- Journey into the Unknown Year-end Travel: Unveiling the 10 Best Road Trips Around the Globe
Embarking on a road trip is like stepping into a world where every turn reveals a new adventure. From the mystical landscapes of Iceland to the historic Route 66 in the USA, these road trips promise not only breathtaking views but also an unforgettable journey. As we approach the year-end, it’s the perfect time to plan a road trip to celebrate the spirit of exploration. Here, we present a list of the 10 best road trips around the world, each offering a unique blend of scenic beauty, cultural richness, and the thrill of the open road.
1. Iceland’s Ring Road: 1,328 kilometres
Iceland’s Ring Road, also known as Route 1, is a mesmerising circular journey covering the country’s diverse landscapes. While it bypasses certain regions, it unveils the country’s most iconic attractions, including Seljalandsfoss and Skógafoss waterfalls, Dyrhólaey cliffs, and Jökulsárlón glacier lagoon. Driving between October and April can be challenging, so a sturdy 4×4 vehicle is recommended for this 1,328-kilometer adventure
2. Route 66, USA: 3,940 kilometres
Established in 1926, Route 66 is an iconic highway that winds from Lake Michigan to the shores of the Pacific Ocean. Immortalized by literary classics like Jack Kerouac’s “On the Road” and John Steinbeck’s “The Grapes of Wrath,” this 3,940-kilometer journey takes you through the heart of America, from the hills of the Missouri Ozarks to the deserts of Arizona.
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3. The Great Ocean Drive, Australia: 243 kilometres
Australia’s Great Ocean Road spans 243 kilometres along the southwest coast of Victoria, offering dramatic landscapes of craggy cliffs, empty beaches, and the famous 12 Apostles. Carved out of limestone over millions of years, these pillars are a testament to the beauty that nature can create. This drive is a must for those seeking a perfect blend of adventure and natural wonders.
4. Switzerland’s Furka Pass: 35 kilometres
At an elevation of 2,431 meters above sea level, Switzerland’s Furka Pass is a scenic Alpine road connecting Andermatt to Gletsch. Featured in the iconic car chase scene in James Bond’s “Goldfinger,” this 35-kilometer journey is part of the Three-Pass-Ride, providing breathtaking views of the Swiss Alps.
5. Route 62, South Africa: 850 kilometres
Known as the world’s longest wine route, Route 62 stretches from Cape Town to Port Elizabeth in South Africa. Beyond wine tours, the route offers a diverse range of experiences, including safari drives, cultural tours, and adventure activities like hiking, mountain climbing, and even skydiving.
6. The Atlantic Road, Norway: 8.3 kilometres
Described as one of the most beautiful car journeys globally, Norway’s Atlantic Road spans 8.3 kilometres, connecting Averøy with the mainland through eight bridges. The drive offers coastal beauty, cultural attractions like Atlanterhavsvegen svevesti, and historical sites between Bud and Kristiansund.
7. The Alcan Highway, Alaska: 2,237 kilometres
Also known as the Alaskan Highway, this 2,237-kilometer route connects Dawson Creek in British Columbia to Delta Junction in Alaska. Built around World War II, the Alcan Highway is a feat of engineering through the rugged northern landscapes of British Columbia, Yukon, and Alaska. Winter months bring challenges, making the drive an adventurous challenge.
8. Milford Road, New Zealand: 255 kilometres
The journey from Te Ana to Milford Sound along New Zealand’s Milford Road is a scenic delight. Passing through Fiordland National Park, highlights include the Eglinton Valley, Mirror Lakes, and Homer Tunnel. Winter drives require preparation for possible delays and road closures, adding a touch of excitement to the journey.
9. Amalfi Coast Road, Italy: 50 kilometres
Italy’s Amalfi Coast Road, also known as SS163, is a 50-kilometer stretch offering an outstanding example of a Mediterranean landscape. Flanked by charming towns and villages, the drive is a visual feast. Travelers must adhere to local driving rules, ensuring dipped headlights in poor visibility and refraining from horn use in built-up areas.
10. Uyuni Salt Flats, Bolivia: 10,582 kilometers
Perched at an elevation of 3,656 meters above sea level, Bolivia’s Uyuni Salt Flats cover a vast expanse of 10,582 kilometers. Accessible from various points, including La Paz in Bolivia and San Pedro de Atacama in Chile, the journey requires preparation for harsh nights with warm clothes and sleeping bags. The sheer beauty of the glistening salt flats, visible even from space, makes this road trip an otherworldly experience.
As the year comes to a close, consider venturing into the unknown on one of these extraordinary road trips. From the magical landscapes of Iceland to the historic Route 66 and the stunning Amalfi Coast, these journeys promise not just destinations but unforgettable adventures. So, pack your bags, grab some crunchy snacks, cue up your favourite playlist, and hit the road for a year-end travel experience like no other.
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