List of the Top-100 Most Scenic Roads in the World
This is a list of the top-100 most scenic roads in the world, segmented by continent.
Since early 2010 I have been road tripping the world on a quest to visit the most scenic roads. My goal is to visit all 100! It may take many years, even a lifetime to complete, but without goals, we have no direction.
This list starts with North America, at the bottom you will find links for the other scenic roads listed by continent. I have indicated if I have already done the road trip and provided links to any additional content.
This is not a complete list, so if you have any suggestions for scenic roads or scenic road trips that should be included, please leave a comment below for consideration.
Canada offers one of the most out-of-the-world road trip experiences in North America. A vast country of great contrasts, Canada offers breathtaking mountain views, rolling coastlines, sparkling waters, and a variety of flora and fauna that will mesmerize you. Get your get cameras and maps, load the car with necessary supplies and let’s have the ride of our lives on the most scenic roads Canada has to offer!
Sea to Sky in British Columbia is one of the most scenic roads in the western part of Canada (Completed)
Starting near Vancouver in the Horseshoe Bay Village, the Sea to Sky Highway (or Highway 99) is one of the most dazzling roads in North America. It will take you about two hours to complete the 254-mile journey. You can’t miss the breathtaking view of Shannon Falls, the amazing Lynn Canyon Suspension Bridge, Whistler Mountain and the continuous stretch of the Coast Mountain and infinite ocean and verdant forests. The mixture of natural and human-made wonders on this stretch of paradise will blow your mind.
Icefields Parkway is one of the most scenic roads in Alberta
The Icefields Parkway is a 143-mile road linking Banff and Jasper National Parks. This enchanting road is bejeweled with subliminal waterfalls, snow-topped peaks of the Canadian Rockies, pristine lakes, forested meadows, limestone cliffs, and an abundance of wildlife. This three-hour journey will take you across bubbling springs, alpine forests and the ethereal 125-mile-square Columbia Icefield.
Trans-Canada Highway Between Revelstoke and Lake Louise is another scenic road trip in Alberta
At 4,860 miles, the Trans-Canada Highway is the longest national road in the world, extending from the country’s Pacific coast, to its Atlantic coast. The Revelstoke and Lake Louise part of the road will take you across four islands, through national parks, lush forests, sparkling glaciers, imposing peaks, prairies, lakes and everything in between. Keep an eye out for the mesmerizing emerald-green alpine lakes in Banff National Park.
Yet another scenic road in Alberta is the Canadian Badlands
The picturesque Canadian Badlands is an exciting environment that takes you back to the time of the dinosaurs. The coulee landscapes, the staggering 80,000 plus specimens and 35 intact dinosaur skeletons displayed at the Royal Tyrell Museum, the hoodoo mountains, and the sandstone ridges are unforgettable sights. If you want to experience Jurassic Park for real, then this is the place to go.
Viking Trail in Newfoundland is one of the scenic roads on the eastern part of the country (Partially Completed)
The 303 mile Viking Trail is the only road to the Gros Morne National Park of Canada and L’Anse aux Meadows National Historic Site of Canada which is the first settlement of Norse sailors in North America, and both are UNESCO World Heritage sites. The trip showcases the rich heritage of the aborigines of Newfoundland and offers breathtaking views of waterfalls, glaciers, fields of wildflower, and fjords.
Fundy Coastal Drive in New Brunswick (Completed)
This scenic 243-mile road will take you along the Fundy Coastal Drive on the Canada/US border. The Bay of Fundy, with the world’s highest tide, is a true wonder of nature. The road stretches as far as the eyes can see, with lighthouses, wetlands, forests, beaches, villages, and idyllic towns. You don’t want to miss the fun at Moncton’s Magic Mountain Water Theme Park, or the spectacular waterfalls at Fundy National Park and the wildlife at the Waterfowl Park. Click the following link for a New Brunswick Road Trip Guide to the Bay of Fundy.
The Cabot Trail on Cape Breton Island in Nova Scotia
If you want to experience the best hiking in Nova Scotia, the 185-mile-long Cabot Trail is the ultimate hiker’s paradise, making it one of the most scenic road trips in Canada. The road offers breathtaking views of enchanting lakes, cliff-top vistas, the glistening ocean, and spectacular river valleys. Wildlife is abundant, including black bears, moose, coyote, bald eagles, and lynx. You can take a break from driving for a quick dip in the cool waters of Highlands Links golf course. Click the following link for more information on doing a Nova Scotia road trip.
Highway 4 (Pacific Rim Highway) from Parksville to Tofino Vancouver Island, BC.
Highway 4 takes you through the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve, which is why it’s called the Pacific Rim Highway as well as Tofino, Port Alberni and the beautiful surfing beaches along the way. The single-lane road can be a bit difficult to navigate due to many twists and turns. Watch out for cascading waterfalls at the Kennedy Lake River and check out the rumbling waves at the Ucluelet Wild Pacific Trail as well as the fantastic marine life at Ucluelet Aquarium.
Tip-to-Tip Prince Edward Island (Completed)
The three-hour tip-to-tip journey of Prince Edward Island is one of the best ways to explore this great chunk of land. The East Point Lighthouse and the North Point Lighthouse are the popular starting points, and you can climb to the top of the East Point Lighthouse for a breathtaking view of the coastline. On your way, you can visit the Prince Edward Island Preserve Company, the Greenwich National Park, and an amazing art and culture scene is bubbling all over the island. Click the following link for a PEI Road Trip Guide.
