Europe is famous for its scenic landscapes, historic architecture, and cultural diversity. Although many take in the sights on foot or by train, taking advantage of the open roads offers a different, unique perspective. If you plan to go travelling in Europe this summer, maybe this year you should hire a car from the airport and give fly drive a go.
Here are our five best driving destinations in Europe that should not be missed.
1. Schwarzwaldhochstraße, Germany
Covering approximately 60 kilometres, Schwarzwaldhochstraße is Germany’s premier driving destination. It offers spectacular views across southwest Germany that include the Vosges Mountains, forests, and national monuments. This famous route is also known as the “Black Forest High Road”, and is the country’s oldest driving destination.
The road is smooth and opens up into an expansive drive with stunning scenery on either side. The driver is led through various sceneries, along a road that is as wide as it is spectacular. Schwarzwaldhochstrasse is an elevated portion of the route that meanders through some of the most beautiful countryside Europe has to offer.There are a number of elevated views with stops along the way to give drivers plenty of opportunity to park up and take in the views. For those who want to take their time making their way through Schwarzwaldhochstraße, this destination offers a number of hotels and restaurants to accommodate travellers.
2. Amalfi Coast, Italy
The Amalfi coast is often compared to another famous coastal drive, California’s Pacific Coast Highway. This Italian route, known as the Amalfi Drive, winds south out of Sorrento on Via Nastro Azzurro and offers a unique and sun-drenched experience for drivers. Although it offers plenty of beauty to take in while on the road, its hairpin turns make it a drive that is sure to whiten the knuckles of even those with the firmest nerve – so drive carefully!
Drivers may find themselves manoeuvring their way near the outer edges of the cliff as they navigate their way through buses that also travel along the route. Those not familiar with the local signs and driving customs may find that taking in the sights while keeping their eyes on the road ahead offers a new challenge unavailable anywhere else.
You shouldn’t worry too much though, the road is wide and well paved compared to many other destinations, making it an ideal location for driving enthusiasts all over the world.
3. Corniche de l’Estérel, French Riviera
The Corniche de l’Estérel was opened in 1903 by the Touring Club of France. It offers the spectacular views one would expect from the French Riviera. It covers 30 kilometres and is lined with resorts and inlets that provide plenty of chances to stop and dine or even take a plunge in the sea.
At no extra cost the road showcases expansive views of the Mediterranean on one side, along with the rocks of the Esterel on the other. Between Anthéor and Théoule-sur-Mer, the route becomes more challenging as it narrows through different areas along the road.
The Corniche de l’Estérel offers views of numerous coves, inlets and bays, which means the driver should never tire of the same old scenery. Be warned the road becomes full of traffic in the afternoon. Drivers should plan to leave early in the morning to get the most out of this spectacular route.
4. Peak District, England
Take me back to dear old Blighty. The Peak District is located in the central and northern areas of England. Take the A628 from the Manchester area into the national park, you can then cut off left onto the A6024 for a road which challenges for the title of best European driving destination. It consists of steep inclines and tight turns that make it an exciting route for more enthusiastic drivers.
Sights include the Holme Moss and Sheepwash Bridge. Devil’s Elbow is one of the road’s well-known bends that make it one of the more challenging driving destinations in Europe.
Drivers enjoy a number of dining destinations including the Peacock Inn at the Rowsley Hotel. The drive showcases approximately 120 kilometres of beautiful landscape, as you are led through the countryside. It includes plenty of scenery, challenging turns, inclines, and descents to make it one of the most memorable drives in Europe.
5. Kystriksveien, Norway
Kystriksveien is equally enjoyed by car and bicycle. Many consider it the most beautiful driving route in the world. The route offers the opportunity to take in some of the area’s most famous landmarks, including the Seven Sisters mountain range, Saltstraumen whirlpools and the Svartisen glacier.
The road is 650 kilometres of scenic driving that extends from Steinkjer to Bodø, and makes its way through the western coastline and through numerous villages. Along the way, there are cabins, hotels, and cottages offering the opportunity to take in even more of the area’s attractions. For camping, Offersøy provides ocean-side views that will make leaving more of a chore than it should be.
The Kystriksveien has been voted as one of the most scenic roads in the world by National Geographic, establishing it as one of the premier driving destinations in Europe.
These 5 driving destinations offer locals and visitors another way of enjoying the beautiful and varied landscapes of the region. With roads that offer smooth and wide routes, along with others that offer more challenging bends and turns, drivers can find the perfect experience they’re looking for. All you need now is to hire a car!