The Best and Worst States for Summer Road Trips
All across the United States, from the Pacific Northwest to the Florida Keys, highways thread together the country’s peaks and valleys.
But some destinations are better than others for a classic American road trip, and now each and every state has been ranked.
WalletHub ranked the 50 states on 21 metrics, including average gas prices, the number of lodging units, the quality of roads and bridges, and the number of national parks, attractions, and scenic byways. The rankings were divided into three main categories, for Driving & Lodging Costs, Road Conditions & Safety, and Fun & Scenic Attractions.
According to WalletHub’s report, Oregon is the top state in the country for road trips.
So what makes the Beaver State the best? With the top overall score of 60.50 out of 100, Oregon boasts the Columbia River Scenic Highway, which offers great views over the Columbia Gorge and an endless supply of waterfalls, just east of Portland. In the individual categories, the state came in second for attractions and fifth for safety, contributing to its highest overall score.
Nevada and Utah trailed closely behind Oregon, thanks to quirky small towns and incredible displays of nature (think windswept sandstone canyons and perfect stargazing.
On the other end of the spectrum, Connecticut came in last with a score of 35.89. Connecticut had the fewest number of scenic byways (though the Merritt Parkway is lovely!) and also had some of the most expensive campgrounds in the country.
WalletHub gave Vermont the top spot for Road Conditions & Safety, and California ranked above the other 49 states for having the most Fun & Scenic Attractions. Wyoming had the most affordable Driving & Lodging Costs.
Melanie Lieberman is the Assistant Digital Editor at Travel + Leisure. Follow her on Twitter and Instagram at @melanietaryn.