Road trips are one of the great pastimes of outdoor adventuring. But too often we set our sights on the objective rather than the actual rubber on the road. We lock our focus on the destination: the trails we’ll be biking, the mountain we’ll be skiing, the break we’ll be surfing, the peak we’ll be bagging. But what about the cool, funky, weird sights we’re zipping past in our cars? They deserve our attention, too. For that reason, we’re highlighting five must-visit desert locales out West.
By no means is this a complete list. If you want to explore beguiling desert landscapes, these are great starting—err, stopping—points to break up your next road trip. From quirky hot spots like Hole N” The Rock in Utah’s Canyonlands to Tse Bii’ Ndzisgaii, a photographer’s haven, here are our favorite desert road trip destinations.
If you’re new to RVing, check out our complete gear guide so you can adventure by day and retire to a warm, bug-free bed by night. And if you’re looking for new locations to explore, here are our favorite road trip routes and itineraries in America and beyond: