Best Western US Roadtrip Destinations


Shea Duplechain

5/27/20238 分钟阅读

Grand Prismatic Springs overlook at Yellowstone National Park in Wyoming
Grand Prismatic Springs overlook at Yellowstone National Park in Wyoming
Yellowstone National Park

Perhaps America’s most famous National Park, Yellowstone is a great destination for all types of road trips. The bulk of Yellowstone National Park can be found in the state of Wyoming but also extends to parts of Idaho and Montana. Yellowstone is one of the most diverse areas of the United States in terms of landscapes and wildlife. From sprawling meadows and waterfalls to tiny chipmunks and massive grizzly bears Yellowstone has it all.

One of the many benefits Yellowstone provides is its ease of access across the park. Yellowstone has great infrastructure, which grants access to vehicles of all sizes to wander. The many roads throughout Yellowstone allow you to see much of the park roadside or bring you to designated parking that's just a short walk to many of its sights. Due to the park being so easy to navigate, this makes it a great destination for people of all ages- including children. The park has a number of restrooms, mostly found near some of the bigger attractions which have shops and restaurants.

Yellowstone being so large in size can make figuring out where to go overwhelming. If you’re a first timer, traveling with kids, or just want a laid back experience, just stick to the basics. Like I mentioned earlier, the roads throughout the park will allow you to see much of the park road side and bring you to some of the more popular attractions. You’ll find yourself pulling over, like many of the other cars, to look at animals just off the road or beautiful waterfalls. Attractions like Old Faithful, Grand Prismatic Spring, and many of the other more popular destinations of the park are well developed, making them easy to maneuver for anyone and wheelchair accessible. If you're looking for a more off the beaten path adventure you can find hiking trails of all difficulties on They also offer a mobile app with downloadable trail maps.

Yellowstone can be explored at any time of the year, but only one of its five total entrances is open all days of the year. The most popular time of year to go is the summer season, which starts around the end of April, and access to Yellowstone in the winter months can be difficult due to road closages.

The park has an entrance fee that ranges from $20-$35 depending on the type of vehicle you enter in, but you could also buy the America the Beautiful pass, which grants you access to 2,000 federal recreation sites which includes all US National Parks. I recommend getting this pass, because it has unlimited uses for a year, and if split between the people in the vehicle is a great bargain. The park also has a few free-fee days which allow free entrance into the park of select dates.

Grand Teton/Jackson Hole

Just to the south of Yellowstone sits another one of my top western road trip destinations known as Grand Teton National Park. The park sits at the base of the Teton range, which also gives the park its famous scenery. Just like Yellowstone, Grand Teton offers an abundance of diverse scenery and is considered the best National Park in the lower 48 to view wildlife.

While Yellowstone allows for ease of access throughout the park by car, Grand Teton is catered towards on foot exploration. Although Grand Teton does not provide the same level of infrastructure asYellowstone, it makes up for it with is endless amount of trails. The park offers some of the best mountain views that you can find anywhere in the United States, and is a summer paradise with the many lakes and trails travelers have access to.

With Grand Teton National Park sitting just seven miles south of Yellowstone, it's possible to see what both parks have to offer, but Grand Teton still has plenty to offer for itself if you're only looking to go there. If you’re wanting to see the Teton range in its full glory, check out places like Snake River overlook, Mormon Row, and Schwabacher landing. If you are looking to cool off from the summer heat, stop by one of the many lakes the park has to offer like Phelps lake and popular Jenny lake. In addition to the many things Grand Teton has to offer, just five miles south of the park is the mountain town of Jackson Hole. Jackson Hole is a wonderful town full of shops and restaurants that provides travelers with a place to recharge and relax after their adventures.

Grand Teton can be visited at any point in the year, but if you’re looking to maximize what you can do while there, summer is the best time to visit. In the summer you will have access to all of the wonderful amenities the park provides like lakes and trails, but this will also be the best time to see a wider range of wildlife. Having gone to the park in the winter myself, I can say that it is still definitely worth visiting if you’re around the area. The blankets of snow piled up across the park and the now frozen over lakes and rivers give the park a more quiet and still atmosphere you won't get in the summer. If you do happen to visit in the winter, Jackson Hole turns into a bustling ski town that people from all over the US flock to.

Just like Yellowstone, the same entrance fees apply to enter Grand Teton, but if you end up purchasing the America the Beautiful pass you can access both parks with the same pass.


