Comprising 40,000 acres, stretching in a hug crescent from the north end of Irvine all the way to the Pacific Coast, the expansive Irvine Ranch National Natural Landmarks area is home to some of the rarest and most biologically diverse ecosystems in the world.

It also features numerous protected parks that are open to the public, ranging from nature preserves to canyons to freshwater marshes, as well as miles upon miles of off-street bikeways and well-marked hiking trails - perfect for self-guided outdoor adventures.  

Whether you're looking for a quick stroll in nature or a half-day ride through peaceful wilderness, here are five of Irvine's best (and most easily-accessible) biking, hiking, and horseback riding destinations - ordered from north to south.

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