I have always dreamed of one day having a big family, shoving them all into an RV and driving across the United States. Teaching my children about American history by actually visiting the historical sites instead of only from a textbook would be so exciting! And getting the chance to taste local cuisine and meet friendly residents in all of the small towns & big cities would be such a treat! AND how fantastic would it be to camp and hike through America’s gorgeous National Parks to truly experience our beautiful nation?!
“Well, what am I waiting for?”
I asked myself. I was having the worst travel withdrawals and decided now is just as good of time as any!! And someday I will just have to do it all over again with my whole fam! 😉
So I packed up my Prius [her name is Priscilla and I heart her] with my camping gear, camera, a full stock of tunes and audio books, kissed my pup Kenya and hit the open summery road. Sometimes the best trips are the least planned ones. I knew I was heading East from Southern California, and I knew I had a tight budget to stick to…but that was it. A good ol’ U.S. road trip adventure!
I really had intended on just staying for a weekend or so, but once I explored Arizona for a few days I thought, “Well, New Mexico is just right there. I’ve never been there before, might as well check it out!”
Then after a couple days there I realized, “Colorado is just North of here and it is gorgeous…maybe I’ll stop there for a bit.” And obviously it quickly escalated from there. 😀
And thus began my quest. Even when I was covered in mosquito bites, random spots of sunburn, heat rash and swollen limbs I just felt pure gratitude for having began this awesome adventure. And visiting rarely seen family and friends along the way has just been the icing on the delicious cake!
Even if you can only spare a weekend of free time this entire summer [or any season] I highly recommend a road trip with the family or with friends. And if neither are possible make it happen solo! You will meet the nicest people along the way and create an unforgettable journey no matter the length. International destinations and foreign lands are amazing adventures but don’t forget about your own backyard. It also has a lot to offer if you just take the time to explore it!
And sooo my lil’ impromptu weekend getaway escalated into a solo 48 state road trip. After 16,023 miles driven in 62 days [on a super tight budget] I returned home with many new gratitudes, a renewed spirit & motivation to inspire others to give it a try!
This was my 48 state road trip route [starting @ home = Southern California] to: Arizona, New Mexico, Colorado, Wyoming, Nebraska, Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas, Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, North Carolina, Tennessee, Kentucky, West Virginia, Virginia, Maryland, Washington DC, Delaware, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York, Connecticut, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Ohio, Indiana, Michigan, Missouri, Illinois, Iowa, Wisconsin, Minnesota, South Dakota, North Dakota, Montana, Wyoming [again], Idaho, Oregon, Washington, California, Nevada & UTAH!
Check out all of my articles, by state [listed by region] for more travel tips, stories, photos & overall inspiration to JUST GO!!
THE [WILD WILD] WEST STATES
California: Visiting Cambria || Visiting The Wizarding World of Harry Potter Hollywood
Colorado: Exploring Colorado’s Rocky Mountain National Park
Utah: Exploring Utah’s Gorgeous National Parks
THE SOUTHWEST STATES
Arizona: My 5 Must Stop Spots While Road Tripping’ Thru Arizona
New Mexico: 48 State U.S. Road Trip – New Mexico Is Adorable!
Oklahoma: U.S. Road Trip – I Heart Louisiana! [Short Stops In Oklahoma, Texas & Arkansas B/C New Orleans Was Calling]
Texas: U.S. Road Trip – I Heart Louisiana! [Short Stops In Oklahoma, Texas & Arkansas B/C New Orleans Was Calling]
THE MIDWEST STATES
THE NORTHEAST STATES
New York: New York City Foodie Spots
Pennsylvania: 5 Must-Dos When Visiting Pennsylvania
Washington DC: Washington DC Is A Must See Destination
THE SOUTHEAST STATES
Arkansas: U.S. Road Trip – I Heart Louisiana! [Short Stops In Oklahoma, Texas & Arkansas B/C New Orleans Was Calling]
Florida: How To Eat Like A Local In Orlando
Kentucky: 48 State Road Trip – Exploring Kentucky, West Virginia & Virginia
Louisiana: U.S. Road Trip – I Heart Louisiana! [Short Stops In Oklahoma, Texas & Arkansas B/C New Orleans Was Calling]
West Virginia: 48 State Road Trip – Exploring Kentucky, West Virginia & Virginia
Virginia: 48 State Road Trip – Exploring Kentucky, West Virginia & Virginia
Also, here is a summary post about everything I was extra grateful for after living out of my car for 2 months & here is a post about the exact costs of this trip. To read about my solo Western Europe backpacking trip click here or visit the Travel page for all travel tips, pics and articles.
And lastly, housesitting/pettsitting is a fantastic way to stay in your favorite place for free. Read about how to do it here.