Hitting the road in 2013? Go for somewhere new. Route 66 and the California Coast are the road trips everyone knows about. On this list, find some new places you might not have thought of before.
Cape Cod might get all the glory, but the beaches northeast of Boston are definitely worth a few days exploration. Take in perfect photogenic towns like Marblehead, Rockport, and Newburyport, while adding a dose of history in Salem and Gloucester.
For the best beaches, check out Wingaersheek Beach in Gloucester and Salisbury Beach in its eponymous town.
New Hampshire itself has very little coastline, but Hampton Beach is loud and vibrant. Spend a day enjoying its breweries and quirky shops of Portsmouth, New Hampshire, before crossing over to Maine for outlet shopping in Kittery.
Finish your trip with the highlights of Southern Maine: taffy and amusement park rides in York, shopping and arts in Ogunquit and Kennebunkport. Head past Portland, a surprisingly charming city, and finish in Camden, home to pristine beauty.
Want to extend your trip inland? Hit up the White Mountains of New Hampshire.
Don't miss: The world-famous seafood chowder at the Maine Diner in Wells, Maine.
Summer is the perfect time to explore Normandy -- the days are brighter, the sun sets at 9:00 PM, and the beaches are more inviting than ever. All the more reason to pile into your car and road trip across this region of northern France.
Take in World War II battle history at the American Military Cemetery and the World War II Museum in Caen. Mandatory on the itinerary is visiting Omaha Beach, home to the D-Day invasion of 1944.
Honfleur, Deauville, and Etretat are all beautiful beach towns worth exploring. Staying inland? Head to Giverny, Monet's home, and see the water lilies that his paintings brought to life.
Don't miss: Mont Saint-Michel, the castle suspended on an island in the sea and the most famous landmark in all of Normandy.
For an unusual European road trip adventure, consider visiting Istria, the heart-shaped region of northwestern Croatia. The roads are excellent and the landscape is full of cultural and culinary treasures.
Istria is home to dozens of wineries that produce excellent wine, but with few of them exporting internationally, they aren't well known outside the country. Be sure to sample Istrian olive oil and truffles as well. Where else in the world could you find a big plate of truffle-topped pasta for less than $10?
The hill towns look like they're straight out of Italy, with narrow streets, brightly painted shutters, and roses blooming out of window boxes. Some of the prettiest ones are Groznjan, Motovun, Bale, and Hum, "the smallest town in the world."
You won't find sandy beaches here -- instead, slabs of stone jut directly into the turquoise ocean.The wildest beaches are found in Rt. Kamenjak, the southernmost tip of the peninsula.
Don't miss: Rovinj, the absolutely gorgeous,brightly painted seaside village and epitomizes all that is wonderful about Istria.
What unusual road trips do you recommend?
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Kate McCulley, better known as Adventurous Kate, has been a full-time travel blogger for more than 2.5 years. She specializes in independent and solo travel for women, and is particularly interested in budget adventure travel. Kate is originally from the Boston area and has most recently lived in London. She has been to more than 30 countries on 5 continents. Kate is currently traveling with her partner Mario and taking photos for SomeoneOnceToldMe.com. Their goal is to get 1000 photos and stories from people around the world. Visit Kate's site at AdventurousKate.com and follow her on Twitter at @adventurouskate. You can also follow her on Facebook, Instagram, YouTube and Google Plus.
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