15 Most Scenic Drives in the USA

15 Most Scenic Drives in America

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Many people consider the road to be solely a means between point A and point B, they are how you get to the pretty, scenic places that you want to go. But I’ve spent a lot of time driving all over the United States, including two major road trips of the American West (definitely some of the most scenic drives!), and plenty of other smaller trips, and one thing you begin to realize is that some roads are destinations unto themselves, which is why I put together this post of the most scenic drives in America.

These drives aren’t just a road to something beautiful, they are jaw-dropping on their own and will have you constantly looking for places to pull over so you can take more photos.

I think everybody should spend a little time driving aimlessly around the country, getting to know it’s places, history, and people just a little better.

Most Scenic Drives in America

Here are what I would concern 15 of the most scenic drives in America and are only those which I’ve personally driven. The American Road Trip remains one of the greatest ways to see the country, to take in its beauty and majesty.

15 Most Scenic Drives in America road-trip

So fill up your gas tank and get your camera ready, here are what I would consider the 15 most scenic drives in the USA, in no particular order.

1. Olympic Peninsula Loop, Washington

Olympic Peninsula Drive - One of the 15 Most Scenic Drives in America

Highway 101 is a road that is extremely familiar to me, having grown up nearby and spent much time exploring the area but is always special.

The road circles around Olympic National Park, one of the most incredible national parks in the country, with a great deal of variety, but the road itself is beautiful in that you can drive along the calm tranquil waters of the Hood Canal, through towering green forests below snow-capped peaks, along the shores of the beautiful and deep Lake Crescent, and on along the Pacific Ocean.

Washington's Olympic Peninsula Drive - One of the 15 Most Scenic Drives in America

Eat: Squaxin Island Seafood Bar at the Little Creek Casino, for incredibly fresh and delicious seafood that would probably cost you double in Seattle or any other big city.

Detour: No visit would be complete without driving up to Hurricane Ridge for a view of the mountains, or into the Hoh Rainforest (maybe climb Mount Olympus!), or along the numerous wild beaches near La Push (and beyond).

2. Pacific Coast Highway, California

California's Pacific Coast Highway - One of the 15 Most Scenic Drives in America

California’s fabled Highway 1 is a scenic drive that runs along the length of most of the Pacific Coast and features some truly incredible scenery throughout the length of the highway.

California's Pacific Coast Highway - One of the 15 Most Scenic Drives in America

The route includes the famous Big Sur section, the iconic Golden Gate Bridge, and mile after mile of incredible coast.

Detour: Follow the route northbound it will lead you up to Highway 101 and the Redwoods of California, certainly one of the most scenic drives in California.

3. Highway 12, Utah

Highway 12 in Utah - One of the 15 Most Scenic Drives in America

Highway 12 in Southern Utah is truly one of the most scenic drives I’ve ever seen and a favorite from this list. The route follows red rock country with towering mesas and beautiful buttes.

It will lead you past Bryce Canyon National Park and Grand-Staircase Escalante National Monument, two of my favorite places in Utah, before leading you up to the edge of Capitol Reef National Park, which is impressive in its own right, so it makes a great road to link up a few places if you’re going on a Utah national park road trip.

My favorite portion of the road is the length between the town of Escalante and Boulder, which features a road carved onto a narrow perch that drops down on both sides and offers commanding views of the surrounding landscape. It feels like you are flying through the air.

Highway 12 in Utah - One of the 15 Most Scenic Drives in America

Eat: Escalante Outfitters in the town of Escalante offers up some truly delicious calzones.

Detour: Be sure to drive down Hole-in-the-Rock Road and into Grand Staircase-Escalante to explore the slot canyons or Coyote Gulch.

4. Blue Ridge Parkway, Virginia

The Blue Ridge Parkway - One of the 15 Most Scenic Drives in America

Skyline Drive through Shenandoah National Park and the Blue Ridge Parkway just to the south features some of the most amazing scenery in the mid-Atlantic. This scenic drive is situated high up along the spine of the Appalachian Mountains, it offers stunning views to both the east and west.

This place was a frequent stomping ground while I lived in Washington DC and spent much of my free time hiking and backpacking throughout the area.

