Saturday, July 10, 2010

The World's Most Spectacular Roads

I had thought that the Great Ocean Road is the most spectacular road on Earth, in my normal exaggerating way. Of course I don't know for real, and of course I have not traveled the world over to know for sure.

You can read my take here.

But Yahoo or specifically has come up with an article of the World Most Spectacular Roads, and I am glad to say that Great Ocean Road sits proudly at No 3. I am also glad to know that of the Top 10 in this series, I have been to two of them, including at No 6 - Colorado.

I wish I can conquer a couple more in the next couple of years - wishful thinking on my side, of course! Milford Road in NZ (No 1) and perhaps because it looks so exotic - The Moutain Hiway in Peru sitting at No 12. On second thought, if I have the money and time, hmm, I would not mind heading to all twenty of them! ;-)

Enjoy the view. It's paradise galore. By the way, which one is your pick? Of course you can have all twenty if your heart so wishes. ;-)

I hope I am not infringing any copyright here. The actual entry can be found here.

Photo Essay: The World’s Most Spectacular Roads, Vol. 2

The original edition sparked so much debate among readers that we had to revisit the subject.

[Editor's note: This list is based almost entirely on reader comments from the original post, The World's Most Spectacular Roads. Plus a couple of my personal favorites.]

Milford Road

1. Milford Road, New Zealand
Not to be confused with the famous Milford Track trekking route, the Milford Road State Highway 94 passes through the Southern Alps of New Zealand’s South Island.
Photo: macronix

Stelvio Pass

2. Stelvio Pass, Italy
48 hairpin turns up to a 2757m (9045ft) pass in the Italian Alps, and Top Gear’s pick for “greatest driving road in the world.”
Photo: Damian Morys Foto

Great Ocean Road rock formation

3. Great Ocean Road, Australia
This coastal road in Victoria runs for 241km, between Torquay and Warrnambool. The car-less might consider the Great Ocean Walk as an alternative.
Photo: Stas Kulesh

Chalus Road, Iran

4. Chalus Road, Iran
Tehran is connected to the northern city of Chalus via this road through the Alborz Mountains. Check this site for more images.
Photo: ninara

Cabot Trail winding road

5. Cabot Trail, Canada
Wrapping around northern Nova Scotia’s Cape Breton Island, the Cabot Trail is mountainous and windy with near-constant ocean views. I recommend biking it.
Photo: kennymatic

Interstate 70, Glenwood Springs

6. I-70 at Glenwood Canyon, Colorado
The Colorado River, of Grand Canyon fame, carved this canyon billions of years ago. The U.S. government built the 12-mile, $490 million interstate route through it, which was only completed in 1992.
Photo: Payton Chung

Millau Bridge

7. Millau Bridge, France
Southern France’s Millau Bridge is the tallest in the world — taller, actually, than the Eiffel Tower.
Photo: tibchris

Karakoram Highway

8. Karakoram Highway, Pakistan
The “highest paved international road in the world” connects Pakistan with Xinjiang, China. It is currently closed at the Hunza Valley due to a massive landslide.
Photo: Umair Mohsin

Snowdonia roads

9. Mountain road, Snowdonia, Wales
Mountainous northern Wales is traversed by many of these ancient, narrow, stone-walled roads. I’ve experienced the challenge of navigating them at night. With oncoming traffic. Car renters beware.
Photo: Richard0

Ice road, Northwest Territories

10. Ice Highway, Canada
Winter means greater accessibility in northern Canada. This frozen road runs up the Northwest Territories.
Photo: madmack66

Chapman's Peak road

11. Chapman’s Peak Drive, South Africa
Another great coastal road, this one just 15 miles south of Cape Town.
Photo: Raveesh Vyas

Peru mountain pass

12. Mountain road, central Peru
Most mountain pass roads in Peru qualify as “spectacular.” This one runs north from the Sacred Valley town of Ollantaytambo and is part of the car route to Machu Picchu.
Photo: ThiagoJ

Liwa desert highway

13. Liwa, UAE
Roads through the desert oasis of Liwa, Abu Dhabi, stretch long.
Photo: Luca Assen

Glacier National Park road

14. Going-to-the-Sun Road, Montana
The only route through Glacier National Park was featured in the opening scenes of “The Shining.”
Photo: Colin Gregory Palmer

Mývatn, Iceland

15. Mývatn, Iceland
Mývatn is a volcanically active region in northern Iceland. This road will take you there.
Photo: Francesco_G

Florida Keys highway

16. Seven Mile Bridge, Florida Keys
U.S. Highway 1 runs for miles over the water, connecting the Florida Keys to the mainland. It includes this long span of bridge.
Photo: milan.boers

Gotthard Pass, Alps

17. Gotthard Pass, Switzerland
Traveling north from Italy into Switzerland, you’ll come to Gotthard Pass, which you can cross on either the new, straightforward road, or the old roller coaster above. My money’s on the latter.
Photo: Mikael Miettinen

High Atlas pass

18. Tichka Pass, Morocco
I recently drove over the 2260m Tichka Pass on my way to Zagora to ride a camel. The pass was cooler. No offense, camel.
Photo: cliffwilliams

Big Sur highway bridge

19. Pacific Coast Highway, California
This is the only road getting reprised from the original post. It seems to deserve it.
Photo: tibchris

Irish rainbow

20. Dingle Peninsula, Ireland
The roads of western Ireland are narrow, flanked by green, and sometimes charmed.
Photo: ktylerconk


  1. err Abg Man,....yang mana satu nak layan kayuh ni?

  2. Al if you have the money or if for me, none of the above. Actually if read the actual post, some of them have alternatives for the car-less, like Great Ocean Road (Great Ocean Walk instead), Cabot Trail for biking etc. But if I can helicoptered the bike to the top, I don't mind riding down with the gravity! ;-) Hehe. can you imagine riding down on Stelvio Pass or the one in Switzerland?