- Posted by Sanderson Lincoln
- On January 3, 2018
If you live in or are planning to visit Arizona, make sure to take some time to hit the open road. We’re blessed to have some of the most amazing countrysides in the United States. From long stretches of scenic desert to canyons, mountains, rivers, and lakes, the Arizona countryside is the perfect terrain to crank up the tunes and take a road trip.
So slow down, forget about your schedule and take to the back roads, byways and scenic highways to discover the diverse landscape and unique activities that Arizona has to offer. Hop into your Lincoln and hit the road on one of these five classic Arizona road trips.
Get Your Kicks on Route 66!
Starting in Topock, Arizona and ending in Holbrook, Route 66 spans 304 miles across the state. Home to the longest stretch of unadulterated miles, Historic Route 66 is a must drive road trip! It’s not about the journey; it’s definitely about the journey. You’ll see plenty of sites, from the Black Mountains to charming Old West kitschy businesses. Make sure to plan stops along the way and make sure to check out the Grand Canyon Caverns, Meteor Crater, and the concrete Teepee at journeys end.
Start your journey in Apache Junction, Arizona and enjoy this 77-mile scenic drive that ends in Globe. There are plenty of natural and man-made sites to see on this road trip. Stop and visit the Goldfield Ghost Town, a historic gold mine and view the Majestic Superstition Mountains along this trail. Make sure to take the Navigator for this drive, the first leg of the path is paved, the second half isn’t!
Make sure to stop and settle in at the bar for a burger, skip the beer! Seven miles ahead is the where the pavement ends, and your driving on gravel down a 3-mile stretch of hairpin turns with a 1500 foot drop down Fish Hill. It’s tight, treacherous and fun to drive! You’ll be back on pavement soon as you pass Roosevelt Dam, the first significant dam in the Southwest.
Coronado Trail Scenic Byway (Highway 191 and 180)
This 144-mile road trip starts in Clifton, Arizona and ends in Springerville. This route doesn’t get a lot of traffic, even though it’s one of the most incredibly scenic drives on this list! Experience genuinely stunning, classic Arizona vistas on this route. From the Morenci Mine Overlook, where you can peek at the largest copper mine in the United States, to Chase Canyon with its hairpin turns, you’ll stay on your toes during this ride. The highlight of the trip is the view of Escudilla Mountain, a volcano and at 10,912 feet, the third largest peak in Arizona!
If you’re looking for solitude and plenty of nature, this is the trip from you. You’ll travel 4300-ft of elevation with plenty of winding switchbacks taking you from the desert scrub to the White Mountains.
Monument Valley Scenic Road (Highway 163)
The shortest road trip on our top five, this 27.7-mile trip takes you through some of the most iconic western landscapes in the country. From a distance, Monument valley looks like a cluster of small red and gold hills in the desert. As you get closer, the individual buttes and formations break from the pack exposing their sunlit beauty and unusual shapes.
Highway 163 traverses the sparse open space which is sporadically broken up by these towering alien buttes. Want a closer look? Enter the Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park and drive the 17-mile loop through the valley. While you’re visiting the trail area, a good choice is to stop in Kayenta for lunch. It’s the closest small town to the valley and a part of the 27,000 square miles Navajo reservation.
The Grand Canyon Loop
This 205-mile journey starts and ends in Flagstaff. Make sure to set aside a full day, or better yet a weekend for this one! This drive passes through some of the most spectacular vistas to appreciate this Natural Wonder of the World. With an “America the Beautiful” pass, you can stop and become one with this natural splendor with a trail ride or a hike. There are plenty of opportunities to see local wildlife like Coyotes and red-tailed hawks. But be aware of the less friendly wildlife like scorpions and rattlesnakes!
Tips For Your Trip
Some of these trips can go for miles without seeing civilization. Make sure you gas up before you go. In fact, have your car serviced, change the oil, check your fluids and tire pressure before you go! Depending on when you travel the temperatures can get into the triple digits. So you want to make sure your AC is working, and your ride is reliable!
Also, make sure to carry extra water and snacks and dress comfortably, especially if you’re planning on stopping for a hike or a trail ride into the Canyon.
Best Cars For Your Scenic Road Trip
Some of these trips traverse some rough terrain and also offer you a chance to go off-road to see the real environment. Lincoln makes some great vehicles that can take you on your road trip in style, comfort, and safety.
Lincoln’s three best gas mileage SUV models, the MKC, MKX and Navigator can more than handle the challenges of the road ahead. The Lincoln MKC crossover SUV gets an EPA estimated 28 mpg on the highway and offered a comfortable ride that will make the miles melt away. The stylish full-size Lincoln MKX delivers 25 miles per gallon on the highway and with seating for five adults will give you plenty of room to take in the scenery. Finally, the Lincoln Navigator gets an impressive 23 mpg highway and with seating for 8, means you have plenty of room for the whole family and all their stuff!
Want to learn more? Before you hit the road, stop by Sanderson Lincoln in Phoenix and take a test drive. Let us put you in the perfect Lincoln for your next road trip. Make sure to ask about our special deals! We’re confident that after a test drive, you’ll find the right Lincoln to take your family on these classic Arizona road trips!