60+ Best On The Road Quotes: Exclusive Selection

On the Road is a 1957 novel by American writer Jack Kerouac, based on the travels of Kerouac and his friends across the United States. Profoundly inspirational On The Road quotes will make you look at life differently and help you live a meaningful life.

If you’re searching for inspirational quotes from famous books that perfectly capture what you’d like to say or just want to feel inspired yourself, browse through an amazing collection of inspiring The Alchemist quotes, powerful quotes from Paradise Lost and top Lady Macbeth quotes.

Famous On The Road Quotes

They have worries, they’re counting the miles, they’re thinking about where to sleep tonight, how much money for gas, the weather, how they’ll get there—and all the time they’ll get there anyway, you see. — On The Road

Why think about that when all the golden land’s ahead of you and all kinds of unforeseen events wait lurking to surprise you and make you glad you’re alive to see? — On The Road

I want to be like him. He’s never hung-up, he goes every direction, he lets it all out, he knows time, he has nothing to do but rock back and forth. Man, he’s the end! You see, if you go like him all the time you’ll finally get it. — On The Road

Once there was Louis Armstrong blowing his beautiful top in the muds of New Orleans; before him the mad musicians who had paraded on official days and broke up their Sousa marches into ragtime. Then there was swing, and Roy Eldridge, vigorous and virile, blasting the horn for everything it had in waves of power and logic and subtlety—leaning into it with glittering eyes and a lovely smile and sending it out broadcast to rock the jazz world. — On The Road

We were all delighted, we all realized we were leaving confusion and nonsense behind and performing our one noble function of the time, move. — On The Road

I believed in a good home, in sane and sound living, in good food, good times, work, faith and hope. I have always believed in these things. It was with some amazement that I realized I was one of the few people in the world who really believed in these things without going around making a dull middle class philosophy out of it. I was suddenly left with nothing in my hands but a handful of crazy stars. — On The Road

Nothing behind me, everything ahead of me, as is ever so on the road. — On The Road

We were already almost out of America and yet definitely in it and in the middle of where it’s maddest. Hotrods blew by. San Antonio, ah-haa! — On The Road

You don’t die enough to cry. — On The Road

So in America when the sun goes down and I sit on the old broken-down river pier watching the long, long skies over New Jersey and sense all that raw land that rolls in one unbelievable huge bulge over to the West Coast, and all that road going, and all the people dreaming in the immensity of it… and tonight the stars’ll be out, and don’t you know that God is Pooh Bear? — On The Road

What difference does it make after all?—Anonymity in the world of men is better than fame in heaven, for what’s heaven? What’s earth? All in the mind. — On The Road

The only people that interest me are the mad ones, the ones who are mad to live, mad to talk, mad to be saved, desirous of everything at the same time, the ones that never yawn or say a commonplace thing but burn, burn, burn like fabulous yellow roman candles exploding like spiders across the stars and in the middle you see the blue centerlight pop and everybody goes ‘Awww!’ — On The Road

It seemed like a matter of minutes when we began rolling in the foothills before Oakland and suddenly reached a height and saw stretched out ahead of us the fabulous white city of San Francisco on her eleven mystic hills with the blue Pacific and its advancing wall of potato-patch fog beyond, and smoke and goldenness of the late afternoon of time. — On The Road

And as I sat there listening to that sound of the night which bop has come to represent for all of us, I thought of my friends from one end of the country to the other and how they were really all in the same vast backyard doing something so frantic and rushing-about. — On The Road

I realized that I had died and been reborn numberless times but just didn’t remember because the transitions from life to death and back are so ghostly easy, a magical action for naught, like falling asleep and waking up again a million times, the utter casualness and deep ignorance of it. — On The Road

Behind us lay the whole of America and everything Dean and I had previously known about life, and life on the road. We had finally found the magic land at the end of the road and we never dreamed the extent of the magic. — On The Road

Here were the children of the American bop night. — On The Road

I woke up as the sun was reddening; and that was the one distinct time in my life, the strangest moment of all, when I didn’t know who I was—I was far away from home, haunted and tired with travel, in a cheap hotel room I’d never seen, hearing the hiss of steam outside, and the creak of the old wood of the hotel, and footsteps upstairs, and all the sad sounds, and I looked at the cracked high ceiling and really didn’t know who I was for about fifteen strange seconds. — On The Road

What’s your road, man?—holyboy road, madman road, rainbow road, guppy road, any road. It’s an anywhere road for anybody anyhow. — On The Road

Somewhere along the line I knew there’d be girls, visions, everything; somewhere along the line the pearl would be handed to me. — On The Road

At lilac evening I walked with every muscle aching among the lights of 27th and Welton in the Denver colored section, wishing I were a Negro, feeling that the best the white world had offered was not enough ecstasy for me, not enough life, joy, kicks, darkness, music, not enough night. — On The Road

The one thing that we yearn for in our living days, that makes us sigh and groan and undergo sweet nauseas of all kinds, is the remembrance of some lost bliss that was probably experienced in the womb and can only be reproduced (though we hate to admit it) in death. — On The Road

This is the story of America. Everybody’s doing what they think they’re supposed to do. — On The Road

We turned at a dozen paces, for love is a duel, and looked at each other for the last time. — On The Road

The stars bent over the little roof; smoke poked from the stovepipe chimney. I smelled mashed beans and chili. The old man growled… A California home; I hid in the grapevines, digging it all. I felt like a million dollars; I was adventuring in the crazy American night. — On The Road

A pain stabbed my heart, as it did every time I saw a girl I loved who was going the opposite direction in this too-big world. — On The Road

