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Guide to 12 International Road Trips – Planning the Ultimate Driving Adventure 2024

Guide to 12 International Road Trips – Planning the Ultimate Driving Adventure 2024

International road trips offer an unparalleled sense of freedom and adventure. They allow travelers to explore diverse landscapes, cultures, and histories at their own pace. This guide is tailored for those who dream of embarking on an ultimate driving adventure across the globe. From the iconic Route 66 in the USA to the scenic Great Ocean Road in Australia, each of these 12 destinations promises a unique and unforgettable road trip experience.

1. Route 66, USA 

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Steeped in nostalgia, The Wigwam Motel along Route 66 in Arizona offers a unique lodging experience. The motel is a throwback to the classic American road trip era with its collection of vintage cars and distinct wigwam-shaped rooms. Each room, though shaped like a traditional Native American wigwam, is equipped with modern amenities, ensuring a comfortable stay. The motel’s location in Holbrook allows easy access to nearby attractions like the Petrified Forest National Park. The Wigwam Motel is a step back in time, offering a slice of Americana and a unique photo opportunity for travelers on the historic Route 66.

Insider’s Tip

Stop at classic diners and motels for an authentic Route 66 experience. 

When to Travel

Spring and autumn offer the best weather conditions for this route.

2. Great Ocean Road, Australia 

Image Credit: Shutterstock / Darryl Leach

Alkina Lodge, situated near the Great Ocean Road, blends luxury accommodation with the raw beauty of Australia’s southern coastline. The lodge’s modern and eco-friendly architecture offers stunning views of the surrounding bushland and wildlife. Each lodge is beautifully appointed, with spacious living areas, gourmet kitchens, and spacious, elegantly furnished private bedrooms. Alkina Lodge is more than just a base for exploring the Great Ocean Road; it’s a retreat where you can see kangaroos grazing at dusk, enjoy starry nights, and relax in a setting that is both luxurious and harmoniously intertwined with nature.

Insider’s Tip

Explore the rainforests and waterfalls in the Great Otway National Park. 

When to Travel

The best time is from December to February, Australia’s summer season.

3. Amalfi Coast, Italy 

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Le Sirenuse, a luxurious hotel in Positano on Italy’s Amalfi Coast, offers breathtaking Mediterranean sea views. This former 18th-century villa exudes elegance and charm, with its beautifully decorated rooms featuring hand-painted tiles and antique furnishings. The hotel’s terrace, with its iconic red awnings, is the perfect place to enjoy a sunset cocktail with panoramic views of Positano’s cliffside villages. Le Sirenuse also boasts a Michelin-starred restaurant, La Sponda, where guests can indulge in exquisite Mediterranean cuisine in a romantic setting illuminated by over 400 candles.

Insider’s Tip

Visit during the late spring or early autumn to avoid the summer crowds. 

When to Travel

April to June and September to October offer pleasant weather and fewer tourists.

4. Garden Route, South Africa 

Image Credit: Shutterstock / David Steele

The Plettenberg, situated on a rocky headland in Plettenberg Bay along South Africa’s Garden Route, offers spectacular ocean views and beaches. This 5-star hotel is known for its refined luxury, with rooms and suites perfectly blending comfort and elegance. The hotel features two pools, one of which is heated, and both offer stunning ocean views. The Plettenberg’s in-house restaurant, SeaFood at The Plettenberg, serves innovative dishes emphasizing fresh, local ingredients, showcasing the best of South African cuisine. The hotel also offers easy access to nearby attractions such as whale watching, hiking trails, and pristine beaches.

Insider’s Tip

Include a safari detour in the Eastern Cape for a complete South African experience. 

When to Travel

The best time is from September to November or from March to May.

5. Ring Road, Iceland 

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Hotel Ranga, located in the countryside near Iceland’s Ring Road, is a luxury resort known for its exceptional service and idyllic location. The hotel offers a unique opportunity to experience Iceland’s natural wonders, including the Northern Lights, which can often be seen from the hotel during the winter months. The rooms and suites at Hotel Ranga are themed after the continents, offering a unique and whimsical touch to your stay. The hotel’s outdoor geothermal hot tubs are the perfect place to relax after a day of exploring, and its acclaimed restaurant specializes in Nordic cuisine, using fresh, locally sourced ingredients.

Insider’s Tip

Rent a 4×4 vehicle for a comfortable journey across varied terrains. 

When to Travel

June to August for midnight sun, and September to April for Northern Lights.

6. Pacific Coast Highway, USA 

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Perched on the cliffs of Big Sur, California, the Post Ranch Inn offers an exclusive and serene retreat along the Pacific Coast Highway. This luxury resort, known for its stunning architecture and unparalleled views of the Pacific Ocean, provides a perfect blend of natural beauty and modern comforts. The guestrooms and private houses are designed with a blend of rustic elegance, featuring wood-burning fireplaces and floor-to-ceiling windows to soak in the dramatic coastal scenery. The inn’s Sierra Mar restaurant offers exquisite dining emphasizing organic and locally sourced ingredients, complemented by a panoramic view of the coastline. The Post Ranch Inn is an ideal sanctuary for those seeking a peaceful retreat amidst the beauty of Big Sur.

Insider’s Tip

Spend extra time exploring the lesser-known beaches and coves along the way. 

When to Travel

Late spring to early autumn for the best coastal weather.

