- This article is about the in-universe location. For the third original Dragon Ball Z anime volume of the same name, see Snake Way (volume).
Snake Way (蛇の道 Hebi no Michi), or Serpent Road, is a long, narrow, winding path, located in Other World, above Hell, which leads from King Yemma's palace to King Kai's Planet, and is the only method of getting to the latter (other than teleporting).
Because of its length, it took Goku 177 days to reach the end (due to King Kai saying that the Saiyans would arrive in 158 days, and it took them eleven months total). If one were to fall off Snake Way, they would pass through a thin layer of clouds (it is revealed early on that the clouds are actually edible and are quite tasty) and then fall into Hell. In the anime, it is also the home of Princess Snake, a filler character who falls in love with Goku and tries to stop him from leaving her palace.
Goku is permitted to travel along Snake Way to seek out King Kai and receive his training in order to prepare for the arrival of Raditz's comrades, Nappa and Vegeta. The journey is not an easy one, however. At one point, Goku tries to jump across Snake Way's many curves, and almost falls into the clouds below, where shadowy hands reach out to him to pull him into Hell. Later, when Goku's fatigue catches up again, he hitches a ride on the cleaner's truck when the cleaner tells him that he is only a quarter of the way to King Kai's planet after running for several months. During the ride, Goku falls asleep, and the cleaner accidentally jerks his truck, causing Goku to fall off Snake Way and into Hell. He is only able to make his way back up after competing with two bored and overworked ogres, though he is forced to start from the beginning of Snake Way again. A piece of stamina-enhancing fruit Goku sneaks away from Hell helps him reach the point he fell off quickly, however. Later on, Goku comes across Princess Snake's palace, mistaking it to be King Kai's home. Though Goku realizes his mistake, he is persuaded to stay. Things turn sour when Goku insists on leaving. Princess Snake turns into her true, giant serpent form and tries to devour Goku, but Goku outsmarts her and continues on his way. Goku is eventually forced to crawl his way across Snake Way until he finally reaches the end. Approximately eighty-eight days later, after his training, Goku travels back down Snake Way again, this time flying across in one day.
During the duel with the Saiyans, Tien Shinhan, Chiaotzu, Yamcha, and Piccolo are slain. They too are allowed to travel down Snake Way to seek out King Kai's training, and King Kai notes that they reached him faster than Goku did, since they had become much stronger than Goku was while fighting Raditz. Yamcha quips that Chiaotzu was the fastest of the four. Later on, Recoome, Burter, Jeice and Guldo are sent to King Kai's planet to provide a challenge for King Kai's pupils, and due to their high power levels, they reach King Kai not long after their deaths on Namek.
Snake Way is seen several times later in the anime, but does not play any major role, since it has likely been reduced to child's play for the main characters after their battles with the Saiyans, Frieza, Androids, and Cell.
In Dragon Ball Super, King Kai and Moori are on Snake Way using the Namekian Dragon Balls to wish King Kai's destroyed planet back. Porunga is summoned and King Kai wants to wish for his planet to be bigger with less gravity and a race track but however, Goku shows up and wishes for his planet to be the same as it was previously. After the wish is made, King Kai's planet returns and King Kai drops to his knees as Moori gathers the stoned Dragon Balls.
Travelers of Snake Way
- King Kai (presumably)
- King Yemma
- Tien Shinhan
- The Ginyu Force (excluding Captain Ginyu)
- Raditz (Harukanaru Densetsu only; supposedly had a relationship with Princess Snake)
Video Game Appearances
The Snake Way appears in Dragon Ball Z: Kyōshū! Saiyan, Dragon Ball Z: Goku Hishōden, The Legacy of Goku series, Dragon Ball Z: Harukanaru Densetsu, and Dragon Ball Z: Attack of the Saiyans where Goku has to cross Snake Way just like in the original storyline in order to reach King Kai's planet. It also appears in Dragon Ball Z: Shin Budokai as the map screen. Snake Way also appears in Super Dragon Ball Z, seen in the background of the Check-In Station battle stage.
In Dragon Ball Z: The Legacy of Goku, Goku has to cross the Snake Way twice, like he did in the anime. The edges of the road will sap energy (even if the code for invincibility is entered). In Dragon Ball Z: Buu's Fury, the game will start at Snake Way after the recaps are done. Unlike Legacy of Goku, it would not take long to get to end, and the edges are not dangerous.
The Snake Way is also a battle stage in Dragon Ball Z: Taiketsu.
In Dragon Ball Z: Infinite World, at the Story Mode's Saiyan Saga, there is a challenge for Goku in which he has an established time limit to reach King Kai's through Snake Way. If he falls, he will lose some time but will be replaced on the floor. At a certain point, there is a hidden Dragon Ball beneath the Snake Way. In this game, Snake Way is incredibly short compared to the anime and the manga. Also Princess Snake's castle is missing and there are platforms for the player to jump on, although though it is risky to jump across them. The Snake Way is shown in cutscenes in the story mode of Dragon Ball Heroes: Ultimate Mission.
Snake Way also appears in Dragon Ball Xenoverse as part of the hubworld Toki Toki City. It can be seen in multiple parts of the hubworld in the background weaving and winding throughout the sky, but not actually interacted with, nor is it part of the game's story.
- Princess Snake's appearance in her Giant Snake form is nearly identical to Snake Way (when Goku left)
- In the manga, an observer states that he heard "legend says it's about a million kilometers" long  (about 625,000 miles)
- Contrary to what is stated in the original manga and Dragon Ball Z Kai where an observer states Snake Way is about a million kilometers (about 625,000 miles) long, the Ocean and FUNimation dubbed versions of the anime state that the Snake Way is 10,000 miles long. 10,000 miles long is inconsistent, because Goku was able to swim half-way around the world (over 20,000 miles) in only one day in order to go to the 22nd World Martial Arts Tournament when he was 15.
- If Snake Way is a million kilometers, to travel that distance in 177 days would mean Goku was traveling at an average speed of about 235 kilometers per hour, or 145 miles per hour, on his way to King Kai's planet (though this does not account for the time Goku spent in Hell or Princess Snake's palace).
- In the manga, there is no official time it took Goku to get back to Earth after being wished back during the battle with the Saiyans, but King Kai estimated it would take two days.
- Considering this two day estimate, if Snake Way was a million kilometers, Goku traveled at about 20,830 kilometers per hour (13,018 miles per hour) in order to travel in 48 hours. However, Snake Way is winding, whereas on the return trip Goku is seen traveling in a straight line over the top of Snake Way.
- Despite being said that only King Yemma and then Goku have crossed Snake Way, in the Other World Tournament it is shown that King Kai actually had many people train with him. However, they may have not actually traveled to his planet with him training them elsewhere, since those disciples are only shown on Grand Kai's planet (and in anime filler only).
- Snake Way is a possible reference to the Great Wall of China with both traveling great distances.
- Snake Way can briefly be seen in the 2nd opening to Dragon Ball Z when Goku is on King Kai's Planet
- Dragon Ball manga. Vol. 18, Ch. 1 ("A Warrior in Hell")