With awe-inspiring landscapes, exciting cities, and wide, open roads made for driving, the world’s third-largest continent delivers adventures of all kinds at every turn. Travel writer Chris Leadbeater picks three epic itineraries that you’ll want to add to your bucket list.
East coast city hopping
Best for... city-breakers with an intrepid spirit
The journey: 450 miles
One of the joys of America’s northeast is that it offers four of the country’s major cities in a close-knit cluster. This is a legacy of the way in which the fledgling USA developed in the 18th and 19th centuries. And it makes for an unforgettable road trip in the 21st century.
Begin in Boston. The Massachusetts capital was at the centre of the colonization of America in the 1620s. The Freedom Trail cuts a 2.5-mile path across the centre, connecting 16 prime sites, which played a prominent role in the breaking away from Britain in the 1770s and 1780s.
One of the joys of America’s northeast is that it offers four of the country’s major cities in a close-knit cluster
But there’s more to Boston than its yesterdays. In summer, visit Fenway Park, home of the Boston Red Sox. And the city revels in good food, whether it is the pizza and pasta joints of Little Italy, or top-notch fish restaurants such as Legal Sea Foods
Once you’ve had your fill, hire a car and hit the road in search of New York, which lies 215 miles southwest. You could spend a lifetime sampling its delights, from the cityscape visible from the roof of the Empire State Building to the gilded department stores of Fifth Avenue. Burnish your evenings by discovering the chic bars of Brooklyn – or the superb culinary scene that dominates West 46th Street in Hell’s Kitchen.
Philadelphia is an easy drive through New Jersey and into Pennsylvania. Priding itself as being the birthplace of American democracy, this underrated metropolis tells its tale in Independence National Historical Park, a cornucopia of the past where Independence Hall witnessed the debating of the Declaration of Independence in 1776. The brilliant Museum of Art has works by Picasso and Dali, while Pat’s King of Steaks serves that meat-heavy sandwich and city signature – the Philly Cheesesteak.