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Classic Car Road Trip Guide: 7 Must-See Routes in the U.S.

Want to take a memorable road trip? Travel across the U.S. in your classic car to see historic landscapes, scenic routes, and stunning natural beauty! Whether you’re wanting a long distance trek or a short day trip, check out these seven ideas for classic car road trips!

Arizona Route 66

Route 66 is a historic U.S. highway and makes for an amazing road trip. While the entire 2,448 miles—running through seven states from Illinois to California—can get long, you can experience great parts of the classic highway in Arizona. Here, you’ll find scenic stops, vintage motels and neon signs, and some history along the way!

Holbrook, AZ

Outside of the Petrified Forest in Holbrook, AZ. Photo by Instagram user @roamingscott

Photo via @roamingscott

As you get your kicks on Route 66, make your first stop in Holbrook. Explore the beautiful Petrified Forest National Park and see the Painted Desert with its breathtaking bands of colors. Visit the iconic Wigwam Motel and stay the night. See larger-than-life dinosaur sculptures and shop trinkets at the Painted Desert Indian Center. Or eat Navajo Tacos and other Tex-Mex eats at Joe & Aggie’s Cafe.

Sedona, AZ

Red Mountains in Sedona, AZ. Photo by Instagram user @allophile_

Photo via @allophile_

Plan a stop in Sedona for some of the best natural beauty Arizona has to offer. Hike through amazing rock formations like Bell Rock, Cathedral Rock, or Devil’s Bridge Trail. Experience a natural water slide at Slide Rock State Park. Enjoy breakfast creations like Lemon Ricotta French Toast or the Broken Yolk Sandwich at Creekside American Bistro. Or make your way to Tii Gavo to dine on Southwest cuisine while overlooking the gorgeous red rocks.

Seligman, AZ

For some of the best nostalgia of Route 66, stop in Seligman. Visit the Return to the 50’s Museum to go back in time and pick up some souvenirs. Stop at the Motoporium to see colorful classic cars and shop for some fun gifts. Try classic Chicken Fried Steak or an Elk Burger at Roadkill Cafe. Or drink milkshakes and root beer floats at Delgadillo’s Snow Cap Drive In.

Oatman, AZ

Horse Outside of the Oatman Saloon in Oatman, AZ. Photo by Instagram user @alimellem

Photo via @alimellem

Complete your Route 66 road trip at Oatman, an old mining town with a certain charm. Brave the heights of Sitgreaves Pass. Stop to pet the Oatman Burros, wild donkeys that roam through the town. Enjoy a burger with Burro Ears at The Oatman Hotel and Saloon. And don’t forget to try the Fry Bread at the Olive Oatman Restaurant.

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Blue Ridge Parkway

If you want to take a leisurely drive in your classic car, head out on the Blue Ridge Parkway. This 469-mile route hits different regions through Virginia and North Carolina, each offering amazing attractions, scenic views, and more. Be sure to plan a stop in each one!

Bedford, VA

Peaks of Otter in Bedford, VA. Photo by Instagram user @erinamartell

Photo via @erinamartell

As you make your way through the Ridge Region of Blue Ridge Parkway, you’ll want to stop in Bedford. Learn more about one of the biggest World War II battles at the National D-Day Memorial. Enjoy the outdoors by renting a boat, swimming, or picnicking at Smith Mountain Lake State Park. See amazing mountain views from the Peaks of Otter. Before heading out of town, order a Bahn Mi Sandwich or a Mediterranean Salad at Town Kitchen and Provisions.

Vinton, VA

Moss Covered Guard Rail in Vinton, VA. Photo by Instagram user @gentry_allison

Photo via @gentry_allison

Just outside of Roanoke is the small town of Vinton. This is a great stop if you’re wanting to relax before continuing your classic car road trip. While you’re there, take in the views at one of the overlooks at Roanoke Mountain. Try local craft beer like the Dry Irish Stout at Twin Creeks Brewing Company. And eat the Macho Cowboy or Colombiana Burger with a side of Tostones at FarmBurguesa!

