5 Best Scenic Drives in Los Angeles

You finally did it.

You splurged and rented that Lamborghini for the weekend. It’s an ideal day.

Warm, with a light breeze – perfect for a nice, scenic drive. You’re jazzed up and ready to take on the Los Angeles streets with the kind of gusto they deserve.

Where to careen off? Below is a list of Los Angeles’ best scenic drives:

1. Pacific Coast Highway: Santa Monica to Point Mugu

In about an hour, you can get from Santa Monica to Point Mugu Naval Base. Take the Pacific Coast Highway (PCH), which yawns northwestward, hugging the California coast. Don’t forget to stop at Zuma Beach, known for its long, wide sands and one of Los Angeles’ most popular surf spots.

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2. Palos Verdes Drive

Consistently cited one of southern California’s nicest drives and with breathtaking views of the Pacific Ocean at almost every turn, Palos Verdes Drive is a must. Be sure to get out of your car at one of several rest stops. Squint your eyes for migrating whales at Point Vicente Lighthouse, or sneak in 9 holes at Trump National Golf Club.

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3. Angeles Crest Scenic Byway

Closed for several years due to landslides, the Angeles Crest Scenic Byway was reopened in 2009 and is one of LA’s most stunning drives. The road is 66 miles and traverses the San Gabriel mountain range, presenting spectacular views of Pomona Valley and the Mojave Desert. You’ll reach over 7,000 feet on this drive, so bring your oxygen tank.

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4. Mulholland Drive

At 55 miles long and with eight overlook points, Mulholland Drive is one of Los Angeles’ most iconic scenic roads. It was built in the 1920s to facilitate housing development in Hollywood Hills – today, it’s no coincidence that some of LA’s most exclusive homes are peppered along the Drive. A curvy road with blind turns and steep drop-offs, Mulholland Drive offers phenomenal and panoramic views of Los Angeles.

5. Sunset Strip

You can’t get as eclectic a view of the Los Angeles ethos than while cruising on the Sunset Strip. In less than two miles, you’ll experience multiple personalities – from grungy tattoo storefronts to chic hotel hangouts, the Sunset Strip is as synonymous with Los Angeles as Wall Street is with New York City. You can’t live in or travel to Los Angeles without rolling down the windows and taking it all in.

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Alan Perlman
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