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    USA scenic roads: the best scenic byways to make your trip unforgettable

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    Joel Fulleda
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    USA scenic roads: the best scenic byways to make your trip unforgettable
    The most beautiful American scenic drives

    If there is one thing that is not lacking in the United States, it is the scenic roads, exhilarating routes where you can enjoy a magnificent panorama from your car, real gems capable of making travel on the long American roads real attractions in themselves.

    This is why the United States is the perfect place to organize a road trip, so much so that the United States Department of Transport in 1991 wanted to protect these itineraries by designing National Scenic Byway (or more simply Scenic Byway o Scenic Drive), a recognition designed to protect the roads that are distinguished by one or more of the six so-called "intrinsic qualities" established by the protection program: archaeological, cultural, historical, natural, recreational or scenographic value.



    It is practically impossible to list all the roads included in the program and it is not the purpose of this page, however we have tried to collect here the ones that we believe are the most beautiful and significant, in order to provide a useful starting point for those who are preparing a itinerario on the road.

    We have dedicated a specific article to most of these roads, others, especially those inside natural parks, we have dealt with in articles dedicated to the destinations that include them; consequently we have divided this page into 2 sections and for navigation convenience you can use this index in order to move more easily and quickly find the scenic byway of your interest:

    Index

    • Articles dedicated to scenic roads
      • Pacific Coast Highway and Big Sur: the road of the American dream
      • Florida Keys: Breathtaking tour along the Overseas Highway
      • Route 66 Recommended Route: how to plan a route
      • Tioga Pass Road: the scenic route through Yosemite
      • California Roads: Road Trip on the most exhilarating scenic byways
      • Area 51: Where is it located? UFOs and aliens on the Extraterrestrial Highway
      • Road to Hana: the most famous road on the island of Maui
      • On the road on the UT-12 Scenic Byway: all stages from Panguitch to Torrey
      • Colorado National Monument: Sightseeing tour along Rim Rock Drive
      • Indian Route 12: scenic route between Arizona and New Mexico
      • The lighthouses of Oregon: itinerary along the Pacific coast
      • Gateway: on the road through the red rock canyons of Colorado
      • Oregon coast: on the road to discover the main wonders of the state
      • Dalton Highway: on the road itinerary along the Arctic Circle
      • Road trip on the UT-24 Scenic Byway: lunar landscapes from Torrey to Green River
      • UT 128 in Moab: extraordinary on the road against the backdrop of Castle Valley
      • UT-9 and Mount Carmel Highway: Adventurous scenic byway from Zion towards Bryce
      • Potash Road e Shafer Trail: selvaggia Scenic Byway tra Moab e Canyonlands
      • Hole in the Rock Road: adventure in the Grand Staircase-Escalante between canyons and rock gardens
      • Moki Dugway and Muley Point: between vertiginous roads and immense panoramas
      • Going to the Sun Road: Glacier Park's spectacular scenic drive
    • Other Scenic Byways we have talked about

    Articles dedicated to scenic roads

    Pacific Coast Highway and Big Sur: the road of the American dream

    Also known as Route 1 or Highway 1, the Pacific Coast Highway is the road of the American dream, a US itinerary that offers stunning coastal views, along the 1000km from Orange County (near Dana Point, south of Los Angeles) to Mendocino County (just above San Francisco, near Leggett), traveling by ...



    Florida Keys: Breathtaking tour along the Overseas Highway

    Not many people know, but deep South Florida is an idyllic area, with white sand beaches, clear water, coral reefs, protected nature reserves and mouth-watering cuisine. The ideal area for refreshing baths and water activities of all kinds. All this is the Florida Keys, an infinite archipelago of islands that stretch out to ...

    Route 66 Recommended Route: how to plan a route

    Filippo Nardelli

    Our definitive guide to Route 66 with state-by-state recommended route and our tips for organizing an itinerary along the Mother Road, with tips on when to go, how much it costs, travel times, best time and much more ...

    Tioga Pass Road: the scenic route through Yosemite

    Bernardo Pacini

    It is not new that moving from one place to another in America requires a little patience: we often find ourselves traveling long and straight roads, with landscapes that are certainly very varied, but which in the long run risk becoming monotonous. Well, in the case of Yosemite Valley this is not the case. How would you stay if we told you that the road ...

