U.S. Highway 1
The north terminus of U.S. Highway 1 has always been in Fort Kent, Maine, and until 1926 the route ended in Miami, Florida. In 1938 it was extended to Key West, Florida. It is also the longest north-south highway in the United States. Although a good part of the route hugs the Atlantic coastline, much of it is quite distant from the coast. Originally, US 1 was built to provide quick travel before the Interstate system was built. Now that Interstates are the primary mode of quick transportation, most of US 1 is regulated by stoplights where it passes within city limits. Plan on a much slower trip than a run down I-95.
It is possible to drive U.S. 1 in either direction, the mile markers in Florida begin in Key West at zero and go northward and in Fort Kent, Maine there is a sign that proclaims on one side it is the beginning and on the other side that it is the end. You might want to pick one or more states and travel the route through those states.
There are 529 miles of highway in Maine, the second longest stretch and only 4 miles shorter than the mileage in Florida. Traveling south in Maine some of the cities and towns you will see are: Fort Kent, Madawaska, Grand Isle, Caribou, Ellsworth, Bucksport, Belfast, Camden, Rockport, Rockland, Waldoboro, Newcastle, Wiscasset, Bath, Brunswick, Freeport, Yarmouth, Portland, Saco, Biddeford, Kennebunk, Ogunquit and Kittery.
Continuing south you'll follow what was known as "the Old Boston Post Road" and pass through Westwood, Norwood, Sharon, Walpole, Foxborough, Wrentham, Plainville, North Attleborough, and Attleboro to the Rhode Island border.
From Pawtucket at the northern border of the state Route 1 travels through Providence, Cranston, Warwick, East Greenwich, North Kingstown, South Kingstown, Narragansett, South Kingstown again, Charlestown and Westerly.
US 1 in Connecticut stays close to Interstate 95 throughout the state and has many junctions with it. It goes through the following towns as the roads listed below. From Greenwich to Branford, US 1 is mostly a 4-lane or 6-lane principal arterial road (with some 2-lane sections in dense areas). From Branford to Stonington, US 1 becomes a 2-lane or 4-lane minor arterial road (it is classified as a principal arterial road within Waterford town). One note of interest is that Route 1 in Connecticut has almost a direct east–west route. Because of this, in some places, signs may say Route 1 east or west, and only a short distance away, another sign may say Route 1 north or south. This can make it confusing for those who are not familiar with the area. Most of US 1 through Connecticut encompasses its predecessor, the Boston Post Road, and in many towns it is still named Boston Post Road.
Route 1 enters New York at Port Chester and passes through Rye, Mamaroneck, Larchmont, New Rochelle and Pelham in Westchester County where it is known as the Boston Post Road. From there the road passes through the Bronx and Manhattan before leaving on the George Washington Bridge to New Jersey.
From Fort Lee at the eastern border of the state, Route 1 travels through Palisades Park, Ridgefield, Fairview, North Bergen, Jersey City, Kearny, Newark, Elizabeth, Linden, Rahway, Woodbridge Township, Edison Township, New Brunswick, North Brunswick Township, South Brunswick Township, Plainsboro Township, West Windsor Township, Lawrence Township, and finally Trenton, before crossing the Delaware River and entering Pennsylvania.
Route 1 enters the state at Morrisville in a southwesterly direction, passing through Langhorne, and then into Philadelphia, where it is now also designated as Roosevelt Boulevard. After crossing the Schuylkill River, the road merges briefly with westbound I-76, then continues southwest becoming City Avenue, a borderline between Philadelphia and Montgomery Counties. Upon leaving Philadelphia, the street name changes to Township Line Road, passing through Upper Darby and Lansdowne. Near Media, the name changes again, to State Road, and further on, becomes the Baltimore Pike, passing close to the Brandywine Battlefield Historic Site. Near Kennett Square, Route 1 is shifted to the Kennett-Oxford Bypass, then turns south, passing into Maryland at Sylmar.
Route 1 crosses the Mason and Dixon Line just north east of Rising Sun and then heads roughly south west through Conowigo, Bel Air, Kingsville, Baltimore, Elkridge, Laurel, College Park, Hyattsville before entering the District of Columbia.
US 1 enters Virginia from I-395 as Jefferson Davis Highway which it is the legislative name throughout the entire state. Adjacent to I-95, US 1 enters Arlington, Woodbridge, Dumfries, Stafford Courthouse before crossing the Rappahannock River and entering Fredericksburg. US 1, still parallel to I-95, enters Ladysmith, Ashland, Glen Allen, then arriving into Richmond. South of the James River, US 1 enters Chester, Colonial Heights, and Petersburg. In Petersburg, US 1 turns from south to a westward direction following I-85 and the geological Fall Line towards North Carolina passing through Dinwiddie Courthouse, Alberta and finally South Hill.
In North Carolina, US 1 runs along I-85 through Henderson. It then proceeds toward Raleigh becoming Capital Blvd. It then latches on to the I-440 Beltline around the western side of Raleigh and continues as a freeway south of Raleigh through Cary. It is a freeway south of Cary though Sanford and to Southern Pines. As of 2011, the section from Southern Pines to Rockingham is under construction being widened to four lanes. It continues south along the geological fall line to South Carolina.
Two lanes for much of its length in South Carolina, US 1 here is farther from the interstates and remains an important route in its own right. Tracing the ancient coastline of the Cretaceous period, Hwy 1 connects many of the state's oldest inland settlements and is the primary means of access from the sparsely populated sandhills region to both Columbia and the NC capital of Raleigh. 1 enters the state north of Wallace and passes through Cheraw and Camden, there widening to four lanes and running approximately parallel to I-20 into Columbia. As Gervais St., Highway 1 is a primary street in Columbia's central business district and passes directly in front of the statehouse. Leaving the capital, US 1 continues west roughly along the route of I-20 through Batesburg-Leesville and Aiken, entering Georgia at Augusta.
From South Carolina, US1 goes from Augusta south thru Wadley, Swainsboro, Oak Park, And Lyons. It continues through Santa Claus And Baxley before continuing through Waycross and Homeland.
If you travel south through Florida on U.S. Highway 1, some of the towns or cities you will pass by include: Jacksonville, St. Augustine, Palm Coast, Ormond Beach, Holly Hill, Daytona Beach, South Daytona, Port Orange, New Smyrna Beach, Edgewater, Titusville, Cocoa, Rockledge, Melbourne, Palm Bay, Grant, Sebastian, Vero Beach, Fort Pierce, Stuart, Hobe Sound, Jupiter, North Palm Beach, Riviera Beach, West Palm Beach, Lake Worth, Boynton Beach, Delray Beach, Boca Raton, Deerfield Beach, Pompano Beach, Fort Lauderdale, Dania, Hollywood, Hallandale, North Miami Beach, North Miami, Miami, Coral Gables, South Miami, Kendall, Perrine, Homestead, Key Largo and the rest of the Florida Keys to Key West, where it ends at an intersection in front of Key West's City Hall. The highway is 533 miles long through the state of Florida.