Think of America as the ultimate travel mood board with many diverse cities, landscapes and exotic locales right on your doorstep, making it a fun place to discover by car. So get ready to rev the engine as we share our USA road trip guide to help plan your next travel route.
Options appear to be endless when deciding where to go on your ultimate USA road trip.Do you want to find your inner Zen in nature or want to be feeling the energies of the big smoke? Feel like being cultured and experiencing something entirely new?
Thankfully, you don't have to settle on just one type of experience. Enjoy 'em all we say! Here are a few to get you inspired for your next USA road trip.
Stops: New York, New York – Catskill Mountains – Saratoga – Adirondack Mountains – Thousand Islands – Niagara Falls
Suggested duration: 14 days
New York itself might be all one big hustle and bustle, but beyond the city lights, there are plenty of gorgeous countrysides to explore – mountains included. You might even find one of these cozy cabins across Hudson Valley to keep you comfy.
Stops: Phoenix, Arizona – Sedona, Arizona – Flagstaff, Arizona – Grand Canyon, Arizona – Las Vegas, Nevada
Suggested duration: 14 days
From mountain peaks to the depths of the Grand Canyon and all eerie ghost towns in between, this road trip from Arizona to Nevada covers a lot of ground. Need some extra Phoenix tips? Check out the best insiders guide to Phoenix. Or find out how you can have relaxation and adventure in Arizona.
Stops: San Francisco, California – Muir Wood National Monument – Napa and Sonoma Valleys – Yosemite National Park – Monterey Country
Suggested duration: 18 days
Get a yin-yang of a city escape and California's diverse and pristine landscapes that are worth clogging everyone's Instagram feed.
Stops: Seattle, Washington – Bainbridge Island, Washington – San Juan Islands, Washington – Mt.Rainer National Park, Washington – Portland, Oregon
Suggested duration: 15 days
The ever-hip Seattle is the perfect base to discover what's good in the Pacific Northwest. Spot whales flapping their massive tails off Orcas Island, have ferry rides aplenty and enjoy the big-city vibes of Portland.
Stops: Washington D.C, D.C – Great Falls National Park, Virginia – Shenandoah National Park, Virginia – Luray, Virginia – Charlottesville, Virginia – Norfolk, Virginia – Virginia Beach, Virginia
Suggested duration: 7 days
This road trip from Washington D.C lets you have a bit of everything with having beach time, mountain climbs, visiting the stunning Luray Carvens, and experiencing quaint towns filled with Southern charm in Virginia.
Stops: Nashville, Tennesse – Memphis, Tennesse – Tunica, Mississippi – Clarksdale, Mississippi – New Orleans, Louisiana
Suggested duration: 10 days
Embrace being cultured through song, architecture and most importantly, through the stomach on this epic road trip that takes you to the country’s musical capitals; Nashville, Memphis and New Orleans.
Questions to ask yourself before you hit the road is a) what is your budget? and b) what creature comforts can you do without?
Camping may not exactly have the five-star comfort factor, but who cares when you can sleep under billions of stars?! Check out what national park campgrounds exist on your travel route. If wanting the creature comforts, i.e. a bed and a proper bathroom, check out Hipcamp for quirky cabin stays, glamping and all national parks and farms in between.
Not sure if full-time van life is your jam? Don't worry; you don't have to commit to buying a van with plenty of options to hire one. Cabana, Indie Campers are just two in a sea of many that offer van hire, so you can enjoy having a 'home' on four wheels.
There are two types of packers in this world – those who can pack accordingly and those who like to pack their house with them. Depending on how big the car is or how many people are traveling, it might not be such an enjoyable experience if constantly playing Tetris with luggage to make sure everything fits right.
To make things easier, we list eight must-have items (besides your usual travel checklist) for your epic road trip. And if you got extra space to pack in more than that, lucky you!
You want to make the trip as fun and memorable (for all the right reasons!) as it can be. Besides traveling with people you gel with, there are other ways to make your roadtrip adventure more enjoyable. Chuck on a decent playlist to sing along to (or chill) or make time go fast with playing games. Get that crowd participation going!
Check out our top road trip playlists as curated by us to get your road trip pumping!
Whether you're the driver or co-pilot, or backseat bandit, being on the road can get physically exhausting.
Make sure when embarking on long trips to factor in regular pitstops. This includes coffee breaks or stretching those legs to get the blood circulating. Also, it's not always about going from A to B. If something grabs your attention, make sure to stop for it. It could all be part of the adventure and excitement of living life out on the road.
Coffee can also be your best friend, but there is only so much energy it can give you. Make sure to switch up driving responsibilities, so you're not driving tired.
Lastly, in the inspiring words of Ralph Waldo Emerson, "It's not the destination, it's the journey."
Enjoy the ride, folks!
Why not try our free visual trip planner? Curate moodboards to help you collect, organize, and map out your bucket lists and places to visit in one place.
Sign up to try it out today.
Feature image: Venti Views on Unsplash