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27 Ideas for the Best 3 Month Bucket List Road Trip Across the United States

One thing that is on everyone’s bucket list is a road trip across the United States. From retirees rolling around in the R.V. to college students on spring break to high school graduates, most everyone dreams of the idea of traveling across the U.S. But where and when is the best place to start? Well, for this three-month long journey, plan to start in April and end in June. This way, you can visit all the warmer states in decent weather and hit all milder states toward the summer months.


First stop: California

There are tons of sites to see in California, which makes it the best place to start for a three-month road trip. Start out in San Francisco and drive over the Golden Gate Bridge and make sure to snap a few photos. It’s a quick start to your long journey and is a must-see when visiting California. Plus, it’s a free stop before the real adventure begins!


Next, head down to Yosemite National Park, which is located in the Sierra Nevada mountains. Yosemite is best known for its giant, ancient sequoias, and for Tunnel View, the iconic vista of towering Bridalveil Falls and the granite cliffs of El Capitan and Half Dome. Within the park are restaurants, shops, and the Yosemite Museum and the art gallery of Ansel Adams, which features the black-and-white prints of the area landscapes.

Plan your visit to Yosemite.


After, travel down to Los Angeles and visit all the sights of Hollywood. Walk the Sunset Strip and Hollywood Boulevard, being sure to find your favorite Hollywood stars on the Walk of Fame, and don’t forget to visit the famous Hollywood sign. The Sunset Strip also features a variety of restaurants and shops to indulge in. Then, while you’re in the area, swing over to Disneyland in Anaheim. Factor in an entire day’s worth of time here so you can enjoy all the rides and park attractions that occur during the day and in the evening.


View the park attractions at the Disneyland website.

Another fun event that happens in Indio, California during the month of April is the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival. This festival takes place every year at the Empire Polo Club and features music genres such as hip hop, rock, electronic dance, and independent. The site offers camping, boutiques, food and beverage, and other fun activities during your weekend spent at Coachella. Activities include things like the Bad Dancing Competition, dodgeball, and the Coachella Art Studio.

To buy your tickets and find out more information, visit the Coachella website.


Viva Las Vegas

Definitely spend some time in the city that never sleeps. Whether you decide to stay here for a few days or just take in all the sights, Las Vegas, Nevada is worth every penny. The city is absolutely incredible with all the marvelous shows, casinos, and hotels, making it a great destination to experience. When you decide to leave Nevada, go visit the Hoover Dam on your way to Arizona. The dam is a concrete archway in the Black Canyon of the Colorado River and rests right on the border of Nevada and Arizona, making it a quick stop before your next destination.



The Grand Canyon

The Grand Canyon is an extraordinary sight to see while in Arizona. There are so many things to do here, including camping, biking, hiking, and lodging. While at the park, you can plan tours or visit on your own time, but make sure to see all the sights. There’s Hermit Road, Desert View Drive, the North Rim, Toroweap, Havasupai Indian Reservation, and don’t forget the Skywalk. The park offers a shuttle bus to all areas of the Grand Canyon, which allows you to see every incredible view. Travel out to Hermit’s Rest on the South Rim or venture out on the Skywalk which is located on the Haulapai Reservation at Grand Canyon West. The horseshoe-shaped steel frame with a glass floor that juts out from the canyon rim is the most famous attraction, but visitors should definitely experience the rest of the amazing views of the park.

For park information, visit the Grand Canyon National Park website.


Houston Space Center

After a visit to the Grand Canyon, make your next stop in Houston, Texas to visit the Lyndon B. Johnson Space Center. The center features over 400 artifacts, as well as educational exhibits and attractions. The world’s largest collection of moon rocks and lunar samples can be found at the NASA Johnson Space Center, and guests are taken behind the scenes to see what it takes to be an astronaut. You can take tours of the space station, see what the life of an astronaut is like, and see the historic Boeing 747 shuttle carrier aircraft at the Independence Plaza.

johnson-space-center-89465_1280To see all the attractions, visit the Houston Space Center website.


Baton Rouge, Louisiana

Baton Rouge is the capital of Louisiana and is full of sights to see. It is the second-largest city in the state and is located along the Mississippi River, and the city is absolutely breathtaking. While you’re in the area, there are a few attractions to visit. First on the list is the Old State Capitol building that has a gothic-castle appearance. It is a noteworthy sight both for its historical and architectural significance. There are also the USS Kidd and Veterans Memorial Center, Louisiana State University, where there are 1,600-year-old American Indian mounds, and the Magnolia Mound Plantation.

