Summer Travel for Seniors: The Best Road Trips

By Etta Hornsteiner
road with trees

Imagine. You’re taking a drive on the Blue Ridge Parkway cocooned by a forestry of trees, soothed by the cool mountain air and serenaded by Ella Fitzgerald’s “Summertime and the living is easy.”  Well, maybe, you don’t have to imagine. Why not actually take a road trip where you can move at your own pace and savor the beauty of nature? But not just any road trip—the best road trip routes in the United States!

The verdict is out! According to Geotab research, they have the scoop on the top 50 routes. Here are the top 10 scored out of 100:

Geotab Research Results

Monument Valley Trails, with a score of 92, came up as the ultimate road trip. These amazing rock formations are a region of the Colorado Plateau:

Road trip-Three Sisters, Monument Valley Trails
Monument Valley Trails

Three other road trips in the top 10 were from the Rocky Mountain area. Three routes were in the Southwest. Two were in the Pacific Northwest.

In terms of attraction, Hells Canyon Scenic Byway was ranked the top attraction:

Road Trip, Pacific Northwest
Hells Canyon Scenic Byway

If you are a foodie, the best area for food is New Mexico’s Two Roads to Taos. If you enjoy history and culture, then a drive Along the Missouri River was the top place in this category.

Most of the road trips are an average of 5 days. However, the shortest ones, being a weekend long, are Lake Champlain in New England and Maryland’s Historic National Road.

If you want to avoid traffic, then you want to stay far away from Disneyland and Orange County route.

What you need on your road trips

  1. A reliable car and good roadside assistance insurance. If you are a member of AARP, then roadside assistance comes with your membership. Other memberships like AAA offer roadside assistance as well. So, remember to take along these cards.
  2. Take your membership cards to get discounts off lodging, dining and shopping.
  3. Take your medications, of course.
  4. Travel with healthy protein bars, nuts and fruits to reduce the temptation of snacking. Not all protein bars are equal, so choose the kind that fits your need.
  5. Carry bottled water, but be careful the amount you drink. If you can synchronize your water intake with your driving breaks, you can avoid countless potty stops.
  6. Include exercise. Intentionally plan to get movement or exercise in. For example, plan a hiking trip. If you do, make sure you have hiking poles, which help you to remain balanced on uneven surfaces.

For more tips, click here.

Allow your road trip to speak to you

  1. Not everyone likes surprises, so some people plan out every detail. But I like this one tip from AARP’s website: “Be open to detours.”  Why? Because it’s less stressful. When we are attached to a fixed way, we can become disappointed if it does not work out according to plans. When we leave space for the detours in our lives, we help ourselves to become more resilient.
  2. Savor the goodness in life. Nature is healing. With every ounce of awareness within you, inhale the beauty.
  3. See life as if you are seeing it for the first time.
  4. Allow a portion of your trip to unfold naturally. In life, we are not going to be able to figure out everything; but trust the process of life, that life will unfold as it should.


  1. Lisa Pettinati says:

    Love this blog. Travel dreams galore.

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