Oxnard Travel Guide

Just sixty miles northwest of Los Angeles, you’ll find the casual, seaside city of Oxnard where oceanfront recreation, fabulous festivals, sweet strawberries, exceptional weather, and miles of uncrowded beaches await your discovery.  Home to the California Strawberry Festival, and neighbor to the breathtaking Channel Islands National Park and Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary, Oxnard is a welcomed retreat any time of year.  visit Oxnard, stay for a while, and savor the sweet and spicy international flavors in Oxnard — Elevate your senses.

Oxnard is steeped in a rich California history. Visit the Henry T. Oxnard National Historic District and Heritage Square for a peek into early-20th century homes.  In addition to its rich cultural history, the city of Oxnard has the most beautiful beaches in California. The beauty of their beaches is credited to their remote location from freeways and big cities. As a matter of fact, these beaches have priceless views of the Channel Islands.  Enjoy the many wonderful beaches of Oxnard, (you’ll find a list here), then come visit Oxnard.  Start planning your trip….read on with our Oxnard Travel Guide!

Oxnard Weather – When to Visit

The best time to visit Oxnard is from March to May or from September to November. Temperatures are fairly mild year-round, hovering in the 60s and 70s, but traveling in early spring or fall ensures you won’t be fighting crowds and rates will be less expensive. Summer welcomes most of the city’s annual events and it’s also peak season if you’re looking for a beach vacation, but you’ll have to contend with more crowds. If you’re traveling during the winter months, make sure to pack an umbrella because Santa Barbara sees most of its rainfall between December and February. No matter when you decide to visit, pack layers as the as morning and late evening temperatures tend to be much cooler than the daytime high.

Oxnard Attractions

Hueneme Beach Park, Oxnard California, Oxnard beaches, California, best Oxnard Hotels,  beaches, best beaches of California, Beach Travel Destinations, things to do in Oxnard, best restaurants in Oxnard, Oxnard AttractionsHueneme Beach Park

Hueneme Beach Park is found just south of the harbor in Point Hueneme, immediately south of Oxnard. This delightful beach is a favorite spot of local residents to relax on summer days. The beach usually offers moderate surf for those who like to swim or play in the waves, but at times the surf can be rough. Lifeguards are on duty during summer months.

Silver Strand Beach, Oxnard California, Oxnard beaches, California, best Oxnard Hotels,  beaches, best beaches of California, Beach Travel Destinations, things to do in Oxnard, best restaurants in Oxnard, Oxnard AttractionsSilverstrand Beach

Silver Strand Beach is by far the most popular beach to visit in Oxnard. Located at the end of South Victoria Road, Silver Strand Beach offers beach goers world class surf, fishing, kayaking, long walks on white sandy beaches, cool to moderate water temperatures, and a family friendly atmosphere. Silver Strand Beach is a favorite among Oxnard Locals and beach savvy tourists. The Silver Strand beach area also has nearby restaurants, hotels, and local attractions at the Channel Islands Harbor.

Channel Islands Harbor, Oxnard California, Oxnard beaches, California, best Oxnard Hotels,  beaches, best beaches of California, Beach Travel Destinations, things to do in Oxnard, best restaurants in Oxnard, Oxnard AttractionsChannel Islands Harbor

The sparkling Channel Islands Harbor — gateway to the Channel Islands National Park is a hub for boating, sport fishing, kayaking and whale-watching excursions. The harbor is also home to the Ventura County Maritime Museum, fresh seafood restaurants, a Sunday Farmers Markets, tall ship visits and year-round events.

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Mandalay Beach, Oxnard California, Oxnard beaches, California, best Oxnard Hotels,  beaches, best beaches of California, Beach Travel Destinations, things to do in Oxnard, best restaurants in Oxnard, Oxnard AttractionsMandalay Beach

Mandalay State Beach is a protected area of beach, dunes, and wetlands between a power generation plant and the Oxnard Shores neighborhood of Oxnard, CA. This is a popular place for birding. Some of the beach is fenced off to protect nesting areas of the Least Tern and Snowy Plover.

