5 Tips For Planning A Damn Good Solo Road Trip

Guess who’s riding shotgun? NOBODY.

When I planned my road trip last summer, I told myself “anything goes.” The reason for traveling is to throw caution to the wind a bit, right? Little did I know I’d see a grizzly in Glacier, pick up a guy from Britain in Austin, and meet a girl in San Francisco.

All these experiences were thrilling, unforgettable, charming, and a slew of other things at the same time.

There’s nothing you can do to prepare yourself for these kinds of experiences. Look, if you want to go on a solo road trip, your main goal should be to have as many kickass experiences as possible. If you follow these five tips, you’ll certainly have them.

1. Stay in a hostel

Do it. Stay in an old, dirty, air-conditioning deprived hostel. I said this before in my other article, and I’ll say it again here. You’ll meet a variety of interesting characters, but for some reason they all embody the soul of the road to an absolute tee. They’re interested in new things, new people, and while they may be a little loopy sometimes, it’s good to get out of your comfort zone. After all, it’s a solo road trip.

2. Visit someone you know

The beauty of road trips is getting to see friends and family from across the country. I have a few friends in Arizona and California, and you bet I saw all of them during my trip. It’s a nice way to reset, get comfortable again, and enjoy a room that has actual air-conditioning. This is crucial, especially when traveling ALONE.

3. Drive in manageable bites

The most time I drove in a single shot was 10 hours. Well, I lied, it was actually 24 hours — but I stopped at a rest area for a few hours! Just a word of advice: don’t do that. For your safety, make sure to keep your drives manageable. I would advise you not to exceed eight straight hours in the car. It was one of my best decisions when planning my road trip this past summer.

4. Visit all the National Parks you can

I visited Arches, Glacier, Yellowstone, and a few other major landmarks out west like the Colorado National Monument. If you’re going to California, you have to see the Redwoods and Yosemite. If you can fit Lake Tahoe in there too go ahead and do it.

5. Write it all down

I kept a journal, I blogged about my trip relentlessly, and you should record your thoughts, too. When you do finish a journal, it’s worth its weight in gold. I can’t tell you how many times I looked back on a journal entry and either laughed or cried about a particular incident. Trust me, write everything down.

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