Four Longest Roads in the U.S.

 Four Longest Roads in the U.S.

Whether making plans for the near-term or already plotting out next summer's RVing adventures, it's always a good idea to be aware of what's out there. 

We aim to deliver a healthy dose of options for our RV Lifestyle Fellow Travelers.

That's why it caught my eye when the folks at recently did a story on the “Top Four Longest Highways in America.”

To be sure, the roads are long, but more importantly offer some great RVing opportunities for those looking for extended adventures.

I compiled the list for you below, with some of our own adventures sprinkled in.

4. U.S. Route 30, New Jersey to Oregon

The nation's fourth longest road and third longest U.S. highway runs 3,072 miles. It starts in Atlantic City, New Jersey, and ends in Astoria, Oregon. Beyond Oregon and New Jersey, U.S. 30 runs through nine more states. A favorite stretch of U.S. 30 is the Thousand Springs Scenic Byway, which runs through Idaho from Bliss through Twin Falls. It's a section of U.S. 30 that meanders through the Snake River Canyon where you travelers will find thousands of waterfalls, hot springs, and charming Idaho towns.

For more small towns and some historic immersion, there are several worthwhile stops on U.S. 30 through Nebraska, called the Lincoln Highway Historical Byway. Travelers of this route will drive along the Oregon, Mormon, and California trails, as well as the transcontinental Pony Express route and Union Pacific Railroad. For what it's worth, the largest city along U.S. Route 30 is Philadelphia, where you can check out historical sites like the Liberty Bell, Independence Hall, Congress Hall, The Betsy Ross House, and one of the oldest streets in the U.S., Elfreth's Alley. 

3. Interstate 90, Massachusetts to Washington

The nation's third longest road and longest interstate can get you to Boston from Seattle (or vice-versa) in a span of a little more than 3,100 miles. Driving from end to end would take about 46 hours, but with so many must-sees and must-dos along the way, it will surely take longer. I-90 runs through 13 states, including Massachusetts and Washington. 

If you crave a smaller town feel, consider a stop in Madison, Wisconsin. Located on an isthmus formed by two lakes, Wisconsin's capitol offers fun pubs and restaurants in the downtown area, which is also home to the main campus of the University of Wisconsin. Of course, farther west on I-90 is Yellowstone National Park when traveling farther west on I-90 (see the video below about our favorite hike in Yellowstone). Continue to drive along I-90 through Montana, Idaho, and Washington with scenery of the Rocky Mountains and the Cascade Mountains so breathtaking, you won't want your trip to end.

2. U.S. Route 6, Massachusetts to California

Of the longest American roads, U.S. Route 6 lies the furthest south, primarily because the highway runs diagonally. U.S. 6 begins on the east coast at the tip of Cape Cod in Provincetown, Massachusetts, and goes all the way to Bishop, California. Driving Route 6 from start to finish takes you through 14 states, and it would take about 61 hours to travel its 3,207 miles. Quick fact: U.S. 6 was once the longest road in the country, but after the U.S. Dept. of Transportation renumbered highways during the '60s, it moved down the list. Also, Route 6 is formally known as the Grand Army of the Republic Highway, dedicated to the Union troops who fought during the Civil War.

For planning purposes, U.S. 6 travels primarily through medium cities, small towns, and charming rural areas. Among the largest urban areas you can enjoy from U.S. 6 are Denver, Des Moines, and Omaha. Simply put, this is the road you want to fully explore middle America. 

1. U.S. Route 20

Stretching a whopping 3,237 miles from Boston to Newport, Oregon, U.S. Route 20 is the longest road in the U.S. Take this beautiful route for its panoramic views and exciting attractions for those who love an epic road trip. It takes you through some of the nation's must stunning national parks, such as Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore, Yellowstone in Wyoming, and Craters of the Moon National Monument, as it parallels I-90 for much of its length. Quick fact: U.S. 20 has not been converted to a four-lane highway in many areas, making this two-lane adventure the perfect opportunity to slowly meander across the United States.

On the eastern part of the route, you will find quaint and charming towns, providing a real taste of Americana with main streets that have looked the same seemingly forever. Example? The Massachusetts portion of Route 20 follows the old Boston Post Road used to carry mail between New York City and Boston in the 1600s and 1700s. Route 20 in New York travels through one of our favorites, the Finger Lakes Region of the state. Check out our video below, “RVing through the Adirondacks, Finger Lakes and Letchworth State Park.”


Mike Wendland

Mike Wendland is a veteran journalist who, with his wife, Jennifer, travels North America in a small motorhome, blogging about the people, places, joys and adventure of RV life on the road at He and Jennifer also host the weekly RV Podcast and do twice-weekly videos on the YouTube RV Lifestyle Channel. They have written 10 books on RV travel.

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