With scenery that will blow your mind, and twists and turns that will ignite your love for driving, these are the 5 best driving roads in South Africa (and probably the world!)
Yes, besides Top Gear's insistence that the best driving roads in the world are found in Europe, we know full well (and politely so) that this is just not true.
The best and purest driving roads are in fact found in South Africa, in a country more stunning and climatically vast than than the entirety of Europe's traffic-clogged underbelly. Not only are our roads fantastic to drive - they boast unrivaled African-wild scenery that will blow your mind.
Chapman's peak meander is a Godly offering of tarred wonder, but does not make this list because it's always too busy!
Truthfully, this list can be made way longer than it is and can even be written to include mountain passes that are untarred too, like Sani pass in KZN, Prince Alfred's in the Southern Cape and of course the majestic and Karoo'd Swartberg, but we decided rather to stick to Top Gear's rules that insist the best driving roads have to be tarred, which truthfully - no matter the amount of 4X4 fun that can be had on gravel - is correct.
Prince Alfred's Pass
Die Swartberg Pass
Sani Pass, which ends at the highest pub in Africa so don't drink and drive bro!
Indeed, the feeling of freedom is extraordinary driving these five roads, and we wish that everyone who reads this gets the chance to do so soon! It will be as much your driving pleasure as it is ours writing about it.
Number 1 comes with a video that will get you smiling for the rest of the day!
5. Outeniqua Pass, Western Cape
Pure driving magic, situated between the ostrich stronghold of the semi-desert and the extraordinary garden route of the Southern Cape's coast, the Outeniqua Pass is a meander of mesmerising mountain bends and views that will keep you entertained from the moment you enter it until the moment you leave. We dig it. You will too.
4. Clarens Drive, Western Cape
Barely an hour's drive from Cape Town is one of the most extraordinary mountain-cum-coastal meanders in the world, made prettier by the fact that it borders an untouched range of Fynbos-buried mountains, that tower on one side and steeply slope down into the relentless energy of False Bay waters. Look out for whales here - it only adds to the experience!
3. Meiringspoort, Western Cape
Best experienced with a loud V12 (if you have one lying around), Meiringspoort is a chiseled oasis in the Karoo desert that swings about in a wander, perfectly flat with F1 twists that should be enjoyed by all drivers the world over - even you! At the end of it, have a swim in a literal desert oasis, turn around and do it all again.
2. Long Tom Pass, Mpumulanga
Few regions in South Africa are more brilliant than its khaki north-east corner, and few driving roads are as scenic than its most extraordinary of passes - the The Long Tom - which is situated in the heart of the world's safari capital. It is a road to remember, from left to right, from start to end, that makes you just want to turn around and do it all again. African sunsets here, in our most real and thorny of bushvelds, are unmatched.
1. Franschoek Pass, Western Cape
Starting in the heart of criss-crossed winelands (or leading there) the Franschoek Pass is a wonder to drive. It peaks on top of an extraordinary look out, and unravels either way in a perfectly tarred miracle. We absolutely love it, but wonder if this extraordinary drifting video of "Mad Mike" Whiddett has made us a little bit biased! Enjoy. It is worth every second of data - you have our word.