If you love driving, enjoy exploring different places at your own pace and love the thrilling excitement of the open road, going on a road trip can be the best travel plan for you. You don’t even need to own a car to do a road trip! You can easily fly or take a bus to your destination and rent a vehicle there to start your real trip.
If this sounds like a plan, with the help of Bonzah, an American car rental insurance company, we’ve listed here the most beautiful scenic roads in the world. Stunning landscapes, breathtaking views, outdoor activities to participate in and a suitcase full of unforgettable experiences to take in await you.
The Atlantic Road, Norway
The Atlantic Road, in Norway, stretches over five miles and links the villages of Vevang and Karvag via a beautiful archipelago and a series of low-lying bridges. Jutting out from the Hustadvika coastline , the islands that lie between the towns of Kristiansund and Molde are connected by the Atlantic Road. These small islands are linked by eight bridges. It’s a breathtaking, scenic route that usually ranks amongst the best road trips in the world.
It’s characterized by multiple twists and turns as it runs through storm-pro ne seas and across the awesome Storseisundet Bridge (the tallest of the road’s eight bridges and a curved architectural feat that seems to drop off straight into the sea).
One of the most attractive features of the Norwegian Atlantic Road is that it takes you through scenery, culture and history. You’ll come across impressive fjords, pass by charming villages and enjoy unforgettable views all together with the country’s unparalleled wildlife like whales and seals. You can also visit small fishing villages like Haholmen or Bjornsund and there are also viewpoint places with interesting viewing platforms.The Atlantic Ocean and the lush green mountains provide the picture-perfect backdrop for a road trip of a lifetime and it’s one of the country’s most popular tourist attractions. Built in 1989 and toll free since 1999, it connects several small islands and offers a great way to admire the Norwegian fjords and the spectacular scenery of mountains coming out of the sea.
Route 40, Argentina
At a staggering 3195 miles (4800 kilometers), Route 40 in Argentina is not only the longest highway in the country _traversing almost its entire length) but one of the world’s longest roads too. It starts at Cabo Virgenes, in the south, and meanders through the remote plains of the Patagonia, winding northwards and flanked by the magnificent peaks of the Andes mountains. It takes drivers past pristine lakes and bustling cities before reaching Abra del Acai, its highest point at 4952 meters above sea level) and finally reaching its end in the border town of La Quiaca in the northern province of Jujuy, bordering Bolivia.
Driving along the whole extension of Route 40 is an invitation to admire and explore the stunning and diverse Argentine landscape.The route also connects 20 national parks and 18 rivers, an awesome opportunity to discover the wonderful biodiversity of Argentina. Probably, some of the most beautiful views are those of Fitzroy and Cerro Torres ranges, which can be admired as you get close to El Chalten in southern Patagonia. It’s definitely a trip that adventure-seekers will definitely enjoy.
If you love numbers you’ll be ecstatic to learn that as you drive Route 40 you’ll cross 11 provinces, 3 provincial capitals, 236 bridges above rivers and gain access to 20 national parks. It’s not meant for novice drivers as some stretches are totally isolated and far from civilization. Besides, the harsh road conditions as some parts are not paved nor marked or have protection rails make it difficult to navigate at times.
Karakoram Highway, Pakistan/China
Karakoram Highway starts just north of Islamabad in Pakistan and ends just over 800 miles later in Kashgar, Xinjiang region, China and it’s one of the highest paved roads in the world, with an elevation of 4700 meters at its highest point. It takes you through equally tough and breathtaking terrain, including the glacial landscape of the Karakoram into China, following a path on the ancient Silk Road route. And to make it even more attractive, it also weaves through the world’s most stunning mountain range, the Himalayas.
Karakoram Highway attracts people from all over the world because of the beautiful lakes and stunning mountains that can be easily appreciated.
It’s a popular destination amongst adventure travelers but due to its high elevation and difficult terrain it can be a dangerous trip. Make sure you take all necessary precautions and be aware of landslides during monsoon season.
Passo dello Stelvio, Italy
Passo dello Stelvio, in Italy is often considered the ultimate driving test because of its 60 hairpin bends past the snowy peaks of the Eastern Alps for 15 miles (most of them on its steep northern face alone as you climb 9045 feet). As it offers dizzying views as you drive bend after bend, it is best approached from the north. It allows you take a rest at the beautiful Stelvio National Park before swooping up the Stelvio Pass’s famous wall of switchbacks.
It’s probably the road trip to take if you want to appreciate some of the most dramatic scenery in the continent. The descent, though not so thrilling, offers picturesque views, sharp bends and sheer drops that will take your breath away.
The Stelvio Region, where the pass is located, is a popular skiing destination all year round that attracts tourists from all over the world. The Pass connects the towns Prato allo Stelvio in the South Tyrol with Bormio in the Sondrio region, really close to Switzerland.
We advise you not to try this road trip unless you are an experienced driver. The sharp hairpins can be difficult to master.
Pacific Coast Highway One, California, USA
The Pacific Coast Highway stretches almost 200 km between Monterey and Morro Bay and it’s one of the crown jewels of America’s national scenic byways system. It’s a narrow two-lane road that hugs the majestic cliffs of the central coast of California.
This iconic California drive is famous for its postcard-perfect views over Big Sur as you pass through some of the most beautiful and refined areas such as Monterey, Malibu, the iconic Golden Gate Bridge, the Mendocino Headlands or Santa Cruz as you keep an eye for humpback whales, blue whales, elephant seals or California condors.
The ride is amazing. You’ll cling to mountains and cliffs, drive through multiple bends, soar to 1000 feet and then you’ll drop back to sea level. That’s what we call a superb scenic drive.