Boone, NC

Mountains in Boone, NC. Photo by Instagram user @thyerpower

Photo via @thyerpower

Boone is located in the highlands region on the Blue Ridge Parkway. Here, you can explore the stunning views inside a mountain at Linville Caverns. Go on a wading trip with Riverstone Fly Fishing and learn how to catch some huge trout. Dig into Southern comfort cuisine with Southern Fried Chicken and Country Style Steak at the Dan’l Boone Inn and Restaurant. Before heading back on the road, grab breakfast at Boone Bagelry for homemade breakfast sandwiches.

Asheville, NC

Sunset over Bearwallow Mountain in Asheville, NC. Photo by Instagram user @toddroy

Photo via @toddroy

As you come to the end of your road trip, make one last stop in Asheville. Take in the amazing views as you hike the Bearwallow Mountain Trail. In the summer, attend the Shindig on the Green music festival to discover traditional mountain music. Order some delicious Barbecued Pork with Jalapeno Cheese Grits and Buttered Green Beans for a hearty meal at 12 Bones Smokehouse. For a fun culinary experience, try homemade cheeses—and even take some home with you—at Looking Glass Creamery!

Blues Highway

Instead of just listening to the blues in your classic car, head out and see the real thing along the Blues Highway! Drive from Nashville to New Orleans to experience the best of this legendary music genre and eat some delicious Southern fare. Bring your oldies playlist as you head out on this historic American road trip!

Nashville, TN

Sign Outside Roberts Western World Home in Nashville, TN. Photo by Instagram user @francescaamoro

Photo via @francescaamoro

Visit Nashville‘s famous Grand Ol Opry and learn about the history of country music. Learn more about legendary artists at the Country Music Hall of Fame. Try delicious Tennessee whiskey and moonshine at one of the many distilleries including Nelson’s Green Brier Distillery, Ole Smoky Tennessee Moonshine, and Tennessee Legend Distillery. When it’s time to eat, grab some famous Nashville hot chicken at Prince’s Hot Chicken Shack.

Clarksdale, MS

Painted Car Outside of Blues Alley in Clarksdale, MS. Photo by Instagram user @visitms

Photo via @visitms

Blues fans don’t want to miss a stop in Clarksdale. Visit the Delta Blues Museum to see famous instruments, costumes, and more. Check out classic live music venues like New Roxy and Ground Zero Blues Club, where many famous blues artists have performed. Fill up on a hearty breakfast of Chicken & Biscuit paired with a speciality coffee at Yazoo Pass. For savory Southern barbecue, head to Abe’s Bar-B-Q. And be sure to stop at the Blues Crossroads sign on your way out of town!

New Orleans, LA

Stop in New Orleans for the final stop on your Blues Highway road trip. Listen to some of the best jazz music around on Frenchmen Street, right off the French Quarter. Head to Bourbon Street for parades, drink specials, dancing, street music, and more. Grab classic french beignets at Cafe Du Monde or a cajun crawfish dinner at BOIL Seafood House.

Dinosaur Diamond

Go on a classic car getaway on the Dinosaur Diamond Prehistoric Highway. This 512-mile loop takes you through Western Colorado and Eastern Utah. You can spend three to four days discovering prehistoric fossils, seeing stunning mountain views, and learning about the natural history that lies here!

Dinosaur, CO

Start your prehistoric adventure in Dinosaur, CO. Make your way up to Dinosaur National Monument to see ancient petroglyphs. Or go hiking at Harper’s Corner Trail for views of Yampa River Canyon. Head to BedRock Depot for BedRock Reubens, homemade ice cream, and souvenir shop! And grab a classic burgers and fries at Highway Bar & Grill.

