If you’re planning a summer or holiday road trip or just a simple getaway, one of the most important things to consider is the music you’ll listen to on the journey. The right playlist can make all the difference in creating a memorable and enjoyable experience. We’ve compiled a list of the best songs for road trips to keep you entertained and energized throughout your travels. These songs will enhance the adventure and make your road trip memorable. So buckle up, turn up the volume, and let’s hit the road with the best songs for road trips.
40 – “In The Air Tonight” by Phil Collins
Phil Collins‘ “In The Air Tonight” is a timeless track that has stood the test of time since its release in 1981. The song’s distinctive drum solo creates a sense of anticipation and excitement, making it a great choice for long drives and open highways. Collins’ soulful vocals allows listeners to immerse themselves in the music. The song’s ethereal soundscapes evoke a sense of wanderlust, making it an excellent choice for exploring new destinations or revisiting familiar ones. Its universal appeal transcends generations, making it an essential addition to any road trip playlist.
39 – “Jack & Diane” by John Mellencamp
Jack & Diane” by John Mellencamp is the perfect song for road trips, transporting listeners to a time of carefree joy and youthful adventure. The chorus invites you to sing along, tapping into the universal longing for simple pleasures and youthful experiences. Mellencamp’s gravelly voice resonates with listeners as he recounts the story of two small-town teenagers embracing life’s adventures. Its lasting appeal lies in its ability to capture the spirit of youthful romance and the universal desire to escape everyday routines, making it the ideal companion for any road trip playlist.
38 – “Everybody Wants to Rule the World” by Tears for Fears
Tears for Fears‘ “Everybody Wants to Rule the World” is a timeless song that sets the ideal tone for any road trip. The song’s opening synthesizer chords and lyrics capture the universal desire for power and control. Still, the upbeat rhythm and optimistic vocals transform the track into a joyful anthem, best for a carefree road trip experience. Whether embarking on a cross-country or a weekend getaway, this song can transport you to a place of boundless possibilities and make your journey memorable.
37 – “Runnin’ Down a Dream” by Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers
“Runnin’ Down a Dream” by Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers is a song that embodies the spirit of a road trip. Petty’s raw and honest storytelling ability taps into the universal emotions of hope, longing, and pursuing a life filled with purpose. The song’s lasting appeal has made it a staple on road trip playlists, encouraging a sense of quest and the feeling that anything is possible.
36 – “More Than a Feeling” by Boston
“More Than a Feeling” by Boston is a classic rock hit that best captures the essence of freedom, making it an ideal choice for road trips. The driving rhythm and memorable guitar solos create an uplifting atmosphere that encourages listeners to turn up the volume and sing along. “More Than a Feeling” is a classic song that delivers a constant reminder of the thrill and joy of exploring the open road.
35 – “Two of Us” by The Beatles
Two of Us” by The Beatles is an ideal addition to any road trip playlist, evoking a sense of freedom and wanderlust. The song’s appeal lies in its uplifting melody and heartfelt lyrics, inspiring a feeling of companionship and togetherness as you hit the open road with a friend or loved one. The harmonious vocals and catchy guitar riffs of “Two of Us” create a sense of unity, making every mile traveled an opportunity for bonding, laughter, and shared experiences. Whether you’re embarking on a spontaneous or carefully curated trip, “Two of Us” will surely be the best soundtrack.
34 – “Get Your Kicks On Route 66” by Nat King Cole
Nat King Cole’s “Get Your Kicks On Route 66” is a must-have on any road trip playlist. Its lively rhythm and smooth vocals transport you to a bygone era, evoking images of cruising down the iconic Route 66 with the wind in your hair and the sun on your face. This song is the best companion for any traveler with its references to various cities and attractions along Route 66, fueling your excitement for the road ahead and encapsulating the spirit of freedom and discovery integral to any memorable road trip.
33 – “Going Back to Cali” by LL Cool J
LL Cool J’s “Going Back to Cali” is the best road trip song, capturing the excitement and nostalgia of returning to a beloved destination. The upbeat rhythm and vibrant instrumentation create an irresistible energy that transports listeners to the sunny roads of California. With its lasting appeal and West Coast vibe, this song is a must-have for any road trip playlist, promising hours of enjoyment and unforgettable memories.
32 – “The Distance” by Cake
Cake’s “The Distance” is the ideal addition to any road trip playlist. Released in 1996, this alternative rock hit captures the spirit of adventure and the open road with its energetic guitar riffs and empowering lyrics. Its blend of rock, funk, and country influences creates a dynamic and enduring soundtrack for your travels.
