Our Rental Car in New Zealand

Our Plans for a European Road Trip

After finally completing the school year in Vietnam we are itching to dive into the excitement and trepidation of travel again; of new places, plans and ideas. In fact, we’ve plunged straight in, fleeing Hanoi by night train on the very day we completed our final classes and now we look forward to months of new adventures. There will be a huge difference in the next stage of our journey though, we’re saying goodbye to the often hellish bus and train trips we’ve been used to in Asia and travelling by rental car through America and Europe instead.

Road Trips Galore

The first road trip Andrew and I ever took together was from England down to the South of France in a battered Peugeot 106 in 2007. We spent three weeks staying on a campsite in Fréjus, taking trips in our trusty steed to nearby towns and beaches and as far away as Cannes and Montpellier. Although The Steed had no air con and his windshield got cracked when Andrew through a pail of cold water on it in the blistering heat, I loved the freedom of exploring by car, of being able to change our route, listen to our own music and stop off whenever we liked.

Our Rental Car in New Zealand

Road-tripping in New Zealand

Our European Road Trip Plans

We still often reminisce about the road trips we took through New Zealand and Australia too; in fact we recall them longingly practically every time we find ourselves stuck on an endless Asian bus journey where we’re assaulted by booming music and crammed in with dozens of other passengers in the sweltering heat. So, when we began planning the next stage of our travels, we decided that road trips were definitely the way to go and we’re starting with an epic one this autumn in the U.S.

After more than two years of constant summer I ache to experience my favourite season again and I hear that there’s no better place to watch the leaves change colour than in New England. We’ll be visiting the U.S. for three whole months and two of those will be spent chasing the fall foliage through forests and National Parks and along the jagged coastline past lighthouses and through seaside towns. I have a vivid mental image of this part of the country, largely formed by the Stephen King books that I grew up with, so I can’t wait to discover New England for real.

Driving the Great Ocean Road, Australia

Driving The Great Ocean Road

After stopping back in England for Christmas we plan to continue our road-trip theme by exploring Europe by car. The plans aren’t yet finalised but we’re thinking of flying to Croatia in the New Year and driving through Slovenia, Austria and the Czech Republic. Depending on our bank balance we’ll continue driving until we need to stop and work; we’ve got our sights set on living in Spain to teach again.

Although we still have months to go before we head off on our European adventure, I am a self-confessed obsessive compulsive travel planner, so we like to spend the odd hour looking at maps and researching routes and finding apartments on AirB&B. I can’t wait to embark on a new European road trip!

Do you have any advice for our road trips through the U.S or Europe?

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7 Comments
  • Patti
    Posted at 20:22h, 24 May Reply

    Road trips are my absolute favorite! You can see and do so much when you road trip. Each day is a new adventure because you never know what you’re going to come across, a site to see, a place to stay and you can just stop when you want to, there is such freedom! You’re going to have a fabulous time!

    • Amy
      Posted at 03:06h, 26 May Reply

      You summed up the advantages of a road trip right there Patti! I absolutely can’t wait! Oh, and we’ll be visiting Washington D.C in November too so if you’re around it would be great to meet 🙂

  • Katie
    Posted at 03:22h, 29 May Reply

    Love a road trip!

    America is PERFECT for them – we took one in California in 2011 and were struck by how the States is perfectly designed for cars. Not like cramped old Blighty at all – it’s all wide open roads and big (plentiful!) car parking spaces. You’ll have a blast and I am a little bit jealous!

    Your route sounds really interesting – it must be hard to decide with so many possibilities! I actually have a schoolfriend who works in Madrid as an English teacher at the moment and he really likes it.

    • Amy
      Posted at 09:30h, 29 May Reply

      Sounds amazing Katie, I can’t wait for our U.S road trip! We still only have a rough idea about what we’re going to do Europe so I’m looking forward to planning that 🙂

  • Louisa Klimentos
    Posted at 08:31h, 01 June Reply

    Wow ,you will love your trip and what an amazing travel plan! I really wish you all the best and when my son recovers from his tree accident ,i will encourage him to travel Japan and hope you will visit it one day,love louisa

  • Louisa Klimentos
    Posted at 23:05h, 08 July Reply

    I hope you get to see Bryce Canyon near salt lake city during your visit to the US,i have been told it is quite spectacular and when you do the road trip in Europe, i hope you can visit Norway because it is something like New Zealand .It has Fiords and they are breath taking apparently.

    • Amy
      Posted at 14:10h, 09 July Reply

      Oh, thanks for the tips, I would love to visit Norway, my parents took a cruise there and they loved it 🙂

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