Washington state is perhaps my favorite road trip destination in the US, and there is no other way I can describe it other than hikers paradise! Washington provides one with endless trails, views, and hidden gems that will amaze you. From the towering Mount Rainier, to the markets of Pike Place in Seattle, to the forest and beaches on the Olympic Peninsula.

Washington, in my honest opinion, is home to some of the most beautiful landscapes that I have set my eyes on. The state has everything one can imagine when thinking of one's ideal paradise. The lush green forest, the vibrant wildflowers, the snow covered mountains littered with turquoise alpine lakes, and the driftwood laid beaches all combine to provide endless exploration. This is a destination handcrafted for travelers looking to get off the beaten path and immerse themselves into the best that nature has to offer.

Unlike my last two destinations, this location will require you to wonder out a little more due to it being an entire state. Although there is more ground to be covered, even visiting just one or two locations in the state will make the trip worthwhile and leave you wanting more. Places like Mount Rainier National Park and Olympic National Park will keep you occupied for days at a time and make you feel like you've stepped into another world. Even taking a day trip out to Seattle to experience the delightful parks and delicious foods is a possibility.

Washington can be visited at any point of the year but I would recommend visiting in spring or summer time. The weather in these seasons is the perfect weather to go out hiking or enjoy a day in the city, and this will also be the best time for plant and wildlife viewing experience. The state is known for its rainfall, so it would be smart to pack rain-gear incase of bad weather.

California Highway 1

A beautiful stretch of road that will guide you down the coast of California, Highway 1 will show you some of the most stunning coastal views you'll ever see. The most northern part of the highway starts in Leggett, and takes you all the way down to Dana Point south of Los Angeles. Having experienced this trip twice already, I can confidently say that this is an all time road trip experience.

If you’re interested in driving Highway 1, I'd recommend starting in the north. By starting in the north, it puts you on the coastal side of the road and gives you clear views of the coast the entire way down. The northern part of Highway 1 will also spit you out into the land of redwoods, so whether you’re starting or ending there be sure to check out the ancient redwoods of the area. While driving you’ll come across cities like San Francisco, Santa Barbara, Los Angeles and also well known coastal areas like Big Sur and Malibu.

Highway 1, unlike many other places, gives you a straightforward itinerary making it a great place for first time road trippers and travelers. The many destinations along the way provide you with endless opportunities to get out and explore. With many rest stops and campgrounds near and around the stretch of road, you’ll have plenty of areas to settle down for the night and hit the road again in the morning.

A drive down the beautiful Highway 1 can be done at anytime of the year but for me I couldn't imagine seeing the California coast at anytime of the year other than summer. The California summer sun will have you putting the windows down and enjoying the cool, salty breeze of the Pacific as you drive by the picturesque beaches and golden fields that makeup up the coast.

Southern Utah/ Northern Arizona

Southern Utah and Northern Arizona provide a much different look in comparison to the other destinations, but still provide their own unique beauty. This is a land of red dirt and rocks for miles and miles, and allows you to see how much the land has changed over thousands of years with your own eyes. This is an area rich in Native American culture and history and has some of the most unique rock formations anywhere in the US.

The most well known location in this area is hands down the Grand Canyon, but you can also find many other lesser known and just as beautiful locations as well. Places like Horseshoe bend and Monument Valley are great places to stop by, and also won't take a lot of your time. Zion National Park and Bryce Canyon are other wonderful locations in the area that will lead you to some of the most interesting and unique landscapes you can find anywhere in the world.

This is the only destination that I would prefer to see in the fall/winter months, as the heat in the middle of the year can be a little unbearable at times. I found the cooler weather allowed me to sit and enjoy the views a little more instead of rushing back to the car to escape the brutal heat. The white snow contrast beautifully with the endless red landscapes and creates a weird but interesting dynamic of snow and desert that you won't likely find elsewhere.

Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming at sunset at Schwabacher landing
Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming at sunset at Schwabacher landing
Alpine lake in Washington State in the summer with green trees and wildflowers
Alpine lake in Washington State in the summer with green trees and wildflowers
Beautiful bridge on California's Highway 1 overlooking the California Coast
Beautiful bridge on California's Highway 1 overlooking the California Coast
Angels landing in Zion National Park in Utah
Angels landing in Zion National Park in Utah