The “Not So Secret Streets and Traffic” of Branson
For those of you faithful travelers that have experienced all the wonders of Branson – the Live Shows, the Attractions and Theme Parks, you may have also been in awe at the sight of HWY 76 Country Music Boulevard (A.K.A. Branson’s Strip) during peak traffic hours during the travel seasons.
The bumper to bumper Branson strip traffic has become somewhat unbelievable over the past decade. Each year more and more travelers embark on a trip to experience the Ozarks and take in the life and folks of our beautiful mountain country. Instead, what they end up experiencing is hours on the famous strip in 90-plus degree weather, moving at a snail’s pace trying to get to their destination and literally wasting away in their vehicles.
Well for all you future travelers and repeat visitors, I am going to share with you the secret to traversing Branson quickly and effortlessly. Okay, to be honest it’s not so secret, but it is extremely useful. These are the tricks I use to travel from one end of Branson to the other end (during the busiest travel days) in only a matter of minutes. When you have an hour for lunch, time matters!
So what is not so secret? Why am I building this up so much? Well it comes down to colors… red, blue and yellow. Yes you read that correctly, colors. All Bransonians use what is known as the Colored Routes of Branson. These side roads were designed to alleviate Hwy 76 of traffic for anyone not wanting to joy ride the strip just to get from point A to point B – like me! When I want a sub or tasty Greek for lunch, I can’t afford to spend all my time in traffic. There’s a gyro with my name on it and I want it now!
Here’s where the colored routes will take you:
- The Red Route (Shepard of the Hills Expressway) is the northern road that travels from Interstate Hwy 65 to the East end of Hwy 76, bypassing the entire five mile main strip until meeting back up at RFD TV Theatre.
- The Blue Route (Roark Valley Rd. and Gretna Rd.) travels through the heart of Branson and runs parallel with Hwy 76. This route allows visitors to skip a majority of the strip but access it three quarters of the way down. Beginning at the first traffic light in Branson, this side road cuts off to the right and runs along most of Hwy 76 until rejoining the strip at the Titanic Museum.
- The Yellow Route (Green Mountain Dr. and Fall Creek Rd.) is the Southern route. This is the Autobahn of Branson. It’s void of traffic, traffic lights and is the quickest route around Branson. Beginning at the light by Dick Clark’s American Bandstand and Dixie Stampede, this route runs alongside the strip (to the left) and rejoins the strip at RFD TV Theatre.
If you want to avoid traffic in Branson and truly experience and enjoy all Branson has to offer, then heed my advice weary traveler. Know thy colors and thy will be rewarded, with more time! Use this advice wisely.