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6 Orange County Roads Perfect for Leisurely Drives in Luxury Cars

Image via Flickr by dlofink

Image via Flickr by dlofink

Stretching along the Pacific Coast from Seal Beach to San Clemente with majestic sea cliffs and sprawling pine forests along the way, California’s Orange County has no shortage of places where you can enjoy a leisurely drive in a luxury car. Hop in your ride and set off to discover these six Orange County routes that you won’t forget in a hurry.

1. Highway 142 – Carbon Canyon Road

As the designated scenic route from Orange County/San Bernardino to Chino Hills, Carbon Canyon Road takes you through the lush Carbon Canyon Regional Park. The drive comes complete with a section running through a narrow canyon; you’ll encounter a few hairpins along the way, so leave the large SUV at home and take the Audi instead.

2. CA-73 N – Dana Point to Huntington Beach

Head northwest along State Route 73 from Dana Point, and in about 90 minutes, you’ll reach the bustling city of Huntington Beach. You’ll enjoy an extended view of the ocean, and also drive past the Aliso and Wood Canyons Wilderness Park and the Crystal Cove State Park. If you’d like a different view on the way back, take CA-73 E, which will take you straight through the middle of the parks.

3. Santiago Canyon Road

From Rancho Santa Margarita, head past the O’Neill Regional Park to Portola Hills where you can hop on Santiago Canyon Road. This route is the dividing line between Limestone Canyon Regional Park and Cleveland National Forest, so you can expect impressive views on both sides. A pleasant 30-minute drive will lead you right to the picturesque Irvine Lake.

4. San Diego Freeway to Ortega Highway

Head north on the San Diego Freeway from Capistrano Beach before taking a right onto Ortega Highway. The route will take you right through the Ronald W. Caspers Wilderness Park before bringing you out near the shores of Lake Elsinore. Take some time out to enjoy the views before heading back, perhaps stopping to eat at the Lookout Roadhouse on the way.

5. Santa Ana Freeway to Costa Mesa Freeway

From Mission Viejo, head northwest along the Santa Ana Freeway (I-5 N) until you reach Tustin. Take a right onto the Costa Mesa Freeway, and again on East Chapman Avenue. Enjoy the winding route up the hill, where you’ll find the Orange Hill Restaurant. It’s the perfect place to park and enjoy a meal and the sweeping views of Catalina Island and downtown Los Angeles.

6. Riverside Freeway

From Buena Park in northwest OC, it’s a pleasant drive along the Riverside Freeway to Corona in the neighboring Riverside County. The route takes about 30 minutes from start to finish, and the latter part of the drive runs along the Santa Ana River and past the lower reaches of the Chino Hills State Park.

There’s a great choice of roads in Orange County perfect for viewing from the comfort of a luxury car. Which one will you drive along first?