Planetware offers eight top-rated tourist attractions in Baton Rouge as well as places to stay in the area.


“Thank you, thank you very much!”

Next stop: Tennessee! There is plenty to see in the great state of Tennessee, but you definitely need to add Graceland to your list of road trip must-sees. Graceland is the home of the King of Rock, Elvis Presley. The mansion has been voted the world’s Best Music Attraction by USA Today’s 10Best Readers’ Choice Awards, and you can even stay at the guest house in Graceland. Tour the home of Elvis Presley and visit the museums and gain some extra knowledge about the King of Rock ‘n’ Roll.

To see everything you can experience in Graceland, visit the website.

Also, while you’re in Tennessee, drive through Nashville, where the legendary Grand Ole Opry is located, and maybe visit the Country Music Hall of Fame on your way out.


Washington, D.C.

Drive on up to the New England states and visit the capital of the United States. Here you can see the National Mall, the Capitol, and the Lincoln Memorial. Visiting Washington, D.C. is definitely a trip to be made at least once, which makes it a perfect stop on a three-month road trip across the U.S. There are so many places to visit and sights to see while you’re here, so don’t worry if you can’t do everything. But to get you started, here is a list from TripAdvisor to give you a few ideas.



New York, New York

The state of New York also offers countless attractions and events for visitors and locals alike. During your stay definitely make time for a few things: visit the Statue of Liberty, the World Trade Center, and walk through Times Square. These are three easy trips since they are all located in New York City. Plus, Times Square offers tons of shops and restaurants, as well as event venues like Broadway, where you can see the current show that’s playing on stage.

While in New York, you should make the journey to  Niagara Falls, a group of three waterfalls that are on the border of Canada and the United States. The falls are a breathtaking sight, and the park offers places to camp, and you can also find hotels, restaurants, and other things to do while in the area.


Rock and Roll Hall of Fame

The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame is located in Cleveland, Ohio, and is definitely worth the stop. You can stop in and visit the museum as well as view all the special exhibits that the hall of fame has to offer. In addition, the hall of fame also offers some of the most celebrated and award-winning education on music and fine arts. They also keep a large repository of the history of rock and roll in their Library and Archives for everyone’s viewing pleasures.

To see the current exhibits at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, visit their website.


Chicago, Illinois

Chicago is another city that offers a wide array of attractions and events to attend. Make sure you at least try to do all the touristy things like take photos of yourself by the Bean, also known as Cloud Gate, and visit the Skydeck, the tallest building in the Western Hemisphere. The Skydeck offers some of the best views of Chicago, so it should definitely be on your bucket list of road trip attractions. Here is a list of other things to do in Chicago.

3889137726_849f8aa0e3_bImage by Bari D


Gateway Arch

On your way back across the United States, drive through St. Louis, Missouri to see the Gateway Arch, also known as the St. Louis Arch. It is a 630-foot monument built from stainless steel in the form of an arch, making it the world’s tallest arch.


The Black Hills

Although South Dakota doesn’t sound like one of the most fascinating places in the U.S., the state does offer a few top destination places to hit on your road trip. You can drive through the Black Hills National Forest, which is home to two historic monuments, including Mount Rushmore that displays the heads of four US Presidents (George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, Thomas Jefferson, and Theodore Roosevelt), and the Crazy Horse Memorial, which pays tribute to the well-known Native American tribal leader.


Yellowstone National Park

Yellowstone is a large, 3,500-square mile wilderness recreational area that serves as a habitat for multiple species including elk, bison, wolves, bears, and antelope. Although the park is mostly in Wyoming, it also covers some of Montana and Idaho as well. The park resides atop a volcanic hotspot and is home to many gushing glaciers–the most famous being Old Faithful–as well as canyons, rivers, and hot springs.


To plan your visit, go to the national park website.


The Rockies

The Rocky Mountains run through the state of Colorado and are a beautiful sight to see. You can easily drive through the mountains and climb up to the peak. There are shops and restaurants along the way before you enter the mountain range, and be prepared for some ear-popping and altitude changes. In addition to the peak of the mountains, there are some other stops along the way where you can get out of the car and take in the breathtaking views.


Zion National Park

The last stop on this road trip is located in southwest Utah on a nature preserve distinguished by the steep red cliffs of Zion Canyon. There is a scenic drive that cuts through the main section of the canyon, which leads to forest trails that run along the Virgin River. The river flows to the Emerald Pools, home to waterfalls and a hanging garden. For more travel information on Zion National Park, you can visit the website.


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