The world’s most underrated and overrated road trips

Many travelers have often dreamed of getting in the car and heading off on Route 66 or another epic road trip.

But what do some of the roads less traveled have to offer?

While there are thousands of great road trips that people aren’t aware of, this is just a snapshot of some of the most popular.

Top 10 most underrated road trips

Rank road trip Country % of “good” reviews Annual search volume Overall rating /10
1 Causeway coastal road UK 98.1% 23,700 9.19
2 Route des Crêtes France 98.5% 131,200 8.27
3 Foothills Walk United States 97.5% 68,700 8.17
3 Lamar Valley United States 97.4% 68,000 8.17
5 Ridge Road Trail United States 98.6% 156,400 7.86
6 Beartooth Highway United States 98.2% 142,300 7.66
7 Napoleon Road France 100.0% 270 200 7.45
7 San Juan Airway United States 95.7% 24,780 7.45
7 Needles Highway United States 97.9% 140,500 7.45
ten Great St. Bernard Pass Italy 96.4% 82,800 7.25

1. Causeway Coastal Route, UK

% of “good” reviews: 98.1%

Annual search volume: 23,700

The Causeway Coast in Northern Ireland is one of the UK’s most rugged and raw beauty spots. One of the best ways to experience the coast is on this scenic drive from Belfast to Derry. Although 98.1% of Tripadvisor reviews of the trip are positive, the road trip has only had 23,700 searches in the last 12 months.

To put that into perspective, the famous Route 66 journey had over 6.5 million searches over the same period. This is surprising given the fame of the Causeway Coastal Route. The trip includes many popular sites such as the Glens of Antrim, as well as well-known Game of Thrones filming locations.

2. Route des Crêtes, France

% of “good” reviews: 98.5%

Annual search volume: 131,200

Another lesser known route is the Route des Crêtes in the Vosges of eastern France. The route extends from Sainte-Marie-aux-Mines to Cernay, through the Regional Natural Park of Ballons des Vosges, culminating at more than 950m. Despite the stunning views and excellent reviews from those who took it, this trip was only searched for 131,200 times last year.

3. Foothills Parkway, USA

% of “good” reviews: 97.5%

Annual search volume: 68,700

There are 2 road trips that tied for third place, both in the United States. The first is the Foothills Parkway in Tennessee. As the name suggests, the route extends from the foothills of the Great Smoky Mountains and heads into the Tennessee Valley. The route offers spectacular views of both, and is actually still under construction, with new sections constantly being added.

3. Lamar Valley, USA

% of “good” reviews: 97.4%

Annual search volume: 68,000

Located in the northeast corner of Yellowstone National Park, the Lamar Valley offers some of the most awe-inspiring scenery in the country. Despite this, the route only saw 68,000 people search for it last year.

The area is often referred to as “the American Serengeti”, with plenty of wildlife to spot such as wolves, bison, pronghorn, badgers, bears, and more.

The world’s most underrated road trips

1. Nandi Hills, India

% of “good” reviews: 81.7%

Annual search volume: 1.96 million

In contrast, the Nandi Hills in India are crowned with the most overrated road trip. Its ratio of 81.7% of positive opinions is still a good score. But given that the trip has been searched for nearly 2 million times in a year, you’d expect slightly more positive ratings.

The route is a popular trip, but this very popularity has led to overcrowding and commercialization of the area in the eyes of some.

2. Route 66, USA

% of “good” reviews: 89.1%

Annual search volume: 6.52 million

Being perhaps the most famous road trip in the world, it would always be difficult for the famous Route 66 to live up to the hype. The route received more than 6.5 million annual searches last year, far more than any other route.

But, despite many positives, Route 66 is a very long journey, much of which takes you through very flat and unremarkable landscapes. Much of the highway is a simple 2 lane road which is poorly maintained in places. This may explain why the route received fewer positive reviews than the other road trips analyzed.

3. Road to Hana, Maui, Hawaii, USA

% of “good” reviews: 83.4%

Annual search volume: 801,500

Another well-known ride that failed to win over some visitors is the Road to Hana in Maui, Hawaii. The Road to Hana is an epic journey that stretches 104.4 km along the coast. However, reviews claim that some sites aren’t as spectacular as you’d hope.

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