Day to day, you commute on one big boring stretch of freeway, wasting your life and your sports car’s potential on stop-and-go traffic and straight line roads. WAKE UP!
There are some patches of pavement out there that would blow your mind! Roads that lead you to wonders of the world and roads guarded by trolls! Yeah, really, stay tuned to find out.
Let’s hit the 10 roads you need to drive on while you still can!
Transfagarasan Highway, Romania
Romania isn’t the first place that pops into my mind when I hear “Top Travel Destinations”. But if you love driving, and you’re looking for the best roads in the world to do it on, the Transfagarasan Highway definitely ranks among the top.
This road cuts right through the heart of the Fagaras Mountains, giving you incredible views of both sides as you twist and turn up the mountain roads. There’s even a hotel toward the end of the road that sits on a small pond in the middle of the mountain range, which is a perfect place to chill out after you’ve carved up the canyon.
But keep your eyes peeled for Vampires, because you’ll be driving through Transylvania, the home of the famous Count Dracula. Unfortunately the speed limit on this road is only about 25 miles per hour, but I think the cops would excuse you if you’re driving away from a blood-sucker.
By the way! Did you know that Dacia is actually a Romanian company? That means you might even run into a Dacia Sandero on this road! Great…
Amalfi Drive, Italy
Now a location that you probably do think of when you hear “Top Travel Destinations” is Italy’s Amalfi Coast. You’ve definitely at least seen a picture of it in your dentist’s office or something. Oh man, what I wouldn’t give to be there right now! Seriously, I live in Seattle. It’s gray season here now.
Amalfi Drive is also one of the most incredible driving roads in the whole world! That’s right, apart from the opportunity to cruise through all those colorful coastal villages you see in the pictures, there are also some amazing stretches of road that run alongside a cliff and open up to panoramic views that will absolutely blow your mind!
The stretch between Positano and Salerno is typically considered to be the best, but the whole damn thing is just a gem. Plus, you’ll probably get some real-deal authentic Italian food along the way. I wonder if they have an Olive Garden!
But proceed with caution, because the Amalfi Drive can also get dangerous due to the fact that it’s on a freakin’ cliff, and those tiny European streets can get pretty cramped.
Chapman’s Peak Drive, South Africa
South Africa in general has got to be one of the most beautiful countries in the world. But Chapman’s Peak Drive is undoubtedly one of the highlights of this surreal landscape. Fondly called “Chappie’s” by the locals, this road stretches from Cape Town city to Cape Point, and offers some unbelievable views of the ocean and surrounding mountains from a rocky coastline road.
The road itself is only 7 miles long, but if you know what you’re doing, you’ll bring some food with you, post up on the hood of your car, and soak in those sweet, sweet views.
You might even catch a glimpse of a Birkin S3 Roadster! That’s right, they’re a South African specialty.
Unfortunately, there is a small toll you’re going to have to pay to get onto Chappie’s, but it’s well worth it for the drive of your life.
Ring Road, Iceland
Iceland has become an increasingly popular tourist destination for North Americans, mostly because flights from the USA to Iceland are ridiculously cheap. I’m talking as much as you’d spend at the bar on a given weekend.
But low flight costs aren’t the only thing bringing people to Iceland, the country is full of beautiful natural features, and a drive along Ring Road will give you the opportunity to see pretty much the whole damn country. This massive road circles the entire island and stretches some 828 miles!!
As you’re rolling along through the Icelandic countryside, you’re sure to encounter some massive glaciers, a few majestic waterfalls, some volcanoes (don’t worry, they’re dormant), and you might even get to hop out of your car for a quick dip in a natural hot spring.
And despite this country being called ICE-land, it’s actually not nearly as cold as you might think. You might even turn on the AC in your rental car as you traverse Ring Road.
Trolls Way (Trollstigen), Norway
If you have a serious fear of trolls or other mischievous mythical creatures, you might want to skip this one. Norweigan legend says that the Trolls Way, this magnificent windy road down into the mountains, is guarded by trolls that play tricks on unwary passersby.
Seriously, might see a troll. No, not the fairytale creature, that Norweigan-made sports car from 1956 that they only made five of.
But don’t let the terrifying trolls deter you! This is definitely one of the coolest roads in the world, starting up high in the mountains and gradually leading you down to the valley through a series of hairpin turns that I wouldn’t suggest trying to drift on.
