I always dreamt of driving cross-country and after graduate school, it was time to get rolling. I’ve also had the drive to visit as many National Parks as possible (it’s on my bucket list!) . . . why not double down?! We had 21 days to drive roundtrip from New York to California, so I hit Mapquest (yes, pre-GPS days, gasp!) and mapped it all out. I then dove into the web to discover adventures along the way. The perfect partner? My sister, Kat! Want some inspiration for your very own road trip? Take a peek at our rough draft itinerary! We ultimately flipped the script to save more excitement and adventure towards the end . . . highly recommended!

Day 1: Long Island, New York to Sandusky, Ohio (480 miles)

Day 2: Sandusky, Ohio

  • Cedar Point Amusement Park

Day 3: Sandusky, Ohio to Chicago, Illinois (260 miles)

Day 4: Chicago, Illinois to Sioux Falls, South Dakota (478 miles)

Day 5: Sioux Falls, South Dakota to Keystone, South Dakota (333 miles)

  • Buffalo Gap National Grassland
  • Mount Rushmore

Day 6: Keystone, South Dakota to Yellowstone, Wyoming (500 miles)

Day 7: Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming: Old Faithful Lodge

  • Lamar Valley
  • Morning Glory
  • Old Faithful

Day 8: Yellowstone to Jackson Hole, Wyoming (105 miles)

  • Grand Teton National Park: Paragliding

Day 9: Jackson Hole, Wyoming to Yosemite, California (625 miles)

Day 10: Yosemite National Park, California: Yosemite Valley Lodge

  • El Capitan
  • Vernal Falls

Day 11: Yosemite, California to Death Valley, California (300 miles)

  • Death Valley National Park: The Ranch at Death Valley

Day 12: Death Valley, California to Grand Canyon, Arizona (440 miles)

  • Hoover Dam
  • Las Vegas
  • Four Corners National Monument

Day 13: Grand Canyon, Arizona

  • Grand Canyon National Park

Day 14: Grand Canyon to Moab, Utah (225 miles)

  • Route 66
  • Canyonlands National Park
  • Arches National Park
  • Bull Canyon Overlook: Dinosaur Tracks

Day 15: Moab, Utah

  • Cataract Canyon: White Water Rafting (Class V Rapids)

Day 16: Moab to Colorado Springs, Colorado (256 miles)

  • Black Canyon of the Gunnison

Day 17: Colorado Springs to Wichita, Kansas (400 miles)

Day 18: Wichita, Kansas to St. Louis, Missouri (381 miles)

  • Anheuser Busch Brewery

Day 19: St. Louis, Missouri to Louisville, Kentucky (265 miles)

Day 20: Louisville, Kentucky to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

  • Columbus, Ohio: German Village

Day 21: Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania to Long Island, New York (342 miles)


Safe travels friends!

With Grateful Intention,