America is a sprawling country with some of the most scenic roads on the planet. If you want to explore the USA, no better way to do it than by car. The best road trips in the country will take you through some iconic places. Here are some of the best scenic road trip roads in the U.S.
US Route 128, Moab, Utah is one of the most scenic roads in the Southwest (Completed)
This incredible stretch of road is what movies are made of. As a matter of fact, this road and its scenery have been seen on the silver screen countless times. From western movies to television commercials, Route 128 is undoubtedly one of America’s most scenic roads. This stretch shown below snakes though the red rock desert following the mighty Colorado River.
Seven Mile Bridge in Florida is one of the most scenic roads in the southern part of the country
The Seven Mile Bridge is an engineering masterpiece on the Florida Overseas Highway, the 106-mile segment of the U.S. 1 traversing Key Largo to Key West. The Seven Mile Bridge left the world awe-struck after its completion in the early 1900s. The road and the bridge offer breathtaking views showcasing the true beauty of the American landscape. If you find yourself around the Florida Keys, you don’t want to miss this ride for anything in the world. Don’t rush through this drive if you want to enjoy it. Take a detour and visit the Key Largo’s Dolphin Research Center, the Pennekamp Coral Reef Park and sample the delicacies of the locality.
Blue Ridge Parkway in North Carolina/Virginia (Partially Completed)
The Blue Ridge Parkway extends for 469 miles from North Carolina’s Great Smoky Mountains National Park to Shenandoah National Park in Virginia. This iconic road passes by Mount Pisgah which has some of the best hiking trails in the South. Watch out for the Mabry Mill and Rocky Knob and other Great Smoky attractions in North Carolina.
Pacific Coast Highway in California is one of the most iconic roads in the country (Completed)
At 653 miles, the Pacific Coast highway is the longest in California and traverses the Pacific coastline of the state. You can start from Dana Point in Orange County and end the ride at Leggett in Mendocino County. You get to see places like San Simeon, the surfing paradise of Malibu, Big Sur, the iconic Golden Gate Bridge, Monterey and the Mendocino Headlands. You can drive down further to the Redwood Forest after Mendocino for a complete California road trip experience.
Going-to-the-Sun Road in Montana is one of the most scenic roads in the northern part of the U.S. (Completed)
The 52-mile Going to the Sun Road bisects Montana’s Glacier National Park. It’s one of the best ways to see the beautiful park and the two-hour drive should take you through glacial lakes and valleys, cedar forests, and alpine tundra. There are many places to stop and soak in the beauty of the surrounding as the road was built specially for easy access to the park. The road is a National Historic Civil Engineering Landmark and was dedicated in 1933. It’s best to visit in summer as snow makes parts of the road inaccessible in winter.
Hana Highway on Maui, Hawaii
The Hana Highway spans 59 bridges, black sand beaches, and cascades as it extends for 59 miles around the eastern section of Maui. Check out the ‘Ohe’o Gulch (Seven Sacred Pools), the Waimoku Falls at Haleakala National Park, the Pipiwai Trail, the Hana Lava Tube as well as the Ho’okipa lookout to catch a glimpse of the world-famous giant waves of Maui and the surfers riding them.
Maine: Park Loop Road, Acadia National Park (Completed)
The Park Loop Road is so called because it loops around the Acadia National Park. The 40-mile road starts from the jagged Maine coast at Route 3, traversing around the park, taking you through rocky shorelines with an abundance of dense forests teeming with biodiversity. The road takes you to the top of the 1,530-foot Cadillac Mountain, the highest elevation on the North Atlantic seaboard for a breathtaking view of the coast.
Beartooth Highway in Montana (Completed)
The Beartooth Highway in Montana is one of the most scenic roads in the United States. The 68-mile road traverses the 10,947-foot Beartooth Pass between Red Lodge and Cooke City, Montana and has a terminus close to Yellowstone National Park’s northeast entrance. The road is only open in summer.
Highway 89 (aka US Route 89) – photo through Sedona, Arizona (Completed)
Scenic Hwy 89 is an incredible route with many, many scenic stretches throughout its nearly 2000 miles, which runs from the boarder of Mexico in the south, all the way north to Canada through Arizona, Utah, Idaho, Wyoming and Montana. You will see seven National Parks, fourteen National Monuments and three Heritage sites along the way. What makes US 89 so unique is that for the most part, it’s a two-lane road, which means it is a slow road, perfect for watching the scenery and providing ample opportunities to stop and experience the best America has to offer.
Richardson Highway in Alaska
The 366-mile long Richardson Highway offers spectacular views of the Chugach Mountains and Alaska Range, and it’s one of the best places to view glaciers in this far-flung wilderness. The highway connects with several highways, and you can see a great deal of the trans-Alaska pipeline as it transports crude oil from the Arctic to Port Valdez.
I-70 Through Glenwood Canyon in Colorado (Completed)
I-70 through, and east, of Glenwood Springs is one of the most celebrated stretches of interstate in the country with a river running next to the highway with steep canyons dotted with trees.
I typically stay off the interstates but this stretch of I-70 is certainly worth the drive and worthy of being on this list. The highway is divided with some incredible civil engineering where one lane goes through the mountain through a series of tunnels and the other is lower or elevated above the other.
Another iconic road in the United States is Highway 163 through Monument Valley in Arizona & Utah (Completed)
Nature is the most prolific artist mankind has ever known—this is no more evident than while driving down scenic highway 163 through Monument Valley, which borders Arizona to the north and Utah to the south. The stunning scenery does not stop in Monument Valley, but rather continues as you drive through Bluff, Utah and beyond.
Scenic Roads of Mexico coming soon…
Links to the following will be published soon, please check back.