For me, virtual road trips will never replace the real thing but with sub-zero temperatures and several inches of snow on the ground, I took a look at one and had some fun. I did not discover it because I was searching the web for just this sort of thing. I learned of it through an email of the sort that contain link exchange offers or promises to increase your search engine ranking or something similar and which are usually deleted about the time my eyes reach the third or fourth sentence. But this one was well written and polite and, not only did I read it all, I actually clicked on the link it contained and, as I said, had some fun.
The graphics are reminiscent of a 1980s Atari game though there are a bunch more elements and they’re a lot smoother. The vehicle is a Cadillac convertible which is moved south along California Highway 1 by scrolling. Flyout tabs allow jumping to specific locations such as Big Sur and Santa Monica if you don’t want to “drive” there. Along the way popups provide information about landmarks and areas and clickable pads appear from time to time that link to Google Street View.
Although bits of data appear for goodly number of landmarks and attractions, it is hardly an exhaustive list and no contact information is provided. The page is intended to be a fun way to cruise/scroll down the California coast and maybe learn a few things on the way. It does not purport to be a practical trip guide.
The page is part of the website of Exsus, a purveyor of “luxury holidays & honeymoons” and not the sort of outfit you might immediately associate with drive-it-yourself road trips. But CA 1 goes through some pretty high class neighborhoods where honeymoons and holidays can certainly be luxurious and Exsus is certainly capable of arranging them. One purpose of the virtual road trip is to make people aware of Exsus. Another is to make people aware of Shout Digital, the company that built it. It is something of a showcase for them and uses some fancy website techniques, such as parallax scrolling, that are better explained in a Creative Bloq article on the page (They call it a “microsite” which I sort of like.) here.
The Highway One Road Trip is here. It won’t clear the snow or make the thermometer less depressing but it can provide some fun and maybe some information on west coast attractions.