With another heavy travel season around the corner, airports will once again become mazes of luggage and large traveling parties. Venturing out for a trip is all about recharging and indulging in stress free activity. Don't deal with an ounce of stress and instead, turn your regenerating venture to the open road. There are creative road trips you didn't know you could take in the U.S. that aren't all highways and tumbleweeds.
The car is your chariot. A window — or six — to the world around you. And its mechanical power is to deliver you to places that will take your breath away. And the grocery store. Equally important. A car is the closest we'll get to a magic carpet ride a la Aladdin, so engage in the wonder of a moving vehicle that has the power to literally transport you. There is an entire country to see out there, back roads to explore, and playlists to construct.
It's time to stock up on your favorite snacks and turn the back seat into a pantry. There are songs to belt out on the beltway and small towns to weave through. If you don't know what route to take, let me steer you in the ~right direction~. There's more to the map than you think.
Pacific Coast Scenic Byway In Oregon
You might associate the Pacific Coast Highway with California. But there is so much more grandiosity sprouting north of California. Like, Oregon. Keep the windows down and inhale the ocean air. Let it lead you to a marina, specifically the Jetty Fishery in Rockaway Beach, where you can purchase a permit to go crabbing for the day. Enjoy a freshly caught crab aside a cold beer in place of toast and orange juice for breakfast. It might sound weird to you now, but in the element of the Oregon coast as the foggy curtain rises to display a majestic green tree line, it will feel so right. From experience, this is a solo travel friendly venture.
Artisinal Cheese Tour Of Alabama
Sometimes the best way to experience a state is through their food. Did you ever think you'd get a taste of Alabama through its ... artisinal goat cheese? Alabama's tourism site, Sweet Home Alabama, lists this road trip as one of its top foodie adventures. Head from Elkmont to Alexandria to Harpersville to Elberta and learn all about cheese. You'll head from artisinal tasting rooms to farms to shake hooves with the goats that provide the dairy. Don't forget to work some Alabama BBQ into the eating itinerary.
Columbia River Highway Scenic Byway And Flower Trail In Oregon
Let's turn this car back around to Oregon. East of Portland, you'll stumble across the Columbia River Highway dotted with scenery, waterfalls, and trails so breathtaking you'll get light headed. So drive carefully. And as much as a challenge as it may be, keep your eyes on the road. Take the exit to Hood River and pick up a map for the Flower Trail. Yes, nestled between majestic peaks, you can hop from organic farm to farm, including Hood River's outdoor aromatherapy spas — I mean, lavender farms. Visit Travel Oregon to get detailed maps and must see spots.
Outer Banks Scenic Byway
In the mood to spot some coastal wildlife? Give the coast of North Carolina a go. Roadtrippers has your back and has created a must take kind of route that covers all the must sees. You'll be treated to quality seafood and Instagram opportunities along the way.
Montana might make you feel like you're on another planet. The range of nature from plains to mountains to crystal waters and rapid rivers call you to frolic, ski, swim and raft. It's all heart pounding. Dial in the direction of Montana to your GPS and cover as much of big sky country as possible. Roadtrippers, as always, will help guide you for the ultimate trip.
You might think that bucket list adventures and wild life journeys are reserved for foreign terrain. Or screen savers. But you don't need a passport to be wowed by what America's soil can produce. National Geographic lays out the route to take for a Pacific Northwest adventure through Washington. Are you even ready for the Hoh Rainforest? Yes, a ~rainforest~ in the U.S.
Dinosaur Diamond Scenic Byway
Dinosaurs aren't only in museums and books. Travel between Utah and Colorado to imagine a roaming herd of herbivores. Pull over to witness paleontologists dust off fossils and gawk at rock art. Mix up the activities with an abundance of recreational activities from biking to hiking.
New England's Route 7
Post card picture perfect for a fall getaway, Route 7 from Connecticut to Vermont will twist and turn you through small towns with food finds you'll want to keep secret. There is no doubt that you'll be incredibly charmed.
BBQ Trail In North Carolina
Travel for the sights and for the BBQ. At least when it comes to how to make your way through North Carolina. With sites set on pig roasts, the Historical Barbecue Trail will deliver you to all the ~hot spots~ in the state. Keep the theme in mind for future road trips and conquer all the great BBQ pits of the US.
Parks Highway In Alaska
When it comes to Alaska, driving doesn't come to mind. As someone not native to the state, I picture sea planes and boats as the main mode of transportation. But that is very wrong. Take Alaska's Parks Highway to take in the majesty that is Alaska from the road. And hey, even get the chance to explore the Museum of Alaska Transportation and Industry to educate yourself on the history of transport in the state.
Ancient Monuments And The Red Rock Scenic Byway
Nearly fall over when you get out to stretch your legs around the Red Rock Scenic Byway. The orange-red hue of the terrain will inspire more than Instagrams. You might start to realize there is so much packed into the U.S. to explore than any travel themed show ever had you imagine.
San Francisco, CA To Muir Woods National Monument
Any road trip taken in California won't yield disappointing stops. Take a taco tour of Southern California or head north to live in a fairytale of sourdough and towering trees. Visit California lays out ten stops from San Francisco to Muir Woods National Monument that you'll have to drive through to believe. Take it all in for yourself before you take it all in for your camera.