Wanderlust on Wheels: 11 Best Scenic Routes to Explore in Europe by Camper Van

Rachel Frum | Live the World

April 28, 2023

Buckle those seatbelts and get ready for the drive of your life through rugged mountain passes to coastal villages, all from the comfort of your four-wheeled home.

Europe is known for its stunning natural scenery, extensive history, and many cultures. A road trip in a camper van is one of the best ways to take in everything that this magnificent continent has to offer. From the undulating hills of Tuscany to the untamed coastline of the Wild Atlantic Way, Europe is home to a variety of picturesque routes that are ideal for travelling by camper van. Travellers have the chance to find undiscovered treasures and breathtaking panoramas on each route, which each has its own distinct charm and personality. Europe's geography is entwined with its history. From the Roman Empire through the Renaissance and beyond, human activity has altered the continent over many centuries. Many of the beautiful routes in Europe follow these ancient pathways, passing by historic cities, towns, and sites. Through these routes, you can discover the rich cultural history of the continent, from the Romantic Road in Germany to the Appian Way in Rome, with its ancient ruins and mediaeval castles.

However, Europe's beauty may also be seen in the amazing natural settings that make up much of its continent. Europe is home to some of the most exquisite scenery in the world, from the majestic Alps to the clear seas of the Norwegian fjords. Driving the Transfagarasan Highway in Romania or touring the untamed Dalmatian Coast in Croatia are just two examples of the magnificent routes that wind through these landscapes and give you a chance to fully appreciate their magnificence. A camper van road trip through Europe is, in essence, a voyage through the continent's past, present, and future. It's a chance to discover the continent's undiscovered regions, get to know its inhabitants, and discover its enchantment for yourself. So, grab your keys, start the engine, and prepare to go out on an unforgettable journey!

Buying or Renting a Camper Van

A platform called Goboony connects potential camper van buyers and renters with private sellers. Renting or purchasing a camper van with Goboony might have several advantages whether you're preparing for a quick weekend getaway or a lengthy excursion.

You can pick from a variety of privately owned vehicles if you're thinking about renting a camper van with Goboony. This means that regardless of whether you desire a tiny, basic van or a large, deluxe RV, you can choose a camper van that suits your preferences and budget. In addition to flexibility and convenience, renting a camper van with Goboony allows you to pick up and return the vehicle wherever is most convenient for you. In addition, a lot of Goboony owners include amenities like mattresses, kitchenware, and outdoor gear, allowing you to travel light while still having everything you need.

Through Goboony, you may browse a variety of vehicles and get in touch with private sellers of camper vans if you're thinking about doing so. The ability to go whenever and wherever you choose, without having to bother about making travel or lodging arrangements, can be provided by purchasing a camper van. A camper van purchase with Goboony can also give buyers peace of mind because the platform confirms the ownership and documentation of every vehicle displayed. Goboony can assist you in locating the ideal vehicle for your explorations, whether you choose a new or used van, a contemporary or classic type.

Rothenburg ob der Tauber

Between Würzburg and Füssen, a distance of around 350 kilometres, lies the gorgeous and historic Romantic Road, which passes through some of Germany's most picturesque regions and quaintest villages. Once in Würzburg, check out this Walking Tour. One of the most well-known scenic drives in the nation, the route was initially developed in the 1950s as a strategy to encourage tourism in post-war Germany. You may get a taste of the rich cultural legacy and history of the area as you travel along the Romantic Road through the heart of Bavaria. Travellers can experience medieval villages, fairy tale castles, and beautiful natural landscapes en route, such as the rocky Bavarian Alps and the rolling hills of the Franconian wine area. There’s even a Würzburg Walking Tour with a Franconian Wine Tasting.