Eat: Devils Backbone Brewing Company near the Wintergreen Ski Resort for some delicious pub food and great locally crafted beer.

Detour: Go hike to the top of Old Rag, hike Three Ridges, or check out one of these other top hikes in Virginia.

5. Highway 101, Oregon

Oregon's Highway 101 - One of the 15 Most Scenic Drives in America

Highway 101 follows the length of Oregon’s stunning coastline and hugs it pretty closely through the majority of the state.

You will see winding coastal roads and crashing waves, with stops that include the town where they filmed Goonies and Kindergarten Cop, Haystack Rock on the northern end, Seal Rock, and a rugged and wild coastline.

You should also try and squeeze in a stop at Thor’s Well or the Devil’s Churn to see some truly stunning coastal scenery.

Oregon's Highway 101 - One of the 15 Most Scenic Drives in America

Eat: Tillamook Cheese Factory for some free samples of delicious cheese and to pick up some other delectable treats, and/or Rogue Ales in Newport for some delicious brews and good eats.

Detour: Head inland along the Columbia River and onto the quirky big city of Portland.

6. Overseas Highway, Florida

Overseas Highway in Florida - One of the 15 Most Scenic Drives in America

The Overseas Highway, Route 1, leads you from Miami south through the Florida Keys. The route is 113 miles long and takes you from beautiful savanna lands to the tropical islands with the largest area of coral reefs in the United States.

Since the road is connecting a chain of islands, you will pass over countless bridges that have you floating above the water, and you’ll feel like a boat coasting through, including one bridge that is nearly seven miles long.

The drive to Key West, Florida - One of the 15 Most Scenic Drives in America

You can drive to the southernmost point in the USA near Key West, which sits closer to Cuba than to Miami, and you can visit the Ernest Hemingway Museum and the descendants of his six-toed cats. But even beyond the overseas highway, there is still plenty to see and do on a Florida road trip.

Detour: Take a trip into Everglades National Park to explore the largest wilderness east of the Mississippi River.

7. 89A, Arizona

Highway 89A in Arizona - One of the 15 Most Scenic Drives in America

Arizona State Route 89A runs 84 miles from Prescott to Flagstaff and runs straight through the heart of red rock country.

The area in and around Sedona, Arizona is some of the most beautiful that I have seen anywhere in the United States, and could have easily been a National Park if not for the development.

Sedona features towering red rock buttes with incredible formations, surrounded by high canyon walls. Driving up along Oak Creek Canyon toward Flagstaff and you will wind high up onto the Mogollon Rim, the southern terminus of the Colorado Plateau.

Highway 89A in Arizona - One of the 15 Most Scenic Drives in America

Eat: The Asylum Restaurant in the historic Jerome Grand Hotel, which is reportedly haunted, or for something a little more upscale visit the Elote Cafe in Sedona. I highly recommend taking an Arizona road trip, it’s one of the coolest, most varied states to explore!

Detour: Of course, you have to detour up to the Grand Canyon, located not far from Flagstaff.

8. Million Dollar Highway, Colorado

The Million Dollar Highway in Colorado - One of the 15 Most Scenic Drives in America

A stunning scenic drive that climbs through the San Juan Mountains between Ouray and Silverton, including the beautiful Red Mountain Pass which lies at 11,018 feet.

The road is particularly beautiful in the winter, with ample snow covering the mountainous terrain, though it can be treacherous with a steep 8% grade, frequent switchbacks, and the chance of avalanches blocking the road.

Eat: Mouse’s Chocolates and Coffee in Ouray, for a delicious scrap cookie and a cup of hot coffee.

Detour: Be sure to visit the nearby Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park and/or Mesa Verde National Park.

9. Route 1, Alaska

Route 1 in Alaska - One of the 15 Most Scenic Drives in America

What is it about highways using the number 1? They seem to have an outsized representation on this list, and Alaska’s Highway 1 is no exception. This route runs from Homer Alaska, up to Anchorage, then cuts east to Tok near the Canadian Border.

