The Great European Roadtrip

Michigan State University Candidate Randy Olson calculates the optimal roadtrip across Europe.

From the snow clad mountains of Switzerland, to the hot beaches of Italy, Europe is diverse, culturally, physically, and gastronomically. A road trip across Europe will always leave you wanting for more, or the regret that you chose to visit one place over the other. So, when Business Insider released their article on “50 places in Europe you need to visit in your lifetime”, Michigan State University doctoral candidate Randy Olson computed the optimal and the shortest way to visit these places. Using Genetic Algorithms, Olson found the shortest distance between any two places.

“Technically, the route is not 100% optimal, but it is close. The trip is made as one big loop, which means you can start anywhere.”

Covering a total of 16,287 miles (21,211 km) and 14 days of driving, this is one roadtrip that you would need to dedicate at least three months. While the route is calculated from the places mentioned on the business insider article, it is worthwhile to step off the beaten path for a few days and explore much more. Then again, the optimized route does not add all of the places of Eastern Europe. Combine these places, some exploring, and the optimized route, you will have a road trip that would at least be 25,000 km. Adventure of a lifetime, huh?

Click here for the interactive version

If you are a happy hacker, Randy has also made the source code available for free here.

So, lets get going?



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