May 16 2024

2024 Official Rating: The best global destinations for a scenic drive

Driving is a unique way to travel - you can see incredible views up close. You can drive at your own pace, whether you want to go slowly and take long breaks to explore on foot, or whether you want to take in the scenery from the window as you make your way from one end of the country to the other.

Last year at, we created a guide to help travelers decide where their next road trip might take them, using real reviews from our customers. We used 150,000+ reviews from customers, based on their experiences of scenic drives, to create a top 20 list of destinations.

This year, we've repeated the research - with a few key differences. This time, to boost the variety in our list, only the highest ranking city from each country has been selected. Also, only destinations which have received more than 500 reviews have been counted. This has created a top 20 list with a greater variety of destinations for readers to pick from. And we used 250,000+ reviews from our customers.
Free to use when crediting using a do-follow hyperlink.
So, let's take a look at the top 10 best destinations for a driving holiday:

Hobart (Australia)

The Australian city of Hobart emerged as the number one destination for a scenic drive, with a rating of 9.25 given by 1,189 reviewers. It's the state capital of the island of Tasmania and sits at the foot of the majestic Mount Wellington, also known as Kunanyi. You can drive right up to the top of the 1270-meter mountain, or use a car for part of the journey to make the hike more manageable if you are interested in climbing on foot.

There's a popular road trip called the Tasmania Grand Circle, which leads drivers from the center of Hobart out around the island. Visitors who set off on this journey will encounter stunningly beautiful national parks and nature reserves, like the nearby Coningham Nature Recreation Area.

Funchal (Portugal)

Funchal, on the Portuguese island of Madeira, ranks in second place, also with an overall rating of 9.19, given by 658 reviewers.

While the city itself is walkable and not that big, getting out and about in a car enables you to explore further afield. Setting off from the city opens up the possibility of driving to a stretch of beautiful coastline anywhere on Madeira. The island is very hilly, giving drivers amazing views from scenic mountain roads.

Madeira has a unique landscape and is home to one of the largest surviving laurisilva or laurel forests, in the world. It's a type of subtropical forest that requires a high level of humidity. Drive out to the Laurisilva Forest (a UNESCO World Heritage Site) to see an ecosystem that has lived on the island for 20 million years - some of the trees themselves are hundreds of years old.

Kefalonia (Greece)

The Greek city-island of Kefalonia placed in 8th position in our ranking last year, and this year it has ranked even higher, in 3rd place. 728 holidaymakers rated Kefalonia a very high 9.13 on average.

If you drive to the harbor of Argostoli in the morning, you might be lucky enough to see the wild sea turtles. When the fishermen dock their boats to sort through their catch and prepare to sell the morning's fresh fish, the turtles swim right up to them in the hopes of getting some scraps.

Another popular tourist destination on the island is the Cave of Melissani, near the coastal town of Sami. Inside the cave is a lake, with water over 20 meters deep that you can row out on. Part of the cave is open to the sky after the roof caved in hundreds of years ago, and the sunlight on the water is a beautiful sight.

Ponta Delgada (Portugal - Azores Islands)

This city is the capital of the Autonomous Region of the Azores, on São Miguel Island. The archipelago of volcanic islands is about 1,400 km west of Lisbon, in the North Atlantic Ocean, and has a mild, sunny climate. Its average rating by 4,623 users was 9.09 when rounded up, the full score being only just under Kefalonia.

One of the most beautiful places to visit on the island is the Lagoa of Sete Citades, not far from Ponta Delgada. Two lakes sit in the crater of a dormant volcano, Lagoa Verde and Lagoa Azul - the Green Lake and the Blue Lake, which reflect the sunlight in stunningly different ways due to the algae species living there.

Visitors to Ponta Delgada also enjoy taking a trip out to Ponta da Ferraria, where you can hike along the rocky shore, or take a dip in a naturally heated thermal pool. Water from the hot springs merges with the cool ocean water, creating a unique experience.

Larnaca (Cyprus)

his port city can be found on the south coast of Cyprus - it combines gorgeous beaches and a lively nightlife with a real sense of history. 2,334 reviewers gave this destination an average score of 9.06.

One amazing attraction near the city of Larnaca is the Larnaca Salt Lakes. In the summer, this network of salt lakes can dry out entirely, and it is said to resemble the surface of the moon. Between November and March, migrating flocks of birds including wild pink flamingo stop here to feed on the lakes' brine shrimp.

Just to the north of the city, you can find the ruins of the ancient city of Kition. The Temple of Aphrodite-Astarte, from the 9th century BCE, is one of the most interesting sites, and there are also incredible examples of Egyptian-style temples.

Christchurch (New Zealand)

Christchurch is New Zealand's second largest city, nicknamed the Garden City because of all the green spaces, parks and botanical gardens to be found here. In the heart of Christchurch, Hagley Park is one of the best examples of these green spaces, with its own Botanic Gardens, cut through by the Avon River. 1,722 users gave Christchurch an average rating of 9.02.

If you drive out to the Port Hills, you will get stunning views of the dramatic landscape formed by an ancient volcano. The Bridle Path Walk is a popular walking route that starts in the hills, taking you just over 2 km to Lyttleton - keep walking and you'll find yourself in the Lyttleton town center.

