Check out some of the best motorcycle road trip destinations in the United States, including Route 66, the Overseas Highway, and other treasures.
Ride Your Bike to These Amazing Places
A motorcycle road trip is a freeing experience. With the pavement stretching out in front of you, the wind blowing through your jacket, and the horizon so far ahead you can’t even see where the land meets the sky, traveling by bike is unlike anything else. The motorcycle-loving team at Gail’s knows this as well as anyone, and they’ve been equipping other motorcycle enthusiasts with the motorcycle parts and accessories they need to embrace the motorcyclist lifestyle for years.
If you’re driven to hit the open road on a mission to see all the good things America has to offer, then you’ll definitely want to check out some of the best motorcycle road trip destinations in the United States, including Route 66, the Overseas Highway, and some treasures in the mountains and river valleys.
Ride your Used Harley-Davidson® Down Route 66
Get your kicks! Traveling down the iconic Route 66 makes for the road trip of a lifetime. Because this old highway runs from Illinois to California, you can travel down just one section, or ride the full length.
Along the way, you’ll get a taste of Americana as you stop at the Historic Standard Oil Gas Station in Odell, Illinois, frozen in time in the 1930s - just don’t count on fueling up there; visit the Route 66 Museum in Clinton, Oklahoma; take photos at Cadillac Ranch in Amarillo, Texas and just down the road a ways at the VW Slug Bug Ranch in Conway, Texas; gaze in wonder at the Santa Rosa Blue Hole in New Mexico, where the crystal clear water refreshes and refills every six hours; stand on the corner in Winslow, Arizona; explore the Calico Ghost Town in the Mojave Desert; and walk the Santa Monica Pier in Los Angeles.
There are lots of things to do between these notable stops, so plan a few extra days to accommodate your explorations before jumping back on your motorcycle of choice.
Chase Foliage in New York’s Hudson River Valley in the Fall
New Yorkers know that the Hudson River Valley is the premier place to visit in autumn, as the trees that line the parkways along the rivers change from their lush greens to brilliant golds, oranges, and reds. From the comfort of your motorcycle, you’ll be surrounded by these changing fall colors, crisp autumn air, and the knowledge that your next great adventure is just around the corner.
Stop in Sleepy Hollow, New York, for a spooky tour of the cemetery by the same name -- just watch out for the Headless Horseman. Visit apple orchards and pick a freshly-grown snack -- we highly recommend Empire apples, for a local treat. Enjoy an afternoon at Storm King Art Center, where you can admire hundreds of sculptures on its artistically-landscaped acreage. And if you ache to visit the big city, NYC is only a short ride away!
Cruise on Your Motorcycle Through the Florida Keys
There’s nothing quite like U.S. Highway 1 in Monroe County, Florida. Also called the Overseas Highway, this 113-mile route will carry you through the Florida Keys to Key West. With only the pavement and support posts between you and the Gulf of Mexico, you’ll get 360-degree views of the gorgeous ocean. To start your journey, you’ll need to visit Miami first to travel through the five regions: Key Largo, Islamorada, Marathon, Big Pine, the Lower Keys, and Key West.
Between Key Largo and Key West, there’s plenty to stop and do, like snorkeling at John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park, where outfitters can take you on a multi-hour underwater adventure. Animal lovers will love stopping in Big Pine Key to see Key Deer, a breed of miniature deer that roams the island. They’re endangered due to poaching and habitat destruction, so drive carefully!
Big Pine Key is also home to No Name Pub (but don’t worry, you can still find it via your GPS). Since the 1980s, visitors have added dollar bills to the walls and ceilings of this brothel-turned-bar. There are lots more things to do along this unusual stretch of highway, so don’t count it out as a vacation option all year round.
Take Your Motorcycle through the Appalachian Mountains
The 105-mile ride through Skyline Drive in Shenandoah National Park is filled with banked curves, hills, and 75 incredible vistas. The pavement is smooth, clean, and perfect for cruising, with pull-off areas for sightseeing and breaks. Because the route is part of the famous Appalachian Trail, you’ll also get access to more than 500 miles of wilderness hiking trails. Make sure you pack your protective motorcycle jacket from Gail’s, even in summer, because of the high elevation, and be prepared to witness wildlife in their native habitats, including black bears and hawks.
From Waynesboro, Virginia, you can take the Blue Ridge Parkway, a 469-mile drive along a ridgetop that connects the Blue Ridge Mountains in Virginia with the Great Smoky Mountains in Tennessee. The road meanders past Humpback Rocks Visitors Center, a historic living museum, Otter Lake, and the James River Visitors Center, where you can see the old canals along the James River. In just 12 miles, you’ll gain 3,300 feet in elevation into Thunder Ridge Wilderness, where you can also stretch your legs on a short trail in sight of the Allegheny Mountains.
Both routes take you past hip breweries, rugged eateries, and fueling stations, so you’re always ready for whatever comes next. To prepare for riding down the winding roads, hills, and curves in this mountainous region, consider taking one of our Skilled Rider courses from our certified instructors at Gail’s.
Gear Up for Your Trip at Gail’s in Grandview
Inspired to take a road trip on your used Harley® motorcycle or other motorcycles make? Get all the gear you need for your vacation at Gail’s in Grandview, near South Kansas City and Lee’s Summit. Whether you need to schedule regular service so that your HOG’s sweet sound keeps singing, or if you need to order and install parts like saddlebags, luggage racks, or a tour pack for all your gear, the team at Gail’s can prepare you for wherever you plan to ride.