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The Ultimate Road Trip Around Europe

Posted on July 12, 2017

Europe is a continent filled with history, culture and abundance of fun. It also has the most gorgeous roads in the world.  Across all the countries on the continent, you will find a road to suit your desires. Whether it be a twisting mountain pass or an unlimited speed autobahn, Europe has them all.

One of the greatest ways of experiencing the culture and history of each country is by driving through them. You will stop at some of the most amazing monuments, drive through and stay in quaint little villages and towns. There will be restaurants and cafes along your route where you can speak to the locals and learn about what each country truly has to offer you.

But first, you have to decide where you want to drive and what route you wish to take. There are so many great roads, we recommend you focus your road trip on finding them and driving along them. Some will last less than an hour and others will fill your day and possibly longer.

But first, choose a car

Each of us has a different view on how to travel when it comes to driving. Some of you love to stay in hotels and enjoy the comfort of a proper bed and room service. Others will enjoy pitching up their tent and sitting around the campfire with a beer. Then there are those of you who will travel, sleep and live in your car for the duration of your visit.

Whichever way you choose to accommodate yourself on your travels will determine which car you will choose for your road trip. If you are staying in a hotel, for example, you just need a car that can carry your bags and suitcases. Nothing requiring too much space, so you could at a squeeze in the boot, choose a sports car.

For those of you considering camping or living in your car, we suggest larger vehicles. Specifically, we recommend you choose either an estate, SUV or MPV. These will be long enough and wide enough to fit both you and your luggage. You do not want to be cooped up in a small hatchback on your long journey.

If you are looking to sleep in your car throughout the road trip, it may be worth getting a car with tinted windows, thereby you not getting woken up by the morning sun streaming into the car.

Zero Deposit Car Leasing has a great range of cars available for you to consider. The cars range from two-seater sports cars up to seven-seater people carriers. Whatever car you need for your road trip, Zero Deposit Car Leasing will have it on offer.

Before you set off, also make sure to get your travel insurance sorted with First Travel - protect you, your family and your possessions abroad or throughout the UK with 10% off your quote with the code FIRST10.

Where to drive
There are so many places you can go and it would be impossible to tell you all about them. Lonely Planet have books galore on where to visit in Europe. But these are the famous roads of Europe:

·         Autobahns of Germany
·         Germany’s Route 500
·         Ireland’s Ring of Kerry
·         Italy’s Amalfi Coast
·         Frances’ Les Corniches
·         Norway’s Trollstigen
·         France’s La Route Des Grandes Alpes
·         Switzerland’s Klausen Pass
·         Portugal’s Estoril Coast Drive
·         Frances’ Route Napoleon

Germany’s Autobahns

Imagine a motorway that has no speed limits in the non-urban regions. Yes, you read that correctly. Outside of the cities and towns, in the glorious German countryside, you can push your car to its top speed on the autobahn. That is, of course, if you have the courage because, for those of you with supercars, that top speed will be ferociously fast.
The autobahns are the fastest way to cross Germany and present so much fun whilst doing it. However, we recommend not racing another driver. Driving at those high speeds requires full concentration on the road and racing another driver offers a terrible distraction that could end terribly.

Germany’s Route 500

Route 500 takes you through the famously dark, Black Forest in Germany. This is the place where Hansel and Gretel encountered the wicked witch with a taste for sweets and children and the home of the cuckoo clock. Route 500 takes you through the mountains, offering you breathtaking views and a leisurely drive through the forest. Fair warning that the Route 500 is the main route so it will be busy at times. The earlier you start, the better.

Ireland’s Ring of Kerry

Ireland is a beautiful country. The countryside with its rolling green fields is spectacular. The Ring of Kerry offers you those views combined with an excellent drive. You get to see so much of Ireland whilst on this road. The loop is 200km long that takes you through the Emerald Isle’s mountains, beaches, lakes and rivers, giving you a true view of what Ireland has to offer.

Amalfi Coast in Italy

We will all have heard of the Amalfi Coast. It is a gorgeous little destination on the Southern Italian coast and has long been defined as one of the best holiday destinations in Europe. The architectures of the towns will take you back in time to a quieter time and you will love it. The roads between the towns is a treasure trove of incredible destinations to visit. Do not miss out on heading down there for at least a week. It is a place that deserves a thorough exploration.

Les Corniches in France

Les Corniches is the beauty of the French countryside. You have three different choices of roads available in the Les Corniches. The region is vast and offers you three different drives through three different scenic tours at three different altitudes. But all three routes do eventually lead you to Monaco, one of the greatest cities on Earth. This is a region that should not be avoided.

Norway’s Trollstigen

This road is genuinely called the Troll Route and it takes you along one of the most scenic drives in the whole of Europe. Norway is known for its beauty and this route takes you through the mountains and passed the waterfalls that will give your camera truly beautiful shots. You will find yourself travelling from Andalsnes and Valldalen into the heart of the country and it will be one of the most beautiful drives of your life. One you will never regret.

La Route de Grandes Alpes in France

The La Route des Grandes Alpes is a route that takes you deep into France’s High Alps, the mountains of France. In the past, there was no path designed specifically for tourists until this one was built. Use it well for it offers you the best scenic route for the entire region. You will drive through four national parks and sixteen mountain passes. It is a true adventure to venture along this road and make sure you stop on the shores of the incredible Geneva Lake.

Switzerland’s Klausen Pass

The Klausen Pass is the home of the Klausenrennen, a wild car race and it featured on Top Gear almost a decade ago. The race takes place every four or five years and the last one was in 2013, meaning there should be one next year. It might be worth going to check it out. If that isn’t your cup of tea, then go for the beautiful scenery offered in the Pass. It is a truly long and windy drive that you will love.

Estoril Coast Drive in Portugal

The coast of Portugal is one of the most amazing things to behold. Truly, you will be in awe the whole way through it. The Estoril Coast Drive from Lisbon to Sintra is one you should take when you are young when you are in the middle of your life and once more before the end comes. It is worth seeing three times. It has an amazing culture, architecture and history that is some of the most amazing in the whole of Europe.

Route Napoleon in France

This route has such historical significance, you would be remiss to never travel it. Napoleon Bonaparte travelled this route in 1815 from his return from Elba to Grenoble. It began the Hundred Days that eventually ended at the Battle of Waterloo and the route is lined with statues of the French Imperial Eagle. The route itself takes you through the French Alps and takes you through the heart of rural France.
Europe is filled with brilliant places that can teach you so much about history, culture and architecture. A road trip is a way of experiencing all of that and these roads are precisely the ones to travel.

There are so many other places to include on your trip, but these ten are well worth including. If you want a new car for the journey, Zero Deposit Car Leasing is available for you to lease a car from. 

First Insurance also offer great deals on your travel insurance; so if you are planning to set off on any of these trips, make sure you protect you, your family and possessions with 10% off your quote with the code FIRST10 with First Travel