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Ventura, CA

Travel Guide
Channel Islands National Park

Visit this quaint beach town to enjoy its lively cultural scene and its famous surfing conditions. The site was founded by the Franciscan friar, Junipero Serra.

Quaint surfing towns are a West Coast trademark. Ventura, a small city in southern California, is one of the most beloved.

Although universally known as Ventura, the city is officially San Buenaventura. It was founded in 1782 when the Franciscan friar Junipero Serra established his mission. Notice the iron bells that sit along Route 101 marking Fray Serra's famous route along El Camino Real.

Main Street is Ventura's center. Enjoy a delicious meal at one of its many restaurants or sip coffee at an outdoor café. From funky thrift stores to upscale boutiques, this area is crammed with shopping opportunities for every budget.

In the heart of Ventura's old town, visit San Buenaventura Mission. Built in 1782 by Junipero Serra, this was only the ninth Spanish mission established in California. Tour the nearby Olivas Adobe, a 160-year-old historical home that is rumored to be haunted.

Watch a professional performance at the Rubicon Theatre, which hosts several plays throughout the year. Continue cultural immersion at E.P. Foster Library, a cozy establishment that displays rotating exhibits by local artists.

Ventura's downtown beach area is dominated by a pier stretching along Ventura Beach. At one end, surfers gather at Surfer's Point to enjoy the waves every day of the year. At the other, the pier meets the scenic San Buenaventura State Beach. When you're not in the water surfing, the pier is a great place to take a bike ride or just enjoy California’s gorgeous weather.

If Ventura isn't interesting enough with its perfect beaches and fascinating history, it is also home to a famous, albeit fictional, literary character. Author Erle Stanley Gardner, who lived in the city, set the beloved Perry Mason series in Ventura.

Whether you visit Ventura to surf or shop or something else entirely, enjoy this enchanting small city. Remember to bring sunglasses and apply sunscreen, as the weather is warm and sunny year-round.

Where to stay in Ventura

La Quinta Inn by Wyndham Ventura
La Quinta Inn by Wyndham Ventura
2.5 out of 5
5818 Valentine Rd, Ventura, CA
The price is $123 per night from Aug 16 to Aug 16
Situated in the business district, this hotel is 1.7 mi (2.8 km) from Kids and Families Together TVC and 2.2 mi (3.5 km) from Olivas Adobe Historical Park. Channel ...
3.4/5Good! (944 reviews)

Reviewed on Jul 23, 2021

La Quinta Inn by Wyndham Ventura
Amanzi Hotel
Amanzi Hotel
2.5 out of 5
298 S Chestnut St, Ventura, CA
The price is $159 per night from Aug 22 to Aug 22
Located in the heart of Ventura, this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Ventura City Hall and Ventura Pier. Ventura Botanical Gardens and San Buenaventura ...
4.3/5Excellent! (2,143 reviews)
"Well situated to the beach and downtown Ventura. Staff was professional and friendly. We appreciated the to go breakfast staff and good coffee."

Reviewed on Jul 27, 2021

Amanzi Hotel
Crowne Plaza Ventura Beach, an IHG Hotel
Crowne Plaza Ventura Beach, an IHG Hotel
3.5 out of 5
450 E Harbor Blvd, Ventura, CA
The price is $256 per night from Aug 1 to Aug 1
Located in Ventura, this beachfront hotel is in the city center and within a 5-minute walk of Ventura City Beach and Ventura Pier. Ventura County Fairgrounds ...
4.3/5Excellent! (984 reviews)
"The Crown Plaza is located overlooking the beach, and next to the Ventura Pier. We could see Surfer’s Point from our room and balcony. The walk along the beach was delightful. The hotel is also very close to Main Street which has many good restaurants and interesting shops."

Reviewed on Jul 27, 2021

Crowne Plaza Ventura Beach, an IHG Hotel
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

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