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Oxnard Beach Park, Oxnard California, Oxnard beaches, California, best Oxnard Hotels,  beaches, best beaches of California, Beach Travel Destinations, things to do in Oxnard, best restaurants in Oxnard, Oxnard AttractionsOxnard Beach Park

Oxnard Beach Park is a family friendly beach located in-between the Oxnard Shores neighborhood and the Embassy Suites Resort. This gorgeous stretch of beach features rolling lawns, free public barbecue areas, volleyball courts, kids play area, skating and jogging paths.  This white sandy beach has spectacular views of the Channel Island National Park and Marine Sanctuary. Most of all this gorgeous beach is perfect for sunbathing, kayaking, fishing, body boarding and surfing. The rolling lawns of Oxnard Beach Park make it a perfect place for flying a kite or picnicking. The large children’s playground features a pirate ship jungle gym, with plenty of room for everyone.

Oxnard Area Tours & Activities

Private Kayak Tour of Santa Barbara

This private Santa Barbara kayaking tour lets you explore the marine life and landmarks of Santa Barbara Harbor and the spectacular coastline on the ‘American Riviera’ along one of four different routes. Take in views of rugged shoreline cliffs and the Santa Ynez Mountains, and be on the lookout for dolphins and seals. This 1.5- to 2.5-hour tour is led by an experienced kayak guide who points out natural features and customizes the speed of the ride according to your skill level.  Read more about Santa Barbara Harbor Private Kayak Tour

Santa Barbara Trolley Tour

All Aboard Santa Barbara’s Original & Longest Running Trolley Tour and Charter Services See the American Riviera in 90 minutes or jump off and on ALL DAY! Santa Barbara sightseeing at its finest on the original, fully narrated Santa Barbara Trolley Tour.   Read more about Santa Barbara Trolley Tour

Santa Barbara Electric Bike Tour

Explore Santa Barbara by electric bike, covering plenty of ground on a morning or afternoon excursion. Ride your easy-to-use beach cruiser to key landmarks such as State Street and the Santa Barbara Mission as your knowledgeable guide shares the city’s history during this Santa Barbara bike tour. Have your camera ready as you glide along the renowned Pacific coastline. Numbers are limited to five people, ensuring personalized attention and a small-group experience.  Read more about Santa Barbara Electric Bike History and Sightseeing Tour 

Santa Barbara Wine Tour with Picnic Lunch

See and taste the best the Santa Barbara coast has to offer on this leisurely paced wine tour and picnic lunch. You’ll sip on a variety of wines and visit at four local wineries in the area. Knowledgeable local guide will pick you up anywhere in the Santa Barbara area to begin the tour. Feast on a delicious picnic lunch at one of the wineries while enjoying the scenery of the rolling coastal mountains.  Read more about Santa Barbara Wine Tasting Tour, Picnic Lunch

Downtown Santa Barbara Food Tour

Walk right past the crowds on this food tour in Downtown Santa Barbara. Your guide leads the way as you pop into seven different restaurants and two wine tasting rooms. Savor dishes and drinks locals have made a staple in their everyday lives, and learn about other places to eat and drink during your stay. If you’re a gluten-free eater or a vegetarian, this tour can also easily cater to your needs.  Read more about Santa Barbara Downtown Food Walking Tour with Wine Tasting

Best Oxnard Restaurants

Anaba  $11 – 30

Anaba is a popular venue specializing in sushi and other Japanese delights. Open for lunch and dinner every day of the week, this place is packed on any given day. It is easy to understand why as the menu is brimming with a variety of delicious options, all colorful and beautifully plated. Some favorite dishes among customers include the salmon lover roll, Hawaiian volcano roll and crunchy tiger hidden dragon roll. Other good pics include the Alaska roll, and asparagus in a kimono, to name but a few.  Telephone:  805-382-1230  Web:  Anaba.

