If you're a motorcycle enthusiast looking for a journey that feels like it's straight out of a sci-fi movie, you're in for a treat. Across the U.S., there are destinations that boast distinctive flora and fauna, unique geological features, and other outlandish characteristics that make them seem like they belong to a different world altogether.
These eight remarkable places promise unforgettable experiences for riders seeking a motorcycle adventure on a distant planet. So, gear up, hit the road, and embark on an otherworldly journey you'll remember for a lifetime.
Olympic National Park, Washington
Starting in the enchanting Pacific Northwest, Olympic National Park in Washington is a haven for nature lovers and motorcycle enthusiasts alike. The park's diverse ecosystems include temperate rainforests, rugged coastlines, and towering peaks.
Ride along the iconic Hurricane Ridge Rd, which offers stunning vistas of the Olympic Mountains. Make sure to visit the Hoh Rainforest, where dense mosses and towering trees create an eerie, otherworldly atmosphere. While in the area, don't miss a detour to the enchanting Ruby Beach, where the driftwood-covered shore contrasts beautifully with the deep blue waters of the Pacific.
For a nice place to stay on your journey, check out the Olympic View Inn in Sequim, WA.
Great Sand Dunes National Park, Colorado
The tower dunes of the Great Sand Dunes National Park in Colorado are nestled against the backdrop of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains. The place really makes you feel like you've stumbled onto a Martian desert.
The Medano Pass Primitive Rd offers a thrilling route through the dunes. Riding over the sandy terrain is a unique challenge that's sure to get your adrenaline pumping. For an even more cosmic experience, consider camping amidst the dunes and witnessing the night sky's spectacular display.
Antelope Canyon, Arizona
Journey to the southwestern U.S., where you'll find the mesmerizing Antelope Canyon in Arizona. Carved by centuries of wind and water, this narrow slot canyon is renowned for its smooth, flowing walls that seem to change colors with the sunlight.
While motorcycle riding isn't allowed within the canyon itself, the surrounding region offers breathtaking roads. Take SR 89A through the scenic Oak Creek Canyon and marvel at the stunning red rock formations.
Lee's Ferry Lodge at Vermilion Cliffs makes a great place to rest after exploring the canyon, only 17 miles away.
Badlands National Park, South Dakota
The Badlands National Park in South Dakota is a unique destination that features a rugged, alien landscape characterized by eroded buttes, pinnacles, and canyons.
Riding the Badlands Loop State Scenic Byway (SR 240) is a must for motorcyclists. The winding road offers sweeping views of the park's bizarre terrain. Be sure to stop at the various overlooks for fantastic photo opportunities and a chance to appreciate the park's geological wonders up close.
In nearby Wall, SD, you can stay at the Badlands Frontier Cabins for a rustic adventure.
Craters of the Moon National Monument, Idaho
The stark and lunar-like landscapes of Craters of the Moon National Monument in Idaho were shaped by ancient volcanic eruptions. The cataclysmic events left behind a desolate yet captivating environment of lava fields and cinder cones.
Riding through the monument's loop road provides an eerie experience as you pass through fields of black lava rock. Take time to explore the caves formed by lava tubes and discover the unique plant life that thrives in this seemingly inhospitable environment.
Only 17 miles from Craters of the Moon is the quaint DK Motel for a good night of sleep.
Fly Geyser, Nevada
As you make your way to the Silver State, don't miss the chance to visit Fly Geyser. This accidental man-made wonder is a stunning geothermal geyser that continuously spews hot water, creating vibrant mineral deposits and otherworldly colors.
While you can't ride too close to the geyser itself, the surrounding desert offers excellent routes for motorcyclists. The Black Rock Desert Hwy is a scenic ride that will take you through the remote beauty of this region.
There isn’t much in this part of the desert, so your best bet for accommodations is 95 miles away in Fernley, NV. The SureStay Hotel by Best Western Fernley is a great option.
Painted Dunes, California
In California, the Painted Dunes in the Lassen Volcanic National Park are a true marvel. These colorful volcanic hills are a sight to behold, featuring shades of red, orange, and green, making you feel like you're exploring an extraterrestrial landscape.
The journey to the Lassen Volcanic National Park itself is a treat for riders. Ride along the scenic California SR 89 and savor the picturesque vistas of the surrounding mountains. Once in the park, take the Bumpass Hell Trail to witness otherworldly hydrothermal features.
Village at Childs Meadow is a peaceful motel near the volcanic park.
Grand Prismatic Spring, Wyoming
Wyoming's Yellowstone National Park is home to the incredible Grand Prismatic Spring. This massive hot spring is renowned for its vibrant blue center surrounded by rings of other brilliant colors, creating an almost ethereal appearance.
The Beartooth Highway, often called "the most beautiful drive in America," leads to Yellowstone and is a favorite among motorcyclists. Be sure to explore the park's many geothermal wonders and iconic landscapes, including Old Faithful.
Kelly Inn in West Yellowstone provides comfortable beds to lay down your head after an eventful day in the park.