.
If you are more of a city person, a stop in La Crosse is an absolute must. Here you can visit the town’s best breweries and enjoy heartily, Wisconsin food. Other mandatory stops would be Tomahawk, Pattinson State Park and the scenic Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest.
Plan a Road Trip to the Central United States
Have you ever wanted to take a epic road trip? Like spend 25 days exploring the beautiful USA! We decided to hit 5 states. Our path included Kansas, Oklahoma, Memphis and Nashville, Tennessee, Kentucky, and Missouri.
Our main objective on this road trip was to see Mammoth Caves in Kentucky. We wanted to make this a fun trip with lots of stops. Part of the fun of any road trip is planning the road trip. Knowing how many miles you will drive each day and where you will be staying each night.
Planning an ultimate road trip is exciting!
Contributed By: followingourownpath.com
Texas Road Trip
Texas is the perfect US state for road trips. Its size and variety are what makes it perfect – in the course of a week/10 days you can easily cover deserts, mountains, hills, cities and rural areas, and experience great food (hey, barbecue!) and hospitality.
Since Texas is the largest state in the Lower 48, there are endless opportunities for road trips, depending on what you’re after.
El Paso to DFW
A possible Texas road trip itinerary could take you from El Paso to DFW, a distance of about 900 miles, via Big Bend National Park, the Hill Country and Austin.
El Paso is a unique border town, fun to explore to enjoy Mexican food and crossing the border to Ciudad Juarez. Big Bend National Park is a wonderful destination for hiking lovers, offering the opportunity to hike and camp both in the desert and mountains, while the Hill Country is fun to explore for its wineries and Old World atmosphere.
To end your itinerary, you could spend some time in Austin to enjoy the best Texas barbecue in the state at Franklin’s, before heading to Dallas/Fort Worth and visit these unique twin cities.
Driving around Texas is fun – you’ll only encounter traffic near cities, otherwise you’ll move fast, even along country backstreets. Don’t forget to allow some time for unscheduled stops at roadside attractions – in one of them, I had the best pecan pie of my life!
Plan a Road Trip to the National Parks
The United States has many National Parks that are incredible. Plan a road trip to one of these locations and you will be sure to have a great adventure.
Yellowstone National Park
Yellowstone National Park has got to be one of our favorite family road trips ever! It has been on our bucket list for quite some time and once we felt that the boys were old enough to take on a long trip, we went for it.
Known to be a wilderness recreation area with its majestic views, multiple geysers, and wildlife, there is bound to be something for everyone in the family.
Top Things To See at Yellowstone
An iconic All-American road trip, you cannot miss some of these popular spots: Old Faithful, Grand Prismatic Spring, and Lake Yellowstone. You not only go there for the views but to learn the history and take in the beauty of it all.
Lodging at Yellowstone
There are so many options for lodging. On this trip, we opted for staying in a hotel near the West Entrance. This area is quite popular with visitors. We loved it so much, we ventured out to Yellowstone National Park again the very next summer but decided to rent a cabin near the North Entrance.
This second trip we did more adventurous things such as whitewater rafting with the boys. Such beautiful memories to be had there.
Contributed By: Thecaffeinatedintrovert.com
Glacier National Park Road Trip
Going To The Sun Road in Glacier National Park is one of the most iconic roads in the entire country!
Hiking in Glacier
From drop-dead gorgeous views to endless hiking opportunities, it’s a perfect drive for any adventure lover. The highway goes straight through the national park, and connects some of the most beautiful spots in the area!
Some of the best stops along the road include hiking to Avalanche Lake, Hidden Lake Overlook, and a sunset stop at Big Bend. Don’t forget to check out the Sun Point Nature trail for epic views of St Mary Lake, and stop by Logan Pass Visitor Center to get more information about the area.
Because of the high elevation and treacherous edges, the road is only open between July and September every year. It takes a few months to plow the road every spring, and it closes when the first serious snowstorm comes to Glacier National Park.
Plan your trip to Glacier, Montana in the summertime to take advantage of these 50 miles of epic scenery.
It’s important to know that this road has a car length limit! Cards must be under 21 feet in length. Therefore, if you have an RV, you can park it on either end and take Glacier’s free shuttle to enjoy Going To The Sun road!
Contributed By: Themandagies.com
Mighty 5 Utah National Parks
This Utah national park road trip is best done over a couple of weeks, but can easily be lengthened or shortened. It’s easiest to start and end in Las Vegas but Salt Lake City and Phoenix are other options depending on what else you want to see.
You’ll want to stop at all the national parks: Zion, Bryce Canyon, Capitol Reef, Arches, and Canyonlands. Monument Valley is a great addition to the loop back to Vegas through Northern Arizona.
Best Hikes in Utah National Parks
Some of the best hikes to do in each (two for each park in the order above) are Angels Landing or The Narrows, Queens Garden/Navajo Loop and Mossy Cave, Cohab canyon and Hickman Bridge, Delicate Arch and Devil’s Garden, and Mesa Arch and Upheaval Dome.
