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For those who consider the journey to be as important as the destination, road trips have long provided amazing views and a sense of adventure.


Below are some of the world’s most spectacular roads
. Fair warning to viewers: these images are shockingly attractive and have been known to induce wanderlust in those who gaze upon them.

Denali National Park, Alaska, Photo by nicmcphee

Timgad, Algeria, Photo by gabyu

Italy, Photo by skino

Illinois, United States, Photo by jamesjordan

Zion National Park, Utah, United States, Photo by wolfgangstaudt

Dades Gorge, Morocco, Photo by wolfgangstaudt

Meadowlands, New Jersey, United States, Photo by bobjagendorf

Greenwich Township, Berks County, Photo by nicholas_t

Highway 98, Arizona, United States, Photo by paraflyer

Las Canadas del Teide, Spain, Photo by hyperfinch

Monument Valley, Utah, United States, Photo by hyperfinch

Himalaya Highway, Photo by babasteve

Route 40, Argentina, Photo by rob

Beaver, Utah, United States, Photo by areyoumyrik

Glacier Point, Yosemite National Park, United States, Photo by candiedwomanire

Utah, United States, Photo by areyoumyrik

Pacific Coast Highway, California, United States, Photo by tylerdurden

Lehigh County, Pennsylvania, United States, Photo by nicholas_t

Lapaz to Coroico, Bolivia, Photo by backpackerben

Southern Bolivia, Photo by philliecasablanca

Camino a Urubamba, Cusco, Peru, Photo by lebce

About The Author

Juliane Huang

With a laptop in one arm and a travel bag in the other, Juliane is rarely at home, though always online. Catch up with her on her blog.

  • Eric Daams

    No mention of the Great Ocean Road? That's a classic one!

  • Nic

    The Great Ocean Road, Australia

  • paresh

    great, really great, thanks for sharing.

  • Mirko Herzner

    Wow. What a stunning collection of street shots. Some of them really might inspire me to go there one day. I enjoyed the one from Italy most. Thanks for sharing.

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  • Rekha

    Oh!! its beautiful!!

  • PW Herman

    These are all spectacular photos but not every road here is spectacular, at least not on a worldwide scale…and some of the locations are too generally described. Each photo should have a little paragraph so that the reader can gain greater context. All beautiful images, though.

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  • Nic McPhee (Unhinder

    A very cool collection – thanks for including my photo in this excellent set! I think you got the Dades Gorge photo mis-labelled. It's by Rosino, not wolfgangstaudt.

  • Jewel

    OMG! You are so right. I was just about to write in my journal about these places. they are so beautiful. And most of of them are very close to where i live. Just goes to show that we shouldn't overlook seemingly unimportant states. Thank you.

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  • Mark Hester

    On The Rest of Everest Podcast the team drives up Himalaya Highway in the picture. It is just as spectacular in the video. I have nothing to do with the podcast — except to enjoy it. Check it out. http://www.therestofeverest.com/

  • Guitar Dad

    Spectacular shots!

  • Turner

    Yeah, some great views in the US. West Texas and Arizona have my vote.

  • alan

    Actually, the title should be 'the world's most spectacular photos of roads'. There are a lot more roads out there that are at least as spectacular as these.

  • Junior

    Is lacking The Serrado Rio do Rastro im Brazil!!! link: http://inema.com.br/mat/idmat011290.htm By!

  • Loren

    wow, so prettttyyyyyy

  • Pokin

    Great collection of photos! After driving up and down the I5 I thought it might have been fun to do the world's most boring roads, but realized that would put everyone to sleep pretty quick. Love this list. Can't wait to go see some of them myself!

  • Dinkyboy

    Too bad you don't know the names of most of those roads, or can be more specific where they are. Makes them nothing more than nice photos that happen to have a road in them.

  • Jose

    The photo 11 does not correspond to the Canary Islands, Spain.

  • Óscar

    The second Photo tittled as Las Canadas del Teide, Spain, Photo by hyperfinch is wrong, it isn't Las cañadas del Teide (Tenerife canary islands) spain.

