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Home Road Trip Want the best Iowa road trip? Try 2 weekend routes across the state

Want the best Iowa road trip? Try 2 weekend routes across the state

by Staff


What’s summer without a weekend road trip? Gunther Motor Company surveyed 3,000 individuals in order to rank the top 100 weekend road trips around the U.S., and two of them are in Iowa.

Sioux City to Burlington: Enjoy a southern route across Iowa

Coming in at number 21 is Sioux City to Burlington via U.S. Highways 75 and 34. This trip comes in at 387 miles, nearly seven hours and takes drivers south through Nebraska before returning to Iowa and heading east. While there are a few different, faster ways to get from Sioux City to Burlington, this is promised to be the most scenic route.

Along U.S. Highway 34, visit Viking Lake State Park and take a dip in the lake, enjoy nature and even camp if you need a spot for the night. For fishing, boating and paddle boarding, Geode State Park has you covered with over 150 acres to explore.

With short detours, you can also stop to see Stanton’s coffee pot water tower or the Villisca ax murder house.

In Burlington, you’ll end where Iowa and Illinois meet, along the Mississippi River. Consider a stop at Good Restaurant + Lounge to enjoy nearly 175 years of history.

Omaha to Dubuque: Head east across northern Iowa

The 66th trip on the list is from Omaha to Dubuque via U.S. Highway 20, another nearly 400 mile, six to seven-hour route.

Instead of taking a straight shot, this trip adds a detour to Sioux City, giving plenty of opportunity for sight-seeing and stops along the way.

U.S. Highway 20 crosses plenty of rivers and parks, including the Twin Lakes State Park. You’ll also cross the Des Moines River, close to Camp Wa-No-Ki, where you can stop for a peaceful hike or even try a challenge course.

Need a bit to eat? Stop in Iowa Falls for a pizza or milkshake from Princess Grill & Pizzeria, which has the largest remaining soda fountain in the country. Just remember some cash since it doesn’t take credit cards.

End your road trip camping at Swiss Valley Park, near Dubuque and the Mississippi River.

Top five weekend road trips

  • New York City to Niagara Falls via Interstate 87 and 90
  • Colorado Springs to Dinosaur National Monument via US-40
  • Las Vegas to Great Basin National Park via U.S. Route 93
  • Dallas to Big Bend National Park via U.S. Route 67
  • Albany to Lake Placid via Interstate 87

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