From coast to coast, each state is filled with unique charm through its landscape, climate, and breathtaking scenery. The sheer ability to drive to a new or favorite destination can feel so liberating. Now, what if we could take these experiences on the road and make them even better through a deeper connection with our history and culture?
After several months of quarantine, my friends and I were ecstatic to finally dust off our luggage for a Southwest road trip. It was an adventure we had talked about for over a year, but due to the uncertainty of COVID, it took us a while to finally go ahead with our travel plan. These tips below helped make our southwestern road trip full of everlasting memories that we will forever cherish. I believe they will do the same for you too.
The 34-mile (55-km) drive along the Kings Canyon Scenic Byway allows you to explore one of North America’s deepest canyons from the comfort of your own vehicle. You’ll drive along a zigzagging road next to the roaring Kings River, among granite, wildlife, and wildflowers aplenty.
Plan a scenic “Sunday drive” along Old Fall River Road on any summer day to explore the biodiversity of Rocky Mountain National Park. This approximately 35-mi (56-km) loop drive travels through the montane, subalpine, and tundra ecosystems. During summer and fall, both Old Fall River Road and Trail Ridge Road are open. With no stops, the drive will take approximately 1.5 hours; with stops, it can take a half-day.
Alaska doesn’t have many roads, but what it lacks in quantity is made up for in quality. Each of the following road trip ideas showcases Alaska’s natural beauty. And often, the destination at the end of the road is every bit as interesting as the journey it took to get there.
Despite their proximity, visiting all of Utah’s national parks is a bit complicated because of the rugged terrain and lack of roads. You must plan on a lot of driving, but it’s worth it to see each park’s unique sights, from Arches’ colorful rock fins to Bryce Canyon’s towering hoodoos to the desert hiking trails of Canyonlands’ Needles District.