  • Bobby

    non from the UK. damn. Great Post by the way.

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  • shawn

    How about the Hana High way? Maui, Hawaii

  • lara dunston

    Some great shots – and great roads – but there are far many more spectacular roads out there, particularly outside the US – that Meadowlands road probably needs to go in a 'Charming American Roads' category. And the road to Coroico needs to go in a 'World's most dangerous roads' blog – was it spectacular? I can't remember – I had my eyes closed most of the time. Sadly, that's one road that one too many deaths occur on each week. Agree with Eric, the Great Ocean Road is one of the most spectacular drives on the planet – and Australia must also have someof the most breathtakingly beautiful stretches of roads. But I'll add to that a few more jaw-dropping roads that I've done this year while doing guidebook research: the Musandam Peninsula in Oman; the Sila Mountain Range, Calabria, Italy; most roads in the mountains on the high plateaus of Crete, but especially the remote south-east; the Liwa desert of the United Arab Emirates, near the 'border' with Saudi Arabia (real Lawrence of Arabia stuff!); the Valley of the Cedars in the Troodos Mountains in Cyprus. All stunning roads that see very few travellers driving them.

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  • jw

    Las Canadas del Teide, Spain, I've never been there and yet it looks so, so familiar.

  • Luke

    No surprise I guess to notice that 10 of the 21 photos were in the US. When will the Yanks realize the rest of the world has heaps more better stuff than their "insular" country.

  • eunice

    All the photos are very stunning, and they appear to have 3D effect! What caught my eyes here are not only the roads but the beautiful skies that are so well-captured.

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  • Eva

    Feel free to suggest some photos that you think are "heaps more better" than these… If you're going to hate, then at least let us in on the big secret!

  • matati
  • Alex

    Nice list, though missing Great Ocean Highway in Southern Australia. Now, THAT is magnificent. Similar to Highway 1 in California

  • Blass

    There are several roads in New Mexico that are even more beautiful than those. The road from the City of Rocks State Park to the Gila Cliff Dwellings National Monument is probably the most beautiful road I have ever seen.

  • Chris

    The Sea to Sky highway between Vancouver and Whistler in British Columbia. Sites for the 2010 Olympic ™ games, separated by some spectacular views of Howe Sound. Many car commercials have been shot on this highway. //” target=”_blank”>http://www.britishcolumbia.com/regions/towns/?tow…//” target=”_blank”>http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/British_Columbia_Hig…

  • abc

    this is a very american-centric post no mention of great ocean road or great alpine road

  • Colin Scott

    Nothing mentioned on the many roads through the Scottish Highlands :o( Glancoe to Fort William route is stunning

  • George

    The one titled "Utah, United States" is Interstate 70 looking east from the top of the San Raphael Reef, west of Green River. I rode that section of interstate in 2005 on a sportbike, and even <href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6abLmQSxYZo&quot;target="_blank">shot some video of i…. As interstates go, it's beautiful, but an even more impressive section is further east, in Glenwood Canyon, Colorado, east of Glenwood Springs. It's both a beautiful drive AND an engineering marvel, how 4 lanes of interstate highway were shoehorned into a narrow canyon without trashing the ecosystem of the Colorado River (or disrupting the operation of the Union Pacific tracks on the opposing side of the canyon.)

  • George

    Gah! URL got borked. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6abLmQSxYZo My apologies everyone.

  • Isabel Martins

    Good choice and certaily brought new info and inspiration for me. However, I'd have some roads to add. Correction: The picture 11 says it is Las Canadas de Teide, what is not correct. That is Highway 163 and crosses Monument Valley, which is pictured here. (Utah, US)

  • me

    Oh man ,Big sur (Hwy 1) is on fire

  • Ed

    Isabel is CORRECT. We have been there the past 2 years on vacation! Tell "hyperfinch" to correct the caption. It is Utah Rt. 163. Watch the movie Forrest Gump and see where he stops running.

  • Lisa

    So those are some pretty great roads, but what about Canada????????? There are at least ten in BC alone that I would include!

