1. Ring of Kerry, Ireland
Photo by Amanda Baker
The beautiful pasture lands of south-west Ireland are home to this 179km circular route. Rugged, grassy coastlines, host idyllic seaside villages for a relaxed drive through Ireland’s kingdom county.
2. La Route Des Grandes Alpes, France
Photo by Werner Bayer
Starting at Lake Geneva, this breath-taking route winds south 684 kilometres, through 17 alpine passes, finishing at the Mediterranean French Riviera. Passable only in the summer months when the snow has melted, the route takes in Mont Blanc and Les Ecrins through some of the highest roads in Europe.
3. Stelvio Pass, Italy
Photo by absoluteczech
A driving enthusiasts dream, Stelvio Pass straddles the Swiss/Italian border, passing 47km through the Alps. Best approached from the north-eastern side, starting at Bormio and driving up through the 48 hairpin turns towards Stilfs (Italian Stelvio). Due to its popularity with cyclists, it’s best to avoid the peak months of July-August.
4. Ring Road, Iceland
Photo by Moyan Brenn
Highway 1 is the stunningly beautiful road looping 1,491km around the perimeter of Iceland. Travel in the summer as winter months are known for heavy snowstorms leaving sections impassable. Travellers can enjoy views of erupting volcanos, glaciers, hot geysers, waterfalls, and sights of the awe-inspiring Northern Lights.
5. Garden Route, South Africa
Photo by Christopher Griner
Stretching 200km from Mossel Bay in the west and Storm River to the east, the Garden Route is one of South Africa’s most popular destinations. Dotted with picturesque beaches and abundant nature reserves, with excellent accommodation available along the way.
6. Gobi Desert, Mongolia
Photo By sunriseOdyssey
A vast, arid landscape of extreme rugged beauty, the Gobi Desert is an off-roader’s paradise. The openness allows a great deal of exploration but be sure to stop at the sand dunes of Khongoryn Els, popularly known as the ‘singing sands’.
7. South Island Circuit, New Zealand
Photo by Jason Hollinger
The South Island Circuit starts and ends at Christchurch. New Zealand is well known for its astonishing natural beauty, with the South Island acclaimed for its diverse landscape of fjords, glaciers, mountains and stretching coastline. Additionally, there’s plenty of activities to do along the way, from whale watching and sea kayaking to hiking and mountain climbing.
8. Route 66, USA
Photo by Vicente Villamón
The first highway of its kind, this is the quintessential American road trip. Stretching 2,448 miles from Chicago to Los Angeles the road brings you on a nostalgic trip through 8 states, spanning 3 time-zones. The historic highway is an essential American icon which takes in great plains, deserts and mountains and offers classic diners, motels and gas stations.
9. The Karakoram Highway, Pakistan/China
Photo by umairadeeb
Connecting China and Pakistan, the highest road in the world journeys through the Himalayas. Dazzling rivers wind their way around the bases of snow-capped mountains. Along the way, you’ll encounter 5 of the 14 infamous eight-thousander mountains and can view some of the 50,000 odd pieces of rock art and petroglyphs.
10. The Pan-American Highway, USA
Photo by A.Duarte
The ultimate road trip, along the longest road in the world, spanning 2 continents, multiple climates, 21 countries and stretching approximately 30,000km from the top of Alaska to Quellon in Chili. There’s no official route, with roads branching out to give an unequalled sense of freedom and adventure.