Topless Summer: Best Summertime Drives in LA
If you’re just itching for a quintessential Southern California experience this summer, read on. Nothing says summertime in Los Angeles like driving around with your top down and 97.1 AMP Radio blasting.
We’re giving away three Fiat convertibles this summer and we think they’re the perfect car to do just that.
In honor of our Topless Summer contest, we want to share our favorite scenic summertime drives in Southern California!
1. Pacific Coast Highway from Santa Monica to Zuma Beach in Malibu (20 miles)
There’s nothing that gets us in the mood for summer more than cruising up PCH. With the beach on one side and amazing cliffs on the other, we always feel like we’re in a movie driving down this world-famous road. If you take it from Santa Monica to Malibu, you’ll see sights like Surfrider beach, Point Dume, and The Getty Villa.
2. Topanga Canyon Loop (15 miles)
Topanga isn’t just a Cory’s girlfriend in Boy Meets World. For Angelenos, Topanga Canyon is a beautiful and rustic hideaway that’s a strange mishmash of hippies, yuppies, film festivals, and biker bars. If you get off the 101 at Mulholland and take it up to Topanga Canyon Road, you’re in for a treat. Just keep following the SUPER curvy road all the way around for some great views. Warning: This drive is not for anyone who gets carsick easily.
3. Sunset Boulevard (23 miles)
There’s a reason why Sunset Boulevard appears in so many famous songs. It may not be the most scenic drive in Los Angeles, but driving down sunset in either direction will surely give you a taste of the many flavors our city is made of. Just a few of the areas you’ll see on this drive are Olvera street, the historic Farmers Market, Bel Air, the Beverly Hills Hotel, and of course, the Sunset Strip.
4. Malibu Canyon Road (10 miles)
Like Topanga Canyon Road, this is a great little trip to take when you just need escape the hustle and bustle for a few hours. If you head up the 101 to Calabasas, get off at Mulholland Hwy, head through the Las Virgenes Valley and you’ll end up in some killer Santa Monica Mountain scenery. This drive is a good alternative to Topanga, as it isn’t so curvy. You can make this a two-fer drive if you loop back around on Old Topanga Highway or take PCH back down to the 10 to get back to civilization.
5. Hollywood Boulevard and Santa Monica Boulevard (7 miles)
This is the drive to take if you want to see and be seen. Hop off the 101 at Hollywood Blvd, and cruise past historic Hollywood and Highland intersection. On this road, you’ll find the Pantages Theater, the Kodak Theater, and tons of nightlife. If you turn at Fairfax and backtrack to the freeway on Santa Monica Blvd, you’ll come across even more history when you pass the Hollywood Forever Cemetery.
Driving in LA can be a total headache most times, but there are plenty of routes worth checking out this summer! Happy and safe cruising!
– Robyn Luttrell, CBS Local