  • ANGELINA

    Health and happiness will to you ! And to you as well! Thanks for the kind words! Cock-a-hoop welcome to my blog!

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  • Jared Gothard

    ok, some of those are bad ass, im not going to lie, but the others are simply the way the pic is taken, the road itself is not that spectacular.

  • yellow

    OMAN is amazing with the Hazar Mountains, absolutely breath-taking..

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  • Mat

    Antrim coast road between Belfast and Giant's Causeway. Spectacular.

  • Nicole

    why is it that there are so many from the usa? and none from Canada. Canada has the usa beat on beauty by far!!!! very disappointing!

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  • kutu

    thanks..

  • Suresh Alurwar

    These are really great collection of roads. There are many beautiful roads in India on western Ghats which is one of the 18 biodiversities in the world.

  • aya

    gorgeous collection! these roads seem wildly picturesque, so i'm not sure if it can compare, but the cabot trail on cape breton island stands out in my memories as one of the loveliest roads i've encountered so far.

  • Joe

    I could name 20 places in Canada which are better than the Illinois picture.

  • Tom

    Pretty nice collection of photo's , Although a lot are from the states, I gues Africa has some nice roads for this blog.

  • Dominic

    It took awhile to open up this article, but well worth it! Beautiful photos. And nice to see home (Pacific Coast Highway – in Santa Monica no?). And that road in Bolivia is crazy. I remember riding a bike down that – intense stuff. Thanks for the photos.

  • Roger Gray

    Should have been called Road's from the US of A and some other less notables

  • Koksnot

    Unfortunately you cannot travel on the road in Denai National park. It is only reserved for the tour buses, and illegal for private cars to travel on. They do not want peoples trash littering the road way. On top of that the road is only wide enough to fit one bus, so buses traveling the opposite direction can only pass where the road makes a turn. It's pretty harry when the road winds in the mountains.

  • Jon

    Amazing, especailly Dades Gorge in Morocco. I'd love to drive that one.

  • Typical Americans…

    Typical egocentric American view of "the world". I've driven countless roads that are far more spectacular than any of the mentioned roads from the USA, yet roads from the US make up over 50% of the total. Take a look outside your own backyard.

  • chap fan

    Beautiful pics! But what about Chapman's Peak Drive in Cape Town, South Africa? One of the most spectaclar drives in the world – the road cuts through the mountain and overlooks the ocean, harbour and little towns along its stretch.

  • suertres

    I love the views… I wonder if some of the pictures was edited? hmmmm….

  • bahamamama

    Just drove down Muholland Drive in CA last week. Spectacular at night.

  • Leora

    Being from Colorado, I was very happy to see this comment. When I was just a little girl, it was nearly impossible to get through Glenwood Canyon before it was rebuilt. It is now one of the most beautiful sections of highway in the United States and it is mind-boggling how it was built without one tree being damaged or removed. I am still in awe when I drive through it.

  • Evie

    Fantastic roads!

  • wartornspectre

    Tail of the Dragon anyone, huh? huh?

  • http://www.richardsmalley.blogspot.com richard smalley

    What about the A666 the Blackburn to Bolton road in Lancashire. 88 deaths in 5 years on the Lancashire moors, England. I’m joking of course. But they are facts of where i am from.

    quality site, thanks.

  • chris

    the warning is fair enough. Fantastic photos, wow. Travelsick is me….

  • http://worldvagabondage.blogspot.com. kerryecho

    Photo Number 11 must be mislabeled. That road is also Highway 98 in Arizona. Hard to believe there would be another just like it.

  • http://nationalparkroadtrips.com Scott Jones

    Can’t believe some of the relatively boring USA shots, like Illinois and New Jersey (!). Definitely have some better ones in the Western US that are far better, and I bet other parts of the World have some mighty impressive ones as well. Going to the Sun Road in Glacier National Park and Tioga Pass Road in Yosemite National Park seems oddly missing.

  • Chas

    Arizona photo is Highway 89, not 98.