Vernal, UT

Pink Dinosaur Holding a Sign in Vernal, UT. Photo by Instagram user @neonlover801

Photo via @neonlover801

Dig for fossils and explore the dinosaur garden at the Utah Field House of Natural History State Park. Explore the unusual geologic sites at Fantasy Canyon. Or go whitewater rafting on the Yampa River. Fill up on Spicy Wings, Dino Burgers, and local brews at Dinosaur Brew Haus. And don’t forget to pick up a Betty Omelet and a giant cinnamon roll for brunch at Betty’s Cafe before you leave Vernal!

Moab, UT

Outdoor lovers must make a stop in Moab! See over 2,000 natural stone arches at Arches National Park. Look at the life-size sculptures of prehistoric creatures at Moab Giants dinosaur museum. Enjoy the Bison Empanadas or Colorado Lamb Chops for dinner at Desert Bistro. Or go for the Smothered Green Chili Cheeseburger and Brown Butter Cake Sundae at Moab Diner.

Fruita, CO

Colorado National Monument in Fruita, CO. Photo by Instagram user @clairecophotos

Photo via @clairecophotos

Finish the Dinosaur Diamond loop in Fruita! Experience the red rock canyons and towering rock formations at Colorado National Monument. See fossils, skeletons, and interactive dinosaur exhibits at Dinosaur Journey Museum. Go mountain biking on the Kokopelli Trail. Relax and try unique pizza like Granny’s Pesto and The Stinky Deluxe at Hot Tomato Pizza. Or head to Camilla’s Kaffe, a local favorite for burgers, sandwiches, and wraps.

Georgia Coast

Coastal Georgia is a great destination if you’re looking for a shorter road trip in your classic car. While the distance may only be 100 miles, there are still plenty of things to do and see, including historic cities, relaxing beaches, exciting outdoor adventures, and more!

Savannah, GA

Start your coastal road trip in Savannah, one of the oldest cities in Georgia. See the town on a vintage trolley with Old Town Trolley Tours. Walk through Forsyth Park to see the Forsyth Park Fountain and towering Live Oak trees. Take a tour and taste some local Savannah Brews at Coastal Empire Beer Co. Sip on some espresso and savor a Churro Muffin at Foxy Loxy Cafe. Or make a reservation for a dinner cruise on the Savannah Riverboat to watch the sun go down along the Savannah River.

Tybee Island, GA

Signs on the Beach at Tybee Island, GA. Photo by Instagram user @annanotsogrimm

Photo via @annanotsogrimm

Not far down the road from Savannah is Tybee Island. Walk to the Tybee Island Light Station and Museum to take in views of the Atlantic Ocean. Go kayaking through the coastal marsh at Sea Kayak Georgia. Order a giant seafood platter at The Crab Shack. Or satisfy your sweet tooth with ice cream creations like the Upside Down Banana Split, Chocolate Chip Milkshake, or Lemon Custard Ice Cream at The Sugar Shack.

St. Simons Island, GA

Before you end your Georgia Coast road trip, make one last stop at St. Simons Island. Lay out on the soft white sand at East Beach. Hike up the steps to St. Simons Lighthouse Museum. Eat local seafood like the Wild Georgia Shrimp at Iguana’s Seafood Restaurant. Or indulge with a Full Slab of Ribs or Southern Soul Sampler at Southern Soul Barbecue.

Oregon Coast

Hop on Highway 101 along the Oregon Coast for an unforgettable road trip in your classic car. Explore charming seaside towns, take in views of the Pacific Ocean, and hike through lush forests! This trip is worth stretching out over a couple days so you can stop and see everything!

Cannon Beach, OR

Cannon Beach on the Oregon Coast. Photo by Instagram user @brentsagnotti

Photo via @brentsagnotti

Start your Pacific Northwest Road Trip in Cannon Beach. Here, you can see Haystack Rock, a recognizable Oregon landmark. Spend the day at Ecola State Park to walk along the white sand or hike through one of the many scenic trails. Order the Fish & Chips with a Blackberry Beauty wheat beer at Bill’s Tavern and Brewhouse. Before you continue on the road, stop at Sea Level Bakery for high-quality coffee and pastries.

