“What’s your road, man?” asks Dean Moriarty in Jack Kerouac’s On the Road, the most famous road trip novel ever written.
Kerouac’s novel is about wanderlust and about seeing and experiencing the world in a new way, without the constraints of a fixed abode or a specific place to be.
However, you don’t have to be completely fancy-free and devoid of responsibilities to get the most out of a on the road trip, as there are jobs and university courses to return to once the holiday is over.
Above all, it’s a chance to explore the landscape more intimately and to be your own master when deciding how long to stay at each of your chosen stops.
For anyone who wants a holiday that’s like no other, where there is a real sense of freedom and spontaneity, a road trip is the way to go.
Planning Your On The Road Adventure
What Do You Want To See?
This is certainly something you need to decide in advance.
Even if you’re planning a domestic road trip, there will be plenty of areas that you previously haven’t explored or national heritage sites that are worth checking out.
Make a list of ten or twelve places, sites or attraction you definitely want to visit and plan the route around them.
However, it’s not just about making good time and checking things off your list.
Be prepared to experience the unexpected and make unscheduled stops.
It’s usually the unplanned moments that make a holiday memorable.
Choosing Your Travel Companions
It’s probably not a good idea to go on a road trip with people you don’t know very well.
Being confined to a car for hours can really test even the strongest friendship.
I’d be inclined to choose friends who I knew were both easy-going enough to absorb changes and deviations to the plan, as you will inevitably make them, and organised enough so I didn’t have to shoulder all the practical responsibilities.
Road Trip Etiquette
Don’t let one person do all the driving!
They will get very tired, which is dangerous on the road, and may start to feel resentful.
Offer to take over driving at short intervals so everyone can take turns.
Don’t rely completely on a satnav or smart phone to guide you.
Battery issues and lack of signal might leave you without a route, so it’s wise to take a good, old-fashioned paper map, even if you don’t end up using it.
Make sure you’re well stocked with plenty of mix tapes and CDs, or invest in a cable that can connect iPods to your car stereo.
Listening to local radio can also be a great way of getting to know the places you’re driving through.
Avoid road trip mistakes with road trip planning tips.
Make sure you come prepared with non-perishable snacks and energy bars as they can be easily stored in your vehicle. How to eat well on the road
Petrol stations can be very expensive to buy from, so it’s best to avoid these if you’re on a budget and wait to make a stop at a cheaper supermarket.
Branch out from fast food outlets and experience local cuisine; you don’t go on holiday to eat things the same food that’s available at home.
Take a detour and find a local restaurant and enjoy something that’s cheaper and probably tastes better than the standard fast food fare.
If you want to camp during your trip, a portable grill can really come in handy and provide a great way to spend an evening!
It might sound obvious during your On The Road Adventure, but don’t break the speed limit and wear your seat belt!
It’s also important to make sure your insurance is up to date, whether for your vehicle or for going abroad.
The car you’re driving needs to have been serviced regularly and it’s a good idea to keep an eye on what’s under the hood throughout of road trip.
No one wants to have their holiday ruined by a breakdown or an accident while they are On The Road.
Best Road Trip Songs
I’ve always loved the late summer season – the air is cool and fresh in the morning, the sun isn’t as strong but it’s still nice and warm…and you ask yourself “What are the Best Road Trip Songs?”
In other words, it’s a perfect time for a road trip – we’re heading out on a road trip in a few days along the coast of Sweden.
With nothing planned to do and no specific plans of where to go, all we need is some of the best road trip songs to keep us going.
Here is a list of some great road trip songs, some suggested from our readers, others our own personal favorites, to create a mix tape with the best road trip songs for your trip.
Everyday Is A Winding Road – Sheryl Crow
Sheryl Crow has made so many great songs which are prefect for any road trip as she always seems to sing about cars, roads and going on a trip.
Going North – Missy Higgins
This is one of the best road trip songs of all time, it’s one of those songs you can play on repeat in your car for hours and hours.
Breakaway – Kelly Clarkson
A favorite among many, this road trip song really makes you want to pack your bags, drive into the sunset and just leave everything behind…
Sex On Fire – Kings Of Leon
Every mix tape need something you can pump out loud from the speakers, and this one is perfect for that.
