There’s no better way to experience the freedom of travel than to go on a road trip, at home or away.
Whether you’re at home or abroad, motorhome hire is becoming a more and more popular way to travel on the basis it allows for a sense of freedom and home comfort, wherever you are in the world.
The challenge, if you own your own motorhome is that you need to drive to your destination from home – which means you are relatively restricted in terms of geographical area. Whereas, if you hire a motorhome, you can fly out to some really cool and faraway places but still have the benefit of motorhome hire – without having to undertake a long, boring journey, to your destination.
The great thing about a road trip is that it gives you total freedom and flexibility in terms of where and when you go – if you spot something along the way that captures your attention, then you are free to explore and adjust your itinerary accordingly.
Similarly, you never know who you’re going to meet on a road trip and having the flexibility to go with the flow is one of the key principles of experiential travel… as this way you get to experience places off the beaten track, make unexpected connections with other travellers, and have a much more adventurous and independent experience than travelling in a more organised group tour format.
In terms of the world’s best road trips here are five offerings to consider:
- ROUTE 66 (USA)
Perhaps the most well known “road trip” in the world, Route 66 is now celebrating its 100th birthday, as one of the first numbered roads in the US.
This route from Chicago to Santa Monica covers 2,450 miles and takes you through scenery that could very easily make you feel like you are on the set of an old western movie; where any minute you expect cowboys and Indians to come running over the plains toward you.
Whilst there are more interesting road trips to be had in America, a trip on route 66 is on most people’s bucket list, and it does offer plenty of interesting pit stops along the way.
- PORTO TO LISBON (PORTUGAL)
In Portugal, the coastal route from Porto to Lisbon is breathtakingly beautiful; as is the route from Lisbon to Albufeira. You could combine the two, if you have time, as Portugal is the perfect place for slow travel and the entire coastal route is beautiful.
The laidback lifestyle is akin to that you might find in Spain, yet there’s a sense of more efficiency and aspiration – it’s not laid back to the point that people are sleepy, it’s laidback to the point that people get on and enjoy life.
The scene on this coastal route here is pretty chilled out, though cities like Lisbon are comparable with Barcelona in terms of their vibrancy and attractions.
- CANARY ISLANDS (SPAIN)
The Canary Islands are found just off the coast of Morocco, yet they belong to Spain and have a distinctively Spanish feel to them. The people here are very easy going and friendly, to the point you don’t tend to find speed cameras or traffic wardens – in fact, there aren’t even any yellow lines in most part of the islands… which reflects the laidback lifestyle on offer.
The great thing about the canary islands, is that they have a brilliant climate throughout the year – even in winter you can expect sunny days with temperatures around twenty degrees and the summer’s never get too hot as the islands benefit from strong coastal breezes.
When it comes to the most epic drives, consider driving up Mt Teide, on the island of Tenerife as this ear-popping journey has you wind your way up Spain’s tallest mountain; to the point you drive through clouds to get to the top, and once at the top, it’s as if you are driving on the moon. It’s perhaps the most enjoyable and beautiful drive in Europe.
That said, on the neighbouring island of Lanzarote, you can drive through the impressive lava fields and find yourself at a remote volcanic beach. Similarly, if you’re more into the surf lifestyle you’ll want to head to Fuerteventura and bask in the chilled out vibe this island has to offer.
The other thing to consider, is that these islands are all pretty close to each other, meaning you could easily travel for a month to the Canary Islands, and work your way through the islands by car ferry.
- US ROUTE 20 (USA)
If you want to travel coast to coast then this is the route for you. Route 20 is the longest road in America covering a distance of 3,365 miles from Newport (Oregon) to Boston (Massachusetts).
If you have time to explore Yellowstone National Park this makes a lovely pit stop, as covering 3,365 miles is not something you want to rush. That said, the route is fast and easy to drive… albeit, not very colorful, as your mostly on fast roads – meaning you should be able to cover it in two to three weeks if you’re in a hurry.
However, the best way to approach this coast to coast route is to take your time, and stop off along the way in the small towns that are what make this route so culturally interesting.
- CANADA’S COWBOY TRAIL (CANADA)
If you’re looking to get away from it all then you can follow this Canadian route through Southern Alberta to the lunar landscape of the badlands and where the Great Plains meet the Rocky Mountains.
It’s a breathtakingly beautiful route with a lot of variety in terms of scenery and different landscapes that is complimented by the friendly nature of the Canadian communities you will be travelling through. Of course, depending on when you visit depends on what the weather will be like, as for some a winter adventure of campfires and snow are right up their street whilst for most people they would prefer to visit in the summer months.