5 Best Coastal Drives in the USA

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Taking a road trip can be a great idea for a getaway, or an addition to your existing trip. You can find a rental car anywhere and now with choices of drop offs at different locations, taking a road trip is even easier.

If you are like me and love the ocean, think of taking a coastal drive. It can be for one day that you decide to rent a car and push on the pedal to get to your next destination, or make it into a trip that will last a few days! The best part of road trips is that you decide where you’re going and how far.

The U.S. has over 10,000 miles of coastline all around. For Americans, you don’t need to leave the country for exotic coastal views. How great is that? You can find paradise within your country’s backyard. For those of you visiting the U.S., consider taking a coastal drive to experience even more of the country!

Here are the top 5 coastal drives in the U.S.

  1. Hwy 1, Florida Keys, Florida

20d-Seven Mile Bridge

This drive is for the island hoppers. The easiest spot is to start off from Miami and head south. Once you’re past Miami, you pass through the Everglades and then the Keys. There are 1,700 islands that make up the Florida Keys. Enjoy turquoise views of the water, private islands, and pull over to hop into the water or feed the tarpons at Robbie’s. The best part is that the Florida Keys never get cold! The lowest it might reach is 60 degrees Fahrenheit in January.

2. Pacific Coast Highway, California

California Dreaming

Become a California girl (or man) and hit the Pacific Coast Highway. Head down from Malibu as you get a view of the Pacific Ocean, Los Angeles, Santa Barbara, and other cities. View redwood trees on one side and surfers on the other. Enjoy a hike at Big Sur National Park and camp out for a night. Take the winding roads carefully and have the top down if you’re into convertible mode.

3. Hana Highway, Maui, Hawaii


This is the best coastal drive you will find on the islands of Hawaii. You will go in and out of jungles and end up back on the coast. There are over 60 bridges to drive over. Most are one lane only so take a deep breath and keep your eyes on the scenery (and road!) Like waterfalls? You will see them and a picnic in the rain forest is always a good idea. Taking a dip at the Seven Sacred Pools is also highly recommended.

4. Cape Cod Scenic Drive, Massachusetts

Explore Cape Cod Package

If you hear of people referring to “The Cape”, this is it. In Cape Cod, experience the bay filled with lobster and clam shacks. Resort towns line the beaches and Provincetown is your main city stop. Other cute stops along the way include Sandwich and Woods Hole.

5. Outer Banks National Scenic Byway, North Carolina


If you want the ultimate sandy view, you will get to see many dunes and beaches when you take the Outer Banks National Scenic Byway. Here you can enjoy bird watching and make a stop over at the Pea and Cedar Island. You will not want to leave; rent a beach house too!

Whichever coastal drive you choose, make sure you have your camera ready! 

This post contains sponsored links from Car Rental 8 .  I received compensation in exchange for writing this post.

All photos via Flickr.