Cabo Seafood Grill and Cantina  $11 – 30

The festive interior, which is often enhanced by a live Mariachi band, complements the zesty fare perfectly. This is a place the entire family will enjoy. With something for everyone, the menu has a host of options. The choices range from appetizers to seafood dishes to house specialties and more. Meanwhile the drinks menu features refreshing margaritas and more. Food highlights include the chile verde, which is tender pork in a flavorful in tomatillo sauce or the pechuga de pollo adobada a la parilla,. Other good picks include the chicken breast marinated in roasted guajillo chile; and the whole fried red snapper. Telephone:  805-487-6933  Web:  Cabo Seafood Grill and Cantina.

Dominick’s Italian Restaurant  $11 – 30

A family-owned and operated restaurant since 1949, Dominick’s delights the taste buds of diners with its amazing array of Italian delicacies. This place offers everything from comforting pasta dishes to entrées to customizable New York-style pizza. The menu is sure to have something to satisfy anyone’s hunger, whether they’re meat lovers or vegetarians. Must-try dishes include the classic lasagna with meat or the vegetarian version loaded with fresh vegetables. Another good option is the build-your-own pizza with a variety of toppings, such as meatballs, BBQ sauce, bell peppers, and zucchini to name but a few. Open every day, Dominick’s also offers a selection of wine and cocktails to complement the meals.  Telephone:  805-483-7933  Web:  Dominick’s Italian Restaurant.

Tierra Sur  $31 – 60

Located inside the Herzog Wine Cellars, Tierra Sur is one of the best restaurants in South California. It featured the highest ZAGAT rating in 2014 within Ventura County. This fine-dining gem’s new American cuisine is made with nothing but the best seasonal ingredients sourced from local purveyors. This guarantees delicious fresh fare. Within a beautiful setting, discerning diners can savor dishes such as the handmade linguini with puttanesca sauce, seared fennel-crusted tuna, and a fried egg. Or, try the oven-roasted chicken leg stuffed with garlic black rice, mixed squash salad, and pomegranate-molasses glaze. To complement the meal, wine and beer are available.  Telephone:  805-983-1560  Web:  Tierra Sur.

Moqueca Brazilian Cuisine  $11 – 30

If you’re looking to delight your palate with the incredible flavors of Brazil, then be sure to give Moqueca Brazilian Cuisine a try. Specializing in Capixaba fare from the southeast state of Espirito Santo in Brazil, the place is named after the famous dish from the area — moqueca. This dish is seafood and vegetables cooked in clay pot. Within a warm, inviting interior space, this venue allows guests to savor a variety of moquecas. They are made from fish or seafood along with one vegetarian option. The menu also features meaty dishes. These include the picanha grelhada, or Brazilian steak with rice, black beans, and fried yucca. Also be sure to try the caipirinha — the national drink of Brazil — made in a variety of flavors.  Telephone:  805-981-7979  Web:  Moqueca Brazilian Cuisine.

Best Oxnard Nightlife
Beachcomber Tavern

The famous Beachcomber Tavern has been a staple of daily life for sailors, surfers, and sunbathers in the Silver Strand neighborhood since 1938.  Telephone:  805-832-4223  Web:  Beachcomber Tavern.

The Thirsty Ox

This is a neighborhood bar loved by locals and visitors alike. Theyhave pool, karaoke, live music and more.  Telephone:  805-307-4142  Web:   The Thirsty Ox.

Gasolina

Borrowing from European motorcycle culture for much of its aesthetic, as well as possessing the atmosphere of a traditional tapas bar, visitors will become immediately aware that they are in for something new when they come to GASOLINA. Offering a carefully picked local and Spanish selection of wine and beer.  Telephone:  805-225-7210  Web:  Gasolina.

Rudder Room

Nice dive bar on the beach with super cheap drinks. The people there are friendly and fun to hang out with. Very friendly people and fun atmosphere.  Great sunsets, sea breezes, volleyball, and the best cocktails right on the beach.  Telephone:  805-985-6096  Web:  Rudder Room.