31 – “Where the Streets Have No Name” by U2
Where the Streets Have No Name” by U2 is a classic rock song that embodies the thrill of hitting the open road. Released in 1987 as the opening track of their album “The Joshua Tree,” this song has uplifting melodies and an anthemic chorus that can transport listeners to wide-open spaces and ignite a sense of adventure. Its universal message of freedom and escape makes it an ideal anthem for those seeking new horizons and boundless possibilities. With its lasting appeal, the song has become a must-have on any road trip playlist.
30 – “Shut Up and Drive” by Rihanna
Released in 2007, “Shut Up and Drive” by Rihanna is the perfect song to accompany any road trip. Its energetic pop-rock sound and Rihanna’s powerful vocals create an exhilarating experience that will keep you pumped up throughout your journey. As a song that resonates with audiences today, “Shut Up and Drive” is a great addition to any road trip playlist.
29 – “Don’t Stop Believin” by Journey
“Don’t Stop Believin'” by Journey is a classic. The song’s driving rhythm and electrifying guitar riffs create an instant sense of excitement and freedom. With its soaring chorus and Steve Perry’s powerful vocals, “Don’t Stop Believin'” captures the spirit of optimism and the thrill of embarking on a journey. Its widespread recognition as one of the greatest rock songs ever recorded elicits a sense of familiarity and nostalgia while inspiring the belief that anything is possible on the road ahead.
28 – “I’ve Been Everywhere” by Johnny Cash
“I’ve Been Everywhere” by Johnny Cash is a must-have for any road trip playlist. Cash’s unique voice and lively delivery make it impossible not to sing along and tap your foot to the beat. The song’s lyrics take you on a whirlwind journey, mentioning countless cities and towns across the United States, creating a lyrical tapestry. As a result, the song serves as a fantastic companion on road trips, encouraging a sense of exploration and creating a joyful atmosphere within the vehicle. It’s a true anthem for the road, reminding us the journey itself is just as important as the destination and that there’s a vast world out there waiting to be discovered.
27 – “Bohemian Rhapsody” by Queen
Bohemian Rhapsody” by Queen is classic road trip song, capturing the excitement of embarking on a journey. Its powerful vocals, intricate harmonies, and gripping lyrics make it an anthem for freedom and self-expression. “Bohemian Rhapsody” has stood the test of time, remaining a beloved classic since its release in 1975. Its universal appeal transcends generations, making it a fantastic choice for road trips with friends, family, or solo.
26 – “Africa” by Toto
The song “Africa” by Toto is an ideal addition to any road trip playlist. Its iconic intro, cascading keyboard melody, and steady drumbeat immediately transport you to a world of vast landscapes and untamed beauty. Its lasting appeal and upbeat tempo make it a choice for any road trip, whether driving through a desert landscape or simply enjoying the scenic route. So, turn up the volume, roll down the windows, and let “Africa” take you on an unforgettable journey.
25 – “Mr. Blue Sky” by Electric Light Orchestra
“Mr. Blue Sky” by Electric Light Orchestra is the perfect song for a road trip. The lively melody and energetic instrumentation create a soundtrack that will lift your spirits and make your journey more enjoyable. This song captures the spirit of road trips and is guaranteed to have everyone in the car singing along and feeling the same joy.
24 – “All-Star” by Smash Mouth
The universally loved song “All-Star” by Smash Mouth has become a staple on road trip playlists due to its feel-good nature and ability to capture the essence of the open road. The nostalgic factor of the song, released in 1999, adds another layer of enjoyment to the road trip experience. Whether driving solo or with friends, “All-Star” will surely bring a smile to your face and make the miles fly by.
23 – “Sweet Caroline” by Neil Diamond
“Sweet Caroline” by Neil Diamond is the ultimate road trip song. Its iconic opening notes kick off an adventure-filled journey, as the song’s catchy chorus and sing-along nature create a sense of togetherness among fellow travelers. With its universal appeal and enduring quality, “Sweet Caroline” is the perfect choice for any car full of passengers. So, turn up the volume, roll down the windows, and let “Sweet Caroline” soundtrack your next road trip.
22 – “Livin’ on a Prayer” by Bon Jovi
Bon Jovi‘s “Livin’ on a Prayer” is a classic that has become a staple for road trips. The song’s powerful message of resilience and determination resonates with listeners of all ages, inspiring them to embrace the unknown and live life to the fullest. As the opening guitar riff kicks in, the song’s uplifting lyrics is an instant crowd-pleaser that unifies friends and family through the power of music.
