I also rented a car for two days when I was in Tuscany in 2009. I picked up the car in Siena. The first day I drove south to Montalcino, Bagno Vignoni, Pienza, and a few other smaller villages; the second day I went north to Monteriggiano, Volterra, and San Gemigniano. Once again, I stopped a lot for scenery, but at least I had some specific destinations where I spent several hours, so it wasn't all day behind the wheel. Still, it was stressful. Twice I forgot to engage the parking brake while I was sitting in the car studying the map. The first time I almost rolled over some other tourists; the second time I nearly rolled down a cliff.
And last year I rented a car for one day to drive around the island of Öland in southeastern Sweden. That was not too long of a day, but there was still a lot of driving and stopping and driving and stopping and driving.
Two weeks from today I leave on my two week road trip to Oregon. If I do no driving other than point to point, I'll put on over 1200 miles:
|Seattle to Cannon Beach||205 miles|
|Cannon Beach to Myrtle Point||233 miles|
|Myrtle Point to Ashland||151 miles|
|Ashland to Bend||185 miles|
|Bend to Fossil||110 miles|
|Fossil to White Salmon||112 miles|
|White Salmon to Seattle||230 miles|
With day trips, I expect to drive close to 2000 miles in 14 days. My challenge will be make the driving as enjoyable as the destinations. The best way to do that, I think, is (1) not to be in a hurry, (2) don't worry about not seeing everything there is to see between point A and point B, and (3) when I stop en route to somewhere, make it a meaningful stop -- take a hike, do some journaling, have a picnic.
But here is a sampling of the kinds of scenery I'll likely encounter as I drive.
|Haceta Head Lighthouse, north of Florence|
|Rogue Valley, near Ashland|
With views like this, I am going to have some major challenges keeping my eye on the road and my heart inside the vehicle.
Wish me luck!