Taking a cross country road trip across the United States is on pretty much everyone’s bucket list. It’s the trip of a lifetime, but coming up with the “best” driving route can prove to be a bit of a challenge.
It all depends on time available, personal preference, and frankly, how much of your holiday you want to spend stuck behind the wheel. Let’s face it, even driving across the states will get boring and uncomfortable at times.
We studied the map, took into consideration the most popular tourist attractions, and devised the “ideal” driving route for a road trip that will allow you to see most of America’s highlights including National Natural Landmarks, National Parks, National Monuments, and various historic sites.
Here are the destinations:
New York – The Statue of Liberty, Empire State Building, Central Park, Times Square, Rockefeller Centre, and the Brooklyn Bridge.
Washington DC – White House, Washington Monument, National Mall, Vietnam’s Veteran Memorial, and the Lincoln Memorial.
Virginia Beach – Virginia Aquarium, Cape Henry Lighthouse, Mount Trashmore Park, and the Military Aviation Museum.
Charlotte – Carowinds Theme Park, Land of Oz, NASCAR Hall of Fame, Discovery Place (Science Museum & IMAX), and U.S. National Whitewater Centre.
Charleston – Waterfront Park, Old Slave Market, Rainbow Row, Magnolia Plantation Gardens, and Drayton Hall Plantation.Orlando – Walt Disney World, Disney’s Animal Kingdom, Universal Orlando, Discovery Cove, and Orlando Science Centre.
Atlanta – World of Coca-Cola, Atlanta Botanical Garden, Six Flags Over Georgia, and Martin Luther King Jr. National Historic Site.
Memphis – Elvis’ Presley’s Home, Beale Street Historic District, Memphis Pyramid, Memphis Rock N’ Soul Museum, and The Cotton Museum.
New Orleans – Bourbon Street, Jackson Square, St. Louis Cathedral, and Audubon Butterfly Garden and Insectarium.
Oklahoma City – White Water Bay, Myriad Botanical Gardens, Museum of Osteology, and the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum.
Albuquerque – Sandia Peak Tramway, Explora Museum, American International Rattlesnake Museum, and Petroglyph National Monument.
(Optional – make a stop off at the Grand Canyon in Arizona.)
Las Vegas – Red Rock Canyon National Park, the Bellagio, Las Vegas Strip, Fremont Street Experience, and Adventuredome.
Los Angeles – Hollywood Sign, Hollywood Boulevard, Hollywood Walk of Fame, and Griffith Observatory.
San Francisco – Golden Gate Bridge, Alcatraz Island, Fisherman’s Wharf, Pier 39, and Union Square.
(Optional – take a detour to Yosemite National Park)
Salt Lake City – Temple Square, Hogle Zoo, Clark Planetarium Pioneer Memorial Museum, and Church History Museum.
Helena – Montana State Capitol, Mount Helena City Park, and Holter Museum of Art.
North Dakota – Mount Rushmore and Theodore Roosevelt National Park.
Minneapolis – Walker Art Centre, Minneapolis Sculpture Garden, and Mill City Museum.Chicago – Willis Tower, Cloud Gate, Millenium Park, Shedd Aquarium, and the Navy Pier.
Kansas City – World of Fun Theme Park, Kansas City Zoo, Arabia Steamboat Museum, Legoland Discovery Centre, and the National World War I Museum.
Indianapolis – Indianapolis Motor Speedway, White River Gardens, Broad Ripple, and Conner Prairie.