Our Top Road Trips

It is hard to beat the romance of the open road. For both couples and families, a road trip offers the ultimate in flexibility and adventure. The heady sense of freedom and the luxury of your own space can make hitting the road one of the most relaxing ways to travel, enjoy the scenery and meet the locals. Here’s a selection of our favourite self-drives.

Garden Route, South Africa

Stretching 200km along the coast of South Africa from Mossel Bay to the Eastern Cape, the Garden Route offers the perfect combination of culture, adventure, beaches and wildlife. For those short on time, the route can be driven in under three hours but with so much to enjoy including sweeping sandy beaches, rocky coves, lagoons, ancient forests and mountain passes, we recommend spreading the journey over 3-5 days. Highlights include oysters at Kynsna and the wildlife sanctuaries of Plettenberg Bay.

Big Sur, California

Best driven in a drop-head sports car, cruising along the Pacific Highway Coast from Carmel to San Simeon is a treat. This great American road trip can be completed over the course of a day, but we’d suggest an overnight stay to get the most from the journey. Beach and wildlife lovers are spoilt for choice. Stop off to hike through forest trails; visit the cascading McWay Falls; scout for migrating whales and take a photograph at iconic Bixby Bridge.

Gamsberg Pass, Namibia

Few road trips come as adventurous or exciting as the Gamsberg Pass and the drive across the flat-topped Gamsberg Mountain is Namibia’s longest and highest mountain pass. Travelling south from Windhoek, the road snakes and climbs providing wonderful views of the Kuiseb River valley below, before dropping to the desert floor and onwards to Walvis Bay. Total drive time is around 6 hours, meaning the journey can be comfortably completed in a day with plenty of time for stop-offs.

Icefields Parkway, Canada

Rated one of the world’s top scenic drives, Icefields Parkway travels from Jasper to Lake Louise passing through ancient glaciers, dramatic waterfalls, surreal rock spires, dense forest and emerald lakes. Spanning Banff and Jasper National Parks, scout for grizzly and black bear, caribou and bighorn sheep and do not miss glacier-fed Peyto Lake, the Columbia Icefield and the chance to experience the Glacier Sky Walk. A drive of 232km, it takes between 3-4 hours without stops.

Amalfi Coast, Italy

Famed for panoramic ocean views and cliff-hugging roads, this UNESCO-listed coastal region is big on Italian romance, beauty and style. The road twists and turns for 70km, linking the historic port of Salerno, the medieval hilltop town of Ravello, the beaches of Amalfi and Atrani, the glamorous pastel-coloured buildings and hidden coves of Positano and Praiano, before reaching the end of the journey in Sorrento. Linger over La Dolce Vita enjoying the glorious food, wine, history and beach life along the way.

Nelson to Christchurch, New Zealand

The coastal road from Nelson to Christchurch weaves along the east coast of New Zealand’s South Island offering an ever-changing landscape of stunning ocean views, glorious mountain ranges and orderly vineyards. Blenheim at the heart of the Marlborough wine-producing region makes a great overnight stop for wine tours. We’d also suggest a seafood lunch in Kaikoura, a marine mecca famous for its fur seal colonies and the chance to spot dolphins and migrating whales. Around 420km, the total drive time is around 6 hours.

Coastal Road Trips

From the legendary Highway 1 to the dramatic Great Ocean Road and the Causeway Coastal Route, we’ve collected the most spectacular drives to take you from A to B via some of the world’s most epic coastlines (and many a photo stop along the way). Not all roads were created equal after all.

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Desert Road Trips

When we think of road trips, it is vast, open spaces, empty roads and dramatic scenery that spring to mind and nothing sates a sense for adventure quite like discovering the desert on four wheels. Carefully crafted to take you through some of the world’s most unique and unspoilt desert landscapes, this selection of itineraries makes for an adventure that leaves anything else in the dust.

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Island Road Trips

Whilst some of the world’s islands might be small, they sure are mighty. These tried and tested routes circumnavigate the craggy coastlines, rolling hillsides and majestic peaks of islands across the world, showcasing the diverse and beguiling landscapes on offer in all four corners of the planet.

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Family Road Trips

For better or for worse, a family road trip is often one of our first holiday memories. Yet long car journeys with children aren't all back seat squabbles and endless cries of "are we there yet?". Take a look at this selection of family friendly itineraries before fastening your seat belts for a game of I Spy you'll never forget.

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Foodie Road Trips

Follow your nose - and of course a map - as you navigate around some of the world's most revered foodie destinations. From world class vineyards to Michelin starred restaurants and farm-to-table fare, we've shortlisted the itineraries where cuisine sits top of the menu.

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Mountain Road Trips

Expect winding roads, vertiginous drop offs and incredible vistas as you venture to the higher ground for a road trip to remember. For lovers of the great outdoors, nothing comes close to reaching the dizzy heights of a majestic peak.

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