The magnificent Würzburg Residenz Palace, which was constructed in the 18th century for the prince-bishops of Würzburg and is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is one of the highlights of the Romantic Road. The scenic town of Rothenburg ob der Tauber, which is popular for its restored medieval architecture and charming town square, is another must-see location. Be sure to check out either the Rothenburg ob der Tauber Private Guided Walking Tour or the Rothenburg Old Town Private Walking Tour to explore different parts of the town. Additionally, travellers can go to the Neuschwanstein Castle, which was constructed in the 19th century by King Ludwig II of Bavaria and is thought to have served as the model for the Sleeping Beauty castle at Disneyland. Book this Premium Tour of Neuschwanstein Castle and Linderhof Palace to Skip-the-Line.

Cliffs of Moher

The 2,500-kilometer-long Wild Atlantic Way follows Ireland's west coast from the Inishowen Peninsula in the north to Kinsale in the south. It was introduced in 2014 and has since grown to be one of Ireland's top travelling routes thanks to its amazing vistas of the country's wild coastline, beautiful beaches, and quaint towns. Six distinct regions, each with its own culture, history, and natural beauty, are traversed throughout the trip. For instance, the gorgeous Malin Head, Ireland's northernmost point, and the Fanad Head Lighthouse, which Lonely Planet named the second-most beautiful lighthouse in the world, are both located in the north. The Gaelic culture of the west area is on show in places like Dingle and the Aran Islands, where traditional music, language, and customs are still practised. To experience Dingle more in depth, why not take a Self-Guided Biking Tour?

The Cliffs of Moher, which climb up to 214 metres above the Atlantic Ocean and provide breathtaking panoramic views of the surrounding area, are one of the highlights of the Wild Atlantic Way. This Half Day Express Cliffs of Moher Tour is sure to check all the boxes. Off the coast of County Kerry, the Skellig Islands are another must-see location. If you want to get closer to the water, try this Whale and Dolphin Watching Boat Tour. On Skellig Michael, there is a monastery colony from the sixth century that is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Adventure enthusiasts will love the Wild Atlantic Way since it provides so many chances for outdoor pursuits including surfing, kayaking, and hiking. Along with the friendly welcome of the inhabitants, travellers may also savour the fresh seafood and traditional Irish cuisine of the area.

Norwegian Fjords

The long, narrow sea inlets known as fjords in Norway are a singular and breathtaking sight to witness. They are encircled by sheer cliffs and mountains. The 104-kilometre Geiranger-Trollstigen National Tourist Route, which travels through some of Norway's most picturesque regions, is one of the most well-liked routes for discovering the fjords. You'll travel through quaint towns and villages, cross bridges over raging rivers, and negotiate hairpin curves and challenging mountain slopes along the way. The village of Geiranger, which sits at the mouth of the magnificent Geirangerfjord, is one of the highlights of the Geiranger-Trollstigen. If you’re feeling adventurous, try this 3 Hour Kayak Tour in Geirangerfjord. Or if you want to unwind, take this Bus Tour in Geiranger and the fjords. One of the most photographed places in Norway, the fjord is flanked by snow-capped mountains and gushing waterfalls. You may take a ferry from Geiranger to the neighbouring town of Hellesylt, which has even more breathtaking views of the fjords.

Trollstigen, also known as ‘The Troll's Path’, is another well-liked stop along the way. It is a steep, twisting mountain road that provides breathtaking views of the area's mountains and valleys. If dogs and hiking are right up your alley, take this Guided Hike by Trollstigen with a Husky. If you would prefer to explore the village and the fjords, try this Half Day Village and Fjord Sightseeing Tour. You can stop at a number of viewpoint locations along the road to admire the breathtaking surroundings. You may enjoy the distinctive culture and traditions of the area while driving a camper van around the fjords of Norway. In addition to seeing lovely villages and towns where you can engage with residents and learn about their way of life, this also includes experiencing regional cuisine, such as fresh seafood and traditional Norwegian delicacies.

