The road trip has been a staple of books and films for many years. The iconography of the car combines with the romance of the open road to evoke a powerful sense of individualism and adventure. But what about in real life? Here’s a list of amazing road trips for you to undertake when you finally throw caution to the wind and quit your day job:
The French Riviera
Nice Port, France
Get yourself an Alfa Romeo and a suntan before heading down to the Franco-Italian coast. Live the James Bond dream, cruising through Monaco, Cannes, Nice and Monte Carlo — not to mention all the gorgeous scenery in between. A road trip that evokes the lost glamour of the 1960′s like no other.
The Blues Highway
The so-called “Blues Highway” runs between Mississippi and Tennessee in America’s enchanting Deep South. A land of wide, simmering swamps, aching with the history of the Blues that you’ve heard about in so many songs. Make sure the CD collection fits the journey and travel with John Lee Hooker and Muddy Waters into the heart of the Delta.
Whistler, British Columbia
This road trip is unique in that it incorporates both Canada’s glittering cities and its awesome mountains and glaciers. Dramatic scenery is underpinned by a strong and unignorable sense of history. Whether it is the stories of the traditional Native tribes of North America or the later arrivals from Europe, you will be captivated.
Chitwan National Park, Nepal
Nothing your driving instructor taught you could prepare you for the treacherous roads of the Chitwan National Park. Landslides and steep ravines threaten every corner. But the pay-off lies in unbeatable scenery and access to a world the 21st century has not quite tainted.
The Pirate Route
Dunn’s River Falls, Jamaica
Jamaica’s world famous road tells a story of buccaneers and galleons, slaves and pirates. Featuring Port Royal and Kingston, the route also encompasses the pale beaches and warm ocean bays that have come to form the popular impression of the Caribbean.
John O’ Groats to Land’s End
Land’s End, UK
All Brits should endeavor to make this pilgrimage from the head to the toe of their island. Traveling in a classic British car such as a Jaguar or an MG would only serve to improve this legendary feat of patriotism.
Normandy and Brittany
A sombre but no less awe-inspiring trip, the routes through Northern France take the driver into the heart of where World War I and II were fought. The contrast between the quiet country lanes and the horror of what went on there is an experience we should all pursue.
The Wild West
Kansas Road Trip
Relive the stagecoaches and cattle trails of John Ford’s films in the quintessential Wild West road trip. Kansas is the state for this, where you travel through Wichita, Dodge City and other evocatively named towns.
The Grand Canyon
Grand Canyon National Park, America
Straddling Utah and Arizona, find America’s most famous natural landmark — a formation so grand and expansive that an old Chevy is the only way to travel around it.
North Island, New Zealand
North Island, New Zealand Road Trip
New Zealand’s North Island, with its dramatic peaks and misty verges, is recognizable to most people as Middle Earth in Peter Jackson’s Lord of the Rings. Take this road trip and you will not only be traversing the gem of the South oceans, but also entering a whole new kingdom of myth and fantasy.