Flying may be the fastest way to get to where you’re headed but as the saying goes, the journey is just as important as the destination — especially when it comes to travel. Road trips not only give you the luxury of moving at your own pace, you’ll also be rewarded with some epic views and adventures along the way. Don’t forget to stop, explore and take a million pictures.
#1 Pacific Coast
Where: United States of America
What: If your American dream involves a mix of sophisticated cities and laid back culture, lush valleys and wildlife spotting, then driving down the sunny California coastline is the road trip for you. Stretching along the Pacific Ocean, it takes roughly nine hours to drive from San Francisco to Los Angeles but where’s the fun in driving in a straight line? Make a detour and set up camp at the Yosemite National Park, or stop by the city of Monterey for the seafood before exploring the Big Sur. California here we come!
#2 Great Ocean Road
What: Stretching 243 kilometers between Torquay (an hour or so outside Melbourne) and Allansford, Australia’s Great Ocean road is second to none for a road trip Down Under. Besides stunning coastal scenery and checking The Twelve Apostles off your bucket list, there are many scenic stops to make — the shipwreck site Lord Ard Gorge, dramatic natural sculptures of the London Arch, The Grotto and The Arch all within the Port Campbell National Park. Nature lovers will love the Great Otway National Park for hiking, camping and the spectacular Triplet Falls, but our favourite stop has got to be koala spotting along Kennet River.
#3 Wild Atlantic Way
What: If you’re up for an extended adventure, the world’s longest coastal route is definitely one to consider. Ireland’s Wild Atlantic Way offers thousands of kilometers of dramatic landscapes, lush countryside, majestic cliffs, ancient sites and charming villages that will take anywhere between two weeks to a month to explore. But if you have the vacation days, it’s well worth the drive and you’ll get to check these off your bucket list: Cliffs of Moher, Skellig Michael, Poulnabrone Dolmen and Aran Islands.
#4 Causeway Coastal Route
What: Don’t have a few weeks or a month to spend but still want to check out Ireland’s stunning sights and scenery by road? We have the perfect one for you — the Causeway Coastal Route in Northern Ireland will take you from Belfast to Derry/ Londonderry in anywhere from four to nine days, depending on your pace. Along the way, check out these epic sights: Giant’s Causeway, Carrick-a-Rede Bridge, and most importantly for Game of Thrones fans — the Dark Hedges.
#5 The Garden Route
What: Answer the call of the wild in South Africa. The Garden Route stretches between Cape Town and Port Elizabeth, and is filled with striking coastlines, sandy beaches, verdant mountains and valleys, vineyards for wine enthusiasts (though we really discourage drinking and driving), and of course — plenty of wildlife spotting. Stop at Oudtshoorn, the ostrich capital of the world, spot dolphins and humpback whales at Plettenberg Bay — and explore the Wilderness National Park.