Best Roads in the World (BimmerFile Edition)

We all have our own sacred pieces of pavement around the world that we treasure. And while many of us keep a few of those close to our chests, today we ‘re going to share a few favorites with all of our readers. And after that, we ‘d love to hear about your favorites. Where they are, when to drive ’em, what to bring, and why they ‘re the best.

Here ‘s a quick list of some of my personal favorites from my travels:

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  • Mike

    Saw Mill River Parkway, Westchester County, NY. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saw_Mill_River_Parkway

    I travel this road every day from Elmsford to it Northern terminus at Interstate 684. The horizontal and vertical curves on this road make it a dream for the BMW enthusiast. I do it every day and love it. Hitting those curves is so much fun it can’t be explained, you just have to do it. Southbound from I684 to I287 is the most fun. I’ve reached very high speeds dipping and curving on this perfect road.

  • adc

    During my 2007 Euro Delivery I drove many superb roads, but three absolutely stand out from the rest: 1. The Stelvio Pass in Italy. 48 switchbacks going up on the North side, 36 coming down on the other side, it’s a driver’s paradise. Low and medium speed with imperfect asphalt, will require all your attention and skill to drive fast – but the majestic views are worth it. You can only go in the summer (usually opens in June). 2. The B500 Schwarzwaldhochstrasse (Black Forest High Road) in Germany. Go in from the South and drive through picture-perfect German towns and villages such as Triberg, the capital of the cuckoo clock. Generally composed of high speed sweepers draped over mountain crests, with amazing asphalt and views. 3. The N85 in Southern France going up from Nice towards Gap, also known as Route Napoleon. Again very high speed sweepers in low/medium altitude hilly terrain, with great surfacing, wide lanes and many overtaking opportunities. Can be driven as fast as you dare – it’s one of the favorite romping grounds of many supercar drivers.

    I will most certainly go back to all these roads, they left an indelible impression.

  • Chaz

    ADC – I followed the B500 based on your recommendations, but wasn’t sure exactly what part of the road you were refering to, as I found it a little dissapointing (expecially compared to the other two). I did find lots of side roads going off from the B500 (in the northern part) had some dramatic drives down from the crest.

    Were you talking about the southern part (Waldshut to Triberg) or the Northern part – the Schwarzwaldhochstraße (Freudenstadt to Baden Baden)

  • I agree the road down into Adenau is a pretty good drive. When I popped my Nürburgruing cherry I drove there from the Frankfurt-Hahn airport. This is the approximate route taken.

    The roads along the Moselle and then up and over the hills towards Nürburg were pretty nice to drive as well.

  • Joe

    Anyone from the New England area should be familiar with the Kancamagus Hwy. It’s a fantastic 35 mile piece of road through the White Mountain National Forest featuring breathtaking mountain vistas and plenty of twisties and elevation changes to keep the driver entertained. It’s a great drive.

  • Drill

    I’ve been on the Dragon and the Ring but now that I live in Stuttgart I’ll have to check the B500 out. Do you have anymore advice adc?

  • adc

    Chaz, I especially enjoyed the Northern part of the B500. I entered the southern part from the Freiberg/Tittisee area and it was indeed a little crowded.

    If there is interest, I can post a Google map link with the route for any prospective drivers… and more on that this summer, for my next Euro Delivery.

  • Nick

    It’s cool to see Highway 1 south of Monterey listed in your top 3!

    I’m going to be taking a trip to the west coast with my girlfriend this summer. We plan on starting up in Vancouver and driving down the coast making stops in Seattle, Portland, San Francisco, and LA.

    So here’s a question to all of you: particularly for the drive from San Francisco to LA I’d love to rent a BMW as the roads are supposed to be excellent for driving. Does anyone have any recommendations on where one might rent a BMW for a one-way trip such as this?

  • adc

    This is the route I took in the Black Forest: http://maps.google.com/maps?f=d&source=s_d&saddr=Titisee+germany&daddr=B500%2FFrejusstra%C3%9Fe+to:48.339821,8.258972+to:B500%2FSchwarzwaldhochstra%C3%9Fe+to:baden+baden+germany&hl=en&geocode=%3BFQCI3gIdfrh9AA%3B%3BFewr5QIdAIJ9AA%3B&mra=dpe&mrcr=0&mrsp=2&sz=9&via=1,2,3&sll=48.337995,8.382568&sspn=0.943898,1.768799&ie=UTF8&ll=48.418264,8.376389&spn=0.235605,0.4422&z=11

    And indeed, the best part was from Freudenstadt to Baden-Baden. But basically you can follow any route that gets you South-North, just make sure you zoom in sufficiently in order to select the one with the most squiggles.

  • lava

    skyline drive through the national park is fun, but you really can’t go fast there

  • Love the 305 starting in Berchtesgaden heading towards Garmisch and picking up the 307 onto 13 then onto 2 finally onto Garmisch. You can take the A-Bahn back up to Munich after all the fun on those twisties. Great road quality and can be high speed (at your own risk) depending on traffic. This route is generally along the Deutsche Alpenstrasse. One of my favorites.

    Then of course there is the Grossglockner High Alpine Road

    Closer to home: The approach to the Bear Mountain Bridge, Route 9w and Storm King are fun as well.. Map.