Road Trippin – Red Hot Chili Peppers
You just can’t forget this awesome road trip song – perfect for when you’re cruising around anywhere.
This Is The Life – Amy Macdonald
The best road trip songs are catchy and easy to sing along to, and this one has both.
Plus it is a song I am sure many of you can relate to.
I love road trips, I think it’s a great way to see a country, get away from home and to enjoy a couple of days of traveling.
The first time I was on a ‘real’ road trip was in Florida going down to Key West a few years ago – we were staying at one of the many Key West condo rentals available by the beach, but what I enjoyed the most was the road trip down there, and having great music really added to that experience.
What do you think are the best road trip songs?
Share them in the comments below!
Must See West End Musicals This Summer!
When it comes to musicals, Broadway in New York and West End in London are the two most famous and popular theaters in the world – and for good reasons.
The West End musicals are not just any kind of show, they’re the best of the best – attracting not only musical fans but all types of people.
I guess you could put it like this: if you’re going to see only one musical in your life, West End is the place to do it.
Here are 5 of the best musicals in the West End this summer …
We Will Rock You
You don’t have to be a Queen fan to enjoy We Will Rock You, currently in its eleventh year at the Dominion Theatre.
No, honestly, you don’t – although it may be an advantage to know the songs as the screams and whoops from the audience will guarantee you won’t hear the first few bars!
With a proper story to link the songs, anyone who likes rock, science fiction, fantasy and amazing sets when they go to see a musical, We Will Rock You is a total must.
So – tie your mother down, get your daddy out of doors and get down to the Dominion Theatre!
Matilda the Musical
Everyone loves Roald Dahl and Matilda is a bit of an iconoclastic book, even for him.
Miss Trunchbull is the teacher everyone loves to hate – and let’s face it, every school has a Miss Trunchbull in it, to some degree or another!
If you spend a night with Matilda and her family and school chums you will come away smiling, and that’s a guarantee.
Although the book was to an extent quite dark, this is feel-good theater at its best.
Matilda the Musical is now booking until May 2014 at the Cambridge Theatre.
The Book of Mormon
The Book of Mormon divided critics when it was first performed on Broadway and if you were wondering why, then perhaps when you discover that it was written by the minds that brought you South Park you will understand.
Currently wowing audiences at the Prince of Wales Theatre in Coventry Street, The Book of Mormon is perhaps not a musical to take your sensitive and elderly aunt to, but if you like to laugh out loud all night long and come away with your head full of songs you will never forget, then this is one for you.
You won’t be able to keep still in your seat once the music starts – get down there are get into the Book of Mormon right now!
It isn’t too many musicals that end up with their own nickname, but of course Les Misérables is an exception, being known the world over as ‘Les Mis’.
Set in post-Revolutionary France, it is the story of Jean Valjean, falsely imprisoned and hunted by the policeman Javert when he breaks his parole.
Of course it isn’t just about these two men – there is love interest, death and … oh, yes, another Revolution, but the songs are stunning.
It has one of the biggest casts of any musical and is now officially the longest running musical ever, having been seen by more than 65 million people worldwide in its twenty eight year run.
Rising above star casts and personalities, catch Les Mis now at the Queen’s Theatre, Shaftesbury Avenue.
The Lion King
There is only one thing to say about The Lion King, still wowing audiences at the Lyceum Theatre in London – go and see it.
Go and see it now!
You don’t need to find a kid to take, just leave your adult status at the door and revel in the animals brought to life before your very eyes.
Who can’t be enchanted by the birds swooping from the boxes, swung by beautiful girls waving fishing rods?
And what about that elephant! And her baby swinging along behind.
Since it is a musical, the songs ought to get a mention and they are of course splendid but it isn’t all about Disney – the African chants and percussion used in the show will stay in your head for life.
If you are planning a trip into London to see one of the amazing shows, Hotel Direct makes it easy to book the theater and hotel with a range of theater deals on their website – to find the cheapest flights to London try Skyscanner, they make it really easy to find the flights best suited to your price range.