Just over an hour's drive from Christchurch, you can also find Mount Hutt and Mount Somers - hike through the striking rock formations, or in the winter, you can ski!

Pointe-a-Pitre (Guadeloupe)

Pointe-à-Pitre is a port city on the island of Grande-Terre, in Guadeloupe. This archipelago in the Caribbean is blessed with a tropical climate and beautiful scenery.

Pointe-à-Pitre, Guadeloupe's commercial capital, was rated 8.91 by 596 users, and there are plenty of scenic drives to try here. Why not drive out to Guadeloupe National Park? Head over the bridge over to the neighboring island of Basse-Terre to find an amazing rainforest, with mangrove swamps and waterfalls.

One place that tourists might like to respectfully visit is the cemetery in Morne-a-l'Eau, not far from Pointe-à-Pitre. Looking down from the top of the hill, the cemetery looks like a distant town, with tombs that look like miniature houses, painted in distinctive checkered patterns. On All Saints Day, the local community come here to celebrate with their families and honor the dead.

Menorca (Spain - Balearic Islands)

Menorca, a smaller and quieter island in the Balearics than its popular neighbor Mallorca, is our next recommendation based on our users' reviews. This gem of an island scored 8.89, from 1,589 reviews.

There are plenty of gorgeous beaches that you can drive out to, with coves on the southern coast of the island like Cala Mitjaneta being especially popular attractions. With white sand beaches and water warm enough to swim in, the coast of Menorca is a perfect destination for beach-lovers.

Something that's really fascinating about Menorca is the Talaiotic archaeological history you can find here. This ancient Iron Age culture has left its mark all over the island, mostly in the form of stone monuments and ruins. There are dozens of taulas on the island, structures that look a bit like Stonehenge, and which are thousands of years old.

Lanzarote (Spain - Canary Islands)

Lanzarote, in the Canary Islands, is another lovely destination. 1,844 people gave this island a very high score, averaging 8.83.

Driving through the towns here, you will see that all the houses are painted white, and that windows and doors are painted one of three colors: blue, brown and green. This is due to the influence of the island's artist César Manrique, who encouraged sustainable tourism and development on Lanzarote, and who acted to prevent any more high rise buildings from being built in the 60s.

The lava fields are a truly incredible sight. Volcanic activity hundreds of years ago left a layer of black ash and rocks, but the ground isn't dead. Look closely to see tiny yellow and green lichen growing. In Timanfaya National Park, you can see geysers shooting steam into the air from underground hot springs, heated by magma.

Budapest (Hungary)

The capital of Hungary is in 10th place in our list - 820 happy visitors rated the city 8.81. Gorgeous Budapest is well known for its art nouveau architecture. If you drive out towards the Buda side of the city, on the western bank of the Danube, you will find yourself in the Buda Hills. Adventurous souls might like to explore the caves and tunnels in the hills with the help of a guide.

Or you might like to drive to Tata, just an hour from the capital - this picturesque town has a 14th century castle, and sits on the shores of Öreg Lake. You can go out on the lake by boat, or enjoy the 7km walk around the tranquil park, with a view of distant mountains.

Rounding out the top 20

Here are the remaining destinations where tourists can enjoy a scenic drive in our top 20 roundup.

Munich (Germany) was next, scoring an average of 8.80, according to 903 users on our site. This city is not far from the incredibly pretty Neuschwanstein Castle which looks like an illustration from a book of fairytales.

1,367 users on our website agreed that Keflavik (Iceland) was a great destination, and this town also scored 8.8. Visit the Bergid cliffs for a coastal hike with a view of volcanic lava fields.

Next up, Zagreb (Croatia) scored 8.79 from 1,107 reviewers, closely followed by Skopje (Macedonia) with 8.75 from 649 users. Cape Town (South Africa) was scored 8.73 by 530 users, and Nadi (Fiji) received a score of 8.70 from 535 reviews. Krakow (Poland) was reviewed 1,352 times and scored 8.69 - and 4211 people told us how much they loved visiting Bari (Italy) which scored 8.68. Next was Plaisance (Mauritius) with a score of 8.67 reviewed by 1,559 people and finally, Vienna (Austria) scored 8.66 according to 1,252 users. These scores are all very close!

As you can see, this list of the top 20 destinations for a scenic drive takes us all over the world, with a huge range of different landscapes, from the Larnaca Salt Lakes in Cyprus to the volcanic lava fields of Lanzarote. Where would you like to go the most - a peaceful forest, a sunny beach, or up to the top of a dramatic, craggy mountain range?

If you are planning your next road trip or driving holiday, please consider booking with us - we can help you find a rental car that's just right, in more than 145 countries around the world.


259,408 customers rated destinations they visited out of 10, based on their scenic driving experiences. Only places with 500 reviews and over qualified for the rating. Only one city from each country could rank.

Top Related Locations

Here are some other locations in the countries that were also highly rated by our customers for their scenic drives (many would have made the list if it weren't for the one city rule) We've also included the closest airports.

Aleksandrs Buraks

Head of Growth at
Aleksandrs has over 10 years of experience in marketing with a focus on creating stellar content that provides topical insights using data. Having taken five road trips across Europe and one in the U.S., he is passionate about traveling by car. His favorite countries to visit are Denmark and Thailand. You can find him on Linkedin, Facebook, and Twitter.