21 – “Wagon Wheel” by Darius Rucker
Darius Rucker’s version of the Bob Dylan penned “Wagon Wheel” is the perfect road trip song. Its folk melody and lively rhythm create a sense of freedom that transport listeners to the open road. What sets “Wagon Wheel” apart is its ability to unite people, encouraging everyone to join in and embrace the spirit of the open road.
20 – “Mr. Brightside” by The Killers
“Mr. Brightside” by The Killers is the perfect road trip song. Released in 2004, this energetic track has stood the test of time and continues to be a favorite among travelers. The lyrics capture the emotions of love and jealousy, creating an atmosphere of liberation. Vocals from Brandon Flowers, “Mr. Brightside” encourages listeners to roll down the windows, turn up the volume, and let the wind carry their worries away. It has become an anthem, uniting people from all walks of life under its infectious energy, making it a lasting choice for any road trip playlist.
19 – “Don’t Stop Me Now” by Queen
“Don’t Stop Me Now” by Queen is a perfect song for road trips, with its energetic tempo and uplifting nature that evokes a sense of excitement and anticipation. As the lyrics encourage listeners to embrace the present moment and their potential for greatness, the song becomes an anthem of empowerment and liberation. “Don’t Stop Me Now” continues to be a go-to choice for music lovers hitting the highway, inspiring a carefree attitude and a determination to break free from the constraints of everyday life.
18 – “Hey Jude” by The Beatles
“Hey Jude” by The Beatles is a classic that captures the essence of adventure and camaraderie that a road trip represents. As soon as the iconic piano chords start, you can’t help but feel a surge of energy and anticipation. Paul McCartney‘s soulful vocals and the uplifting harmonies of the band create a captivating atmosphere that resonates with listeners of all generations.
17 – “Walking on Sunshine” by Katrina and the Waves
“Walking on Sunshine” by Katrina and the Waves is the perfect song for a road trip. Its upbeat rhythm, and uplifting lyrics create an atmosphere of pure joy and excitement, making it impossible not to tap your feet and sing along. “Walking on Sunshine” is more than just a song; it celebrates the life and the sheer joy of hitting the road with your favorite people.
16 – “Free Fallin'” by Tom Petty
“Free Fallin'” by Tom Petty is a great road trip song. Its energetic tempo and memorable guitar riffs make it the ideal accompaniment for any long drive. The lyrics, delivered in Tom Petty’s unique voice, evoke a sense of freedom, creating an ideal atmosphere for a memorable journey. “Free Fallin'” is a must-have on any road trip playlist.
15 – “I Will Wait” by Mumford & Sons
“I Will Wait” by Mumford & Sons is the perfect song for road trips. The banjo-driven melody and powerful chorus ignite energy, making it nearly impossible to resist singing along. The infectious energy and foot-stomping rhythm make it a perfect song for group road trips, fostering a sense of unity and togetherness.
14 – “Rolling in the Deep” by Adele
“Rolling in the Deep” by Adele is a perfect addition to any road trip playlist. The powerful vocals and energetic instrumentation create a driving rhythm that captures the spirit of a journey. The lyrics speak of heartbreak, resilience, and moving forward, making it an ideal soundtrack for self-discovery on the road. Additionally, the song’s popularity ensures that it will be a hit with fellow travelers, as you share the joy of the journey.
13 – “Fast Car” by Tracy Chapman
Tracy Chapman‘s “Fast Car” is a timeless classic, released in 1988; the song’s poetic lyrics and captivating melody make it an enduring favorite among listeners of all ages. Chapman’s soulful voice tells a heartfelt story of a young woman seeking a better life, resonating with anyone who has ever dreamed of escaping the monotony of everyday life.
12 – “American Girl” by Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers
“American Girl” by Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers is a classic road trip song. The song’s energetic melody and spirited vocals create a sense of excitement and anticipation, making it the perfect soundtrack for any road trip. The lyrics tell a story of chasing dreams and exploring new landscapes, symbolizing the universal desire for self-discovery and pursuing the American dream.
11 – “Hit the Road Jack” by Ray Charles
Hit the Road Jack” by Ray Charles is a timeless tune, the playful call-and-response between Ray Charles and his backup singers and the infectious rhythm and blues vibes make it an instant crowd-pleaser that invites everyone in the car to join in and sing their hearts out. With “Hit the Road Jack” on your playlist, you can be sure that the good times will roll on as you cruise down the highway, creating lasting memories.
