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Top 10 Most Dangerous Roads In the World

VO: JP WRITTEN BY: Andrew Tejada

Script written by Andrew Tejada

If you’re looking for a relaxing Sunday drive, you’ll want to avoid driving on these. From Skippers Canyon road in New Zealand, to the Kanali Highway in Nepal, to the Karakoram highway in Pakistan and China, these are the scariest roads in the world. WatchMojo counts down ten most dangerous roads in the world.

Special thanks to our users kaeshmsoshi, Alex Estelle, Lloyd Eksteen, urbanwatch69, AlHazard, david alves and LJG8000 for suggesting this idea! Check out the voting page at http://WatchMojo.comsuggest/most%20dangerous%20roads%20in%20the%20world.


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Script written by Andrew Tejada

Top 10 Most Dangerous Roads In the World

If you’re looking for a relaxing Sunday drive, you’ll want to avoid driving on these. Welcome to, and today we’re counting down our picks for the top 10 most dangerous roads in the world.

For this list, we’re looking at routes from across the planet with hazards treacherous enough to make even the bravest drivers steer clear.

#10: Skippers Canyon Road

Queenstown, New Zealand
You shall not pass...easily on this narrow road. Built in the late 1800s for gold miners, Skippers Canyon Road is a challenging route for the average driver. It’s positioned over a running river, and has several steep drops. Parts of the road are too tight for cars to pass each other, making encountering other automobiles a nerve-wracking prospect. If you manage to get permission to drive through, you better have your own vehicle, because rental companies will not cover your insurance there. Skippers Canyon Road is as beautiful as it is dangerous, so it’s a great spot for adventurous tourists and the occasional fantasy franchise.

#9: Karnali Highway

Karnali, Nepal
The Karnali Highway is one route that helps save lives while endangering others. This crucial passage has helped villagers in remote areas to gain access to food and other natural resources. However, while commuting on the almost 10,000 foot-tall road, drivers still have to deal with dust, bumpy and unsecured sections, flooding during rainy seasons that can make passage impossible and the constant threat of landslides. Although the trip can be harrowing at times, the risks taken by those who brave it are vital to the local economy and the lives of the people that reside there.

#8: BR-116

Brazil, South America
Nicknamed the “Highway of Death”, the BR-116 in Brazil unfortunately lives up to its bad reputation. The weather can change quickly, making its busy roads even more of a hazard. Accidents are common, with commuters and a large volume of tired truckers vying for space every day. But the road is most notorious for its high volume of child trafficking, causing UNICEF to declare it as the one of the worst areas for crimes against children. Between its criminal activity and fatigued drivers, the most dangerous aspect of this road isn’t the highway itself, but the people who drive it.

#7: Karakoram Highway

Pakistan and China
Guides name it the 8th wonder of the world; governments call portions of it “The Friendship Tunnels” while others just call it terrifying. Made to connect China and Pakistan, the Karakoram Highway first gained notoriety during its construction, during which over 1,000 workers lost their lives. In modern times, despite being one of the highest paved highways in the world, there are still spots without safety barriers. The surrounding environment can also be a threat, with a 2010 landslide being so bad that it created a deadly flood and formed a body of water known as Attabad Lake. No matter what you call this crossing, its treacherous history speaks for itself.

#6: Stelvio Pass

Ortler Alps, Italy
The view from this pass may be great, but losing sight of how perilous it is can be a costly mistake. Located over 9,000 feet above sea level, drivers that are wary of heights may wish the concrete barriers were a bit higher, especially considering the road has a dizzying amount of hairpin turns that could spell disaster if taken too fast. That still hasn’t stopped people from underestimating the pass before, with everyone from inexperienced drivers to famous Formula 1 driver Stirling Moss running into trouble. With weather conditions only leaving the pass closed during the winter, anyone trying this scenic range should double-check their brakes before taking their first turn.

#5: Kabul-Jalalabad Highway

Those who travel on this path are lucky to make it home. On the Kabul-Jalalabad Highway, the sheer volume of traffic on this thin, pothole-ridden mountain road makes accidents more likely. What makes crashes nearly inevitable are the drivers, some of which don’t have licenses, that often speed or try to pass each other recklessly. If that wasn’t enough, the highway is a frequent target for the Taliban, whose regular attacks threaten drivers and prevent construction workers from improving the road itself. Any motorist willing to face the risky driving, near-crashes and terrorism on this pass would have to be as tough as the mountain they’re driving on.

#4: Guoliang Tunnel Road

Henan Province, China
Local villagers say this road tolerates no mistakes. And they would know, as the Guoliang Tunnel was carved out of a mountain by their own people. Although the villagers’ efforts helped connect a nearly inaccessible community with the rest of China, their lack of building expertise is shown through the tunnel’s drawbacks. The passage is uneven, making quick changes in direction or altitude startlingly common. And the road can become slick during wet weather conditions, making the misshapen “windows” seem like potential pitfalls. The pass may not be as long as other Chinese roads, like the over 3000 mile long Sichuan-Tibet Highway, but it doesn’t make the trip through the tunnel any less petrifying.

#3: Kolyma Highway

Magadan, Russia
With a high death toll before it was even open, this Russian route is not to be taken lightly. The Kolyma Highway relied on prisoners for its initial construction, many of whom perished in the harsh conditions. Its climate still proves to be a challenge today, with temperatures regularly hitting a teeth chattering -58 degrees Fahrenheit. Even if you can handle the cold, mud and flowing rivers are additional hazards that slow journeys, and provide fresh opportunities to the bears. Yes, you heard right, there are bears that loom alongside the route. Between its dark legacy and cold conditions, this is a road that can chill your bones in more ways than one.

#2: James W. Dalton Highway

On this perilous northern thoroughfare, isolation is only the start of your worries. The James Dalton Highway weaves through an area of Alaska that is so loosely populated that there are only three places to stop for gas along the entire highway. The road itself is unforgiving as well, with potholes and flying gravel from big rigs serving as continual threats to your vehicle. Even the visitors‘ guides for this road are scary, with recommendations to keep headlights on at all times and to bring multiple spare tires. And then there’s the...look. This route was featured on three seasons of “Ice Road Truckers!” It’s clearly not for everyone.

Before we ease on very carefully into our top pick, here are some honorable mentions.
- Luxor-al-Hurghada Road

- Los Caracoles Pass
Argentina and Chile

- Zoji La Pass

#1: North Yungas Road

Bolivia, South America
North Yungas Road is the “world’s most dangerous.” That was the declaration of the Inter-American Development Bank in 1995, and there is plenty to back that claim. Located in Bolivia, the resume of this road reads like a shopping list of hazards. Lack of guardrails next to 2,000-foot drops? Check. Extreme weather from hot jungle climates to obscuring fog? Check. Narrow pathways that make passing cars potentially deadly? Check and check. An alleged 200-300 people died a year before improvements were made on the road in the late 2000s. But despite safety initiatives, news of accidents and fatalities still emerge, reminding prospective travelers the highway has been dubbed “The Road of Death.”

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