Classic American road trips for travelers of all ages

Here are road trip recommendations to do with your family this sping break or the summer days.
Highway 118 at Kuehner Drive in Simi Valley on Wednesday, Jan. 3, 2024.
Highway 118 at Kuehner Drive in Simi Valley on Wednesday, Jan. 3, 2024. / JUAN CARLO\THE STAR / USA TODAY NETWORK

When most type ‘‘classic American road trip ideas’’ into a Google search or ChatGPT, the information is flooded with a list of states and published articles from various travel news outlets. The details offer some insight into ideas in narrowing down locations to cruise the open road, here are the road trip suggestions.

Hit the road to the state of Virginia for the delightful history, landscape the southern cuisine depending on the chosen route that new or seasonal road-trippers would take. 

Drive through the capital city of Richmond, Virginia known for its art scene, architecture, and museums from the dozen restaurants to choose from, kid-friendly activities such as the Children’s Museum of Richmond to the Science Museum of Virginia, and there is the VA’s Craft Beer Roadtrip, a 500-mile beer crawl that shows itinerary from Richmond to Danville. 

There is Virginia Beach, Virginia’s largest coastal city is known for its craft beer, lively boardwalk, water sports activities, Vibe Creative District, and hike First Landing State Park, which has over beachfront campsites in addition to the Virginia Beach Neptune Festival is celebrating the 50th Annual Boardwalk Weekend from September 27-29, with concerts scattered along the boardwalk, an Art & Craft Show, sand sculptures, an 8k race, a grand parade, and more.

Consider taking the scenic road that stretches 469 miles connecting Shenandoah National Park in Virginia with the Great Smoky Mountains National Park in North Carolina. Roanoke is perfect for a drive through the Blue Ridge Mountains to fish in one of the state’s only trout fisheries, rent mountain bikes in The George Washington National Forest, or try caving at Grand Caverns.

For new road trippers who may have Colonial Williamsburg on their mind as place to visit, book a stay at one of the hotels in Virginia such as The Jefferson Hotel in Richmond, Embassy Suites, Marriott Oceanfront, or the Cavalier Hotel in Virginia Beach. When driving in Roanoke, there is The Liberty Trust is a unique historic boutique hotel. 

A road trip to Cleveland, Ohio sounds like an ideal suggestion for the blend of mind-blowing landscapes, lively culture, and historical importance including the scenic route to Lake Erie Coastal Ohio Trail, the Cedar Point amusement park, there is also Ohio’s Amish Country, the Great Lakes Circle Tour, Cuyahoga Valley National Park, The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, and so much more to explore.