Summer’s finally on the horizon. After a long winter and rainy spring, BBQs, vitamin D, and vacation days are in our near future. Whether you’re a first-time solo traveler or looking for wanderlust inspo for a family vacay, we have two words for you: road trip. We asked three travel bloggers why they love road trips and for their destination recommendations. Read on for all the deets.
3 REASONS WHY ROAD TRIPS ARE AMAZING
1. They encourage you to be spontaneous. Not only can you pack up your car and be ready to head out within a few hours, but road trips offer endless opportunities for spontaneity. “A good road trip is as much about the journey as it is the destination. Being open to unexpected pit stops, having the best road trip music, and, of course, great conversations. If you have to ask ‘are we there yet?’ then something ain’t right,” says Debbie Arcangeles, Offbeat Trekker travel blogger.
2. If done right, they push you outside your comfort zone. Trying new things is a great way to inspire creativity and even support brain health. “Travel is good medicine. Because it challenges the brain with new and different experiences and environments, it is an important behavior that promotes brain health and builds brain resilience across the lifespan,” writes Paul Nussbaum, a clinical neuropsychologist and professor at the University of Pittsburgh. Also, by not mapping out every stop along the way and allowing yourself to be inspired by random road signs, you’ll tap into your desires and find out what you really want.
3. They’re cheaper. So, basically, a summer road trip is a no-brainer. Depending on where you’re going and the price of gas, road trips can end up being more expensive than you’d expect, but generally, they’re a lot cheaper than destinations you have to fly to. That’s because you can pile all your friends (or kiddos) in your car and split the cost of gas instead of each having to buy a plane ticket. Since you have a car, you’ll also be able to make a road trip budget-friendly by driving to local spots for meals and camping along the way.
3 epic road trips
1. Albuquerque to the Bisti/De-Na-Zin Wilderness, New Mexico: “One of the best road trips I’ve done was from Albuquerque to Kasha-Katuwe Tent Rocks National Monument and finally the Bisti/De-Na-Zin Wilderness. In Kasha-Katuwe, make sure to hike the 1.2 miles to the lookout point. It is absolutely worth it to see the view of the tent rocks! If you’re up for a bigger challenge, then head to the Bisti/De-Na-Zin Wilderness for more incredible hiking and camping. What makes the De-Na-Zin Wilderness so unique are its eerie, otherworldly landscapes. Hidden gem tip: Look out for the ‘Bisti Egg Garden.’ You’ll thank me later.” — Debbie Arcangeles, @offbeattrekker
2. Phoenix to Antelope Valley, Arizona: “One of my favorite road trips was to Antelope Canyon near Page, Arizona. Although it’s heavily trafficked and only accessible via a private tour due to being on a reservation, visiting the beautiful shapes and colors of the site was well worth the drive and lengthy wait. Purchase tickets for 3pm to catch the sunset, which unveils purples, oranges, and hints of blue in the canyon. Nearby Horseshoe Bend should definitely be on your must-do list too.” Start your road trip in Phoenix to enjoy the amazing natural landscapes of Sedona and the small-town charm of Flagstaff along the way. — Janelle Diane, @destinationdame
3. Portland, Oregon to Walla Walla, Washington: “This trek is by far one of the most beautiful in the Pacific Northwest, and it’s great for casual campers or people looking to stay in hotels along the way. Portland is a city you could eat your way through! Don’t miss the Bollywood Theatre and Salt and Straw Ice Cream. The drive through the gorge is simply exquisite. Take the historic highway (I-84) and make obligatory stops at Crown Point, overlooking the river, and Multnomah Falls. In Walla Walla, you’ll find outdoor adventuring, BBQs, hiking, and Bennington Lake. For delicious wine, I suggest Waterbrook Winery and L’Ecole No 41. For delicious farm-to-table affordable eats, head to the Olive Market Place and Cafe Graze. You can also rent a bike and cruise around the downtown area! — Nonee, @noneesworld
Are you planning a road trip this summer? Tell us where you’re heading @BritandCo!
(Featured photo via Getty)