We drove the section between Portage and Glenallen in March and it was just jaw-dropping beauty throughout, with snow-capped mountains that reached down to the sea, and immense glaciers. Be sure to explore the Matanuska Glacier on your way east of Anchorage.

Route 1 in Alaska - One of the 15 Most Scenic Drives in America

Detour: Drive north out of Anchorage and up to Denali State Park for some commanding and inspiring views of the incredible Denali, which stands more than 20k feet above sea level and is the highest peak in North America. If you’re there during the winter, you can’t miss out on seeing the Northern Lights in Fairbanks.

10. Historic Columbia River Highway, Oregon

Historic Columbia River Highway - One of the 15 Most Scenic Drives in America

Waterfall after waterfall is what you can expect to find along this incredible stretch of road that begins just east of Portland. I’ve always loved LaTourell Falls (above) but you can’t miss out on Multnomah Falls (below) the most popular of all the falls, though there are countless others to explore.

The road is particularly narrow and features beautiful foliage tunnels and trees dripping with moss, it is an incredibly green drive.

The Vista House sits on a high bluff overlooking the mighty Columbia River and is always worth a stop to enjoy the view.

Historic Columbia River Highway - One of the 15 Most Scenic Drives in America

Eat: McMenamins Edgefield offers up a number of restaurants and breweries on their historic and expansive property just west of Troutdale, or make a stop at Tad’s Chicken and Dumplings for a delicious and hearty meal.

Detour: Head south to visit the majestic Mount Hood and Timberline Lodge, which served as the exterior shots for the hotel in The Shining.

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11. Loneliest Highway, Nevada

The Loneliest Highway in Nevada - One of the 15 Most Scenic Drives in America

Highway 50 was named the loneliest highway in the United States by Life magazine in 1986, and the state latched onto the name in celebration. Highway 50 runs across the entire middle of the state from Lake Tahoe in the West all the way to the Utah border.

I can assure you that the nickname is accurate, this road features long desolate stretches with little sign of civilization. It feels much more remote and wild than the sections of road we drove in Alaska.

The route itself is not flat and boring though, as it actually crosses over 17 mountain passes, reaching elevations of over 7,000 feet, and features steep grades and hairpin turns. This is an incredible and beautiful drive through a remote and wild part of America.

The Loneliest Highway in Nevada - One of the 15 Most Scenic Drives in America

Sand Mountain itself is something not to be missed.

Detour: At the eastern terminus of the road, be sure to head south to visit Great Basin National Park, Nevada’s one and only park and frequently overlooked.

12. Titus Canyon Road, California

Titus Canyon Road in California - One of the 15 Most Scenic Drives in America

This is the only road on this list that isn’t an actual highway, but rather a one-way dirt road that leads west outside of Beatty, Nevada, and down into Death Valley National Park.

The road isn’t particularly rough, though they recommend four-wheel drive, and will take you through high mountain passes, beside abandoned ghost towns, and through narrow slot canyons (for a vehicle anyway) before spitting you out in the heart of Death Valley.

Titus Canyon Road - One of the 15 Most Scenic Drives in America

An outstanding and unforgettable drive, and easily one of the most scenic drives in America.

Detour: You can’t drive into Death Valley without making a visit to the Painted Hills and Badwater Basin.

13. North Cascades Highway, Washington

North Cascades Highway in Washington - One of the 15 Most Scenic Drives in America

Highway 20 runs through the heart of the North Cascades, the so-called American Alps. The North Cascades Highway is usually just about the last of Washington’s mountain passes to be opened each year thanks to the rugged nature of the road in high mountain passes, and the absolute deluge of snow that usually falls each winter and the ensuing avalanches will pile up on the roads.

Frigid mountain rivers, bald eagles, towering green forests, and snow-capped mountain peaks, are a few of my favorite things.

The area in and around Washington Pass, with the Liberty Bell group of five peaks, is one of my favorite places in all of Washington State, but there is also the beautiful Diablo Lake, and quaint little towns like the wild west-themed Winthrop.

North Cascades Highway - One of the 15 Most Scenic Drives in America

Eat: In Mazama, you can visit the Mazama Store which usually offers up a delicious selection of food, including some killer pizzas that are perfect after a long day on the road.

