Tag Archives: Austria

50 million years ago, we would have been deep under the Tethys Sea, swimming with trilobites. Today, however, we can sip coffee (or homemade schnapps, for non-drivers) in the sunshine outside alpine huts, well over a mile above sea level.

Times have changed, here in the Nockberge…

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Have you ever dreamed of designing your own country? Mine would have Sydney’s warm, dry climate; the mountains, forests and meadows of Austria; the cuisine and wines of Italy, and Hong Kong’s low taxes. As far as I know, nowhere has all of these qualities, but I think I’ve found somewhere that comes close. The Italian region of South Tyrol, known as Alto Adige in Italian and Südtirol in German, matches most of my criteria – although I would need to do some work on the tax regime.


Explore this region on our journey –



Explore stylish and historic European cities, including Salzburg, Vienna and Ljubljana; and drive beautiful roads over mountains, through vineyards and along gorgeous stretches of Mediterranean coastline. Stay in wonderful hotels both big and small, discover delicious local cuisines and meet the people and artisans who make this region so varied & vibrant

Where about?

Day 1: Berchtesgaden (Germany)
Day 2: Berchtesgaden (Germany) & Salzburg (Austria)
Day 3: Berchtesgaden (Germany) to South Tyrol (Italy)
Day 4: In and around South Tyrol (Italy)
Day 5: South Tyrol (Italy) to Istria (Croatia)
Day 6: In & around Istria (Croatia)
Day 7: In & around Istria (Croatia)
Day 8: Istria (Croatia) to Ljubljana (Slovenia)
Day 9: Ljubljana (Slovenia) to Otocec (Slovenia)
Day 10: Otocec (Slovenia) to Vienna (Austria)
Day 11: In Vienna (Austria)
Day 12: Life must go on…

What you will discover

– a journey that will take you to Salzburg, Vienna & Ljubljana, some of Europe’s most romantic cities.

– Explore and get a taste of five countries: Austria, Italy, Croatia, Slovenia and the Bavarian corner of Germany 

– Drive from the glorious Dolimiti UNESCO region of the Alps to the little known, deep blue Adriatic Sea (the eastern corner of the Mediterranean) –from Summit to Sea, in other words.

Journey Dossier

View here

Interested Links…

Feeling peckish?
Go to South Tyrolean apple farmers’ lovely website.
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Feeling adventurous?
Visit the website of the multi-site: Messner Mountain Museum, which is housed in unusual properties from castles to underground bunkers across Tyrol
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Merry Christmas!

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We hope you had enjoyable summer months. For us, July and August were incredibly busy, not so much because of journeys, but because preparations for 2017 are in full swing! Here’s what we’ve been up to and what you can expect to come.

Water Splashing Festival


image1Looking back… 
Over the summer, we published some fun reading on our Detours blog:

What a Day?! – Here is a story about a very special day on my most recent research trip in Europe

· Part 1: A holiday? Not exactly…

· Part 2: Impatient to be free…

· Part 3: I know one when I see one…

Jo has written a story about traveling from Luang Prabang in Lao to Lhasa in Tibet…a route that lies at the heart of our new, 2017 “Lands of Silk and Snow” journey (see below).

And Mareen published a story about a day in her life working at On the Road.



image2Looking forward… 
In September, we will be announcing two entirely new journeys for 2017.

From Lao to Tibet…

First out of the gate will be “Lands of Silk and Snow: From Luang Prabang to Lhasa”, our entirely new journey to Tibet. Imagine driving from the lush rain forests of Lao to the stupendous mountains of Tibet, from a culture inspired by one form of Buddhism to that inspired by another. For this magical journey you need 16 days, but you can shorten it to 12 days if you skip the Lao portion.

On the other hand, if you want to make it into the journey of a lifetime, then add Roads on the Roof of the World at the end to drive all the way to the Mt. Everest Base Camp. Driving tours don’t get any better than this in Asia!





image3Austrian Hungarian Lands: Vienna, the Adriatic, the Alps and Prague

And then comes a milestone for us.  After several private group journeys in Europe, here we are with our first scheduled European journey you can join in spring or autumn 2017.

If you would like to

· spoil yourself with beautiful hotels,

· eat fine meals (not always Michelin star, but the best these regions have to offer the way “mom used to cook it”),

· drive on some of the world most beautiful roads and

· immerse yourself in the landscapes and cultures of Austria, Slovenia, Croatia and the Czech Republic, there is no better journey in the world.



