Road trips are the perfect ways to escape your daily routine and get up close and personal with the stunning landscapes scattered throughout the country. In many cases, sitting behind the wheel is the best way to see the great outdoors. If you’re looking for the most beautiful scenic drives in the United States, you’ve come to the right place. Check out our top picks below!

Pacific Coast Highway, California

Many people consider the Pacific Coast Highway one of the most beautiful drives in the
United States. The route begins in San Diego, winds north along the stunning Pacific
coast, and ends in San Francisco. Along the way, you’ll be able to make stops in iconic
locations such as Los Angeles, Santa Barbara, Big Sur, and Monterey.
Whether you make several stops throughout the journey or simply take in the scenery
from your vehicle, the beauty along the Pacific Coast Highway will certainly blow you
away. Plus, if you’ve never been to California, this scenic drive is the perfect way to
experience the best the state has to offer.

Blue Ridge Parkway, Virginia

Connecting Virginia’s Shenandoah National Park to Great Smoky Mountains National Park in North Carolina, the Blue Ridge Parkway is another beautiful, scenic drive in the United States. Driving the Blue Ridge Parkway is ideal for people looking for unobstructed views at a slower pace. Along the way, you won’t see any billboards, commercial traffic, or towns. Plus, the 45-mile-per-hour speed limit will allow you to truly take in the surrounding natural beauty.

Blue Ridge Parkway
Photo by Jeffrey Hamilton on Unsplash

Leaf-peeping fanatics can consider planning a road trip during the fall season. From the end of September through October, you’ll be delighted by deep red and vibrant yellow leaves at almost every mile. The Blue Ridge Parkway also features mountainous terrain, waterfalls, and a plethora of native wildlife. In short, this spectacular journey has something for everyone.

Historic Columbia River Highway, Oregon

Spanning 23 miles, the Historic Columbia River Highway was built in 1917, making it the oldest scenic route in the country. This National Historic Landmark offers some of the most breathtaking views you’ll witness from your vehicle. Once you begin driving in Troutdale, you’ll be treated to incredible sights along the Columbia River, including gorgeous waterfalls, foliage-covered cliffs, and awe-inspiring bridges. You’ll also encounter road tunnels that cut through the cliffside and provide beautiful views. The Historic Columbia River Highway is a popular drive, so do your best to time your visit during off-peak seasons. And to avoid traffic jams, start your trip as early in the morning as possible.

Before you embark on any scenic drive, it’s important to map out your route and determine where you’ll stop to fill your gas tank, eat a meal, and stretch your legs. You should also perform a thorough inspection of your vehicle and make sure your insurance policy is up to date. If you’re renting a car, familiarize yourself with the benefits of nonowners’ insurance for frequent renters. Lastly, don’t forget to have an emergency supply kit on hand.

With so many beautiful locations to see across the country, there’s no time to waste.
Grab your keys and hit the road!