Detour: Head south on the east side and swing down to Leavenworth for more incredible mountain scenery in this little Bavarian-style village.

14. Highway 163, Arizona/Utah

Highway 163 in Utah & Arizona - One of the 15 Most Scenic Drives in America

Highway 163 is a 64-mile route that runs primarily through the Navajo Nation, from Kayenta, Arizona to near Bluff, Utah.

The scenery and terrain through the area are fantastic, but the real draw is, of course, the incredible Monument Valley which features big rocky outcroppings that rise dramatically out of the desert floor. This is the scene of so many famous movies and is the heart of what many consider the American West.

Monument Valley - One of the 15 Most Scenic Drives in America

This road will have you constantly reaching for your camera.

Detour: Keep heading northward until you reach Canyonlands National Park and Arches National Park. There is so much beauty throughout the Four Corners region.

15. Highway 90 and 145, Colorado

Highway 90 and 145 in Colorado - One of the 15 Most Scenic Drives in America

Highway 90 runs 42 miles from the border of Utah near the La Sal Mountains and toward the San Juan Mountains where the road ends at Naturita before it meets Highway 145. The road winds through some spectacular canyon scenery and has big snow-capped mountains to both the east and west.

Highway 90 and 145 in Colorado - One of the 15 Most Scenic Drives in America

Highway 145 heads toward Telluride before winding through the mountains. The whole area is just incredible.

Detour: Head up to Moab for some more spectacular scenery that you won’t forget.

My To-Do List

Kancamangus Highway, New Hampshire

I’ve driven part of this famous road during a New Hampshire ice climbing trip in the dead of winter, but it is most famous for its fall colors. Maybe I will make it back one of these days.

Beartooth Highway, Wyoming 

This famous road, also one of America’s scenic byways, runs up to high altitudes near the northeast entrance of Yellowstone National Park and has been called the most beautiful highway in America. I was there recently, planning to do the trip after Yellowstone, and they closed it the morning we were going to do the drive with the first snowfall!

Going to the Sun Road, Montana

When I was a teenager we made it to the Going to the Sun Road on a family road trip, but that was a long time ago and I haven’t driven it myself… I even went back recently but the road was still closed due to weather… One of these days I’ll make it back to one of America’s most beautiful national parks.

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Your Turn

Is there an amazingly scenic road that didn’t make this list? Sound off in the comments below and share your favorite pick.

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15 Most Scenic Drives in America road-trip


Head Writer and Adventurer at Desk to Dirtbag
Ryan is an author, adventurer, perpetual wanderer, and self-proclaimed dirtbag (but that might not mean what you think). Originally from Seattle, he headed to Washington D.C. where he spent five years working for Congress before heeding the call of the wild. He set out truck camping to road trip across the American West, and then across all of Central America and South America. When he isn't on the move, you can find him living as an expat in Colombia. He is also the author of the best selling book: Big Travel, Small Budget that will help you travel more for less. Follow the adventures on social media or read more.

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Comments 43

  1. I’ve done 8 x-country road-trips in my life so far (with NY or OH as starting points). Also trips S and NE. Sometimes the beauty is simply being out on the open road in America. Most scenic? There are so many and it’s really so personal (and changes over time). Here in the E I’d recommend the Gaspe Peninsula, Prince Edward Island, Bay of Fundy, Nova Scotia (none of these are US – does that mean they don’t count?), Acadia NP, Kancamagus Hwy, road up (and down) Mt. Washington (also the Cog Railway up/down same on its western slope), Whiteface Mountain (NY), Blue Ridge Parkway and Skyline Drive (essentially same as BR Pkwy, but farther north), I-81 through much of WV, numerous drives in and through Great Smokies NP, almost any drive along forest byways in NE during fall colors (breathtaking!). So many of these also involve getting out of your car and taking little walks (though none of what I’ve listed involve actual hikes – that’s a whole ‘nother list!). So, Mt. Mitchell along the Blue Ridge Parkway, Clingman’s Dome in GSNP, Mt. Washington, Whiteface Mountain – I guess peaks in general, since parking lots are generally a few hundred feet away from summits. And it’s not always grandiose vistas we go for (often fall colors are a much more intimate experience). Next week we’re heading up to Ithaca, NY for colors, waterfalls, gorges, cascades, Cornell campus (beauty is not always wild). Sorry to rant, but I wanted to add an Eastern flavor to the discussion.