    California Roads: Road Trip on the most exhilarating scenic byways

    It is undeniable that the streets of California exert a particular charm, capable of attracting visitors from all over the world. It is no coincidence that a visit to the Golden State always goes hand in hand with the decision to rent a car to whiz in full style on the road along the fascinating Highways and Interstates of the state. Why is the idea of ​​a road trip to California so fascinating? Things…



    Area 51: Where is it located? UFOs and aliens on the Extraterrestrial Highway

    Bernardo Pacini

    Area 51, along with the city of Roswell in New Mexico, share a disturbing mystery. The top secret underground military zone extends over a desert area that corresponds to the dried up bottom of Groom Lake, near Rachel (Nevada), on the Extraterrestrial Highway, 150 km north of Las Vegas. The very high level of secrecy to which military aeronautical operations of an experimental nature are subjected which ...

    Road to Hana: the most famous road on the island of Maui

    Marianna Licia and Paolo

    We continue our journey to discover Hawaii, and specifically the Island of Maui, discovering one of the most fascinating roads of the archipelago: the Road to Hana, which will lead us to discover the wonders of the island. There are roads and roads. And the Road to Hana should be traveled at least once in the life of us travelers. It is one of the most scenic routes in the ...

    On the road on the UT-12 Scenic Byway: all stages from Panguitch to Torrey

    Bernardo Pacini

    Before talking about the UT-12, one of the most beautiful scenic roads in the United States, I would like to make a small introduction: it happens very often that, during our West Coast tours, to save a few hours of travel between a stage and the another one decides to take the fastest and not the most beautiful road. If on the one hand this ...


    Colorado National Monument: Sightseeing tour along Rim Rock Drive

    In America there are many parks and natural beauties with remote areas not accessible with a rental car; in those cases we often have to stop, pick up our boots and start walking, or more simply give up; it is actually one of the few flaws of travel conceived exclusively as "on the road" ... anyway, do not worry: today we will not have this problem! Colorado…


    Indian Route 12: scenic route between Arizona and New Mexico

    Marianna Licia and Paolo

    We are in New Mexico ready to move from Gallup to Goosenecks State Park in Utah. We have two options: the first would be to continue north towards the sacred and surreal area of ​​Shiprock, then detour west through the Four Corners where Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico and Utah meet and then take the roads 41, 162 and 163. The second would be ...

    The lighthouses of Oregon: itinerary along the Pacific coast

    Filippo Nardelli

    The Oregon coast is certainly one of the most evocative in the United States, even if it is not particularly busy with tourist routes. Adding charm to the coasts overlooking the Pacific Ocean are the inevitable lighthouses that will allow you to take unforgettable souvenir photos. A bit like the New England lighthouses, also in this case, ...

    Gateway: on the road through the red rock canyons of Colorado

    Bernardo Pacini

    Some time ago we got a very peculiar comment: a reader of the site was breathless in front of a scenic road that cut in the middle of a Colorado canyon, seen during Jaaaaaaaags, an episode of The Grand Tour (season 2). This place had remained very impressed to her so much that she asked us for help in understanding where exactly it took place ...

    Oregon coast: on the road to discover the main wonders of the state

    Filippo Nardelli

    If you are thinking of organizing your vacation in Oregon, you cannot fail to start planning your Pacific North West road itinerary starting from one of the many magnificent natural attractions that stretch along the coast of the state. Faraglioni rising from the waters of the Pacific Ocean, observation points that allow you to admire all the ...

    Dalton Highway: on the road itinerary along the Arctic Circle

    Andrea Cuminatto

    Do you love road trips, but hate traffic? Is your ideal road the one whose end is not seen, which crosses boundless spaces immersed in nature? Then the Dalton Highway should be your next destination! Mind you though, this is not about making the romantic Route 66, nor simply crossing a state on the ...

    Road trip on the UT-24 Scenic Byway: lunar landscapes from Torrey to Green River

    Bernardo Pacini

    Especially for those coming from Bryce Canyon and heading to the Moab area, the UT-24 Scenic Byway is the natural continuation of the equally scenic and unmissable UT-12. The road is longer than the section we are considering, but we are particularly interested in the section that goes from Torrey to the entrance to the I-70, which will then take us to Green ...

    UT 128 in Moab: extraordinary on the road against the backdrop of Castle Valley

    Bernardo Pacini

    For those like me who are fond of southern Utah views, it was not difficult to rename Moab with the equally biblical name of "Promised Land". Yes, because the fingers of both hands are not enough to count the beauties that lurk around this small town in southern Utah: we tried it by describing in detail the ...