Tillamook, OR

Oregon Coastline in Tillamook, OR. Photo by Instagram user @thesaltyraven

Photo via @thesaltyraven

Plan another stop on your road trip in Tillamook! Visit the Tillamook Creamery, where you can see how their cheese is made, try some ice cream, and take home a souvenir from the gift shop. Go clamming, crabbing, and fishing in Tillamook Bay. Drink up with The Broken Truck or The Noir Truffle at de Garde Brewing. Or grab a bite to eat at Old Oregon Smokehouse for a variety of fresh seafood dishes.

Newport, OR

Lighthouse on the Oregon Coast in Newport, OR. Photo by Instagram user @brocksmi84

Photo via @brocksmi84

As you continue south on US-101, check out Newport for amazing views and great seafood finds. Look out over the water at the Yaquina Head Lighthouse. See the interactive exhibits and learn about local marine line at the Oregon Coast Aquarium. Stroll along the soft white sand at South Beach State Park or rent a yurt for a night on the beach. And don’t leave without trying the famous Clam Chowder and other seafood dishes at Mo’s.

Port Orford, OR

End your trip in the Pacific Northwest with one last stop in Port Orford! Walk along the beach or wade in the tide pools of Port Orford Bay. Go kayaking, hiking, or just relax on the beach at Cape Blanco State Park. Check out Tasty Kate’s, a quirky cafe serving up pastries and coffee. Or make reservations at Redfish for fine seafood, cocktails, and live music from local musicians.

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Pacific Coast Highway

The Pacific Coast Highway in California is a gorgeous trip to take in your classic car. Here’s a road trip tip for you—start up north and work your way south so you can drive in the lane closest to the ocean for the best views! This coast-hugging highway is 656 miles long and the longest in California, so be sure to plan some stops along the way to enjoy the beach, try delicious wine, and discover incredible local food!

San Francisco, CA

Start your PCH road trip up north in San Francisco. See the views of the Golden Gate Bridge. Shop for souvenirs and see families of sea lions at Fisherman’s Wharf. Have a picnic at Golden Gate Park or Mission Dolores Park. Eat the Lemon Ricotta Pancakes or Fried Egg Sandwich for breakfast at Plow. Or get fresh seafood like oysters, lobster, shrimp, and more at Swan Oyster Depot.

Monterey, CA

Beach in Monterey, CA. Photo by Instagram User @cprdrt

Photo via @cprdrt

Make your next stop in the seaside city of Monterey! See otters, sharks, and other sea creatures at Monterey Bay Aquarium. Catch some waves at Del Monte Beach. Venture out with seafood dishes like the BBQ Baby Octopus or Crab Ravioli at Monterey’s Fish House. And get the Mai Tai P.A., Bixby Blonde, and other local drafts at Alvarado Street Brewery & Grill.

San Luis Obispo, CA

Homes on the Edge of a Cliff in San Luis Obispo, CA. Photo by Instagram User @ellastakhovich

Photo via @ellastakhovich

As you continue driving down Pacific Coast Highway, plan on stopping in San Luis Obispo. Visit The Madonna Inn, an iconic motel with whimsical decor, a spa, and handful of dining options. Enjoy the outdoors and hike Bishop Peak Trail. Try Central Coast Chardonnays and Pinot Noirs in the tasting room at Chamisal Vineyards. Or head to Bear & The Wren for Prosciutto Pizza and Polenta Tots.

San Diego, CA

End your California road trip in sunny San Diego! Relax for the day at La Jolla Beach. Hike through Torrey Pines State Reserve. Visit the world-renowned San Diego Zoo. Savor seasonal wines and dishes at Wine Vault and Bistro. Or order Jidori Fried Chicken and Mexican Poutine for dinner at Crack Shack.


Looking for more road trip ideas across the U.S.? Check out these national park road trips, van life road trips, RV road trips, and motorcycle road trips!

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