The air was soft, the stars so fine, the promise of every cobbled alley so great, that I thought I was in a dream. — On The Road

I woke up as the sun was reddening; and that was the one distinct time in my life, the strangest moment of all, when I didn’t know who I was—I was far away from home, haunted and tired with travel, in a cheap hotel room I’d never seen, hearing the hiss of steam outside, and the creak of the old wood of the hotel, and footsteps upstairs, and all the sad sounds, and I looked at the cracked high ceiling and really didn’t know who I was for about fifteen strange seconds. I wasn’t scared; I was just somebody else, some stranger, and my whole life was a haunted life, the life of a ghost. — On The Road

My whole wretched life swam before my weary eyes, and I realized no matter what you do it’s bound to be a waste of time in the end so you might as well go mad. — On The Road

Hell man, I know very well you didn’t come to me only to want to become a writer, and after all what do I really know about it except that you’ve got to stick to it with the energy of a benny addict. — On The Road

But you can go on thinking and imagining forever further and stop at no decisions to pick up a bag for the thinkings. Turn your thinking into your work, your thoughts a book, in sieges. — On The Road

And for just a moment I had reached the point of ecstasy that I always wanted to reach and which was the complete step across chronological time into timeless shadows, and wonderment in the bleakness of the mortal realm, and the sensation of death kicking at my heels to move on, with a phantom dogging its own heels, and myself hurrying to a plank where all the Angels dove off and flew into infinity. — On The Road

I like too many things and get all confused and hung-up running from one falling star to another till I drop. This is the night, what it does to you. I had nothing to offer anybody except my own confusion. — On The Road

Whither goest thou, America, in thy shiny car in the night? — On The Road

We fumed and screamed in our mountain nook, mad drunken Americans in the mighty land. We were on the roof of America and all we could do was yell, I guess—across the night… — On The Road

My aunt once said that the world would never find peace until men fell at their women’s feet and asked for forgiveness. — On The Road

I was surprised, as always, by how easy the act of leaving was, and how good it felt. The world was suddenly rich with possibility. — On The Road

Isn’t it true that you start your life a sweet child, believing in everything under your father’s roof? Then comes the day of the Laodiceans, when you know you are wretched and miserable and poor and blind and naked, and with the visage of a gruesome, grieving ghost you go shuddering through nightmare life. — On The Road

Our battered suitcases were were piled on the sidewalk again; we had longer ways to go. But no matter, the road is life. — On The Road

They were like the man with the dungeon stone and gloom, rising from the underground, the sordid hipsters of America, a new beat generation that I was slowly joining. — On The Road

Then a complete silence fell over everybody; where once Dean would have talked his way out, he now fell silent himself, but standing in front of everybody, ragged and broken and idiotic, right under the lightbulbs, his bony mad face covered with sweat and throbbing veins… — On The Road

I suddenly began to realize that everybody in America is a natural-born thief. — On The Road

What difference does it make after all?—anonymity in the world of men is better than fame in heaven, for what’s heaven? what’s earth? All in the mind. — On The Road

What is that feeling when you’re driving away from people and they recede on the plain till you see their specks dispersing?—It’s the too-huge world vaulting us, and it’s good-bye. But we lean forward to the next crazy venture beneath the skies. — On The Road

They danced down the streets like dingledodies, and I shambled after as I’ve been doing all my life after people who interest me, because the only people for me are the mad ones, the ones who are mad to live, mad to talk, mad to be saved, desirous of everything at the same time, the ones that never yawn or say a commonplace thing, but burn, burn, burn… — On The Road

Every now and then a clear harmonic cry gave new suggestions of a tune that would someday be the only tune in the world and would raise men’s souls to joy. — On The Road

Life is life, and kind is kind. — On The Road

I was standing on the hot road underneath an arc-lamp with the summer moths smashing into it when I heard the sound of footsteps from the darkness beyond, and lo, a tall old man with flowing white hair came clomping by with a pack on his back, and when he saw me as he passed, he said, Go moan for man, and clomped on back to his dark. Did this mean that I should at last go on my pilgrimmage on foot on the dark roads around America? — On The Road

Offer them what they secretly want and they of course immediately become panic-stricken. — On The Road

I was beginning to get the bug like Dean. He was simply a youth tremendously excited with life, and though he was a con-man, he was only conning because he wanted so much to live and to get involved with people who would otherwise pay no attention to him. — On The Road

Boys and girls in America have such a sad time together; sophistication demands that they submit to sex immediately without proper preliminary talk. Not courting talk—real straight talk about souls, for life is holy and every moment is precious. — On The Road

Holy flowers floating in the air, were all these tired faces in the dawn of Jazz America. — On The Road

As we crossed the Colorado-Utah border I saw God in the sky in the form of huge gold sunburning clouds above the desert that seemed to point a finger at me and say, ‘Pass here and go on, you’re on the road to heaven.’ — On The Road

Here was a young kid like Dean had been; his blood boiled too much for him to bear; his nose opened up; no native strange saintliness to save him from the iron fate. — On The Road

LA is the loneliest and most brutal of American cities; New York gets god-awful cold in the winter but there’s a feeling of wacky comradeship somewhere in some streets. — On The Road

Her great dark eyes surveyed me with emptiness and a kind of chagrin that reached back generations and generations in her blood from not having done what was crying to be done—whatever it was, and everybody knows what it was. — On The Road

Besides, all my New York friends were in the negative, nightmare position of putting down society and giving their tired bookish or political or psychoanalytical reasons, but Dean just raced in society, eager for bread and love. — On The Road

Our final excited joy in talking and living to the blank tranced end of all innumerable riotous angelic particulars that had been lurking in our souls all our lives. — On The Road

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