    UT-9 and Mount Carmel Highway: Adventurous scenic byway from Zion towards Bryce

    Bernardo Pacini

    In Utah there is no shortage of scenic roads to talk about, and the UT-9 can easily be counted among these not only for the beauty of the views that can be seen around, but also for the driving experience itself, different from the classic typical straights. of desert areas. Are you curious to find out more? Well, suffice it to say that a segment of ...

    Potash Road e Shafer Trail: selvaggia Scenic Byway tra Moab e Canyonlands

    Bernardo Pacini

    Driving along the Colorado River on a road trip through the parks of the West is quite a complicated task. In various cases it can be seen from above or from afar, but it is difficult to find an easy road to take that gives us the thrill of whizzing with our car following the course of the most famous river in the West. Well, around ...

    Hole in the Rock Road: adventure in the Grand Staircase-Escalante between canyons and rock gardens

    Bernardo Pacini

    The state of Utah is full of scenic drives to try at least once in a lifetime, and the infamous Hole in the Rock Road is certainly no exception. I have already talked about this adventurous dirt road that goes into the most remote area of ​​Escalante in the article on the much better known and busier UT-12, because it is by deviating from this that you ...

    Moki Dugway and Muley Point: between vertiginous roads and immense panoramas

    Andrea Cuminatto

    When you see images of winding roads, sinuously winding up between mountains, rocks and precipices, can't you wait to jump in your car to drive them regardless of vertigo? Well, then you definitely need to include the Moki Dugway on your road trip in the American southwest. A breathtaking view and a pinch of danger make this road one of the most intriguing to ...

    Going to the Sun Road: Glacier Park's spectacular scenic drive

    The flagship of Glacier National Park is undoubtedly its panoramic road, the Going to the Sun Road, one of the most scenic routes in the world that allows you to spot glaciers, lush valleys, spectacular mountain peaks, wild animals directly from your car. such as bears, moose or mountain goats, and thundering waterfalls that slide directly from the back of the mountain….

    Other Scenic Byways we have talked about

    Forrest Gump Point

    As already mentioned, there are many scenic roads to which we have not dedicated a specific article, but this does not mean that they are less deserving than the others, in fact we have still explored them in other articles on wider destinations. Among these, some streets deserve a special mention, not only for their beauty, but also for their powerful iconographic-symbolic appeal:

    • Valley Drive, the road that winds its way between the imposing rocky monoliths of Monument Valley -> see the article on Monument Valley
    • Scenic Byway I-163, which leads to the same park, where you can photograph the Forrest Gump Point -> see the article on Forrest Gump Point
    • Death Valley Scenic Drive, the impressive road through the heart of Death Valley -> see the article on how to visit Death Valley and the best scenic drives in California

    In addition to Monument Valley, other notable scenarios for those who love red rock landscapes can be admired along the Oak Creek Scenic Drive from Flagstaff e Sedona, la Zion Park Scenic Byway (in the homonymous national park of Zion), the North e South Rim Drive (which runs along the edges of Canyon de Chelly), la Valley of Fire Highway (in the Valley of Fire park), la Valley of the Gods Road (the road that crosses the Valley of the Gods, a sort of minor version of Monument Valley) and the many paths of the 5 great parks of Utah (the so-called Utah Mighty Five).

    Death Valley Scenic Drive

    Those looking for beautiful mountain landscapes are spoiled for choice, just think of the verdant valleys of Lamar Valley and Hayden Valley, the rocky monoliths of the Buffalo Bill Cody Scenic Byway (see the article on Cody), to the mountain peaks and crystalline lakes of the Teton Park Road (Grand Teton park) and the Going to the Sun Road (Glacier National Park), alla Trail Ridge Road, the highest-altitude paved road in the United States (in the Rocky Mountain National Park), and Crater Lake Rim Drive, which allows you to skirt the edge of the volcano of Crater Lake National Park.

    Finally, those looking for scenic roads on the East Coast, in the New England area, can enjoy beautiful landscapes on the sea along the Acadia Loop Road (the loop road from which to admire the magnificent cliffs of Acadia National Park), or you can go hunting for lighthouses and romantic landscapes following this itinerary on the New England coast.

    Those who travel to the States during the autumn season can follow our ideas on how to enjoy the foliage in New England or, going further south, take 2 other scenic roads much loved by Americans: the Blue Ridge Parkway (fra Virginia and North Carolina) and the Skyline Drive (running through the Shenandoah National Park in Virginia).

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