If you ask me, road trips are the best mini-vacations there is. From hundreds of highways with most scenic drives in America, the road just keeps on calling. Whether you want a quiet and peaceful drive or a dramatic one, there is always a perfect one for you with the most scenic drives in America. Choose a trip, get the map and call up your favorite travel buddies.
Gear up for 5 of the most scenic drives in America!
Take road trips to the west during summer, and go for the trips in eastern part of the country in fall. From hundreds of options available for you, here are 5 most scenic drives in USA for road trips:
1. Overseas Highway, Florida Keys
With 113 miles of open road, Overseas Highway takes you to Key West, the southernmost part of the country. The starting drive from Florida mainland to Key Largo may not be much to look at, but once you get to Key Largo and begin your drive on Route 1, all bets are off.
On the drive through Route 1, from Key Largo to Key West in Florida, you will get to not only cross one of the longest bridges in the country – Seven Mile Bridge, but will get to have the view of the stunning ocean. Having the company of turquoise hued sea on a sunny beautiful day feels much like heaven.
2. Pacific Coast Highway, California
Highway 1 on the Pacific Coast Highway will take you on an incredible journey from California, Oregon and Washington. When you are making your way from Santa Barbara to Canadian border, you get to witness some of the most amazing views of Pacific Ocean and coastal mountains.
Pacific Coast Highway may only be 123 miles long, Highway 1, however, is much longer. It has a number of sharp twists& turns, so you have to be careful. And then, there is the 90 mile long part of the highway, popularly known as Big Sur with the scenic redwoods. If you could, avoid going on a road trip here in July & August, as there is way too much traffic. I also do not recommend a visit here in winter because of the mudslides.
The drive on Pacific Coast Highway will give you a real good goose-bumping adventure. Don’t forget to make short stops to take in the fabulous views, while passing through California’s Monterey Peninsula, Mendocino and Eureka.
3. Patchwork Parkway, Utah
It takes around 2-3 hours to drive Patchwork Parkway in Utah which bridges Heritage Highway 89 and Scenic Byway 12. The 51 miles long scenic roadway is also known as Route 143. It offers a hell of a view of canyons colored in different shades of oranges and reds. With an elevation of more than 10,000 feet at Cedar Breaks National Monument, it is one of the highest paved roads in the state.
Take breaks from time to time to admire the breathtaking views of canyons, silt cliffs, peaks and plateaus, lakes as well as lava fields. If you love looking up to the stars, plateaus here give you quite a welcome for star gazing.
4. Skyline Drive, Virginia
Skyline Drive is a part of the stunning Blue Ridge Parkway that goes through Shenandoah National Park. So, there is a definite speed limit of 35 mph here to prevent the animals crossing the path from becoming a road kill.
The drive or say the crawl on the Skyline gives a whopping 75 stops, overlooking the scenic valleys and incredible mountains. Go for a road trip on Blue Ridge Parkway in autumn to view the vibrant colors decorating the mountains and the foliage.
While spring is a great time to see the wild flowers in full bloom on this 105 mile stretch. If you are short on time, do not worry, Skyline Drive only takes around 4 hours to complete, with stops in between. And for some of us, with a speed limit of 35 mph, who needs to stop!
5. Going to the Sun Road, Montana
This is definitely one of the popular drives in the country. Many of us have either done a road trip here or are planning for one. The 52 mile long scenic roadway takes you through Glacier National Park, Montana. And, the drive itself can be completed in around 2 hours without a pit stop. The coolest thing about this drive has to be crossing the Continental Divide at Logan Pass, at an elevation of 6646 ft.
Besides that, you have got spectacular views of glaciers at Jackson Glacier Overlook which is right on the road. Plus, you get to drive through different landscapes from cedar forests to alpine tundra, as well as the glacial lakes and valleys. You get to see all of these in just one amazing road trip!
If you wish to finish the entire thing in one go, you should do it in summer for the magnificent views.
All 50 states have amazing roadways while these are only the top 5 favorites of mine. Whatever you do, DO NOT miss these, no matter what! Make time for having some of the most memorable moments in your life with some best American road trips there is.
For more scenic drives in US, check out the list here http://www.fhwa.dot.gov/byways/