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  • Writer's pictureJohn

Road Trips to Relish

The open road, sun in the sky and another day's adventuring to wherever our whims take us! We’re highlighting some of the most iconic road trips around the world, with hints and tips on what to see and where to stay. Then check out our unique Vacay Weather app that tailors your search for the ideal time and place, weatherwise, to take to the road!


Imagine the Amalfi!

Amalfi Coast
There's a new and enchanting vista at every twist and turn along the Amalfi coastline

To whet your appetite, what better place to start than the Amalfi Coast of Italy? The weather, the views, the architecture, the food, the history! We could go on.... in fact we will!

Best time of year to visit

First things first - the weather. This 50km stretch of coastline from Sorrento to Salerno has a microclimate of its own, which means that even in midwinter, the Amalfi is milder than the surrounding region. With temperatures in the teens, this is the quietest time to tour, and brings a charm of its own. But we recommend spring or autumn for that perfect blend of colour and comfortable warmth. Summer days can be very hot, especially if you stop off inland in the middle of the day. Thank goodness the coast brings not only stunning views but a refreshingly cool breeze too!

Stop and see

Start your trip with a walking tour of the medieval streets of Naples and refuel with a slice of pizza. Did you know it was invented here?! Head south to Mount Vesuvius, the only active volcano in mainland Europe. Explore the ancient ruins of Pompeii. Don’t miss Sorrento, with sweeping views of the Bay of Naples and the Island of Capri; or Positano - with its pastel coloured houses clinging to the cliff face.

A place to stay

Set in the mountains high above the Amalfi Coast sits the Belmond Hotel Caruso The hotel dates back to the 11th century when a noble Roman family, en-route to Constantinople, became shipwrecked off the coast of Ravello. They built the palazzo high on the clifftop, as a symbol of their survival. In 2000, Belmond began restoring the medieval palace, uncovering original frescos and returning the rooms to their former glory.


Cruising the Pacific Highway

Golden Gate Bridge, San Francisco
The iconic Golden Gate Bridge is just one 'must see' landmark on the Pacific Highway

We’re off to the west coast of the USA and taking to Highway 101! From giant redwoods to near-desert plains; from secluded sandy beaches to some of the world’s greatest cities - the Pacific Highway road-trip overflows with all the variety that this great continent can offer.

Best time of year to visit

Expect all sorts! Thankfully, the nearby ocean acts as a mild, moderating influence on temperature, which means this road trip can be made at any time of year. However, winter can bring some wet and windy days and the midsummer sun can be stifling, especially on some southern stretches. So we recommend the late spring for warmth and freshness or the early autumn, when the trees are beginning to turn. Pack for variety and you’re good to go! Every season on Highway 101 brings its own charm.

Stop and see

Santa Barbara - catch a classic California sunset from Stearns Wharf, California’s oldest working wharf.

San Fran - with so much to do in the city you’ll definitely need a few days here. Lombard Street is known as the most crooked street in the world, with its eight hairpin turns. Check out Pier 39 - where you’ll see plenty of playful, barking California sea lions; and you can’t fail to notice the iconic 746 foot-tall orange towers of the Golden Gate Bridge!

Muir Woods - immerse yourself in nature with a hike and gaze up in wonder at the soaring redwoods, some of which are over 150 years old.

Carmel-by-the-Sea - one of Californias most beautiful seaside hideaways. Combine this with a trip to Monterey on the scenic 17-mile Drive and make time for the Monterey Bay Aquarium.

A place to stay

Spend the day by the pool, strolling along Butterfly Beach or relax in the award-winning spa. Sleep in the beachfront Ty Warner Villa, which features a 180-degree view of Butterfly Beach, with its own oceanfront plunge pool. What a place to spend a few nights on your Pacific Coast adventure!


The gorgeous Garden Route

Cape of Good Hope, South Africa
Why not start your journey at the Cape of Good Hope - looking out over the Southern Ocean?

For our next road trip, we’re heading to South Africa. The Garden Route has a name that gives a promising clue to the rich assault on the senses you’ll find along this 300km coastal stretch. Dramatic coasts, rich forests and some very very tempting vineyards. There’s beauty and variety at almost every turn. Oh - and the wildlife - stunning - on land and at sea!

Best time of year to visit

We recommend spring for the vibrant fresh blooms, but it’s genuinely a road trip for all seasons. Thanks to the ocean influence, temperatures rarely fall below 10 or rise above 30 Celsius. This is a mild climate. Showers occur year-round, but sunshine is abundant, with the latter meaning the shades will be more useful than the waterproofs.

Stop and see

Storms River Suspension Bridge spans 77 metres and sits just 7 metres above Storms River as it enters the Indian Ocean. Originally built in 1969, but since rebuilt to ensure its safety, it remains one of the most popular tourist destinations on the Eastern Cape.

Visit the Cango Caves to see some of the biggest stalagmite formations in the world. One of the main attractions is Cleopatra’s Needle, which stands 9 metres high and is around 150 000 years old!

Experience an unforgettable walk with Elephants at the Knysna Elephant Park. The park was the first in South Africa to offer a home to orphaned elephants.

Featherbed Nature Reserve - it’s best to book an organised tour, so catch the ferry at the Knysna Waterfront and sail across the lagoon. Take a 4x4 to the top of the mountain for some breathtaking views of the lagoon, then head back down along the coastal path to enjoy a delicious lunch.

A place to stay

There are 16 suites at the Emily Moon River Lodge all open onto private decks with views of the the Bitou River or the wetlands below. The rooms are all uniquely decorated with artefacts that the owners have collected from their travels all over Africa, Asia and Polynesia. The lodge is located within easy reach of Plettenburg Bay which is reputed to have the most beautiful coastline in South Africa.

We hope this has given you just a few ideas to tempt you to a road trip. These are some of our favourites, but there are so many more around the globe. Remember: the Vacay Weather app helps you search for the perfect time and place to choose your trip of a lifetime! And our Climate Guide gives detailed stats on the typical weather through the year across the world's capital cities.


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