Some other parks and hikes to do along the way are Snow Canyon State Park, Goblin Valley State Park, Little Wild Horse Canyon, Willis Creek Slot Canyon, Natural Bridges National Monument, Dead Horse Point State Park, Corona Arch, and Coral Pink Sand Dunes, though there are plenty more to choose from to make it the best trip ever.
Contributed By: Redaroundtheworld.com
Sierra Nevada to Yosemite
California is famous for its lively beaches. But, do you know the state is home to one of the major mountain ranges in the US?
The Sierra Nevada, located in the eastern part of the state, is 400 miles long. The best way to explore this land of wonders is by driving around the 3 National Parks located within its limits.
Sequoia National Park
Start your trip by visiting Sequoia National Park and its most famous resident, General Sherman, the largest tree by volume in the world. Spend some time walking among other giant trees. The Big Trees and Congress trails are ideal for this.
The Giant Forest Museum, Moro Rock, and Tokopah Falls are additional spots to explore.
Kings Canyon National Park
Kings Canyon National Park is adjacent to Sequoia National Park and accessed through the Generals Highway. People flock to the park to see General Grant, another of the largest trees in the world. However, I recommend driving to the bottom of Kings Canyon. You will get to see one of the deepest canyons in the US, waterfalls, and granite walls.
Yosemite National Park
Drive about 120 miles to reach Yosemite National Park. With limited time, concentrate on seeing the Yosemite Valley sights (El Capitan, Yosemite Falls, Bridalveil Fall). If you have time for one hike, consider doing part of the Mist Trail. And, do not miss seeing the beauty of the park from Glacier Point.
Contributed By: Tanamatales.com
Plan a Road Trip in Hawaii
If you are looking for one of the most beautiful places to visit and take the best road trip, think about visiting the Big Island of Hawaii.
Big Island Road Trip
A Big Island road trip will give you the ability to see magnificent landscapes, waterfalls and botanical gardens, coastal views and stunning tropical landscape to enjoy.
The trip around the island takes you to unique places to visit with fascinating contrast of bare lava areas, lush rain forests and stunning coastline views.
There are so many wonderful scenic vista points to stop and take it all in. Taking photographs is a must to capture the moment.
Where to Start?
You can easily start your road trip from either Kona or Hilo. Both have rental car locations at the airports that service each area.
You can easily do a whole day around the island, but to really observe and take it all in, try and stay at a few places so you get to enjoy the gorgeous sunsets and sunrises. Another benefit is to hang out with locals in their favorite restaurants, bars and other venues to mix and mingle.
The Big Island of Hawaii is truly beautiful in spirit, nature and inspiring landscapes and hopefully you can visit soon.
Road To Hana Maui, Hawaii
When you think of Hawaii you may not think of a road trip but you’d be thinking wrong. When traveling on the island of Maui driving the road to Hana is a MUST!
The only way to get to the Eastern part of the island is by driving the Hana Highway. The road to Hana is made up of 52 miles of one lane bridges, hairpin turns and curves. This road trip will take up an entire day so make sure you pack lots of snacks and fill up for gas before hand.
Waterfalls and Beaches
The winding road takes you past jaw dropping seascape views, roaring waterfalls and pristine beaches. Some highlights of this drive include Ho’okipa outlook, Twin Falls, the Painted Forest, Honomanu Bay and Wailua Falls. Saving the best stop for last is Wai’anapanapa State Park which features one of the most beautiful black sand beaches that you’ll ever seen.
Don’t forget to wear your bathing suit and pack a towel because pulling off the side of the road to swim under a waterfall is the name of the game. Buckle up, enjoy the ride and prepare for a road trip of a lifetime.
Road Trip On Oahu, Hawaii
Hawaii is a dream vacation. Oahu is the most populated island and the most touristy. Most people stay near Waikiki Beach. This area is a wonderful place with lots to do but if you are seeking an adventure a road trip is the perfect plan.
Driving to the North Shore does not take long. There are actually two ways to get there. I recommend the more scenic drive on the coastal HWY. It takes a little longer but is well worth it. There are not to many stops along the way but once you reach the North Shore you will want to stop at many of the local towns.
Things to do on the North Shore
There are so many things to do on the North Shore. The Polynesian Cultrual Center, the best snorkeling on Oahu, and watching the surfers hit the big waves. It really is a great destination and worth the road trip.
Make sure to plan some time on the North Shore as you plan your Oahu, Hawaii Itinerary. Oahu is a great place to plan a road trip!
If you want to know the best places to eat on Oahu, be sure to sign up for my email list! I will send you the top 20 places to eat on Oahu. Click the image below!
Are You Ready to Plan a Road Trip?
Hopefully, you have been inspired and are ready to plan a road trip of your dreams. If you have followed Planningaway for a while you will know that I just love planning. I created a 27 page USA road trip guide just for fun!
I want to give that to you for Free. It basically has road trips across America with how many miles from point A to point B. It also list some of the activities to do along the way. If you want a copy be sure to click the image below!
Have fun planning your road trip!
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