  2. I highly highly recommend one day driving the Beartooth, me and my dad had the honor of driving them a while back when we visited family in Montana. It was beautiful and that is an understatement I was in awe the entire time. Pull over at any chance because the guardrail hides a lot because it is so steep, we almost missed a beautiful mountain lake because it was blocked. There are many mountain lakes and snow covered mountain sides and we went in June and there was still a good amount of snow. I think its almost 12,000 feet at the peak and we had a Ford Taurus we rented so its a beautiful drive and a quite easy one too aside from a good amount of sharp turns. I hope to one day be able to go back, driving is one thing I can still do that I love.

  3. Great list! Please add to your bucket list if you haven’t already: Texas Hwy. 170 (The River Road) out of Lajitas, TX (near Big Bend National Park) to Presidio, TX, and have a good Mexican meal once you arrive in Presidio. Spectacular.

  4. This is a great list! We’ve driven many of these roads and hope to travel several of your list that are already on ours. Tads Chicken and Dumplings—-heck yes! The best. And McMennamins Edgefield is another of our favorites.
    Thanks for sharing!

  5. Montana Rte 200 west from Paradise, MT to Sandpoint, ID is magnificent. It travels along a wide valley, on a little-traveled 2-lane “Blue Highway,” along the Clark Fork River. There is a nice sense of geographic discovery as you slowly approach Lake Pend Oreille, a gem of a place!

  6. One of my favorite roads I found on my way to Grand Tetons was the Snowy Range Rd (Rt 130) in WY. Absolutely beautiful. Plus we stayed at a hot spring resort in Saratoga. I also thought 16A in Custer State Park in SD was pretty cool going through the tunnels and seeing all the pinnacle formations. Very unique!

  7. I drove 13 out of 15 on your list, and its a good list. Always wanted to do 20 in cascades. Like I said earlier its all personal taste but going to the sun road has to be near the top.

  8. This is a great post, lots of inspiration for that post lockdown road trip! We prefer the scenic stops to the busy cities and there’s a lots of stops here we haven’t made yet.

  9. The list presented here is amazing and I’d love to get out and travel some of those roads that I haven’t been over. As beautiful as these are none hold a candle to Hwy140 coming out of Yosemite Valley to Tioga Pass. Starting in beautiful Yosemite Valley it’s hard to beat the starting place anywhere. Start on Hwy120 out the west end of the Valley. Climb the steep canyon wall and then branch off onto hwy140 to Tuolumne Meadows. After about 45 minutes you will pass the sheer rugged granite of the Olmstead point lookout with a view of half dome. Descend on beautiful Tenaya Lake and on to Tuolumne. Rugged peaks like Unicorn peak and Cathedral Peak line the way to Tioga Pass and you descend to the east side of the Sierras by beautiful Levining Grade.

  10. This is an amazing list. Fortunately I have seen some of the spots. Made my morning during one of the coronavirus days. I pray that sometime we can roam as we used to do. Judy Crawford

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  11. Who makes these lists ? They all seem to focus on the west and west coast. How can it be that only one of these drives is west of the rockies? People who are truly well travelled will recognize 100s of places east of the Rockies that are every bit as magnificent as you have chosen.

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      I’m pretty well traveled although certainly not the MOST well traveled. It’s hard to deny that the scale and sheer volume of impressive places on the west is much greater than back east, at least in my eyes. There are things I love back east, even for nature and outdoors, but it is hard to compete with the west. Also, I did include more than one east of the Rockies 😉

    2. Well we live in the midwest and we have been taking family road trips for the past 20 years. We get excited every summer about where are we going to go next and usually the excitement is just a little stronger when its west?

