If you’re still in the planning phases of your family summer vacation, you might consider a road trip. A family road trip, whether you’re driving in California along the Pacific Coast Highway or you’re on the East Coast driving in the Blue Ridge Mountains, can offer a lot of advantages for your family.
The following covers some suggested routes you might take, as well as highlighting some of the benefits of family summer road trips.
The Best Road Trip Routes in the U.S.
The options are nearly endless when it comes to choosing a road trip route in the United States, but to give you a starting point, the following are some favorites among travelers:
- Montauk Highway runs along the coast of Long Island, and once you get to Montauk, it’s the furthest point east on Long Island. The Hamptons are known for the glitz and the glam of New York residents who come there on the weekends during the summer, but there’s a lot of natural beauty and plenty of lobster along this route. You can stop at Montauk Point State Park, and see the Montauk Point Lighthouse.
- If you wanted to cover the entire East Coast, you could do Route 1, going from Maine to Key West, or portions of it.
- The Overseas Highway is a shorter road trip in You can start in Miami and make your way down this scenic route toward Key West. There are beautiful and fun stops along the way,including the Turtle Hospital in Marathon.
- If you’d rather head out west, there’s Route 12 in Utah. You can stop at Red Canyon and Bryce Canyon National Park.
- Of course, there’s the amazing Pacific Coast Highway running along California’s scenic coastline as well. This is a road trip everyone should do at least once in their lifetime.
- Route 66 is the quintessential Americana road trip. Route 66 runs from Chicago to Santa Monica, but obviously you don’t have to do all 2,250 miles of it.
So beyond the potential road trip routes, why should you think about this form of summer travel?
Flying is expensive,and the costs continue to rise. If you have a family of four, even flying somewhere in the United States in an economy seat with no frills is likely going to cost thousands of dollars. A road trip can save you a lot on those initial travel costs so you can budget for more fun things along the way.
Also, if you have your own vehicle when you arrive at your destinations, you’re going to save on the costs of things like Uber or taxis—it can often be logistically easier as well.
Road Trips Can Be Less Stress
Even if you don’t mind the cost of airline travel, it’s an incredibly stressful experience,especiallywhen kids are involved. You have to get to the airport hours early, go through security, wait for your flight and there’s always the risk that your flight will be late or canceled. By the time you get on the plane, everyone is likely exhausted and irritated, and your travels haven’t even started yet.
You Can Bond with Your Kids
Sometimes vacations can feel so rushed and stressful that it doesn’t turn into a bonding experience at all. When you’re driving at your own pace, you can spend time catching up and really talking and listening much more so than if you went with another type of vacation.
You also have the opportunity to learn and see things along the way as you decide you’d like to, and if you want to veer off you’re itinerary and have an adventure, you can do it.
You’re the boss,and along with input from your family, you can find the things you want to do when you want to do them. If you see something that catches your interest along the way, you’re free to stop and check it out.
You’re also going to feel like you accomplished something as a family when you do a road trip and that in and of itself is likely to bring your family closer together.
Finally, if you regularly do road trips as opposed to taking flights, you might have the chance to travel more frequently. Even if you’re not doing a huge trip across the country, you can do a weekend road trip and get away with your family, explore and reconnect. You don’t have to save up for a once-every-10-year vacation like you might otherwise.