Travel Inspirations for the coming months…
From now until February, here are some border-crossing journey ideas for you:

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All the best from On the Road Experiences for the lovely month of September!


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Europe is the cradle of the motorcar and private motoring. Ever since Karl Benz’s 1886 Motorwagen, people have taken pride in owning a car and being in its driver’s seat. Driving in a beautiful car bespeaks privilege, freedom, privacy, and, especially in an open-top car, allows one to be in communion with the elements and natural beauty: soak up the sunshine, feel the wind in your hair, smell the fresh air and the scents of freshly cut grass. Besides, there is the sheer pleasure of being in control, of directing the course of travel: to turn, to go, to stop where and when you feel like it.

These are pleasures that Europeans were the first to enjoy. Most evidently, these are pleasures that can be shared by couples. While it is often the gentleman who takes the driving seat, it was in fact Bertha Benz who undertook the first driving journey (with their two children) in the world. Driving journeys in a cabriolet are something that women have enjoyed ever since, whether as companion or driver.

On the Road in EuropeAdd to this the many other delights of a driving holiday in Europe – private concerts or car museums, the dazzling sights of sparkling Alpine lakes, the smell of sweets freshly baked, a home-cooked meal in a restaurant in the middle of nowhere and time together with friends or family a driving holiday in Europe is the perfect blend of sweet adventure and world-class comfort!

Visit our European journeys page for itinerary ideas. And remember: soon we will introduce our first scheduled, European journey for 2017.


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For most people and much of human history, mountain passes evoked visions or memories of anything but pleasure. Instead, they were associated with the pinnacle of hardship as traders, exhausted and starving, struggled to carry their wares across mountain ranges wrapped in deep snow and whipped by ferocious winds. Or they were frozen graveyards of soldiers since mountain ranges formed natural boundaries turned political borders. Mountain passes were the places where one came face-to-face with the enemy and the violence of war.

The Tremola

One of more than 300 passes in the Alps…(c) Swiss Tourism

How different my world is.  I grew up in the heart of the Alps and in a period of peace and unprecedented wealth creation: there are fabulous roads to drive across the Alps and the only enemy I recall encountering at the top of a mountain pass was a bird that shat into my open-top car while I got myself a grilled sausage from a stand by the roadside.

According to one website for motorbikers, there are over 300 mountain passes dotting the Alps. I must have driven across at least a third of them, including some of the highest, like the Col de la Bonette in eastern France.

On the S314, Tibet...

On the S314, Tibet…

(When I drove across this one many years ago I felt quite proud, though I’ve since driven over a mountain pass on the S304 in Tibet that’s early twice as high, topping out at 5,450m.)

Once, on one day alone, I crossed fifteen Alpine passes. On days like these, when I have the luxury of driving for fun, the agony of waking to the sound of an alarm clock in the early hours of the morning was almost instantaneously replaced with eager anticipation of the treat to come. In no time, I was up, dressed, had put on my soft driving shoes (all the better to work the pedals), and had rushed out to my car.

My home town Bregenz (c) Bregenz Tourism

My home town Bregenz (c) Bregenz Tourism

On that morning I started off in Bregenz, an Austrian town by Lake Constance.   At first, with the early morning temperature hovering around five degrees Celsius, the car’s engine was still cold, not ready to be put through its paces. The engine spluttered and vibrated edgily in its compartment. But by the time I reached the city boundaries, heading south, it was purring and I was raring to go.

When the last of the city’s stop-lights turned green, it threw open the road before me.  I sped up and found myself rushing toward immense beauty: the black, purple, pink and orange of dawn in the Rhine valley.  There was the instant thrill of being pressed into my seat, feeling the engine coming, then coming again, and again, as I shifted through the gears. It was a sensation of total immersion and bursting free, both at the same time.

Near the Bielerhoehe...

Near the Bielerhoehe…

About an hour later, the sun rose and divided the world in two, the still-dark valleys below and the glorious mountains above. In fact, I had finished climbing the first mountain, the Bielerhöhe, which separates Austria’s two western-most states, and was already descending into a Tyrolean valley, negotiating hairpin turns on the way down, one after another.

The only way I can describe driving among those mountains on that day is as a sensation of near-flight

Come back for the continuation of On days like these … soon…


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… to love what you do. We love what we do – creating the world’s greatest driving holidays for you!

We share our passion for driving journeys in this beautiful video about our newest adventure, On the Road in Europe:

For more videos, please visit this page

On the Road Signature

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