Crossing the continent: Five of the best European road trip routes

Are you planning your next great adventure? Sometimes, we all need something to look forward to and the thought of a holiday can have us hopping with excitement and anticipation. There is always a temptation to pack the itinerary to make the most of our time away. So, why not slow down, take things at your own pace, and soak up all the stunning sights in greater detail?

It’s true that at the moment, there is lots of uncertainty around overseas travel from the UK and one should always make plans responsibly in these difficult times. Recently, there has been a significant fall in the number of flights out of the UK. But you don’t have to take to the air to enjoy a well-earned break.

As an alternative, perhaps you’re considering one of the many stunning European road trip routes from the UK? Are there areas of our glorious continent that you’ve yet to see? Unexplored lands that have long been on your wish list? If that’s the case, why not plan your itinerary, pack up the car, get behind the wheel and get going!

The joy of driving is a liberating sensation, and these five European road trip routes will make you feel truly free.

Our top five European road trip ideas

- Les Corniches, France

- Furka Pass, Switzerland

- Romantic Road, Germany

- High Alpine Road, Austria

- The Lakes, Italy

Les Corniches, France

When it comes to extravagance, glitz and glamour, few places in the world can top this little corner of the south of France. Made up of three stunning coastal roads in the Riviera, we recommend you take this ultimate European road trip slowly, so as not to miss anything. The route will take you through quaint fishing villages and then past the rows of millionaires’ yachts that are quite a sight. And of course, it offers spectacular views out over Monaco, where you might want to stop off and sample some of the area’s most elegant cafes and restaurants.

Furka Pass, Switzerland

If the opulence of the French Riviera does not appeal, maybe a journey through the bewitching Swiss Alps is more your idea of the ultimate European road trip. And if you’re heading in that direction, you simply have to experience the Furka Pass. Rising to around 2,500m above sea level, it consists of a series of tight hairpin bends that offer unrivalled views out across the mountainous landscape. The route was made famous in the James Bond classic Goldfinger, but don’t be fooled into thinking you can drive like 007 – be sure to go carefully and consult the forecast before setting off.

Romantic Road, Germany

The Romantic Road is one of the most famous European road trip routes and it’s not hard to see why. For well over 200 miles, you’ll wind through Bavaria and Baden-Württemberg, and some of the sights along the way will have you gazing in wonder. Picturesque villages, the breath-taking Tauber river and castles that look like something out of a Disney film all await you. We recommend taking your time on this particular journey – give yourself several days and be sure to soak it all in.

High Alpine Road, Austria

Similar to the Furka Pass, the High Alpine Road winds through Austria’s Hohe Tauern National Park. And when we say ‘winds’, we mean it. Dozens of hairpin bends will put your driving to the test, so be sure to go steady. It’s a popular spot for motorists, bikers and cyclists and there are plenty of stopping points where you can park up and admire the remarkable panoramic views sprawling out in front of you. This European road trip route is only around 30 miles long, so be sure to savour every moment.

The Lakes, Italy

Given their northern location, the Lakes are one of the best European road trips from the UK in terms of travel time. And once you arrive, it will have been worth every second behind the wheel or in the passenger seat. Take in the likes of Lake Como, surrounded by spectacular mountains, and its shoreside towns Varenna and Bellagio. At the same time, Lakes Maggiore and Lugano are equally beautiful and cross the border with Switzerland. With jaw-dropping views and Neo-classical architecture as far as the eye can see, you’ll want to explore this corner of northern Italy to the full.

The best cars for a European road trip

These European road trip ideas are sure to thrill any keen traveller, and having the perfect vehicle for the journey can only add to that excitement. A Mini Convertible would be ideal for the numerous hairpin bends along the High Alpine Road. At the same time, the Furka Pass earned worldwide recognition thanks to Sean Connery and his Aston Martin DB5 in Goldfinger.

When on the Romantic Road, you could pay tribute to your hosts by taking your BMW or Mercedes-Benz. The same goes for feeling the power of a Ferrari around the Lakes in Italy.

Whichever route you take and whichever car you drive, heading off on the ultimate European road trip can prove the adventure of a lifetime.

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