Featuring diverse terrain and country music-inspiring scenery, these American roads were paved and made by people who value the journey just as much as the destination. On these drives from Hawaii to Alaska, the phrase “are we there yet?” has surely never been uttered. Pack a bag, or don’t, to hit the most beautiful roads in the USA.
State Route 11
Landscape photographer James Q. Martin calls this harsh, remote route in Alaska his favorite scenic drive in the country. Martin’s number one pick isn’t for nervous drivers, who may be put off by its 240-mile distance between services, its challenging route through the state’s boreal forests and mountain ranges, and its occasional polar bear sightings. For adventurous travelers, however, the drive on State Route 11 is a destination in itself.
Some know it as the Main Street of America, others as The Mother Road, but the country’s road trip enthusiasts know that it isn’t important how one refers to Route 66. What is important is taking in every archetypal road trip scene on this 2,000-plus-mile road running all the way from Chicago, Illinois to Los Angeles, California.
What the Overseas Highway lacks in creative naming, it more than makes up for in beauty. The southernmost leg of U.S. 1 connects drivers from Florida’s mainland to the Florida Keys, but not before granting them seven miles’ worth of views of piercing blue water. As the name of the road suggests, this unique drive takes place almost completely over water.
State Route 139
When people refer to the Californian landscape, sunny beaches and wispy palm trees often eclipse the brand of beauty glimpsed from State Route 139. Cutting through the north eastern part of the state, this route showcases a lesser-seen side of California complete with views of the Modoc National Forest and the brilliant blue Eagle Lake.
Hamakua Heritage Corridor
Unsurprisingly, the state of Hawaii boasts one of America’s most picturesque drives. The Hamakua Heritage Corridor on Hawaii’s Big Island delivers an even bigger payoff – driving along the Hamakua Coast from Hilo to the Waipio Valley Lookout, you’ll glimpse waterfalls, sea cliffs, tropical rainforests, and more.
US Route 2
America’s northeast is known for its breathtaking fall foliage. See the best of it on US Route 2, a 35-mile scenic stretch between the Maine and Vermont state borders. If you can peel your eyes away from the trees’ kaleidoscopic colors, be sure to take in the beauty of the parallel Androscoggin River.
Great River Road
For the best views of America’s Mississippi River, take the aptly-named Great River Road. The National Scenic Byway follows all 2,320 miles of the Mississippi River and then some, passing through 10 states from northern Minnesota to the Gulf of Mexico and through hundreds of river towns.
U.S. Route 30
Travel through Pennsylvania and back in time via U.S. Route 30. The rustic road passes straight through several Amish towns, including one of the oldest Amish communities in America, and features traffic consisting mainly of horse-drawn carriages.
Volcanic Iceland Epic Trip
meet our Local Insider
HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN A GUIDE?
WHAT DO YOU LOVE ABOUT YOUR JOB?
It's the personal contact, the personal experiences. I love meeting people from all over the world... I really like getting to know everyone and feeling like I'm traveling with a group of friends.
WHAT DESTINATION IS ON YOUR TRAVEL BUCKET-LIST?
I have so many places on my list, but I would really lobe to go to Africa. I consider myself an “adventure girl” and Africa feels like the ULTIMATE adventure!
Every CULTURE TRIP Small-group adventure is led by a Local Insider just like Hanna.
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Since you are here, we would like to share our vision for the future of travel - and the direction Culture Trip is moving in.
Culture Trip launched in 2011 with a simple yet passionate mission: to inspire people to go beyond their boundaries and experience what makes a place, its people and its culture special and meaningful — and this is still in our DNA today. We are proud that, for more than a decade, millions like you have trusted our award-winning recommendations by people who deeply understand what makes certain places and communities so special.
Increasingly we believe the world needs more meaningful, real-life connections between curious travellers keen to explore the world in a more responsible way. That is why we have intensively curated a collection of premium small-group trips as an invitation to meet and connect with new, like-minded people for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in three categories: Culture Trips, Rail Trips and Private Trips. Our Trips are suitable for both solo travelers, couples and friends who want to explore the world together.
Culture Trips are deeply immersive 5 to 16 days itineraries, that combine authentic local experiences, exciting activities and 4-5* accommodation to look forward to at the end of each day. Our Rail Trips are our most planet-friendly itineraries that invite you to take the scenic route, relax whilst getting under the skin of a destination. Our Private Trips are fully tailored itineraries, curated by our Travel Experts specifically for you, your friends or your family.
We know that many of you worry about the environmental impact of travel and are looking for ways of expanding horizons in ways that do minimal harm - and may even bring benefits. We are committed to go as far as possible in curating our trips with care for the planet. That is why all of our trips are flightless in destination, fully carbon offset - and we have ambitious plans to be net zero in the very near future.