Bolzano-Cortina d’Ampezzo – This is a must for mountain lovers. This road is lined with steep cliffs and limestone walls. The 100 km course through the Dolomites in the Italian Alps is impressive and full of twists and turns.
Great Saint Bernard Pass: from Martigny to Saint Bernardino, 56 km, one of the most famous passes in Alpine Europe. The Swiss section of the pass road begins in French-speaking Martigny and ends in Italian-speaking San Bernardino.
Furka Pass – Travel from southwest to northeast and you will see the frozen mass of the glacier that feeds the Rhône. This highway follows a high altitude border between German and Italian speaking Switzerland.
Flower Route – Haarlem-Leiden, 25 miles. This unit has one of the best concentrations of flower fields to be seen. The fields along the way have beautiful swaths of color from the start of the blooming season, which is late January to late May. Stop and buy from street vendors.
North America and Canada
Tennessee and Mississippi – Blues Highway Drive. Drive north on Route 61 between Memphis and Vicksburg along the Mississippi River. This is a truly musical impulse. The music is everywhere. Soul, gospel, R&B spill out of churches, cars, bars. This is where the road sings
Hawaii. Belt Road: farmland, beaches, lava flows, towering mountains. Drive down Belt Road and see it all. From Kailua-Kona to the windswept ruins of Puukohola Heiau, experience a varied landscape like no other in America
Hawaii. Hana Expressway: A 52-mile drive from Kahului to Hana. A 4 wheel drive is ideal for this trip. The ocean to your left, while to the right is a jungle of bamboo and fruit trees and beautiful waterfalls. Be sure to make plenty of stops along the way to make the most of the spectacular scenery that awaits you on this journey.
Alaska. Seward Highway: For blue glaciers, jagged mountains, waterfalls, and whale watching, this tour has it all. Anchorage-Seward, 204 kilometers
Dalton-Livengood-Prudhoe Bay Highway, 414 miles. Cross the Yukon River, pass through the North Slope and end in the Arctic Ocean. It is a mostly gravel road. Don’t expect to see many amenities, but do expect spectacular scenery. Recommended for the more experienced driver.
Florida Keys – Overseas Highway. Mainland Florida-Key West, 181 kilometers. This highway stretches across a huge expanse of water with the Atlantic on the left and the Gulf on the right. Highway 1 is typical America with bars selling burgers, shakes and fries to gift shops where you can buy seashell necklaces.
Vermont Cheese Trail – Plymouth Notch-Websterville, 450 miles. Taste the best cheeses imaginable en route. Why not visit some of the cheesemakers along the way? They all offer tours and you can buy the products.
Colorado: Ghost towns, fossil beds, towering mountains and a gorge await you on this drive west on US 24 from Colorado Springs.
June through September is the best time to drive this 225-mile loop that includes Cripple Creek, South Park City and St Elmo.
Alberta, Canada – From the edge of the Great Plains, you’ll climb through the magnificent mountain scenery of Banff and Jasper National Parks, experiencing forests, boulders, and glaciers. Moose bears and other wildlife can be seen during this fantastic 264 mile journey.
Kentucky. Bourbon Trail – Travel through bourbon country on bluegrass trails. Smell the mint that grows alongside the road as you drive, stopping to watch the whitewater rapids. Louisville, Bardstown, and Frankfort connect in a large triangle. There are plenty of distilleries to try on this road trip.
Brandywine Valley – Pennsylvania and Delaware. Drive through the picturesque castle region, where the narrow winding roads are shaded by overhanging branches. You won’t see any billboards here, just wildflowers lining the roadsides.
Cape Cod Massachusetts – 160 miles. Starting in the Cape Cod Canal on the north shore of the Capes and passing through many stops like Provincetown and Chatham, it will end in Woods Hole. You should allow 3 or 4 days to enjoy this trip. Best taken from spring to fall when the temperature is moderate.
Finger Lakes, New York: Savor your way from vineyard to vineyard amid rolling hills. The Finger Lakes region is a mix of rich farmland and small towns.
Cascade Lakes Oregon – Incredible scenery on the 83-mile drive from Bend Oregon to the Sun River. Enjoy the classic landscapes of the Cascades, whispering streams and sparkling lakes.
Western Australia has some amazing drives including Beverley up to County Peak where you will drive through the Jarrah forests and the beautiful scenery of the River Dale.
An hour south of Perth is the Rockingham Scenic Drive. Why not explore the Blackwood River region of South West Australia? The drive from Balingup to Nannup and Bridgetown is spectacular.
Aspects to consider when renting a car abroad
Whether you’re looking to rent a car at Heathrow Airport or anywhere else in the world, there are a number of things to consider. Try to book in advance as it will be cheaper than paying at the counter. Ask about late fees, fuel charges, etc. when making the reservation, check the special weekend offers. Check the age restrictions when booking as some agencies charge a surcharge if you are under 25 or over 70. Check if you will need an International Driving Permit-IDP. It is simply a piece of paper that translates your information into 10 different languages.
It’s also worth checking the speed limits for the country you’ll be driving in, as they vary widely, as do the limits for driving under the influence of alcohol. However, as in any country, we always insist on not drinking anything when driving.
When planning to rent a car to drive abroad, think about the trip you will be taking. If it’s not too long a trip, a smaller car may be suitable and will be cheaper. For longer trips, think about comfort and space. In hot climates, air conditioning is a must.
If you don’t have sat nav, invest in a decent road map and always plan your route before you go.