Nothing beats an iconic road trip, especially if it means driving around some of Europe’s most beautiful places. Road-tripping is a fantastic way to discover the world at your own pace and visit off-the-beaten-path destinations. But with so many scenic roads in Europe, it’s hard to narrow down the best destination for your next driving adventure. To help you with this, here are some tips on where to find unique driving adventures in Europe.
Drive the North Coast 500, Scotland
The North Coast 500 is one of Europe’s popular driving routes. It’s a 516-mile scenic road taking you along the northern coast of Scotland, which starts and ends in Inverness, the capital of the Scottish Highlands. The route offers an incredible opportunity to explore Scotland’s rugged landscapes, stop at some beautiful beaches, visit castles and heritage sites, and discover picturesque villages.
The North Coast 500 forms a loop around the Highlands, which means that you will start and end in the same place in Inverness. It follows the main roads across the coastal highway of North Highlands, passing along small towns and villages, such as Durness, Wick, and Lochinver. The highlight of your road trip is the scenic views along the coastal highway, from rugged coastlines to idyllic beaches, majestic rivers, lochs, and lush forests. You could also encounter fascinating wildlife along the way, such as deer, sheep, and different bird species.
The North Coast 500 is perfect for sightseeing, so try to take things slow. Plan for at least a week to soak everything in and visit famous sights like Loch Ness, Isle of Skye, and the Orkney Islands. If you have plenty of time, you can tackle the route for two weeks, giving you enough time to soak up the majestic scenery and enjoy fun activities like hiking, swimming, etc.
The Hungarian Grand Prix
If you’re heading for the Hungarian Grand Prix, consider taking a road trip to Mogyoród, a small village in Hungary’s Pest County. Mogyoród is the location of the famous racing event, so if you plan to watch the F1 race, you may want to drive from Budapest to Mogyoród.
Start your journey in Budapest, a magnificent capital city famous for its art nouveau architecture, thermal baths, and cozy coffee shops. Spend the day wandering around the city before you start your journey. Mogyoród is only a short 30-min drive from Budapest. If you want a longer route, you can continue to Gödöllő, where you’ll find the Royal Palace of Gödöllő, known as the Hungarian Palace of Versailles. Built around the 18th Century, it’s a magnificent palace said to be a favorite place of the Queen of Hungary.
After spending some time exploring the Royal Palace of Gödöllő, you can drive back to Mogyoród for the Hungarian Grand Prix. Aside from witnessing the race, you will also have the incredible opportunity to drive through the racetrack. You can find tickets for the F1 with Grand Prix Grand Tours, browse their site for more information.
Drive from Pula to Dubrovnik, Croatia
Croatia is a gorgeous country home to many fascinating cities. If you’re driving around the country, the most scenic route is from Pula to Dubrovnik. It’s a 713-km long journey that takes around 7.5 hours, depending on the traffic. To make the most out of this driving adventure, you should allocate at least a couple of days, especially if you plan to stop at famous sights like the Paklenica National Park.
Begin your journey in Pula and drive towards the direction of Opatija, a lovely coastal town along the Adriatic coast. Spend a few hours discovering Opatija before continuing your journey to Senj, famous for the 15th Century Nehaj Fortress. From Senj, make your way to Paklenica National Park, and spend the night at one of the beautiful lodges within the park.
The next day, leave Paklenica National Park for Split, which should take around two hours. Spend a few hours discovering Split, especially the famous Diocletian Palace. From Split, head to Mljet before arriving at your final destination of Dubrovnik.
Road Trip on Iceland’s Golden Circle
Imagine driving through the gorgeous countryside and seeing spouting geysers, majestic waterfalls, and dramatic cliffs along the way. If that sounds like an incredible adventure, you should drive through Iceland for its iconic route, the Golden Circle. It takes you to some of the country’s famous attractions, with an opportunity to stop at some fascinating locations.
The Golden Circle route is a famous driving route for tourists who want to discover three of Iceland’s most popular attractions. You will start in Reykjavik, the capital city, and then drive to the southern uplands. Stop at the scenic Þingvellir National Park, the spectacular Geysir, and the gorgeous Gullfoss waterfall.
You can take up the Golden Circle in one day since it’s only 230 km long. It’s possible to drive through the entire route for less than four hours. But since you will go sightseeing, you will have to spend five hours or more. You can also choose to spend the night in some villages along the way.
Travel the Northern Ireland Loop
Northern Ireland has some of the UK’s most fascinating driving routes. Your road trip will take you through exhilarating terrains while passing through mountains, lochs, and coastal villages. The scenic loop along High Mournes is one of those driving routes you should consider in Northern Ireland.
The High Mournes Loop is a 32-km route that starts in Newcastle, towards Annalong and back. It takes you to the most beautiful areas of the Mourne Mountains, where you can marvel at the breathtaking views of the Spelga Dam and the highest peaks along the mountain range. You will find something stunning on every corner of the road, so keep your eyes peeled on the road while driving. Stop at some viewpoints to enjoy the views and take some pictures.
When driving through this route, it’s worth spending some time at Annalong, a lovely seaside village at the foot of the Mourne Mountains. You can also spend the night here before driving back to Newcastle.