Vacationing is a blast. The biggest trouble you might run into is not knowing where the road leads. Sometimes it’s the unknown roads, especially at night, that can cause the most panic for tourists. Of course, you could also live by a path you’ve never traveled before because you’ve heard about how dangerous it is.
The world is full of beautiful places, so with this beauty comes danger. Sometimes you run into this danger on roads you’re traveling. It could be a pothole you didn’t see until the last minute, and now you are on the side of the road with no cell phone range in an unknown area. The way might be near the edge of a cliff that’s thousands of miles high. Sometimes, the reason the road is dangerous is because of a driver. From streets that will make you cringe to desert highways, this list brings you some of the most dangerous roads in the world.
25. Lysevegen, Norway
Norway is not only home to the longest tunnel in the world, which is 15 miles or 24.5 kilometers long, but it’s also home to one of the most dangerous roads. When it comes to Lysevegen, Norway, this dangerous road is also a popular stop for most tourists, even if they aren’t looking for a bit of danger and excitement.
After passing through a tunnel, you are on the road known as Lsevegen. Even though it’s only 18 miles long, 29 Kilometers, it runs along one of Norway’s mountains. The way has 27 hairpin turns on an already narrow road. As you find yourself amazed by the breathtaking view, you’ll also need to pay attention to traffic.
24. Passo dello Stelvio, Italy
The Passo dello Stelvio is one of the most iconic mountains in all of Europe. It’s a mountain pass in northern Italy that borders Switzerland. It has an elevation of 9,045 feet or 2,757 meters above sea level. When it comes to the Eastern Alps, it’s not only the highest paved mountain pass but also the second-highest in the Alps.
Passo Dello Stelvio has 48 hairpin turns along its route and is known to cause so much worry to locals that the police decided experienced drivers only travel it. Of course, this doesn’t mean that they don’t worry about the slithering road as it makes its way down and around part of the mountain.
23. Old Yungas Road, Bolivia
Many people refer to Old Yungas Road in Bolivia as the “Highway to Hell” road. Then, some people say they would instead take the real path to hell than take their chances on this old Bolivian road. Given the nickname as the “death road,” it’s indeed known as one of the most dangerous in the world – and many people have not lived to tell their journey.
The road links La Paz to Coroico and is about 40 miles long. The cliffs overlook a sprawling canyon that features so many sharp turns that you feel going 10 miles per hour over the speed limit is too fast. Most people who travel the road don’t go faster than 10 to 15 miles, and many people that have tend to go over the cliff instead of staying on the road.
22. James Dalton Highway, Alaska
If you’ve seen the History Channel television show, Ice Road Truckers, you’ve learned that nearly every road in Alaska is dangerous during the winter. It seems that they are always full of ice and snow. Many ways are difficult to tell where one side ends, and the other side begins. On top of this, some roads are near cliffs and very narrow.
However, one of the worst roads in the state of Alaska and the world is James Dalton Highway. This is a 414-mile-long road between civilization and the Arctic Sea oil fields. While the road is wider than most on this list, the twists and turns make it dangerous, especially on icy roads. Furthermore, there always seems to be debris from the wind, it’s in the middle of nowhere, and filled with potholes.
21. Passage du Gois, France
Passage du Gois in France is a road between water that runs from d between Île de Noirmoutier and Beauvoir-sur-Mer. It’s one of the smallest streets on the list, only about 2.6 miles or 4.3 kilometers. One of the most significant events that happen every year is the foot race, which always starts at the onset of high tide.
The truth is, the most dangerous aspect of the Passage du Gois is not the road itself; this is relatively safe. It’s the water that runs along the road and causes it to flood at least twice a day. If you’re caught on the path at the wrong time, the tides will have no problem carrying you out to sea. There are many cars that have disappeared because of the waves.
20. Kismayo-Bardera City Road, Somalia
Kismayo-Bardera City Road is one of the most dangerous roads in the world. It’s rumored to be the most dangerous road in Africa. Officials in Somalia are always warning residents and tourists not to travel the way, yet people allow their curiosity to get to them, and this can have negative consequences.
Kismayo-Bardera City Road is close to 300 miles long. The road itself isn’t the most dangerous part. While it’s a gravel road filled with steep and narrow stretches, the most critical part is the illegal checkpoints by violent militias. There are also criminals that hideout in the area and wild animals that roam. Kismayo-Bardera is known to have accidents daily.
19. Kahekili Highway, Hawaii
Kahekili Highway is located in Hawaii, a state in America that people love to visit. It’s known for its continuous 70-degree weather, beautiful water, beaches, and so much more. Most people don’t have too many worries other than Volcanoes and one of the most dangerous roads in the world.
Kahekili Highway is between a cliff edge and a sheer rock face. To make the road a bit more dangerous, it is narrow. However, most people don’t worry about falling off the edge of the cliff – they worry more about the rocks rolling down and onto the road right in front of them.