  • Bruce Nickerson

    I disagree with many of the above selections. In the U.S. the list should include the Going to the Sun Highway across Glacier Park, Montana, the Trail Ridge road through Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado, Sonora Pass, California Sierras, the Old Columbia River Gorge highway between Portland and the Dalles, Oregon, any of the rim drives along the Grand Canyon, the circular highway around Crater Lake, Oregon, Highway 1 from Carmel to San Luis Obispo through the Big Sur country, California, and the Beartooth highway north-east of Yellowstone Park.

    In Europe any of the great alpine passes and in Norway numerous roads around the fjords. Similarly in New Zealand the highway from Te Annau to Milford Sound is spectacular, as is the Ice Fields Highway through the Canadian Rockies, in Alberta between Banff and Jasper Parks. I could go on and on, but trust me., these are truly spectacular.

  • Jill

    What about Ice Roads?

  • Rachitha

    Great best pictures. must have great merit to see this naturally.

  • Chris

    Nice list. How about Chapmans Peak, Cape Town, South Africa, or Sani Pass, KwaZulu Natal, South Africa. Ridiculously beautiful scenery.

    The road to Sossusvlei in Namibia is also a goodie. That Italy photo is awesome, i could live there in a second.

  • http://www.monterosa-nepal.com Nepal expedition

    wao whats a paradise road. all above roads are so wonderful and looks dangerous too. i like above all road but first one, sith and third last are so beautyful. thanks for shering these wonderful road picture

    Monterosa

  • http://www.promaptraveler.com LordHox

    Wow, Timgad Algeria looks awesome.

    One of my favorite roads is the Millau Viaduct in Southern France.

    Lord Out!

  • http://keychainplus.club.officelive.com Richard

    Nice collection of road views.

  • Emma

    United States is one of the most geographically diverse nations..It does not surprise me that it has so many beautiful roads. If there is one reason to be proud of the country, it’s immense scenery should be it.
    That said, I do think that traveling through the olive fields in Spain was one of the most picturesque roads that I”VE ever been on.

  • Bill
    • http://matadortrips.com/ Hal Amen

      Nice catch, Bill. Appreciate it.

  • D.A.

    I personally think the photo of Illinois does belong. The Midwest of the US has some spectacular sky’s and are breath taking in their own right.

    One I’d like to add is the Dingle Peninsula in Ireland, much better than its more popular neighbor…the ring of Kerry. Great ocean cliffs, small towns, country roads, sheep, blasket Islands, etc.

  • http://matadortravel.com/travel-community/gypsynoir Shreya

    *Staring in awe*

  • http://www.wolfcat.com.au/randomrants Wolf Cocklin

    Stunning shots…

    here is one from Australia..

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/wolfcat_aus/3124724834/

    This the road that Mad Max 2 was filmed on as well.

  • http://guymclaren.com Guy McLaren

    I see two that are not in the Americas, more than 50% from the states. I think the title is misleading. It should read Roads from the States and a few other places. Not all of the images or roads are at all awesome.

  • http://www.photopayne.com Jonathan Payne

    Excellent collection! I love how it’s inspiring many of us out here to capture our own favorite road views. Cheers

  • http://www.audrizzle.com Amanda Kruel

    These is the kind of roads I would love to travel as a passenger… I would become too distracted by all the beauty around to continue to drive well.

    Gotta say though, Illinois is one of the most boring states to drive through. At sunset it’s pretty, but corn can only be entertaining for so long.

  • Steve

    I’m not sure what’s with the Illinois selection; driving by my house is more exciting. And how the hell is Going to the Sun road from Glacier not on here? Only 13 miles of it was open when I made my way to the park in late June and it was above and beyond most of these selections.

  • Andrew

    A good collection although some of the US ones are rather non descript. Ones I would regard as equally spectacular yet not present are: The Pinnacles in Western Australia, the Sydney-Newcastle Motorway (M3) through the Ku-ring-gai/Hawkesbury north of Sydney, the Great Ocean Road (Victoria, Australia), the Trans-Canada Highway between Revelstoke/Field and the Alberta border, the BC-99 between Horseshoe Bay and Whistler, the main road (not a very major one though!) from Ostrava to the Slovakian border via Ostravice, one of the main highways to the north of Konya, Turkey, some of the mountain roads down through Köycegiz (Turkey), and a number of the Swiss and Austrian mountain routes (my parents have been there and have photos but I don’t have names). Also agree with the Antrim Coast one from Northern Ireland.

