Solo Summer Road Tripper: The Best American Sites to Visit Since You’re Too Afraid to Fly (Or Be Near Anyone)
It might not seem like it, but summer has officially started. Sure, things are a little different because of the ongoing pandemic. But that shouldn’t stop you from enjoying as much of the summer as possible. That is, as long as you bring along a mask, continue social distancing, and just use common sense when you’re around crowds of fellow tourists.
One of the biggest differences between this summer and years past is that, unless you fly for work, air travel to another country is probably not on your agenda. This is why summer 2020 is the perfect time to take that road trip you’ve been planning. The U.S. is full of amazing, exciting destinations that you’ve probably never visited. Hop in your car, set your GPS, and head out ASAP. All you need is a suitcase, a camera, and a sense of adventure.
To help point you in the right direction, we made a list of some of our favorite destinations in America. Not only are they some of the most popular tourist attractions, but they’re all far away from crowded cities (although many of the sites will probably be crowded). Check them all out below.
Photo: Jordan Siemens (Getty Images)
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Yellowstone was the first ever national park. It’s also one of the most popular and if you’ve never visited it, now’s the time. This 3,500 square mile park is home to bison, wolves, and various other wildlife as well as the famous geyser Old Faithful.
Photo: Viktor Vichev / EyeEm (Getty Images)
The Grand Canyon (Arizona)
Like Niagara Falls and Mount Rushmore, we’ve all seen the Grand Canyon in movies. We’ve always wanted to see it in person and now is the time. If you didn’t know just how “grand” this canyon is, it’s 277 miles long. Yes, it’s that freaking big.
Photo: Craig Hastings (Getty Images)
Big Sur (California)
If you’re anywhere near California, this summer is the perfect time to finally experience Big Sur. It’s full of great hiking and beautiful scenic drives. The breathtaking, twisting coastline seems like it was made for photos that will make all of your Instagram followers totally jealous.
Photo: Fabiane Burja / EyeEm (Getty Images)
Bar Harbor (Maine)
It might be tough to social distance in the quaint town of Bar Harbor, Maine. But, try your best and wear a mask while you’re perusing the various shops. Definitely don’t leave without visiting nearby Acadia National Park with its rock-filled beaches and granite peaks overlooking the Atlantic Ocean.
Photo: Dermot Conlan (Getty Images)
If you’ve never been to Moab, now’s your chance. Situated in eastern Utah, the ridiculous scenery will make you feel like you’re on another planet (far from COVID-19). It’s full of crazy rock formations, two National Parks (Arches and Canyonlands) and home to pretty much any outdoor activity you can think up.
Photo: Mark Brodkin Photography (Getty Images)
Niagara Falls (New York)
Made up of three different falls, Niagara Falls is one of the most breathtaking sites in the world. It’s also pretty easy to get to if you live in New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania or any of the surrounding states. Sadly, this summer you’re not likely to be able to enter into Canada and see the falls from a much better angle. But, you can still take a road trip to see them on the New York side.
Photo: Peter Unger (Getty Images)
Great Smoky Mountains (Tennessee)
The Great Smoky Mountains National Park is situated on the border between Tennessee and North Carolina. It’s one of the most visited National Parks for a reason. It’s massive, full of beautiful scenery and perfect for hikers hoping to spend time outdoors while socially distancing from others.
Photo: Chris Swartwood (Getty Images)
Mount Rushmore (South Dakota)
Most of us have never seen Mount Rushmore in person. We’ve seen it in movies like North By Northwest and Richie Rich. This summer is the perfect time to finally take a road trip to see the giant heads of Thomas Jefferson, George Washington, Theodore Roosevelt, and Abraham Lincoln in person.
Photo: Ed Freeman (Getty Images)