10 – “Radar Love” by Golden Earring
Golden Earring’s “Radar Love” is a timeless classic that has become a staple on road trip playlists. The driving guitar riffs, energetic drum beats, and powerful vocals of lead singer Barry Hay create a sense of adventure and connection with fellow road warriors. Its enduring popularity and universal appeal have made it a must-have on any playlist, and it’s hard not to feel an adrenaline rush when the iconic guitar riff kicks in.
9 – “Highway to Hell” by AC/DC
Highway to Hell” by AC/DC is a timeless classic that captures the excitement of hitting the open road. The lyrics are filled with a rebellious spirit and a sense of living life to the fullest, making it the perfect song to blast through your car speakers as you embrace the freedom of the open road. With its infectious energy and timeless appeal, “Highway to Hell” has become synonymous with the thrill of adventure and the joy of exploration, making it the ultimate road trip song that will undoubtedly create memories that will last a lifetime.
8 – “Take Me Home, Country Roads” by John Denver
“Take Me Home, Country Roads” by John Denver is a folk-inspired song that has become an iconic anthem for road trips since its release in 1971. The song creates a connection to nature and a yearning for a simpler, more authentic way of life. The song’s sing-along appeal make it an irresistible addition to any road trip playlist, bringing people together with its universal appeal.
7 – “Hotel California” by Eagles
The Eagles‘ “Hotel California” is a classic song and a road trip favorite, evoking a sense of adventure from the first notes of its iconic guitar intro. As you cruise down scenic routes or bustling city streets, the song’s captivating storytelling, soaring harmonies, and infectious rhythm create an atmosphere that is both introspective and invigorating. “Hotel California” is an essential road trip companion to make your travels more memorable and enjoyable.
6 – “Running on Empty” by Jackson Browne
Running on Empty” by Jackson Browne is a timeless track that captures the essence of a road trip. Its upbeat tempo and catchy guitar riffs transport listeners into the spirit of adventure, while Browne’s introspective lyrics offer a reflective element to the journey. The infectious rhythm of “Running on Empty” make it an ideal choice when you simply want to let loose and have fun on your road trip.
5 – “I’m Gonna Be (500 Miles)” by The Proclaimers
“I’m Gonna Be (500 Miles)” by The Proclaimers is a road trip essential. Its upbeat tempo and memorable melody make it perfect for cruising the open road. The song’s timeless appeal ensures it resonates with people of all ages and musical preferences. It is a classic road trip soundtrack that inspires feelings of joy.
4 – “Sweet Home Alabama” by Lynyrd Skynyrd
Lynyrd Skynyrd‘s “Sweet Home Alabama” is a classic rock hit that captures the essence of the American South and the excitement of hitting the open road. The song’s catchy melody and unforgettable lyrics transport listeners to a place where adventure awaits, making it the perfect anthem for road trips. “Sweet Home Alabama” also holds cultural significance as a symbol of Southern pride and an emblem of the American spirit. Its celebration of home, belonging, and freedom makes it a must-have addition to any road trip playlist, creating an unforgettable soundtrack to accompany you on your journey.
3 – “On the Road Again” by Willie Nelson
Released in 1980, “On the Road Again” by Willie Nelson is a classic country tune that perfectly captures the excitement of hitting the open road. With its upbeat tempo and twangy guitar riffs, the song will make you want to sing along at the top of your lungs. Beyond its catchy tune, the lyrics beautifully convey the joy of exploration and leaving behind the worries of everyday life. “On the Road Again” has become an anthem for road trips worldwide, uniting generations of travelers in their shared love for adventure.
2 – “Life is a Highway” by Tom Cochrane
“Life is a Highway” by Tom Cochrane is a timeless classic that captures the essence of the open road, making it the perfect companion for any road trip. The lyrics resonate deeply with anyone, embracing life’s twists and turns and the constant motion that defines our existence. As you cruise along the highway, this uplifting tune will have you tapping your fingers on the steering wheel and nodding your head to the beat, making it an ideal addition to any road trip playlist.
1 – “Born to Run” by Bruce Springsteen
Born to Run” by Bruce Springsteen is the ultimate road trip song that captures the yearning for escape and the thrill of hitting the open road. From the iconic guitar riff to the dynamic instrumentation, the song injects a sense of adrenaline and a thirst for adventure into every mile. Its powerful and anthemic chorus encourages you to roll down the windows, turn up the volume, and let the wind whip through your hair as you speed the highway. “Born to Run” is a timeless classic that embodies the spirit of exploration and endless possibilities, reminding us that sometimes all we need is a full tank of gas, a great song, and the desire to chase our dreams wherever they may lead.