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  • Writer's pictureGreg Phillips

We’re Just Getting Started!

Updated: Feb 20


Man at overlook in Death Valley National Park
California's Death Valley National Scenic Byway

If you’ve taken time to look over the Beautiful Byways site, thank you. You also likely noticed it’s far from complete. To date, we’ve researched and posted articles for nine states, and we’ve also released a few videos on YouTube. Soon, each of the 50 states plus Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, American Samoa, Guam and the Northern Mariana Islands will have their Top Scenic Byways profiled, cataloged and celebrated here. Then, we’ll begin adding more significant byways to each state’s section as this evolving resource grows.


Who is Beautiful Byways for?


The site, blog posts and YouTube videos provide road trip inspiration. And for the nine states that have been posted, Beautiful Byways gives detailed itineraries for each state’s best byways. Right now, if you’re looking for specific information on Iowa, the site is helpful. But if you’re interested in Wisconsin, you’ll have to wait. Content creation takes research, writing, editing and money. But in the near future, travel inspiration will equal invaluable resource as Beautiful Byways becomes a full-fledged online travel guide with articles, maps and videos. The byways will link from state to state across the country.


Scenic Byways Unite Us


As you learn about the byways, you see how they connect towns, counties and states from coast to coast. The roads unite us. And these highways encompass everyone: bikers, hunters, hikers, history-lovers, young families who camp, older folks who prefer Airbnbs and international visitors who want to experience America’s Main Streets. The recreational and cultural opportunities are endless, from rodeos, local museums, festivals and train rides to backcountry skiing, bakeries and one-of-a-kind shops. “Slow travel” is a 2024 buzzword. It means spending more time in fewer places and really getting to know a destination through immersive experiences. Scenic byways epitomize this trend, and they are often nearby. Unlike national parks which are few and far between and largely concentrated in the western U.S., every state has numerous scenic byways. And while all states have state parks, scenic byways often connect multiple attractions. It’s not uncommon to find a couple of state parks plus several other amazing things to see and do along one byway. And while the hiking couple may travel the road just to experience one trail, they’ll probably need to stop for supplies and dinner, too.


The Ultimate Road Trip Inspiration


Beautiful Byways involves many elements: geography, gorgeous places and pride in community, state and nation. It’s the ultimate road trip inspiration because the byways have been curated by the people who live along them. They are officially sanctioned by their counties, states and in many cases, the federal government. So, a marketing channel has also been created. When local businesses and organizations support their scenic byway, everyone benefits. Sustainability is another important term you may have heard. Scenic byways help attract visitors, but they can also be used to disperse travelers to other places, helping to maintain the area’s delicate tourism ecosystem.


A Community of Collaborators                 

                    

So far, I’ve driven well over 100,000 miles in dozens of states gathering video footage and information on America’s scenic byways. I’m also writing articles and creating itineraries for clients who specialize in attracting talent, investment and tourism to smaller cities and towns. I grew up in a very rural and remote part of Colorado but have spent most of my adult life in big cities. And I travel the world when not driving the Beautiful Byways of my home country. So, I’ve developed a wealth of knowledge, insight and deep respect for the power of travel to connect, enlighten and change people’s perspectives. Currently, Beautiful Byways reflects only my voice and point of view. But as we grow, it will be critical to include other collaborators who write and make films about these roads. We're just getting started telling the stories of America’s scenic byways. Won’t you join us? Please start by subscribing!


man adjusts camera on back of car
Adjusting GoPro Along Oregon's Journey Through Time Scenic Byway

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