Top European Driving Destinations

July 25, 2011 | By | In Buying Guides

Have you had enough of flying? So have we! There’s nothing worse than being crammed onto an overcrowded and sweaty aircraft with hundreds of other angry-looking passengers – it’s no way to start your holiday. And besides, many think the days of cheap flights are numbered, so maybe it’s time to start considering other options.

Have you ever thought of taking the car? We’re lucky enough to live in one of the most accessible continents in the world, and ever since the Channel Tunnel opened in 1994, getting to Europe by car is easy, relatively inexpensive, and pretty speedy too.

Driving to your holiday destination is also a very satisfying way of travelling – you can enjoy the scenery, stop at your leisure, take diversions to local highlights, and all of this in the comfort of your own car. We’d definitely recommend it – and to give you a few ideas, here are our five favourite European destinations.

Northern Spain Spain is very well known for budget breaks on the Costas, but the northern coast is stunning too, with a slightly more traditional Spanish feel. It’s also well within driving reach, offering you the chance to catch a bit of France on the way down.

Total drive time from Dover is around 14 hours, so we’d recommend a stop-off in somewhere like Poitiers on the way down. Skip quickly through the slightly industrial feeling border town of Irun, and make San Sebastian your destination – it’s a fantastic seaside town, (think a glamorous, Spanish-style Brighton), with some of the best tapas around. View Larger Map

Eastern Europe Popularised in recent years by the budget airline boom, Eastern Europe is actually well within driving distance, despite the fact that culturally, it feels like a world away. You are totally spoilt for choice, with a range of fascinating cities to visit, so why not visit a few? Prague, Krakow and Budapest form an easy triangle.

Eastern Europe would really make for a different road trip – one to tell the grandchildren about – and with Prague just 11 hours from Dover, it has to be worth a thought. View Larger Map South France The best thing about heading to the south of France by car as opposed to plane is that you’ll have the car once you’re there. It’s about 15 hours to get down there, but once you hit the coast, there are so many amazing destinations within a short distance of each other. Cannes, Monaco, Nice, Antibes – pottering between these during the summer is total paradise. It’s so much easier by car than in public transport too – and the air con will not go amiss!

One top tip for film and motorsport fans would be to head down at the time of the F1 and the film festival (these fall around the same time of year) – the cars and yachts on show will blow your mind!

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