With summertime finally here, it’s time to take some time off. The open road is a great place to reconnect and spend quality time together, or disconnect from everyday life and reground yourself. From short day trips to longer excursions, there are many reasons to get out and explore. Here are a few travel ideas:
Skyline Drive, Shenandoah National Park Virginia.
With 75 scenic vistas over its 105 miles from Front Royal south to I-64, Skyline drive can be done as a day trip. The Blue Ridge Mountains are the backdrop for this cruise, and is home to part of the Appalachian Trail. Some of the rock formations along this stretch date back over 1 billion years. Due to the topography of the area, a phenomenon known as “fog ocean” can occur, where the valley is covered in dense fog and some of the peaks poke above like tiny islands. This trip can be lengthened by picking up the Blue Ridge Parkway and ending in the Great Smoky Mountains of North Carolina.
Overseas Highway, Miami to Key West Florida.
Dubbed “The Highway That Goes to the Sea”, the southern section of US Route 1 is best enjoyed over a long weekend. Connecting Miami and Key West, the Overseas Highway crosses 42 bridges. The roadway dates back to the late 1800’s and early 1900’s and was originally a rail line. The Overseas Highway follows along the only living coral reef in the continental United States, which spans over 170 miles. Be sure to soak in the sunsets at Mallory Square and visit mile marker 0. Key West is a major hub for cruise ships.
Pacific Coast Highway, California.
Just over 659 miles, the Pacific Coast Highway is a decent trip for five to seven days. Starting near Leggitt, the PCH runs thought the home of the largest trees on the planet. Californian Redwoods can grow over 350 feet high, nearly 30 feet in diameter and live an estimated 1,200-1,800 years. The PCH’s course winds the coast and serves as major thoroughfare for several areas such as San Francisco, the Monterey Bay area and Los Angeles. The PCH ends at Dana Point in Orange County.
Great River Road, 10 states along the Mississippi River.
While not a single road, but a cooperative collection of roadways spanning 2,340 miles between Minnesota to Louisiana following the course of the Mississippi River. While the distance can be Conquered in several days, this trip is best had over weeks time. With so much between the two, there are many points of interest and is sure to have something for everyone.
With an endless amount of possibilities, prudent planning is the best foundation for a memorable road trip. A few key necessities include a paper map, first aid kit and provisions for communication. A cell phone will suffice in most areas but more remote locations could do better with a 2 way radio or CB radio. Additionally, keeping up with your vehicles maintenance and making sure it is up for the journey. No one wants to cut a trip short over something that could have been avoided