18. Strada delle 52 Gallerie, Italy
There are some roads that officials don’t want people driving on, such as Strada delle 52 Gallerie in Italy. For decades, the Italian government has asked people, residents, and tourists, to stop taking the road. They refuse to pave or even fix the way in hopes that people will listen to them, but it still hasn’t stopped everyone from turning around once they get to the road.
The name for the road comes from the 52 tunnels you will drive through during your short 4 miles or 5-kilometer ride. If you do take this road, it’s incredibly important to be as cautious as possible because there is no railing to save you from rolling off of the cliff.
17. Route 5, Chile
Route 5 in Chile goes right through one of the driest places in the world, the Atacama Desert. In fact, this is one reason why Route 5 is known as one of the most dangerous roads in the world. There is hardly any civilization around the area, very little chance of having any range to use your cell phone, and it’s challenging to find a place to stop.
Another reason that the road is dangerous is because of the conditions that you’re forced to face, such as the heat. The wind can become so heavy that it’s nearly impossible to see from time to time with all the sand flying in front of your car.
16. Engineer Pass, Colorado
If you want a road that has a lot of mystery and danger on the side, you’ll find it with Engineer Pass in Colorado. From October to May, it’s nearly impossible to pass through the road, but this doesn’t stop people from trying. Fortunately, most don’t make it too far and can escape the danger.
Engineer Pass is Colorado’s highest road, measuring at 12,800 feet above sea level. It’s a part of the Alpine Loop and created of gravel. Along the track is several ghost towns and abandoned mines to give you a bit more of a spooky feeling.
15. Road N15, Cameroon
Cameroon is located in Central Africa and became one of the most dangerous roads because of the snow, ice, and other hazardous weather conditions that affect it. While weather conditions always make a route a bit more dangerous, Road N15 becomes worse than most because it’s a dirt road.
Road N15 is more prone to flooding than many other roads in Central Africa, which adds to the danger. The biggest problem with the flooding is that the road becomes all muddy and nearly impassible. If you try to take the way when it’s flooded, you’ll want to ensure that you have camping gear because you will find yourself stranded.
14. Fairy Meadows Road, Pakistan
Dangerous roads are all over the world. It seems that no country is allowed to escape the chance of a path becoming hazardous. Pakistan has a street called Fairy Meadows, and it’s their most dangerous. Even though you might think the road is safe because of its name, it’s a road that no one should travel on.
The World Health Organization named Fairy Meadows Road the second most dangerous road in the world because of its “treacherous high altitude, unstable and narrow mountain roads.” When you come across another car, you won’t know what to do because there is really nowhere to go.
13. Zoji La, India
Cited as one of the deadliest roads you can ever drive on, Zoji La in India makes this list because, like so many other roads, you simply want to pray you don’t run into another vehicle. While more experienced drivers will find it a bit easier than other people, everyone who takes a trip to Zoji La puts themselves on a suicide mission.
As cars travel in a straight line up the hill, you want to pray that your vehicle can handle the steep drive. You also don’t want to look out the driver’s side window because, well, you’re so high up that you don’t want to take the chance of your car going off the road.
12. Guoliang Tunnel Road, China
Guoliang Tunnel Road in China doesn’t allow people to make a mistake, so you want to ensure you know exactly what you need to do when traveling down the tunnel road. The translation for the road means ‘Road that tolerates no mistakes.’
Even though the tunnel is 16 feet tall and 13 feet wide with a 0.75-mile long opening, you don’t want to speed. It’s a guarantee that you speed you’ll find yourself crashing with another car or into one of the walls.
11. Skippers Canyon Road, New Zealand
Skippers Canyon Road in New Zealand is located on the south island and about 140 years old, which makes it possibly the oldest road on this list. While the way used to be maintained a little better, it isn’t heavily managed anymore, and this is causing it to become more dangerous.
The road isn’t designed for modern cars, and officials aren’t going to change the design. Therefore, it’s a very narrow road with a lot of twists and turns that make a modern-day driver slow down to a near stop. Most people take this road, so they get a glimpse of the magnificent view. However, you need to pay attention to the drop, so you don’t drop.
10. Pan-American Highway
The Pan-American Highway is one of the longest most dangerous roads in the world, stretching over 30,000 miles. When you take this highway from one end to the other, you will pass through 10 countries and find it rather drivable, so you might wonder why it’s one of the most dangerous roads in the world.
One of the main reasons why it’s dangerous is because of the weather, which can make some parts of the road too risky to pass during a few months out of the year. Another reason is that some areas are really remote with limited cell phone range. Then, there is always the chance of running into some wildlife.
9. Bayburt Of Yolu-D915, Turkey
Bayburt Of Yolu-D915 in Turkey is one of the most dangerous roads in the world due to lack of guard rails, sharp turns, it’s unpaved and very narrow. The drop is far if you find yourself going off the road. In fact, you’ll drop hundreds of feed into Turkey’s valley.
