Best Summer Road Trips in Europe
Embarking on a road trip through the diverse landscapes of Europe is an enchanting adventure that promises a tapestry of unforgettable experiences. From ancient cobblestone streets that whisper tales of bygone eras to breathtaking coastal roads that caress the edge of the continent, Europe beckons wanderlust-filled souls to explore its captivating charm. As you traverse the well-worn paths and offbeat routes, each bend in the road reveals a new revelation, whether it be a medieval castle perched atop a rolling hill, a hidden village tucked away in a verdant valley, or a bustling city teeming with vibrant energy. A European road trip is an invitation to indulge in the continent’s rich history, savor its delectable cuisine, and immerse oneself in the captivating blend of cultures that converge upon these storied highways. So, fasten your seatbelt, release your wanderlust, and let the journey begin, for Europe’s open roads await your exploration.
The Amalfi Coast, Italy
Start your journey in Naples and wind your way along the stunning Amalfi Coast. Marvel at the dramatic cliffs, colorful cliffside villages, and crystal-clear waters of the Tyrrhenian Sea. Visit charming towns like Positano, Amalfi, and Ravello along the way, and indulge in delicious Italian cuisine.
The Ring Road, Iceland
Iceland’s Ring Road, also known as Route 1, encircles the entire island and offers breathtaking landscapes. Explore otherworldly lava fields, cascading waterfalls, black sand beaches, geothermal hot springs, and mighty glaciers. Don’t forget to make stops at popular attractions like the Golden Circle and Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon.
The Scottish Highlands, Scotland
Embark on a road trip through the rugged and mystical Scottish Highlands. Drive through the famous North Coast 500 route, which takes you through picturesque landscapes, ancient castles, and charming villages. Admire the majestic Loch Ness, explore the Isle of Skye, and soak in the dramatic beauty of the Highlands.
The Romantic Road, Germany
Follow the Romantic Road, a scenic route that winds through the heart of Germany. Starting in Würzburg and ending in Füssen, you’ll pass through charming medieval towns, fairytale castles like Neuschwanstein, rolling vineyards, and picturesque countryside. Enjoy the rich history, culture, and culinary delights of Bavaria along the way.
The Atlantic Road, Norway
Experience the dramatic coastal beauty of Norway by driving along the Atlantic Road. This engineering marvel connects a series of small islands and offers stunning views of the North Atlantic Ocean. Marvel at the archipelago, traverse hairpin bends, and drive across bridges that seem to emerge from the sea.
The Dalmatian Coast, Croatia
Explore the stunning Dalmatian Coast by driving from Dubrovnik to Split. This coastal road trip offers breathtaking views of the Adriatic Sea, picturesque islands, charming seaside towns like Hvar and Trogir, and historical sites such as Dubrovnik’s ancient city walls.
The Causeway Coastal Route, Northern Ireland
Discover the rugged beauty of Northern Ireland by driving the Causeway Coastal Route. Starting in Belfast, this scenic road trip takes you along the dramatic coastline, past the Giant’s Causeway, through quaint villages, and offers stunning views of the Atlantic Ocean.
The Transfagarasan Highway, Romania
Experience one of Europe’s most spectacular mountain roads by driving the Transfagarasan Highway in Romania. This winding road cuts through the Carpathian Mountains, offering breathtaking views, stunning alpine landscapes, and access to attractions like the Balea Lake and the Poienari Castle.
Motorcycle, car, or RV, get ready to hit the road. Before you go, rRemember to plan your road trips well, considering factors such as weather conditions, traffic, and local regulations. Pack essentials like a roadmap, travel documents, and necessary equipment, and enjoy the freedom and adventure that these European summer road trips have to offer.
Tonya Fitzpatrick, Esq. is co-Founder of World Footprints, a social impact travel storytelling content hub she runs with her husband, Ian, that has been recognized as Best Social Impact Travel Media Company by CEO Monthly. She is an award-winning travel and business journalist, global public speaker, and 3-time TEDx speaker. Tonya regularly shares her insights on career transitions, DEIA in travel and the transformative power of travel to audiences all over the world. Recognized as Black Travel Journalists of the Year—an honor she shares with Ian, Tonya contributes her time and leadership to several boards and commissions in the travel community including SATW, The Explorers Club (DC), North American Travel Journalists Association (NATJA) and JourneyWoman. Tonya has been appointed to the Maryland Tourism Development Board by Gov. Wes Moore.