In the imagination of the continental United States comes the idea of the great American road trip: packing up the car, setting off solo or with a group of pals, and hitting the open road. This idea has been explored time and time again through the work of great writers like Jack Kerouac, Tom Wolfe, and F. Scott Fitzgerald. Travelers set off to do some soul searching, to “find themselves” on the road, and to take in the cultural and geographic diversity that America has to offer. For a country that prides itself on their “land of the free, home of the brave” motto, there is nothing more emblematic of freedom than the cross country adventure. From rocky mountains and wide open plains, to dense metropolises and the quintessential American diner, discover the great American road trip through the work of contemporary painters.
Put on your shades and crank up The Beach Boys as we start our road trip on the west coast in the Golden State of California. From magnificent beaches where surfer dudes catch some waves, to the liveliness of Los Angeles where stars and style are abundant, the west coast is a hotbed of culture and cool vibes. Roll down the windows on the scenic Pacific Coast Highway, wrap your arms around a giant sequoia tree, discover the magnificent Golden Gate Bridge, and venture into Napa Valley’s wine country. The California dream awaits!
The Mountains are Calling
For a retreat into nature, we continue our road trip into the mountains of the west and southwest, from the Rocky Mountain range running north-south from Montana down to New Mexico, to the Grand Canyon in Arizona. The United States boasts 61 National Parks and 419 national park sites, protecting the wildlife and preserving some of earth’s most breathtaking land. Pack your tent in the car and disconnect for a week or two to appreciate the splendor of nature.
Wonders of the Wild Wild West
In the mind of Americans and foreigners alike, the wild wild west and the image of the cowboy is a facet of Americana that has been recreated in films and intrigued many cultures around the world. The American cowboy is alive and well, and you can explore ranches in states like Texas, Utah, Montana, and Wyoming to test out the lifestyle. Make sure to buy a pair of cowboy boots or a ten-gallon hat as a souvenir.
Wide Open Spaces
It’s time to crank up the tunes and get ready for long drives through the wide open spaces of the Midwest. Known as “America’s Heartland,” you’ll pass through farmland and cornfields for miles and miles. If you’re lucky, you’ll catch a football game and experience the great American tailgate: grilling up some BBQ out of the back of your pick-up truck in the stadium parking lot before kick-off. Watch out for tornadoes and taste some Wisconsin cheese curds before making your way up to Chicago for a famous hot-dog or deep dish pizza.
Passing through Suburbia
An American road trip would be incomplete without passing through good ol’ suburbia. Speckled all over the country like little boxes on the hillside, witness the white picket fence American dream and the charm of main street with everything you need: the hardware store, the local coffee shop and the five and dime.
Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives
Getting hungry on the drive and need to make a pit stop? A great American diner or pancake house is just around the corner and promises everything you hope for and more when you’re on the road. Extremely enthusiastic waitresses and a vintage jukebox await you, along with bottomless coffee and fried eggs and bacon to make your mouth water.
A New York Minute
The second to last stop on our great American road trip is one of the liveliest and most romanticized destinations in the world: New York City. From stunning skyscrapers to iconic yellow taxis, there is so much to discover in this hub of culture and diversity. In the city that never sleeps, follow in the footsteps of dreamers and make sure to eat a New York bagel before you leave.
Cozy New England
To recharge from the hustle and bustle of New York City, we finish our great American road trip in cozy New England. Discover the beautiful forests and maple syrup of Vermont, the lighthouses and beaches of Cape Cod, and the magnificent rocky coast and lobster rolls of Maine. No matter the season, New England will welcome you with pure beauty- from the most impressive fall foliage you can imagine to pristine fields blanketed in white snow.