The Pacific Coast Highway is usually mentioned as one of the most picturesque roads in America. In fact, for most people that drive across it, it is not as important where they are going to but the road and its fantastic views itself.
Strada Statale 163, Amalfi Coast, Italy
Having the chance of driving across the twists and turns of Strada Statale 163 on the Italian Amalfi Coast is an otherworldly experience. This scenic road starts in the city of Salerno and expands westwards along the Sorrento Peninsula, flanked by towering cliffs and the beautiful Mediterranean Sea. It takes drivers past picturesque villages such as Positano or Amalfi.
Strada Statale 163 is probably one of the most beautiful roads in the world and the one that offers the most romantic and spectacular views. It’s a perfect landscape, with mountains plunging into the sea, a mild climate, small fishing villages and architecture features that have been preserved throughout the centuries. It connects 13 towns that are so close to one another that they cannot be treated separately: Vietri sul Mare, Ravello, Minri, Atrani, Scala, Furore or Positano are just some of them.
Overseas Highway, Florida, USA
125 miles of US Route 1 runs over the turquoise blue waters through the Florida Keys in an epic road trip that links all of the keys together. There’s probably no better way to explore the Florida Caribbean and go island hopping.
The Overseas Highway offers drivers the chance of visiting one of the hottest vacation destinations while feeling as if driving across the ocean for miles and miles. From Key Largo to Key West, the overseas highway strings the islands together, running past lighthouses, underwater coral-reef parks and across the 7 Mile Bridge, one of the longest bridges in the world.
Hana Highway, Hawaii
Hana Highway, in Maui, Hawaii’s largest island, offers travelers an unbeatable glimpse at the natural landscape of the Pacific as you drive across lush valleys, rainforests, enchanting waterfalls and colorful meadows. Windy, narrow and scenic, this route crosses over 59 bridges and black sand beaches. Some of the highlights you can appreciate as you drive are the Waimouku Falls at Haleakala National Park, the Hana Lava Tube, the Pipiwai Trail, the ‘Ohe’o Gulch and admire the giant waves in Maui and the intrepid surfers that ride them.
We dare you to complete the drive in about two and a half hours, if you manage to refrain yourself from taking thousands of pictures at the multiple scenic pullouts along the way.
Ring Road, Iceland
Route 1, in Iceland, is a ring-shaped road that runs around the edges of the island and takes drivers through some of the world’s most dramatic scenery. If you’re lucky enough to spend your holidays in this stunning country, you can’t miss road tripping the Ring Road!
As you drive, you’ll pass stunning fjords, mountains, tiny fishing villages and roaming wild reindeer. Amongst the highlights of your trip we can mention the stunning Lake Myvatn and its hot springs, the Jökulsárlón glacial lagoon or the beautiful Seljalandsfoss waterfall.
A road trip along Ring Road is full of surprises and adventure as it connects the most popular parts of the country, including its capital, Reykjavik. It allows tourists to circumnavigate the whole country in 7 days and, of course, you can allow yourself more days in case there are areas you’d like to explore further.
Great Ocean Road, Australia
Looking for a road with a view? Search no further than the Australian Great Ocean Road. It’s Australia’s most famous scenic drive and take a pic of the Twelve Apostles, the Bay of MartyrsLoch and Gorge, Teddy’s Lookout and the stunning oceanic scenery.
The Great Ocean Road offers Australia’s best of the best in only a 400-mile stretch: splendid scenery, beautiful lookouts and the most stunning wildlife (koalas, kangaroos and dolphins included!). It’s one of the world’s most scenic drives that takes you through misty waterfalls, towering cliffs and some of Australia’s most iconic rock formations, near-deserted sandy beaches and fantastic rainforest. It begins at Torquay, Victoria and carries you for 150 miles through jaw-dropping scenery until it finishes at Warrnambool.
The Romantic Road, Germany
The Romantic Road in Germany traces 220 miles of highway in southern Germany, passing through the Bavarian region and linking several picturesque castles and towns. It starts in Würzburg and ends in It’s quite a magical scenic drive as the road snakes through thick forests and steep mountains and you are drawn to visit medieval wall towns and captivating castles.
Those driving the Romantic Road can admire impressive buildings such as the Würzburg Residence or the Fortress Marienberg, Rothenburg ob der Tauber or fall in love with the romantic and inspiring Neuschwanstein, Hohenschwangau, Hohenzollern or Schwerin castles.
The Route des Grandes Alpes, France
Linking Lake Geneva, in Switzerland, with the French Riviera, the Route des Grandes Alpes is a stretch of road that takes you by beautiful alpine meadows, peaceful deep azure lakes, towering jagged peaks and the fantastic Riviera coastline.
Open between and October, will take you along 17 of the highest mountain passes in Europe. It’s a journey of a lifetime that allows you to experience the majestic beauty of the Alps and the charming Mediterranean Sea in a single trip.
Route 66 which makes its way from Santa Monica in California to Chicago, Illinois, and extends for a total of 2448 miles is not only iconic but also one of the most scenic drives you can experience. The road winds, weaves, rises and dips through multiple states including New Mexico, Arizona or Oklahoma. It even takes you through the Mojave Desert, one of the most fascinating and captivating views ever.
One of the features that make Route 66 so interesting is that as it spans across three timezones and beautiful landscapes, drivers enjoy desertic views, thick forests, quiet prairies and the quirky roadside art. Some of the attractions you can’t miss is the Route 66 start sign in Chicago, the world’s second largest rocking-chair in Fanning, MO, the Wigwam Hotel in San Bernardino, CA, and the Cadillac Ranch in Amarillo, TX.