Q Club

The Q Club Oxnard is a full-service billiards, bar-and-grill, sports lounge, that has been a staple in Oxnard and the Ventura County area for many, many years. A friendly place where ALL are welcome to catch their favorite games, fights, or any other sporting event on TV, and have a drink, play a little bit of billiards. You have to visit and experience it for yourself!  Telephone:  805-278-1231  Web:  Q Club.

Best Oxnard Hotels
Embassy Suites Mandalay Beach – Hotel & Resort


This property is 2 minutes walk from the beach. On the coast of the Pacific Ocean, 5 miles from downtown Oxnard, California, this all-suite resort features a restaurant, bar and beach access. It has spacious suites with 2 full bathrooms.  A state-of-the-art gym and on-site tennis court are available for recreation.  A cooked-to-order breakfast is served each morning and Coastal Grill Restaurant is open for lunch and dinner. There is a full bar menu in the evenings.  All 2-room suites include a living room with sofa bed, 2 bathrooms and a dining area with a microwave and refrigerator.

Hampton Inn Channel Islands Harbor


This property is a 8-minute walk from the beach. This Oxnard hotel has an outdoor pool and tennis courts. Breakfast is offered daily to guests of The Hampton Inn, overlooking the Channel Islands Harbor.  All rooms in the hotel have a free cable TV, a work desk and ironing facilities. There is a coffee maker in every room, and Wi-Fi is free throughout the hotel.   Breakfast is available to enjoy in the hotel or to take away. Along with the pool, the Channel Islands Hampton Inn has a fitness room and a business center for guest use.  The hotel is about a mile from several Channel Islands Harbor cruise and whale watching excursions and within 2 miles of Pacific Ocean beaches.

Homewood Suites by Hilton – Oxnard/Camarillo


Located off Route 101 in Oxnard, California, this hotel is 8 miles from Port Huenene Beach Park. It features an on-site gym, basketball courts, and suites with 2 flat-screen TVs.  The modern suites at the Homewood Suites by Hilton Oxnard/Camarillo include a sitting area with a sofa bed and work desk. They have cable TV and a clock radio with MP3 compatibility. The kitchenette is complete with a full-size refrigerator, dishwasher, and 2-burner stovetop.  This hotel has a heated outdoor pool and hot tub. A 24-hour business center is in the lobby and a hot continental breakfast is served every morning.

Hilton Garden Inn – Oxnard/Camarillo


Located off Highway 101, this Oxnard, California hotel is 10.6 miles from Ventura Harbor. It features an outdoor pool with hot tub, a 24 hour business center and guest rooms with free Wi-Fi.  Hilton Garden Inn Oxnard/Camarillo provides each room with a flat-screen cable TV with HBO. They are furnished with a microwave, refrigerator and coffee making amenities. Every room is decorated with wood furniture.  Guests have access to the on-site gym and 24 hour convenience store at the hotel. Oxnard Hilton Garden Inn Camarillo also offers 2,020 square feet of meeting space.

Residence Inn by Marriott – Oxnard River Ridge


This property is a 7-minute walk from the beach. Residence Inn features self-contained accommodations 3 miles from downtown Oxnard and a 10-minute drive from the Pacific Ocean shores. It showcases a nearby golf course, a tennis court and a pool.  Spacious rooms at Residence Inn Oxnard River Ridge include a full kitchen, a sitting area with couch and a work desk. Each room also provides free internet connection.  Guests at Residence Inn can enjoy a full breakfast buffet each morning and enjoying the spectacular view of the Rive Ridge Golf Course.  Silver Strand Beach and Hollywood Beach are renowned for their sand and are both within 5 miles of the Residence Inn River Ridge hotel.


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28 Comments

  1. Rob

    Honestly, this is great. I would never of known about any of these places if it wasn’t for you. I’ve been to California once but I went really north. I always tell myself I want to go to LA, and everyone says its overrated. But I don’t know where else to go in California. You give me a huge list of ideas. I just bookmarked your page for future reference. Thanks!

