Throughout the entire world, there are beautiful sights, comfy vacation spots, and interesting venues. Some are tailored to a specific breed of individual, especially those that focus on automotive enthusiasts. To see the best of the best, look no further than Europe.
Not only is Europe the home of many automotive manufacturers, but it’s also the home of motor sports itself. During the decades that have passed, Europe has been the home of many different locations, which car lovers can only dream of visiting. So, even though there are too many options to list here, these ten are arguably the best places for any gear-head to visit.
10 The Bentley Factory
For those who fancy luxury and pedigree mixed into one, the Bentley factory may just be the perfect place. Like many other high-end automakers, Bentley offers tours of its factory and production line.
Visiting the factory allows car enthusiasts to get a first hand look at how these stunning cars are made. Seeing the intense detail that goes into every inch of design and the mechanical excellence required to build the luxurious supercar certainly helps you to understand why they cost so much.
9 Pagani Factory
As mentioned previously, Bentley is not alone in offering tours of their headquarters. In fact, multiple companies do exactly that. Even the relatively new (If you count their start in the ‘90s as “new”) hypercar manufacturer Pagani gives pedestrians an opportunity to see the in’s and out’s of their workshop.
Obviously, the Pagani factory is quite large. There’s a lot to see when you visit it, including a small museum where some of the latest and greatest Pagani models are on display. Also, it’s only a short drive away from the legendary Modena, Italy: The home of many beautiful creations.
8 The Autobahn
Odds are if you’ve ever studied Germany before, you likely heard about the famous “Autobahn.” A long stretch of highway that has no speed limits, no rules, and is incredibly dangerous.
However, this danger isn’t guaranteed. Only those who go way too fast for their own good are the ones who end up being scrapped off the pavement. Nonetheless, it’s an engineering marvel made doubly impressive by the lack of law enforcement. For once, you can live out your Need For Speed dreams. Just be careful!
7 Mercedes-Benz Museum, Germany
Museums often get a bad wrap. Some view them as boring or outdated, especially now since the Internet can show us so much information. Although these critics may be correct in a certain sense, there’s nothing quite like seeing these things in person. Thankfully, Mercedes-Benz has a museum that exemplifies that notion.
Nestled comfortably next to the Neckar River in Stuttgart, Germany, the Mercedes-Benz museum not only holds wonderful works of art inside but is also itself a work of art. The architectural design put into building the museum is more than enough to lure in car lovers and draftsman alike. Just don’t get too distracted by the building, though, lest you miss the treasures inside.
6 Stelvio Pass
Nowadays, roads seem to be boring and formulaic, especially in the states. They typically have a few things in common: Long straights, seemingly endless highways, and cops lurking around nearly every corner. Luckily, though, Europe isn’t always the same way.
To see just how good a road can really be, look no further than Italy’s Stelvio Pass: A road so high up in the mountains that it’s frequently shut down during winter months. If you get a chance to go, though, you will see one of the coolest passes in all of Europe with sharp hairpins and beautiful sights the entire way. It’s even better if you have a Ferrari to go with it.
5 Silverstone, U.K.
The United Kingdom; home of Fish and Chips, teatime, and (Most importantly) the motorsports. The U.K. has a rich history in all things automotive making and automotive racing and the Silverstone Circuit is where Formula One got its start.
Back in 1950, Formula One was barely even a fledgling sport. During the late ‘40s, most competitors didn’t even race for a championship. That all changed, though, at Silverstone where the first Championship race was held. As such, Silverstone is a historically significant place. Not only for its track, but also for the culture of the people surrounding it. Mostly because you have to love racing to be able to stand living next to one of their favorite places to go.
4 Circuit De La Sarthe (Le Mans)
As far as motor sports history goes, only a few places eclipse the likes of Silverstone and Monaco. One example is the now 96-year-old Le Mans 24 Hour Circuit: The Circuit De La Sarthe.
After opening in 1923, the Circuit De La Sarthe hosted races for almost every series. Although, after the cars became faster, the track needed some changes to accommodate them. Now, the track doesn’t look the same as it did back then. Regardless of that, it’s still a wonderful venue to see. Chiefly during the running of the fabled ’24 Hours of Le Mans.’
3 Nurburgring Nordschleife
It’s rare that something receives the title of “Hell,” but it’s even rarer when it’s used as a badge of honor. Luckily, the Nurburgring Nordschleife isn’t actually hell on Earth, but rather a “Green Hell.”
The title of “Green Hell” is derived from the then F1 driver Jackie Stewart after winning the 1968 German GP. He described it as such for both its thick wilderness surrounding the track and the deep complexity of the track itself. Don’t be scared away from it, though, because anyone can drive on that same circuit for a small fee.
It may be difficult, however, it’s much less so when you're not screaming down the road at 160+ M.P.H. in a classic F1 car. Either way, it’s something that every motor sports lover should see at least once in his or her lifetime.
Name a place with luxury, opulence and a profound racing history which is called “home” by multiple Formula One drivers. If you didn’t immediately think of Monaco/Monte-Carlo, then you should think again.
Monaco is a small city-state situated in the South of France. Don’t be mistaken by its size, though, because Monaco is one of the wealthiest cities in all of the Mediterranean. To add to this, it's also home to one of the most highly regarded F1 races of every season: The Monaco GP. So, whether you like racing or just cars in general, odds are you’ll find what you’re looking for and more on the streets of Monte-Carlo.
1 Ferrari Factory
If you consider yourself a ‘car guy’ or ‘car girl,’ you’d have to be insane to be in Italy and not see the renowned Ferrari factory in Maranello, Italy. It has everything an automotive enthusiast could ask for: Museums, merchandise, Ferrari’s, and a personal racetrack.
Ferrari is, arguably, the king of sports cars. They have worldwide brand recognition; multiple wins across several racing series, and a litany of artfully crafted road cars. So, naturally, the best place to see them all in one go is the Ferrari factory. You can see their production lines, tour their museum, and spy on some testing runs at the Fiorano circuit.
For Ferrari fans, heaven is indeed a place on Earth, and it’s called Maranello.