  • http://londoniscool.com William Wallace

    You have listed some stunning roads to travel on, but you maybe need to check out the West Coast of Scotland or the Scottish Highlands, you will find plenty of amazing roads to drive on there.

  • eric

    they don’t have going to the sun highway in glacier national park, montana, usa….

  • http://www.dewabharataubud.com putude

    Look at Lapaz to Coroico, what amazing road but a little bit scary.

  • Femke

    What about the Sani Pass, Lesotho?
    Is one of the most amazing things I’ve seen!

  • alireza

    you didn’t show chalus road in iran

  • http://www.robertdall.com Robert Dall

    I can’t believe Vancouver’s Highway 99. Sea to Sky Highway.

    I know your going to get a billion on what you didn’t cover, but not a single road in Canada was feature is disappointing.

    • http://matadortrips.com/ Hal Amen

      Robert, thanks for your comment. And stay tuned–we’ve got a sequel coming in the next week or so based largely off of comments like yours.

  • Taylor

    Yuck, Illinois? Really? I live in Wisconsin and can attest that driving through Illinois is the most miserable, boring, monotonous part of every road trip I’ve ever been on. There is certainly a lot of beauty to be found in the Midwest, but not a whole lot of it is in Illinois.

  • PC Collins

    I don’t think this was intended to be an exhaustive list of EVERY great road…just those the author has happened to travel. Lighten up!

  • Marian

    The Transfagarasan road in Romania..that’s the most spectacular road ..;)

  • anonimous

    Search for “Transfagarasan” road, in Romania, even those from Top Gear said it is the most spectacular road they have ever seen.

  • Gonçalo

    Angola – Road from Namibe – Lubango (Serra da Leba) http://www.flickr.com/photos/44194132@N03/4779900971/in/set-72157624339517759/

  • http://www.coolhotnot.com Dave Whittle

    I saw the follow-up (#2) list first, and being from Utah, kept asking myself “so where are some of the many spectacular roads and views available here in Utah?” Glad I followed through and saw this first list – where Utah’s spectacular scenery gets the credit it deserves. You can’t tell from the pictures, however, just how spectacular some of the scenery you can see from the roads is. And I would definitely add the Alpine Scenic Loop, which goes through Provo Canyon, up past Sundance (and Robert Redford’s home), through the world’s largest living thing (a mountainside of genetically identical quaking aspen trees), past Timpanogas Cave, and out into Utah Valley.

    Combining the two lists, adding a few more roads, and lots more pictures would result in a spectacular coffee-table book or web site.

  • http://www.triphimalaya.com Lila Gurung

    it is really great pictures. I love travel and i really want be there in one day. Dades Gorge, Morocco is just great for down hill Mountain Bike tour.

  • Samuellipman

    Trans-Canadian Highway Calgary to Revelstoke.  Best ever. 

  • Dewdle

    Somehow you forgot to include the Beartooth Highway  between Red Lodge and Cooke City Montana ( USA ) but mostly in Wyoming.  Was dedicated as the first All American Highway.

    Some of these so-called spectacular roads look like stretches I would want to see in my rear view mirror , at least from the pictures chosen to illustrate them

  • Aubrey

    what about the atlantic road in norway, and i agree there are many beautiful drives in australia, these should be included, there seems to be a lot of american roads in both lists???

  • coloradoan

    I’m originally from Glenwood Springs, CO nice to see us on the V2 list. I always thought that the canyon was amazing, and I’ve driven it for 10 years, it still is amazing to me. 

  • Ian Rubin

    Enjoy the scenery.

  • Ravi Wankhade

    wonderful road

  • Brett Colley

    half these are shit yank roads, we have much more beautiful roads in new zealand and I’m sure even the yanks have better roads than that.

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