What's the longest drive you've done in a day? If you're up for a real adventure, you could drive the longest highway in Missouri, but you better set aside almost 12 hours to get it done.

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This is another example of me having too much time on my hands where my curiosity takes me on a rabbit trail. Just wondering out loud what the longest highway in Missouri is, I was led to a lonely highway that quite literally weaves its way right through the middle of the Show Me State.

So what is Missouri's longest highway anyway?

As Wikipedia confirms, Route 5 is the longest highway in Missouri covering a jaw-dropping 650 miles. It is the only state highway that crosses the entire length of Missouri. It's been mentioned that the 650 miles includes the roadway that extends into other states like Arkansas as well and that's correct. Only around 60% of it is through the state of Missouri.

Infographic, Open Street Map
Infographic, Open Street Map

Not only is Route 5 the longest highway in Missouri, it's full of history, too. It was built in 1922 when the original highway system was designed. You can follow it until you enter the sometimes terrifying but always beautiful land of Arkansas.

The interesting thing about Missouri Route 5 is it zigs and zags through about every small town you can imagine, but doesn't traverse many big ones. it ventures to the west of Columbia and east of Springfield, Missouri. If you'd like to see how regular Missourians live, this is the highway you want to make a journey on.

Much of Missouri Route 5 isn't exactly in great shape anymore, but it's a rural path through Missouri that is unlike any other...especially in length.

See the Must-Drive Roads in Every State

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