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Great Fall Road Trips

Where should you go on your fall excursion? Here are a few suggestions for scenic locations and the best car for the job.

By: Brian Moody, Executive Editor for Autotrader

Fall is a great time to plan a sightseeing trip. Many schools have a fall break well ahead of the Thanksgiving holiday, and if you time it right, you can catch the fall leaves changing colors.

On any road trip, be sure to pack essentials like a portable battery for charging phones, extra charging cables, snacks, water bottles, a blanket, and extra pairs of shoes.

But where should you go on your fall excursion? Here are a few suggestions for scenic locations and the best car for the job. If you want to skip traditional rental car outlets, consider something like Turo where everyday people rent you their car. It’s less expensive, and there is such a wide variety of vehicles available. However, traditional rental car companies like Avis, Hertz, and Sixt offer luxury rental cars too. Of course, if you live near a scenic area, you can always just take your own car and cue up your well-thought-out “So Classic” Spotify playlist.

Head to the Southwest

Headed to the West Coast or the Southwest? Try a Volvo XC60 Plug-in Hybrid. The XC60 functions nicely as a road trip car, but the plug-in hybrid version can be useful in some of California’s coastal towns in Orange County and San Diego. These areas usually have plenty of charging stations and mom-and-pop taco joints. So you can drive on electricity alone for about 40 miles depending on the terrain; no promises about the longevity of the tacos.

Comfortable and cooled seats will come in handy if you decided to head inland. A huge panoramic sunroof will help take in the scenery if you decide to press on to destinations like Flagstaff, Lemmon, or Alpine, Arizona. The Southwest is perfect for taking amazing photos. Some people are really good at taking up-close and intimate photos, and others prefer the vastness of the desert or the ocean. The Southwest is good for both and will have you yelling “take me there” every fall.

fall road trips

Texas, I See You

Looking for a cool drive in the Lone Star State? Texas has so much natural beauty that we don’t know how not to include it. The River Road in Texas is a great choice. The River Road borders the Rio Grande and allows access to some remote areas of the Rio Grande. At night it’s the perfect place to go out counting stars.

Tulsa, Oklahoma to Arlington, Missouri is part of a larger ghost town tour that takes in parts of the famous Route 66. For these types of road trips, a Chevrolet Tahoe will work out perfectly. The Tahoe is capable of handling both on and off-road duties – both situations are likely to come up on either of these road trips. The Tahoe also makes for a nice home base for hiking or biking adventures too.

fall road trips

Fall Colors

Looking to see some dramatic fall foliage? The Eastern part of the U.S. has some of the best fall colors around. From Michigan to Georgia, there are colors everywhere. Try to get there in mid to late October. Roanoke, Virginia to Hartford, Connecticut is all treats and no tricks. It’s a very long drive but taking in the colors over several days is probably the way to go.

Virginia through West Virginia and into the central part of Pennsylvania are great for viewing fall colors on the East Coast. For this trip, a Ford Mustang Convertible works. The beach may be virtual oceans away, but the Carolinas to New England will have you looking for a new hideaway. Connecticut has a superstar quality when it comes to beauty. There will be cool days perfect for viewing the dramatic colors with the top down. Plus, top up or down, the Mustang will be perfect for handling the scenic and winding back roads.

Many of these locations are so spectacular that some tourists may just decide to run away and stay all year long.

The author of this article, Brian Moody, is Executive Editor for Autotrader and a monthly contributor to YurView’s Creative Living show, airing Sundays at 8:30 pm, Mondays at 7:30 pm, Thursdays at 8 pm, and Saturdays at 10 pm.