Here’s a question for you. Where can you ride a bike, watch the waves break, AND watch people Lamborghinis at a slower pace than they are meant to be driven? The answer is the Pacific Coast Highway in Malibu, California. The Pacific Coast Highway is a long road of course and runs along most of the coast of California. In fact, there are a lot of people who ride the whole coast of California, or the whole West Coast of the United States. The section described in this profile concerns the piece of road north of the town of Malibu and south of Ventura County Naval Base.
What Makes It Great
The ride is iconic, beautiful, and a pretty great workout. It will take you from where the congested and traffic-light ridden Malibu ends and the unbelievably scenic Malibu begins. It will take you all the way up past a number of state and town beaches and allows for some amazing, majestic views of the Pacific Ocean.
Start right in the town of Malibu (starting point described below), and take Malibu Road along the water. It will take you past some huge Malibu mansions without hardly any cars giving you the chance to warm up a bit before you hit PCH. Malibu Road loops back up to PCH after about 2.5 miles and hits Highway 1. Take this North and you will have good pavement throughout. Take highway 1 as far as you feel you can handle. It is 25 miles from the Malibu to end of the coastal section of PCH. This 50 miles makes a beautiful loop, but if this isn’t enough for you, take Latigo, Decker, Yerba Buena or Mulholland up into the canyons and you will gain elevation quickly without running into very many cars.
The only downside with this ride is that the road can be pretty highly travelled on weekends, especially in the summertime. If you come during a weekday, in the middle of the day, you may get the road to yourself and you will find that you have hit the jackpot.
Who is Going to Love It
This road is ideal because all levels of riders are found here. You can ride for 5 miles and turn around or do 25 on PCH and do any of the number of climbs up into the Santa Monica Mountains that will leave all but the fittest bikers winded. Anyone with a working bike can have fun here.
Directions, Parking, & Regulations
Park on PCH across from the Malibu Country Mart, a big shopping complex with lots of restaurants and stores. There are no parking fees here and the shoulder is really wide here so your car will insulate you from traffic. For the surfer/cyclists out there, this is also a good place to park for Malibu’s Third Point, but that’s neither here nor there. This spot is about 13 miles from the Santa Monica pier, making it a nice jumping off point for the more remote, prettier sections of Malibu.