There’s nothing quite like the feeling of a warm summer wind blowing through your hair. Pair that with a motorcycle road trip and you’ll have one of the best summer adventures possible. We’ve scouted out some of the top places to ride and hang out this summer across the US. Here’s the best of the best.
1. Adirondack Mountains, New York State
One of the most breathtaking rides in the country is through the Adirondack Mountains in upstate New York, where you can veer off to cruise along breathtaking mountain lakes like Lake Placid, or tackle local mountain terrains with twisty roads and little traffic. All that’s not to mention spectacular views and a great local vibe.
2. The Harley-Davidson Museum, Milwaukee, Wisconsin
The Harley-Davidson Museum is a motorcycle lover’s haven. Check out a huge selection of motorcycles and cool gear, and learn more about the history of the rider lifestyle. You can also get some great food and shop for Harley-Davidson products.
3. Pacific Coast Highway, California
With the Pacific Ocean on one side and mountains on the other, this stunning highway boasts the best of both worlds. Stopping places include major cities such as San Francisco, Los Angeles and San Diego, as well as smaller surf towns like Santa Cruz, Ventura and Santa Barbara.
4. North Georgia’s Chattahoochee National Forest
Saddle up on your bike and take a thrilling ride through some of the most scenic parts of Georgia. The forest offers lots of curves and turns plus a prime opportunity to get in touch with nature while riding.
5. Warm Springs, La Grange, Georgia
Warm Springs is a warm town with much history — and now, a motorcycle museum for Indian and Harley-Davidson motorcycles. It’s a beautiful ride across Pine Mountain with nice views.
6. Lone Star Motorcycle Museum, Vanderpool, Texas
This stop is a two-fer. Visit the museum to see its great collection of unique bikes, then pop into the Ace café for a bite before heading back on the road.
7. West Texas, Fort Davis, Texas
Discover a part of Texas that is unlike any other by riding through Hill Country in West Texas. Fort Davis is known as the “Highest Town in Texas – Where the Stars Come Out to Play” and offers grand views of winding roads and rivers, ghost towns, wildflowers and more.
8. Mount Lemmon, Tucson, Arizona
Mount Lemmon is one ride where you’re going to want to stop and take pictures. Go from 2,400 feet to more than 8,000 feet in 24 miles of twists, turns and scenic overlooks on the “Sky Highway.”
9. Tombstone, Arizona
Get your spook on by riding through Tombstone — one of the most famous ghost towns. It’s hot during summer months, but that just adds to the grittiness of a desert town that’s worth it.
10. Tortilla Flats, Apache Junction, Arizona
The Tortilla Flats are well known to locals as a great place to ride. The trip takes you past Canyon Lake to the Tortilla Flats nestled between the mountains. With twists and turns, this route is one of the best mountain rides in the country.
11. Lexington, Kentucky
Who doesn’t want to get lost in Kentucky with all that bluegrass and fried chicken? Get in touch with Kentucky’s roots and routes by traveling on the 89. Great views and plenty of places to stop in this rural countryside.
12. Ohio River Crossings, Frankfort, Kentucky
A route that provides scenic river views and good road conditions will give you a peek at some old Kentucky towns. Take Highway 7 south from North Vernon to Madison, and then get on 421 south all the way to Frankfort.
13. Peaks and Canyons Tour, Denver, Colorado
If you have the days to spare for an actual tour, try this one out of Denver, where you’ll discover the plateaus and valleys near the city and along the “Million Dollar Highway.”
14. Grits to Glitz Tour, Denver, Colorado
Just because you’re on a motorcycle on the open road doesn’t mean you can’t release your inner diva. This tour through the Rocky Mountains takes you to the top-notch accommodations and local cuisine.
15. Colorado’s San Juan Loop, Silverton, Colorado
This 236-mile loop incorporates part of the “Million Dollar Highway” and travels through several ghost towns, making it a paradise for adventure-seeking motorcyclists.
16. Aspen’s Little Nell Resort, Aspen, Colorado
Aspen earned its fame as a Gold Rush hotspot. These days, you can be an easy rider through the highways, and a stop at the Little Nell Resort will be the perfect resting place.
17. Ely, Nevada
You might know the Ely area for the annual 90-mile Silver State Classic Challenge course, an annual Cannonball Run-style car race that attracts entrants from around the world. The area is also great for a motorcycle ride, however. The old mining town in White Pine County has plenty to see, including the Nevada Northern Railway Museum and the Ghost Train of Old Ely. Nearby you’ll find Great Basin National Park for photo opportunities.
18. Deal’s Gap Motorcycle Resort, Tapoco, North Carolina
After riding through the North Carolina end of Deal’s Gap with its 318 curves, take time to rejuvenate at Deal’s Gap Motorcycle Resort — a haven for weary riders and a premier motorcycle destination.
19. Cherohala Skyway, Robbinsville, North Carolina
A less crowded alternative to Deal’s Gap is the Cherohala Skyway that runs from Robbinsville, North Carolina, to Tellico Plains, Tennessee. The highest points are in North Carolina, but the Tennessee views are just as spectacular as you ride through the forest.
20. Everglades, Key West, Florida
It’s a several-day excursion to make your way through the Everglades, but the weather and the views (not to mention the rest stops) make it well worth the trip.