Now is the best time to start planning your summer road trip. Don't wait until the warmer months when you'll want to get in the car, roll your windows down, and just go! Picking a destination now can help you get the best hotel deals, plus you'll be able to organize your work schedule ahead of time. Planning ahead helps to ensure your family has the best road trip ever. We've put together our top five picks for U.S. road trip destinations to help get you started.
5. Bay Bluffs Park, Florida
For a fun trip that isn't too far from home, consider Bay Bluffs Park, one of the many scenic destinations in the Sunshine State. Bay Bluffs Park is a 50 acre preserve of undeveloped land for vacationers and residents to enjoy, according to PensacolaScenicBluffs.org. From a quaint neighborhood and commercial district in nearby Pensacola to beautiful views of the giant cliffs, this is a fantastic destination if you want to get away from it all for a day or two.
4. Redwood Forest, California
The Redwood Forest boasts some of the tallest trees in the world. You and your family can hike through challenging trails or take scenic drives through these trees, some of which have been around for hundreds of years, according to the National Park Service. In fact, redwoods live for an average of 500 to 700 years.
The area also provides kayaking, fishing, biking, rafting, and a number of other attractions, according to Redwoods.info, meaning that it will be sure to bring out the naturalist in you and your family.
3. New York City, New York
New York City is an amazing place to take your family on vacation - it is the ultimate tourist destination in the U.S. From the city's rich history to some of the tallest buildings in the nation, to the incredible bar scene for after hours, New York city earns its reputation as the center of the world.
If you choose to go to the Big Apple, some attractions that you absolutely have to see include the Empire State Building, the Statue of Liberty, and Times Square.
2. The Grand Canyon, Arizona
The Grand Canyon is the staple destination for the American road trip. This awe-inspiring natural feature was formed by glaciers moving across the area, and exposes 2 billion years of natural history, according to the Natural Park Service. Of the 5 million visitors that make their way to the Grand Canyon every year, most see it from the more easily accessible south rim, which is 7,000 feet above sea level. If you choose to see this destination, one of most memorable experiences you can have is to see the canyon at sunrise or sunset.
1. Washington, DC
The nation's capitol is perhaps the most exciting and historical city you can visit in the U.S. Bring your children and learn about the nation's complex, fascinating history with a tangible experience. If you plan enough in advance, you can go into nearly every single building in which our country's laws are made - though the White House is now closed off to most visitors.
Should you choose the capitol as your destination, try to time it to coincide with the annual Cherry Blossom Festival, which happens between late March and early April, and make sure that you get tickets to see the city from the top of the Washington Monument.
While you're planning your vacation, make sure that you keep all costs in mind, including general auto insurance, to ensure that you have the best vacation your family could ask for. You may want to look into becoming a member of a Roadside Assistance program too. If you run out of gas, lock yourself out of the car, or need a jumpstart, a roadside assistance program can truly be a lifesaver.