  12. Glad to see some of my favorites on this list! PCH has to be the best road trip I’ve ever been on!

  13. Hoping to get to Washington and Oregon this summer and your list made me more eager to get there! Glacier NP is my very favorite park (so far) and once you do Going To the Sun Road, I’m positive it will be added to this list. Not in the US, but the drive from Banff to Jasper on the Icefields Parkway is amazing!

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  14. Alternate highway 14 E goes from Cody, WY just east of Yellowstone Park to the South Dakota Border. I ended up on this road when there was road construction on 14 E on my trip from Portland, OR to Minneapolis. It was a dry, hot summer day with heat shimmery light on the highway. The land was typical near-high desert with scraggly trees and dried out plants. Then I took my detour on a paved road snaking its way back and forth up an up an up on the Big Horn mountain with a glorious view looking down of the side of the mountain. On the top of mountains were meadows of wild flowers, lots of blue forget me not’s and ratty banks of last winter’s snows. There was a basque shepherd and his dog sitting on the stoop of his little wagon which looked like a giant tomato juice can on its side and mounted on wheels. Sheep dotted the meadows. No fences, barriers, billboards, residences, telephone poles, towns,etc. There was a one stop service station with food as well as gasoline. Going down the other side was a pack of hang gliders with advanced equipment. My friend ended up volunteering to drive one of the pack’s car down to the elementary school a few miles away both vertically and horizontally. The updraft lifted the gliders immediately to even higher altitudes. Amazing to watch. They were having a ball. We found food at the same little town and carried on to Minneapolis.

  15. I’ve been on many of the scenic/historic highways mentioned in your articles and in other folks comments. Perhaps one that could be noted is the Great River Road that covers both the East side and West side of the Mississippi River. Not the spectacular views of many other scenic byways but interesting and historic in it’s own right. A little over 5,000 miles if you travel the East side of the River from Lake Itasca, Minn south to where it enters the Gulf of Mexico southwest of New Orleans then back up the West side to the headwaters. Video’s of all my journey’s since 2010 can be seen on YouTube (search for MikesZ06), including May 2019 Great River Road.

  16. Highway 12 in my home state of Utah is definitely one of the most beautiful and unusual in a state full of unusual and beautiful scenery, thanks for including it. Cant wait for your review of WY Beartooth highway, that along with Montanas going to the sun road are 2 of my favorites, but one almost as good is “Chief Joseph Highway” also in Wyoming, it departs from the Beartooth highway right before it begins its climb up and follows the “Clarks Fork of the Yellowstone” river (the path that Chief Joseph took while eluding government troops) over dead indian pass and comes out just east of Cody WY. Also if you have a 4WD right outside of Cooke City MT (start of Beartooth highway) take the Lulu pass road. So many beautiful drives in the west.

  17. Death Valley is and has for many years been my go to place! My oldest daughter and I have been there once and are planning to go again this coming summer. The Titus Canyon Road adventure you describe appears magnificent and a drive that I definitely want to try to make. What are your thoughts on a 2 wheel drive passenger car making this route unscathed?

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      Titus Canyon is quite amazing! Conditions change from time to time regarding road conditions, washouts, etc, but when we did it there was no need for 4WD. That being said, I’d be hesitant to go in a standard passenger car just because high clearance is typically something that you’ll want on these types of roads. On the other hand, I have heard about people making the journey in a normal passenger car…

  18. I call Shenanigans on this list. I’ve driven most of these and none live up to California’s Highway 395, especially during fall. Considering that the country’s greatest landscape photographers make this highway and the places it accesses a nearly annual pilgrimage, it’s almost blasphemous to leave it off a Most Scenic Highway list.

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      Hah, I guess different opinions? I considered adding it since I’ve driven Highway 395 more than a few times… It’s beautiful for sure in terms of the nearby scenery, but I think these routes more than live up to 395, especially seeing as most of the actual 395 drive is just long straightaways — the pretty stuff is accessed away from there. Personally, I’d put like the Whitney Portal Drive above it (or the Alabama Hills!) or maybe include the stretch of 395 up by Mono Lake.