Most people who live in the area know better than to take the road. They know it’s dangerous, so they simply don’t travel down the road in their vehicles. It’s usually tourists or people who don’t understand the real danger of the way that takes the road. If you do find yourself on the road, you need to know there is no place to turn back.
8. Loveland Pass, Colorado
Colorado is home to a few roads on this list because of its mountains and other factors, such as weather that passes through during the year. One of the most dangerous ways is Loveland Pass in the Rocky Mountains. First, you should automatically understand that any path that’s part of the Rocky Mountains is more hazardous than most roads – I mean, it’s in the Rockies.
The road’s elevation of 11,990 feet is one reason it’s so dangerous. Another reason is because it’s known for snowdrifts in the winter and avalanches during the other months. These conditions tend to pop up as you are driving down the road, making it dangerous.
7. Hurghada-Luxor, Egypt
Most people know Egypt for its pyramids and sandy scenery – and probably pharaohs. However, Egypt is also home to one of the world’s most dangerous roads, the Hurghada-Luxor. Linking the Red Sea to the city of Luxor, which is an old Egyptian town, the way is considered a death trap by locals.
While officials repaved the road not too long ago as a way to make it less dangerous, this didn’t work too well. However, one reason for this is because there are no rules of the road that people need to watch, so they do what they want on the road. Another reason is that many criminals wander around the street and attack people without a moment’s notice.
6. Col du Chaussy, France
Col du Chaussy in France is on the southeastern side and known as one of the world’s most dangerous roads if you lose track of your concentration. Because of the narrow lanes, 17 hairpin turns, and other death-defying turns, you need to maintain eye contact on the road.
Unfortunately, this is difficult for many people because the scenery is simply beautiful, mainly because you’re more than 5,000 feet above sea level. The main rule of Col Du Chaussy is that you need to keep your eye on the road and drive slow. If you follow this advice, you’ll live to show the pictures that your passengers took.
5. Furka Pass, Switzerland
Furka Pass in Switzerland is a drive that pretty much everyone needs to see because it’s so cool. Unfortunately, it also makes this list because it is also a bit of a doozy, especially for tourists that aren’t used to the road and don’t know what to expect.
A paved road, over 8,000 feet above sea level, makes Furka Pass one of the most talked-about and exciting paths in Europe. One factor that tourists don’t think about is it’s prone to snow even on a beautiful day…think about it…the higher you go, the more likely it is to snow. If you travel down Furka Pass, just make sure that you’re prepared for snow and ice.
4. A726, Scotland
A726 in Scotland makes this list because over 40 people have passed away while driving on this road in the last few years. The Scottish residents are always surprised by how deadly the path is because it doesn’t seem that it should be.
One reason it’s dangerous is that visibility is an issue – which makes it more challenging for motorcyclists and pedestrians. Another reason the high death rate is alarming is that the road is only 7 miles long. Take a moment to think about the statistics and the twists and turns the road has before you travel along this dangerous road.
3. Bruce Highway, Australia
Bruce Highway in Australia links Queensland together. It’s about 1,000 miles long and known as one of the most dangerous roads in the world – and most dangerous in Australia – because it’s a road that causes many accidents. Well, the way itself doesn’t cause the accidents, it’s more like the people behind the wheel that are driving too fast and carelessly.
The rule of the road is to slow down, but people like to pretend they’re race car drivers so you don’t want to pass another car as you can easily find yourself in a head-on collision with a speeding car. It’s also hard to move because the road is very narrow.
2. Commonwealth Avenue, Philippines
Commonwealth Avenue in the Philippines is a bit different from the other places on this list. First, it’s not on a cliff. Second, it’s not a dirt road. It is fully paved, and it’s a major road in a busy city. But, this is also the reason Commonwealth Avenue is so dangerous.
One reason it’s similar to other roads is because of some people behind the wheel that make it dangerous. Some so many drivers take this road and don’t pay attention to what they’re doing, in a rush, or don’t note the rules of the road that they cause significant accidents. Locals call Commonwealth Avenue the “the killer highway,” and many will avoid the road at all costs.
1. Iron Mountain Road, South Dakota
South Dakota is known for its Black Hills, which is precisely where Iron Mountain Road sits. This road will take you up 5,445 feet before you reach its peak and some of the best scenery in the state. Even though the road is only 15 miles long, you’ll run into some of the most creative ways when climbing the trail.
For instance, there are a lot of tunnels, switchbacks, and curves. In fact, there are over 300 curves along the 15 miles – say what? You’ll even run into some pigtails, which is when the road crosses itself. Let’s just say if you want to travel this road, and it needs to be nice and sunny out.
“25 Fascinating Facts About Norway.” David Nikel, Life in Norway. February 2018.
“The Most Dangerous Roads In The World.” Robbie Woods, Rough Maps. February 2020.
“The World’s 12 Most Dangerous Roads.” Jimmy Im, Thrillist. September 2015.
“The World’s 20 Most Dangerous Roads.” Christopher McFadden, Interesting Engineering. January 2018.