5 Scenic Drives to Help You Forget About the Pandemic

The coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has dragged on for a long time, and it doesn’t look like it will go away anytime soon. When you see the negative news about the pandemic, it’s easy to get frustrated and depressed. However, in the United States, we’re fortunate that we live in a country with so much wide open space and beautiful natural landscapes. This presents many opportunities to drive your car and get away from it all. Check out these five scenic drives to help you forget about the pandemic.

Beautiful scenic drives in the U.S. to escape the coronavirus pandemic

Majestic view of the Big Sur coastline
Big Sur Coastline | Brian van der Brug/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images

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The secure environment of a car, away from other people, is the perfect way to escape the coronavirus pandemic. There are thousands of scenic drives around the country, so it would be impossible to mention all of them. The ones that we chose here all share characteristics of unique beauty, remoteness, and tranquility.

1. Pacific Coast Highway, Big Sur, California

The Pacific Coast Highway follows most of the coastline of California. However, the stretch of the PCH through Big Sur is the most spectacular section. With the road hugging mountains that dramatically slope into the ocean, this drive will take your breath away. Recently, sections of the PCH in Big Sur were temporarily closed due to landslides, so be sure to check ahead before making the drive.

2. Olympic Peninsula Loop, Washington

Beautiful view from a scenic drive in Olympic National Park
Olympic National Park | Karla Ann Cote/NurPhoto via Getty Images

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Olympic National Park is one of the most diverse National Parks in the world. On the loop around the park, you’ll drive through a temperate rainforest, journey past snow-capped mountains, cruise by a tranquil lake, and meander along a stunning coastline with interesting rock formations. The park has something for everyone. 

3. Million Dollar Highway, Colorado

Winding scenic drive on the Million Dollar Highway in Colorado
Million Dollar Highway | Joe Sohm/Visions of America/Universal Images Group via Getty Images

The Million Dollar Highway is a spectacular drive through the San Juan Mountains, as detailed by Desk Dirtbag. The road is beautiful any time of the year, but it’s especially stunning during the winter, with an abundance of snow covering the mountainous terrain. With this in mind, ideally, you should take a vehicle with all-wheel drive or four-wheel drive capabilities during the snowy months of the year. 

4. Blue Ridge Parkway, Virginia and North Carolina

Stunning view from a scenic drive on the Blue Ridge Parkway
Blue Ridge Parkway | Dukas/Christian Heeb/Universal Images Group via Getty Images

There are numerous beautiful scenic drives throughout the Appalachian Mountains. One of the standout drives is the Blue Ridge Parkway. It follows the spine of the Appalachian Mountains, with incredible views on both the east and west sides of the ridge. The area also offers many spots to go hiking, backpacking, and camping. The Blue Ridge Parkway also claims the title of the longest linear park in the U.S., with it stretching 469 miles through Virginia and North Carolina.

5. Overseas Highway, Florida

Beautiful overhead view from a scenic drive on the Overseas Highway to the Florida Keys
Overseas Highway | Paul Harris/Getty Images

The Overseas Highway will take you from the savanna lands of South Florida, over a long stretch of ocean, and through the tropical islands of the Florida Keys. Along with relaxing beaches, the Florida Keys contain the largest area of coral reefs in the U.S. Also, Key West is closer to Cuba than to mainland Florida. The experience of driving on the Overseas Highway is surreal. With long stretches of bridges connecting the islands, it’s like you’re on a boat sailing over the water. 

Enjoy the great outdoors on a scenic drive amidst the pandemic

The core message of all these scenic drive suggestions is that despite the confining nature of the coronavirus pandemic, you can still enjoy the freedom and openness of the great outdoors. Even if you don’t live near any of these scenic drives, there’s likely a beautiful scenic drive that’s not far from you. Get out, explore, and enjoy the natural beauty of our country.

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