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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.
Situated by the ocean, this motel is 1.3 mi (2.1 km) from Ventura Pier and 2 mi (3.2 km) from Mission San Buenaventura. Ventura Harbor and Ventura County Fairgrounds are also within 3 mi (5 km).
This inn is located four miles from Oxnard Airport and Ventura Pier. Mission San Buenaventura is five miles away.
Situated near the beach, this hotel is within a 15-minute walk of Ventura Pier and Mission San Buenaventura. San Buenaventura Mission and Albinger Archaeological Museum are also within 15 minutes.
Situated near the beach, this hotel is within 1 mi (2 km) of Ventura County Fairgrounds and Ventura Pier. Mission San Buenaventura is 1.3 mi (2 km) away.
Nestled on the beach, this Ventura hotel is within a 15-minute walk of Ventura Pier and Mission San Buenaventura. Ventura County Fairgrounds and San Buenaventura Mission are also within 15 minutes.
Situated near the beach, this cottage is within 3 mi (5 km) of Ventura Harbor, Ventura Pier, and Mission San Buenaventura. Ventura County Fairgrounds and Olivas Adobe Historical Park are also within 3 mi (5 km).
Situated near the beach, this spa hotel is 0.4 mi (0.7 km) from Ventura Harbor and 3 mi (4.8 km) from Ventura Pier. Olivas Adobe Historical Park and McGrath State Beach are also within 3 mi (5 km).
Situated by the ocean, this hotel is within a 15-minute walk of Ventura Pier and Mission San Buenaventura. San Buenaventura Mission and Albinger Archaeological Museum are also within 15 minutes.