  19. Apache Trail between Apache Junction, AZ and Roosevelt Lake. This relatively short road, about 26 miles, wraps through the superstition mountains with incredible desert landscape, valleys, and some man made lakes. The road is not paved for more than half the drive. There is onestretch down the face of a cliff dropping about 1000 ft on a barely 2 lane road. There are many side roads with lots of hiking trails. Emphatically recommend this as one of the most spectacular. Not recommended on the weekends due to dust from cars out of Phoenix.

  20. Thanks for putting this incredible information together. I have a goal to visit all 50 states so this gives me some additional ideas. I’ve driven parts of highway 1 from L.A. to San Fran, and the 101 to Portland. Also have driven from Phoenix to Sedona and through some parts of Colorado and VA and throughout the Southern U.S. Looking forward to exploring Washington and the Northeast states. Only 16 states to go!
    Cheers and happy travels!

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      You’ve visited more states than me at this point! The big chunk that I’m missing is definitely in the South and the NE, hope to explore a bit of that at some point! Cheers

  21. Awesome list! Have lived in OR and WA all my life with traveling work in Utah and AZ so have driven at least half of these. Keep driving and writing.

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  22. So many roads, and so little time.
    -WA 129 from Clarkston WA to La Grande, OR appears to be an unknown gem of twists, turns, up and down for about 100 miles as it skirts the western side of the Blue Mountains. Leaves me speechless. If you’re in to tossing your car into hairpin corners and breath taking scenery… Last time I drove it I only encountered a small handful of cars.
    -Mt. Baker Highway to Artist Point. Jaw dropping.
    -Bears tooth Pass. Insanity at 10,000 feet.
    -US 95 from the Canadian Border to Boise and beyond.
    -Highway 412 over Chinook Pass ending at Yakima, or extend the drive up the Yakima Canyon road to Ellensburg.
    -When in Ellensburg, look for Reecer Rd to the northwest of town. It turns into a paved Forest Service Rd which winds it’s way up the southern flank of Table Mt. pavement ends after about 15 miles. By this point you have already pass numerous vistas. After the pavement peters out, at roughly the 20 mile mark, is a 4 way intersection. Take a left and destination is Lions Rock at 6200’ which offers the best views of the Cascades. This is also one of the highest places you can drive in the state. Slate Peak, Sunrise, and Obstruction Point are all about the same elevation. When you come to the 4 way intersection, you’ll have already been skirting along the edge of a massive meadow area on the top of Table Mt. this area was scorched of few years back, so you might need to look past some scorched tree trunk. From Adams, to Rainier, to Mt Stuart. Wild flowers are amazing. The last 500 yard of dirt road leading to Lion Rock is for high clearance vehicles. Once here you’ll know why it is a favorite of local astronomy clubs. There is a big summer solstice gathering here of amateur astronomers. Yes, many will let you have a look through their telescope. It get chilly up there after the sunsets. Go prepared.
    -Just about any road in the Palouse is worthy of mention.

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      Awesome list, yeah, so many roads, so little time. Could do an article just on the incredible drives in Washington State, for sure. Thanks for chiming in, Matt!

  23. Love the shout outs to Going to the Sun Rd and Kanc. If you do the Kanc in the fall, GO MIDWEEK! Crazy amounts of people on weekends peeping those leaves. Rt. 100 in VT is pretty nice as well.

    1. We drove the Kancamangas Highway back during the rain from Hurricane Irene. Parts of the road were washed away, I think we were the last car on the road before it was closed down. It’s a memory.

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  24. Last summer we took the Natchez Trace Parkway all the way from one end to the other. (From Natchez Mississippi to Nashville Tennessee) It was truly stunning! It was in the middle of August and there was NO ONE on it! It was so peaceful and beautiful…we went 16 miles without seeing another car! I highly recommend this route!

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  25. I have driven on CA Route 1 and I just drove on Titus Canyon Road yesterday! However it did knock something loose in my van and now I’m at a repair shop getting a new cable to connect my shift stick to the transmission. Oops! Looking forward to checking out some of the drives you mentioned in Oregon and Washington.

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      That’s so awesome, Faith! Hopefully the repair job isn’t too much. Doesn’t sound like a big deal, but who knows with those crazy hourly rates they charge… Let me know how you like the Pacific NW!

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