The greatest driving road in the world

August 22, 2009

For car and bike enthusiasts, the road is a major part of the passion. You can have the fastest, tightest, biggest, smallest or simply the best car in the world, but without a good road to drive it on, it would be completely redundant; because you ultimately will not enjoy it. From living in Kuwait for the past 9 years I have come to the conclusion that I’m not so sure a good driving road exists, or at least maybe not in Kuwait. We make do with a 20-30km or so stretch of tarmac from the end of the 6th Ring Road stretching all the way to lets say the end of the Arabian Gulf Street. It’s filled with potholes, has slow traffic lights and is always jam packed with boys chasing girls, has little to no scenery as most of the waterfront has now been covered up by gigantic trees, gyms, malls, toilets, anything you can think of, but that road is the best we have. I personally love driving the streets alongside the Kuwait University Shwaikh campus; its an old stretch of tarmac, rough and noisy but the road has a great combination of roundabouts and slight bends for a good spirited drive, late at night.

There has been a quest, by the car enthusiast for many years to find the greatest driving road in the world. The Top Gear crew tackled this issue on an episode (Series 10, Episode 1) that aired sometime mid 2007, they drove across Italy, Switzerland and Slovenia in a Lamborghini Gallardo Superleggera, Porsche 911 GT3 RS and a race prepped Aston Martin V8 Vantage attempting to answer the question of “Where is the best driving road in the world?”. They were looking for “something that has everything, the challenging bends, no traffic, great views, long fast straights, the lot.” They quickly decided that the best driving road would be somewhere in Europe around Italy and the Alps and after a few days exploring their choices eventually decided to give the award of the best driving road in the world to the Stelvio Pass; a beautiful, 15 mile stretch of asphalt climbing a valley of the Alps.

Perhaps they were too quick to throw out all of the other options. National Geographic have recently compiled what they call ‘Drives of a Lifetime: The World’s Greatest Scenic Routes’, and they believe this to be a list of the best scenic roads around the world. Now i know National Geographic are not the worlds best biggest lunatics but their choice of roads is sure worth a look at. Have a look HERE.

I can also think of one or two roads friends of mine have brought to my attention but never got the exposure.

The first one is Tail of the Dragon, Deal’s Gap, North Carolina. The photos and stories i have seen and heard about this place make it sound really scary, i would love to fight this road.

And the second is somewhere closer to home, the Jebel Hafeet Mountain Road in the United Arab Emirates.
I can just imagine the screaming exhaust note of a big V8 echoing off of the hard rock surface of the mountain, and it sounds like fun to me.

Any other great roads come to mind?

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One Response to “The greatest driving road in the world”

  1. Shli7f said

    Dude, seriously, we should go to Abu Dhabi someday in the near future and try that road….with our cars..:)…talk about cool ass road trip..!

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