One of the greatest American pastimes is piling the family into the car, starting the engine, and hitting the open road to journey across this wonderful country of ours. But as anyone who has taken a road trip will tell you, it’s not necessarily about the destination. It’s more about the journey. The next time you plan to take a road trip, consider the following scenic drives en route to amazing destinations.
Dry Fork Scenic Backway
This two-hour drive to Dinosaur Land takes road trippers on a 45-mile journey through a gorgeous array of Rocky Mountains, tranquil meadows, aspen groves and lush forests in Utah. Along the way to the monument or dinosaur restaurants, travelers can stop at McConkie Ranch to admire the Fremont Indian rock art scattered throughout the private property. The tranquil beauty and historic value of this scenic drive gives every traveler something to look forward to.
El Camino Real National Scenic Byway
Journey across this 299-mile slice of history on the way to Petroglyph National Monument in Albuquerque, NM. This scenic route was first used by Spanish settlers to share news and goods with the first capital of the New World. Today, tourists can check out the remnants of historic pueblos, ancient Spanish and Puebloan petroglyphs, vast mountain ranges and expansive desert views on this winding byway. Tourists can also extend their time here at any of the numerous campsites and hiking trails in the area.
California Pacific Coast Highway
In total, this extensive stretch of highway takes road trippers on a scenic journey across approximately 656 miles of U.S. Route 101. The route is broken into five parts between Los Angeles and San Francisco, where tourists can experience the beauty of the west coast on their way to Redwood National and State Parks in Northern California. Admire the tranquil blue water of the Pacific Ocean, the rocky cliffs of Point Mugu and the towering trees of the national parks and forests along this diverse drive.
Davis Mountains Scenic Loop
On the way to Davis Mountains State Park in Fort Worth, TX, travelers can venture through the 75-mile stretch of road known as Davis Mountains Scenic Loop. The natural beauty of this route was formed by volcanic activity millions of years ago, leaving road trippers with stunning views of lush greenery including pine, oak and juniper trees. In addition to the beautiful scenery, guests are welcome to stop along the route to picnic, camp or learn a little about the route’s history.
State Route 11, in Washington state, offers 21 miles of beautiful cliffs and forest views on the way to Fairhaven Park. Over the cliffs, travelers can take in the gorgeous waters of Chuckanut Bay. As they journey through the lush forest, they can catch some of its abundant wildlife darting through the trees. While the winding road offers a picturesque drive throughout the day, many believe that sunset is the prime time for a drive across this tranquil route. If you need to take a break before reaching your destination, there are plenty of picnic stops and turn out points where you can rest and take a picture.
No matter where you are in the United States or where you plan to go, there’s no denying that the U.S. is home to some amazing drives. Not only are these five routes abundant in beauty, but they are also rich in culture and history. Whether you plan on taking the family on your road trip or you plan on going solo, travelers from all walks of life can find something to take away from these extraordinary drives.