And at the end of the road? Some of the most amazing cliffs and waterfalls you’ll ever see. You can even take a boat tour and enjoy the view with a beer or a glass of wine. Doesn’t get much better than that, eh? Just don’t go driving back up the mountain with a head full of booze. I don’t think the trolls, or the cops, would like that.
Milford Road, New Zealand
New Zealand is widely revered as one of the most incredible natural settings in the world, and the fact that there’s a road that cuts right through the heart of its most famous national park is an absolute treat for anyone who loves driving.
The famous Mildford Road winds through Fiordland National Park, an awe-inspiring natural region with rock faces that go up to infinity on either side of the road. You’ll also catch views of some incredibly blue glacial lakes, stunning valleys, and a native rainforest that was once the hunting ground for native New Zealanders. All on your way to the Milford Sound, which has been called the “8th Wonder of the World” by some, and with good reason. This body of water looks like something straight out of Lord of the Rings.
And best of all, you can drive right up to it! Pull up, kick back, and soak in the sights.
Great Ocean Road, Australia
New Zealand’s big brother, Australia, has also got some superb streets that should not be overlooked. But perhaps the greatest is Great Ocean Road. The name pretty much says it all.
It stretches along Australia’s southern coast near Melbourne, and let me tell you, it is GREAT. Definitely greater than the super weird-looking Holden Ute, but that’s a low bar.
Great Ocean Road is a 151-mile stretch of pavement that takes you through rainforests, passes by waterfalls, and even brings you by the 12 Apostles, a bunch of mysterious big rocks that stand alone in the ocean.
And if you’re into surfing, or just lounging on the beach, strap a surfboard or a cooler on top of your car and hit the sand! Just try not to track too much of that sand into your renter or they might charge you an extra cleaning fee when you return it.
There are some stretches of Great Ocean Road where you can absolutely floor it, all while taking in the views and feeling that sweet Australian breeze.
Khardung La, India
Ever wonder what it’d be like to drive in the clouds? All it takes is a trip to India, to the Khardung Pass to be exact.
This mountainside street goes as high as 17,000 feet above sea level, and slinks up the mountain like a giant sidewinder. The road leads you all the way to the top of a mountain where you can witness one of the most incredible views in all of India.
Unfortunately, all the way up there in the sky, you’re going to be sacrificing a lot of horsepower. Apparently, you lose 3% of your pony-power for every 1000 feet of elevation. And this is the highest motorable road in the world, so you’re losing about 51% of your power up on the Khardung La.
But if you’re interested, you might be able to drive it in one of the first ever Indian-made supercars, the DC Avanti. And you know at 49% power, it’ll kind of just feel like a normal car. But be careful, they don’t have any airbags.
Romantic Road, Germany
If you want the feeling of driving a Mercedes or a BMW right through the heart of a Brothers Grimm fairy tale, there’s no better place to get it than on Romantic Road in southern Germany. Imagine ripping a Bavarian bullet like a BMW M4 past medieval castles and quaint little German countrysides.
This journey into the heart of a storybook spans through 217 miles of Bavaria, a distance travelled in exactly one hour by Hennessey Exorcist.
Romantic Road gives you the best sense of what Germany really has to offer. And when you’re done driving for the day, shack up in a cozy little B&B and go find some of that super-famous Bavarian beer!
Best of all, since you’re in Germany, once you’re done with Romantic Road just pop over to the Nurburgring or the Autobahn for even more rental car abuse!
Pacific Coast Highway, USA
For the last road on our list, let’s bring it home to the good old USA. There are plenty of incredible driving roads throughout the 50 states, but our favorite has got to be the Pacific Coast Highway. Maybe we’re a little west coast-biased…
Spanning almost the entire coast of California, the PCH will lead you all the way from San Francisco to San Diego with some mind-boggling stops in between.
The entire drive takes roughly 10 hours, so it’s achievable in a day if you’re a speed demon, but I’d recommend taking it a little slower and enjoying the sights along the way. The PCH passes through two national parks that are definitely worth spending some time in, and people often report seeing packs of whales just off the shoreline all along the highway.
Towns like Monterey and Santa Barbara are famed throughout the world for their beautiful beaches and exciting streetlife, so it’d be a shame if you just blew through their streets at Mach 5 without stopping to see the sights.
But don’t worry, the speed limit on the PCH is usually around 55 miles per hour, so you’ll have an opportunity to give your car a little gas.