Freedom... to go where you want to go
The key to seeing everything you want to see, without getting lost, is to think each trip through properly.
- When planning a drive in a country you don't know, make a rough list of what you could do in the time that you have... and then cut your list in half!
- Remember that the more distance you cover, the less you will actually do or see - you can spend too much time in a car.
- Work out how much driving you feel happy to do each day and the distance that represents.
- Build your route, leaving time for sightseeing and rest-stops on the way.
- Remember that motorway driving may be faster, but it is duller and more fatiguing than driving on smaller roads.
- Don't plan too rigidly. Drive for a day or two and you will have a much better idea of driving conditions and the speed at which you can expect to travel (Germany, for example, will be a lot faster than Portugal).
- Decide in advance what to do if you make an error and avoid last-minute corrections which can be dangerous. The best option is usually to agree to come off at the next motorway exit or stop at the first convenient lay-by.
Local tourist boards and large-scale touring maps often show you routes of particular interest to visitors. They are usually green or brown and are often worth following. Examples include wine routes in France, or castle routes in Germany.