Transfagarasan Highway

Romania's Fagaras Mountains are crossed by the breathtaking Transfagarasan Highway, a mountain route. The Transylvanian Alps are where the route traverses, and it is frequently cited as one of the world's most beautiful drives. The route extends for more than 90 kilometres and tops out at an elevation of 2,042 metres. If you want to go through the Translyvanian Alps, Carparthian Mountains, and see beautiful castles, then this Tour of Castles and the Surrounding Area is for you. The Transfagarasan Highway was constructed in the 1970s as a vital military route, but it has since grown in popularity as a popular tourist destination thanks to its magnificent scenery and dizzying bends. The route allows visitors to get a close-up view of the Carpathian Mountains and is open from June to October every year. If you want to truly experience the Mountains, take this 1-Day Hiking Tour.

The route offers breathtaking views of glacial lakes, flowing waterfalls, and towering hills, making it the perfect getaway spot for nature enthusiasts and adventurers. Along the way, there are a lot of hiking paths and camping places, letting travellers explore the area's natural beauty at their own speed. The Balea Lake, which is situated at the Transfagarasan Highway's highest point and provides breathtaking views of the surrounding mountains, is one of its main attractions. Explore the Balea Lake, the Fagaras Mountains, and Cistercian Monestary on this tour. The Balea Waterfall, one of Romania's tallest waterfalls, is accessible via cable car as well. The Transfagarasan Highway is known for its natural beauty, but it is also the location of a number of important cultural and historical sites, including the Poienari Castle, the former home of Vlad the Impaler, the model for Bram Stoker's Dracula.

The Basque Country

Located on the western edge of the Pyrenees Mountains, the Basque Country is a distinctive area that straddles both France and Spain. If you feel daring, why not take exploring the Pyrenees Mountains to the next level with this Paragliding Experience? Travellers seeking to see another side of Europe frequently visit the Basque Country because of its untamed coastline, undulating hills, and distinctive cultural heritage. With a distinct language, customs, and food from the rest of Europe, the area has a rich history and culture. The history of the area is strongly entwined with Basque culture, as evidenced by the presence of Basque communities dating back thousands of years. Through its museums, festivals, and gastronomy, the Basque Country offers visitors a chance to learn more about the distinctive cultural history of the area.

The rocky coastline of the Basque Country, which is home to a lot of beaches, cliffs, and fishing communities, is one of its highlights. With world-class waves at locations like Biarritz and Hossegor, the Basque Coast is a well-liked surfing destination. San Sebastian and Saint-Jean-de-Luz are two beautiful seaside towns in the area that give visitors an opportunity to see the region's distinctive fusion of French and Spanish culture. To explore San Sebastian more in depth, take a Guided E-Bike Tour or an Evening Pintxos Wine Tour. Travel through Biarritze and San Sebastian on this Basque Country Tour or you can go on this Tour which also includes Saint-Jean-de-Luz.

The Basque Country is renowned for its picturesque villages, verdant forests, and rolling hills in the interior. As a result of the abundance of trails and cycling paths that wind through the picturesque countryside, the area is a well-liked vacation spot for hikers and cyclists. The cuisine of the Basque Country has become known for its focus on natural, regional ingredients and distinctive flavours. Visitors can try regional specialities like seafood stew, cheesecake made in the Basque style, and pintxos (Basque tapas).

Hvar

Croatia's Dalmatian Coast is a breathtaking section of land that hugs the Adriatic Sea's eastern side. Travellers seeking to enjoy the splendour of the Mediterranean flock to the area because of its pure waters, stunning beaches, and quaint coastal towns. Many historic cities, such as Dubrovnik, Split, and Zadar, can be found along the Dalmatian Coast, giving tourists the chance to learn more about the area's rich cultural legacy. Want to do something totally unique in Split? Then try this Paddleboard Night Glow Tour. If you prefer to sit, then take this Half Day Kayaking Tour in Dubrovnik! If thrilling adventure is your thing, this Sunset Zipline Experience followed by Wine Tasting is for you. The Old Town of Dubrovnik, which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and has served as a filming site for hit TV shows and motion pictures like Star Wars and Game of Thrones (which you can even take a tour for!), is particularly well-known for being well-preserved.