7. The Wild Atlantic Way, Ireland 

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Nestled in the heart of the Connemara countryside, Ashford Castle is a historic landmark transformed into a luxurious hotel, perfect for exploring Ireland’s Wild Atlantic Way. Dating back to 1228 and set on 350 acres, it offers a blend of rich history and modern luxury. The castle’s rooms and suites are individually designed, combining traditional elegance with contemporary amenities. Guests can enjoy a range of activities on the estate, including falconry, horseback riding, and golf, or relax in the state-of-the-art spa. The dining experience at Ashford Castle is unparalleled, with several restaurants offering a variety of culinary delights, from fine dining to traditional Irish fare.

Insider’s Tip

Explore the local music scene in traditional Irish pubs along the route. 

When to Travel

May to September for milder weather and longer daylight hours.

8. The Romantic Road, Germany 

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Image Credit: Shutterstock / Yuri Turkov

Overlooking the Danube valley near Germany’s Romantic Road, Hotel Schloss Leitheim offers a regal experience in a baroque castle setting. The hotel combines historic charm with modern luxury, with rooms and suites decorated in a classic style that reflects the castle’s heritage. The property includes a renowned spa and wellness center, providing a tranquil retreat for relaxation. The on-site restaurant, Weingut Fürst, serves gourmet cuisine that complements the region’s rich culinary traditions. Hotel Schloss Leitheim is an ideal stop for those seeking a blend of cultural immersion and luxury on Germany’s Romantic Road.

Insider’s Tip

Allocate time for guided tours in historical towns to better understand their heritage. 

When to Travel

Late spring to early autumn for pleasant weather and vibrant festivals.

9. Carretera Austral, Chile 

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Situated along the Carretera Austral in the pristine Patagonian rainforest, Puyuhuapi Lodge & Spa offers an eco-friendly retreat in one of Chile’s most beautiful and untouched regions. This remote lodge is accessible only by boat, adding to its exclusivity and charm. The lodge’s architecture is in harmony with its surroundings, using local materials and traditional designs. It features thermal hot springs, a full-service spa, and offers a range of outdoor activities such as kayaking, hiking, and exploring the nearby Queulat National Park. The dining experience focuses on local cuisine, with fresh seafood and traditional Patagonian dishes.

Insider’s Tip

Be prepared for varying weather conditions and pack accordingly. 

When to Travel

The Austral summer (December to February) is the most accessible time.

10. Causeway Coastal Route, Northern Ireland 

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The Bushmills Inn, located near Northern Ireland’s Causeway Coastal Route, is a charming and historic hotel known for its warm hospitality and rustic charm. Originally a coaching stop dating back to the 1600s, the inn has been beautifully restored and modernized. Its rooms and suites are designed with comfort and character, many featuring traditional peat fires. The inn’s restaurant and bar serve local, seasonal dishes and offer a wide range of Irish whiskeys, including those from the nearby Bushmills Distillery. The Bushmills Inn is a perfect base for exploring the Giant’s Causeway, Carrick-a-Rede rope bridge, and other coastal attractions.

Insider’s Tip

Visit the Bushmills Distillery for a taste of traditional Irish whiskey. 

When to Travel

April to October for the best driving conditions.

11. Transfagarasan Highway, Romania 

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Image Credit: Shutterstock / Mikadun

For a truly unique experience along Romania’s Transfagarasan Highway, stay at the Balea Ice Hotel. Accessible only by cable car in the winter, this hotel is rebuilt annually from ice and snow, offering guests an unforgettable adventure. The rooms, furnishings, and even the glasses in the ice bar are carved from ice, with thermal sleeping bags provided for warmth. The hotel’s location at Balea Lake offers spectacular views of the Fagaras Mountains. While amenities are naturally limited due to the hotel’s construction, the experience of staying in a real ice hotel is unparalleled.

Insider’s Tip

Stop at the Poenari Castle ruin, the real castle of Vlad the Impaler. 

When to Travel

July to September, as the road is often closed in winter due to snow.

12. The Great Alpine Road, Australia 

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Bright Velo is a boutique hotel offering a cozy and inviting atmosphere in the charming town of Bright along Australia’s Great Alpine Road. Known for its cycling-friendly facilities, it’s a popular base for those exploring the Alpine region’s cycling trails. The hotel’s design blends vintage and contemporary with comfortable rooms that offer a homely feel. The on-site café is a hub for guests and locals, serving excellent coffee and delicious, locally sourced food. Bright Velo’s location in the heart of Bright provides easy access to the town’s amenities and the natural beauty of the Victorian Alps.

Insider’s Tip

Visit the alpine villages like Bright for their cozy cafes and local markets. 

When to Travel

December to February for summer activities, June to August for winter sports.

The Bottom Line 

As you embark on your international road trip adventure, each destination offers its own unique journey filled with breathtaking landscapes, rich cultures, and unforgettable experiences. Remember, the joy of a road trip lies not just in the destination but in the journey itself. Embrace the freedom of the open road, the spontaneity of travel, and the countless stories waiting to be discovered along the way. Your epic road trip awaits – the world is yours to explore.

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The post Guide to 12 International Road Trips – Planning the Ultimate Driving Adventure first appeared on The Green Voyage.

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For transparency, this content was partly developed with AI assistance and carefully curated by an experienced editor to be informative and ensure accuracy.

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