Despite being a small country Portugal has many natural beauties and many monuments that are very specific and worth visiting for tourists.
One of the unsuspected attractions that will surely delight driving lovers on roads with a beautiful landscape is National Road 222 which is considered the best road in the world.
The road takes drivers for 27 km along the River Douro and the picturesque regional wine towns of the UNESCO World Heritage Site.
As decided by a new driving ratio developed by the car rental company Avis, Northern Portugal can now claim to be home to the best road to drive in the world – the N-222, from Peso da Régua to Pinhão.
Stretching for 27 kilometres and comprising 93 breath-taking bends and jaw-dropping views of the Douro Valley, Avis has crowned Portugal’s N-222 as "the road that offers the best driving experience in the world".
According to the company, the road was granted the prestigious title for its location and for the spectacular views it affords of the wine region below.
"The N-222 from Peso da Régua to Pinhão cuts right through the heart of the Douro Valley, offering amazing views of the terraced hillsides. This road most closely matches the ideal ADR [Avis Driving Ratio] of 10:1 (10 seconds on a straight to every 1 second spent on a bend) with a ratio of 11:1, and offers the world’s best driving experience", Avis writes, adding: "The road takes drivers along the River Douro and the picturesque regional wine towns of the UNESCO World Heritage Site".
The write-up explains that the road "takes drivers along a glorious road that hugs the River Douro, enjoys spectacular views over the vineyards near the river, and finishes in the picturesque wine town of Pinhão".
It complements by saying that the stretch keeps "drivers on their toes and allows them to experience the car’s handling power, while offering frequently changing viewpoints".
To compile the ratio, which was designed to end long-standing debate amongst car enthusiasts, Avis recruited experts from across quantum physics, F1 track design, high performance cars and even a world-renowned British designer of roller-coasters.
Eminent quantum physicist Dr Mark Hadley, who led the research said: "In creating the Avis Driving Ratio (ADR) we have calculated the optimum balance between those components, to scientifically establish the world’s best driving roads".
According to Avis, to inform and develop the ADR Dr Hadley used the geometry of the road and driving style together with the average acceleration, lateral acceleration, braking times and distances of a range of the cars on offer in the Avis Prestige fleet: Porsche Carrera 911, Jaguar XKRS and Mercedes E350.
The ADR was then tested with legendary F1 track designer, Hermann Tilke and world renowned roller coaster designer, John Wardley.
"Our winning road gives drivers the right balance of tight corners with longer stretches of road. This creates a thrilling and varied driving experience that tests the driver’s capabilities and provides opportunities to experience the performance of the car, whilst also giving the driver time to enjoy breathtaking panoramic views", commented Mark Servodidio, Managing Director of Avis UK, who commissioned the research.
Two other Portuguese roads can be found on Avis’ list of top-25 World’s Best Roads, these being the N267 from São Marcos da Serra to Monchique, in the Algarve, and the N247/Avenida do Atlântico, from Sintra to Praia das Maçãs.
The best way to explore Portugal's secret spots is arguably by car, and while driving, each detour and wrong turn can take you to another beautiful town or village.
To visit the beautiful Douro region, UNESCO world heritage, the famous Port wine vineyards, breathtaking landscapes, charming hotels with beautiful views of the Douro River and, by the way, take the best road in the world, you just you need to book a Porto car hire online at best-portugal-car-hire.com for delivery at Porto airport and from there drive your rental car to enjoy the most peaceful vacation of your life.