The Dalmatian Coast is recognised not only for its ancient cities but also for its stunning natural splendour. A number of national parks, such as the Krka National Park and the Paklenica National Park, are located in the area, giving tourists the chance to explore the area's lush woods, flowing waterfalls, and stunning mountain ranges. With this tour, you can go from Split to the Krka Waterfalls! The beautiful coastline and crystal-clear waters along the Dalmatian Coast are some of its best features. Multiple gorgeous beaches can be found in the area, including Zlatni Rat, which is frequently cited as one of Europe's most beautiful beaches. A boat tour of adjacent islands like Hvar and Korcula, which have gorgeous beaches and quiet coves, is another option for travellers. Walk through the Culture and HIstory of Korcula with this Tour or this Hvar Cave and Beach Tour. Last but not least, the Dalmatian Coast is renowned for its delectable cuisine, which combines influences from Eastern Europe and the Mediterranean. Feel free to try local dishes including pasticada, a slow-cooked beef stew, and fresh seafood and grilled meats.

The Great Alpine Road

The Great Alpine Road is a beautiful driving route that crosses the Austrian Alps from Bregenz, which is located on the shores of Lake Constance, to Grado, which is located in northern Italy. The roughly 450-kilometre journey passes through some of Europe's most breathtaking mountain landscapes. The Great Alpine Road passes through charming alpine communities and provides travellers with breathtaking vistas of snow-capped mountains, glistening lakes, and verdant valleys. The Grossglockner High Alpine Road, one of the highlights of the route, passes through the Hohe Tauern National Park and provides incredible panoramas of Austria's highest peak, the Grossglockner. Paraglide your way through Grossglockner with this experience or try canyoning and rafting in Salzburg.

The Great Alpine Road is known for both its incredible scenery and its extensive cultural history. The route passes through a number of historic towns, including Salzburg and Innsbruck, which provide travellers the chance to learn more about Austria's rich history and culture. Innsbruck, in particular, is famed for its well-preserved Old Town, which displays magnificent Baroque architecture and is home to various historical attractions such as the Golden Roof and the Imperial Palace. You can also taste the local cuisine with this Food Walking Tour. Along the way, camper vans can also make pit stops at a number of quaint mountain towns, including Zell am See and St Anton am Arlberg, where travellers can sample the hospitality and food of the country's past.

Ring Road

The 1,332-kilometre-long Ring Road, usually referred to as Route 1, circles Iceland's whole island. The road travels via glaciers, waterfalls, volcanoes, and hot springs, some of the most spectacular natural features on earth. The Ring Road is a well-liked stopping point for tourists who want to take in Iceland's breathtaking scenery. The Ring Road is a favoured stopping point for travellers who want to take in Iceland's amazing beauty. The road passes by various national parks, including as Vatnajökull and ingvellir, which give travellers a chance to study the nation's distinctive geology and wildlife. Get a closer look at Vatnajökull glacier with this Ice Cave Tour or try the Skaftafell Glacier Hike. The Jökulsárlón glacier lagoon, which is filled with enormous chunks of ice that have broken off from surrounding glaciers, is one of the highlights of the journey.

The Ring Road is famous for its vibrant culture in addition to its natural beauty. Drivers will pass through a number of quaint coastal communities along the way, like Akureyri and Vik, which provide tourists a chance to explore Iceland's rich history and culture. You can even take a Northern Lights Tour in Akureyri to learn all about the aurora borealis. A stop at the Vatnshellir Cave offers one of the most distinctive cultural experiences along the journey, allowing travellers to explore a subterranean lava tube and learn about the local geology. The route also gives travellers the ability to partake in a variety of outdoor pursuits, such as hiking, horseback riding, kayaking, and even hiking on glaciers. Bathing in one of the many hot springs in the nation, including the Blue Lagoon or the Mvatn Nature Baths, is among the most popular pastimes to do along the road.

