Inside: How to Plan a Teen Road Trip + Fun Destinations To Land At Along The Way.
My family and I took many road trips when I was a kid. All the road trips I took as a kid and teen were some of my favorite memories. So I thought I’d give you a ton of advice for road tripping with your teenagers. Even with their strong personalities, it can be a lot of fun!
I decided to make this guide to help you pack your bags and give you some ideas of activities to consider along the way.
Here are some of our top picks for where to stop and what to do during your next road trip.
Teenage Road Trip Destinations
Long Beach, California: Honestly, if you want to keep your teen happy and enchanted by the experience, consider a beach vacation. Who can resist such a fun experience?
If you have time, don’t skip the Aquarium of the Pacific during your trip. I promise there is no shortage of things to do while you are there. They have everything from sea otters to frogs!
Gatlinburg, Tennessee: With its exciting, lively selection of restaurants that can satisfy a wide range of appetites, preferences, and tastes, Gatlinburg is a fantastic destination for families. The town exudes a warm, friendly, relaxed air.
Park City, Utah: If you are going on a relaxing adventure, Park City is the place to be. Breathtaking scenery, trails, ponds, hot air balloons, historical sites, horseback riding, and camping are just a few things to draw visitors in.
Lake Tahoe: Whether you are in the mood to ride around in a boat all day or are an adrenaline junkie who wants something more adventurous, there is something for you here. There is a mountain coaster that is sure to have you screaming in delight. Or you can go on a bike tour to take in the views.
Teen Road Trip Tips
Plan with them and involve your teenager: Get your teen involved in the trip planning process. To make them feel like they are contributing, assign them a job like making a binder full of activities to do on the road trip.
Make sure everyone gets some space to themselves: Giving your tween some personal space in the car can go a long way toward preventing some space conflicts when kids are tired or restless, even if they get along well most of the time.
Don’t forget to pause and stretch:: Put the car to a stop, exit, and stretch your legs. These little people are full of energy and need to get moving on a regular basis. It could be a fun game or challenge wherever you take a break or just stretch and go!
Provide in-car activities: There is nothing more annoying than embarking on a family road trip only to discover that everyone has their noses in their electronic devices the entire time. Pack some basic games like car tag bingo, or I spy, along with some art supplies and other teenager entertainment for the journey. Or pop in a movie for everyone to watch.
Rotate the fun: When going on a trip, I like to share only a portion of the goodies I’ve compiled. If you’re going to be on the road for multiple days, switching things up by playing a different game each day will keep things from getting boring. Likewise, this also applies to food and drinks.
What to Bring on a Road Trip for Teens
Other than the obvious (a duffel bag, clothing and shoes, and personal hygiene products), here are some of our suggestions for must-haves for any teen’s road trip.
Teenage Road Trip Essentials
- charging devices for all your electronics
- games or playing cards
- medicine for headaches, motion sickness, and pain reliever
- lip gloss
- travel pillow
- lots of snacks
- water and other drinks
Things To Do on a Car Trip for a Teenager
Listen to Podcasts/ Audio Books: How I Built This, TED Talks, and Family Travel Radio are all great podcasts for preteens and teens, and they also appeal to their parents. If your household can settle on an audiobook, that’s another option. You’ll want something that keeps everyone interested, or bring individual earbuds, so you don’t all have to listen.
Roadside Attractions: Do some exploring of the neighborhood before setting out on your journey. The sights you come across on your travels might surprise you. Many interesting places, such as museums and arcades, are conveniently located nearby.
Create Playlist: Get some good tunes and make some entertaining playlists to play in rotation on the drive.
Car Games for Teens
- 20 Questions: Play an old-fashioned game of “20 Questions!” You may be surprised by how much you learn about each other.
- Categories: You get to pick the topic, which could be anything from athletics to travel. Then, everyone takes turns naming an item from that group until no more can be thought of. Whoever can name an item last wins.
- 3 Truths and a Lie: It’s easy: just take turns naming 3 truths and one lie. The remaining players must determine which statement was a fabrication.
- Alphabet Game: See if you can spot the letter “A” on any of the road signs outside the window. When you come across a “A,” continue your search for a “B” on a different board. Tell your child that the letter you’re looking for must be the first letter of a word if you want to increase the difficulty of the game.
Road Trip Scavenger Hunt for Teens
Printable Road Trip Scavenger Hunt: Test your ability to cross off each item on this list while on the road! Always be on the lookout for landmarks, wildlife, and picnic areas. Keep your young ones’ attention on the road and away from their devices with this fun game!
License Plate Finder: During your extended road trip, keep your eyes peeled for license plates from all 50 states.
Harder Hunt:The teenagers in your life will love this printable travel scavenger hunt. Take this printable along on your next road trip with your teens. These things aren’t as easy to come by, but they’ll keep those teenagers busy for hours.
More Fun Ideas for Teens
If you like these fun teen road trip ideas, then check out a few more of our favorites.
- Cute Hairstyles for Teens + Fun Accessories –The modern young woman has it made. Nowadays kids and teens have a lot more options than we did when we were young when it comes to attractive, adorable, and on-trend hairstyles. The hairstyle options for adolescent women are practically endless. To help you figure out what to do about your favorite girl’s hair this year, here are some of the season’s loveliest styles.
- Journal Prompts for Teens –Everyone can gain something from making journaling a regular practice. Writing in a journal is like confiding in a trusted friend who will keep your thoughts private while you work through difficult emotions and thoughts. Even though keeping a journal on a regular basis is an excellent way to develop a lifelong habit of writing every day, many teenagers have trouble getting started.
- Self Care Ideas for Teens – It can be draining to deal with the stresses of being a teen on top of everything else we’ve had to deal with during the past several years. It’s not only a drain on energy, but it can also have an effect on your day-to-day disposition and feelings. The best course of action, then, is to practice some additional self-care. It’s important to take time for yourself on a regular basis to revitalize your energy, outlook, and attitude.