Baltic Coast - Estonia

Lithuania, Latvia, and Estonia are part of the stunning Baltic Coast, a region of Northern Europe. The area is noted for its extensive lengths of white sand beaches, picturesque seaside towns, and rich cultural legacy. It is situated along the eastern shore of the Baltic Sea. Even while each nation has its own unique traditions and customs, they are nonetheless bound together by a common history and geography. Since the Baltic Coast has long served as a significant hub for trade and commerce, a wide range of cultures and civilisations have left their mark there. Enjoy the singing of the birds with this Guided Birdwatching Tour in Lithuania.

The Curonian Spit, a 98-kilometre-long spit of land that runs between the coasts of Russia and Lithuania, is one of the most well-known locations along the Baltic Coast. The spit is renowned for its magnificent sand dunes, some of which can be up to 60 metres tall. The sand dunes can be explored on foot, by bicycle, or by riding in a horse-drawn carriage. Nida, Palanga, and Pärnu are just a few of the wonderful seaside towns in the area. Experience the Best of Pärnu with this Tour.These small towns, with their charming streets, vibrant buildings, and traditional architecture, provide travellers a chance to discover the distinctive culture and history of the area. The region is also home to a number of historical sites, including the UNESCO World Heritage Site that is the Old Town of Riga and the Hill of Crosses in Lithuania, a sacred location with thousands of crosses. This Hill of Crosses Tour allows you to explore this site in depth.

North Coast

From Porto to the Spanish border, the North Coast of Portugal is a stunning region. The area is renowned for its rocky coastline, quaint fishing towns, and rich history and culture. The city of Porto, which is well-known for its historic centre, the Ribeira, which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is one of the primary draws of the North Coast. Get a taste of home by taking this Pastel de Nata Cooking Class with Grandma’s Recipe. The ancient town's meandering alleyways and vibrant buildings can be explored by visitors, who can also try the local port wine. The Douro Valley, known for its wineries and vineyards, is another well-liked vacation spot along the North Coast. Visitors can enjoy a leisurely boat ride down the river or have a picturesque drive over the valley's meandering pathways, like with this All Inclusive Tour.

Additionally, the area is recognised for its beautiful beaches, including Praia da Luz and Praia de Moledo. Visitors to these beaches can unwind on the sand, go swimming in the ocean, or engage in a number of water sports, including windsurfing and surfing. The Bom Jesus do Monte Sanctuary andthe Castle of Guimares, both of which are renowned pilgrimage destinations, are two more historic sites that can be found along the North Coast. The North Coast is well-liked by foodies in addition to those who are interested in natural beauty and extensive history. The region has a reputation for its traditional foods, such as the Francesinha, a sandwich filled with gammon, sausage and sirloin and topped with cheese and a hot tomato sauce, as well as its fresh seafood, such as sardines and cod.

Tuscany Trail

The Tuscany Trail in Italy is renowned for its scenic countryside, gently undulating hills, and charming medieval villages. The ideal way to begin your trip to Tuscany is by travelling to the city of Florence. Ride in style in Tuscany with this Horseback Riding Tour. Florence is a centre of culture and history and is renowned for its amazing art and architecture. You can take to the road after touring the city and drive through the picturesque Tuscan countryside to see the vineyards. Among the most beautiful places to visit is the Val d'Orcia. It is famed for its rolling hills, vineyards, and cypress trees and is situated in southern Tuscany. Along the way, you can make stops at several vineyards to taste some of the region's well-known wines, like Chianti and Brunello di Montalcino and take a tour of Chianti including a Food and Wine Tasting.

Another must-see location is the medieval city of Siena. Siena, a UNESCO World Heritage site, is regarded as one of the most attractive towns in Italy because of its old city centre, winding streets, and breathtaking architecture. Feel free to take a 2 Hour Walking Tour with Skip-the-Line Duomo Tickets or hit three places in one with this Tour. You will get the chance to sample the local cuisine as you travel around Tuscany in a camper van. Tuscan food is simple yet flavourful, featuring dishes like bistecca alla fiorentina, a meaty steak cooked to perfection, and ribollita, a substantial vegetable soup.

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