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Great Rob! There are so many wonderful places in California and LA is overrated! I am glad you enjoyed reading my Oxnard Travel Guide.

      Reply
  2. Norman

    This is an extremely complete and informative post. All the essential information I need in order to plan a super trip with my wife and kids is all in one place. I’ve been to California a couple of times, but never to Oxnard – it’s now on my “to do” list thanks to you. 🙂 whales, wine, beaches and New York style pizza – doesn’t get any better than that. I’m bookmarking the page for future reference.

    Thanks for sharing!

    Norman

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Great Norman, and no. does not get much better 🙂 Glad you enjoyed reading and learning about Oxnard 🙂

      Reply
  3. Jerry

    Very informative article about Oxnard as a tourist destination. It makes me want to go there immediately, although I do not live nearby. Oxnard Beach Park with its barbecue and skating areas would be the one for me. I would also go off season, as I like quiet areas. But the most important reason to go there is for the wine tours, where I would visit each of the wineries. No vineyards?

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      There are vineyards and the wine tours are at these vineyards 🙂  Great place Jerry, thanks for reading my Oxnard Travel Guide.

      Reply
  4. hong

    Oxnard sounds like an amazing place to visit this summer. It has been a while since I visited your blog. This is another great article. Very informative. With the amount of information given on your blog, I don’t think I even need a GPS. Thank you so much for the amazing details.

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      You bet Hong, and it is an amazing place. Heck, I love any beach…but some coastal communities just have extra charm. Oxnard is one of them. Thanks for visiting beachtraveldestinations.com.

      Reply
  5. Ahmad Ballard

    Hello once again Leah, great travel article as always :). Me and my family are going to Atlantic City this summer, and we haven’t been in so long, so I am very excited. Oxnard Beach looks so nice!!! I will have to tell my family about this, so we can go one day. Thanks again, and I’m looking forward to more great travel posts from you!!!

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Great Ahmad, there are so many beautiful all over the world to see and savor. I am working my way around 🙂 Thanks for reading my Oxnard Travel Guide.

      Reply
  6. Jaden

    This is a very informative post. Once again, I’m amaze of the place you recommend. I had no idea where is Oxnard and what is the best time to visit the place. The interesting part after reading the post are the place to visit during day time and night time. This really save most of my time and I would like to share the post. And also, after reading the post, I would really want to go for a vacation now to the place that recommended. Hahaha. Keep it!

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Thanks Jaden ! You will love the whole area really. So many coastal communities right there, as well as beautiful beaches 🙂 Glad you enjoyed reading!

      Reply
  7. Steven

    Oxnard is one of the few places I haven’t visited before. After reading your article it really does seem like my kind of place, a little off the beaten path. You recommended so many places that look awesome. Looks like I will have to visit for awhile so I can go to all of them. Ha!

    Another great post! You really make me want to travel more than I already do! Thanks!

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Good Steven, and Oxnard and Santa Barbara are so close, you can kill two birds with one stone. You will love the small coastal feel of Oxnard 🙂

      Reply
  8. John

    Leahrae,
    We are going to the west coast this year on vacation. Do not know if we will get this far north. You have a great deal of information available here that I like, Wine tours, Whale watching, things for the kids and cannot go to the beach without getting the best seafood available.
    I will look into adding this location to our trip, although we will be going in June one of the busiest times.
    John

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Yes, it will be busy, but if you are going by RV, you will be fine. I am just assuming that you might be 🙂 It is a great place to visit with so much different flavors to it. Thanks for reading about Oxnard.

      Reply
  9. Lee Ann

    Yet another good find on your site.
    After reading this post, I think I will start a calendar and add the places from your site by the best months to visit.
    Oxnard would be in November for sure. Non crowded beaches with warm and comfortable temperature. Oh yes.
    Depending on hotel prices I might have to mark this one down for December.
    You have given us hotels, sites to see and food that sounds amazingly YUMMY.
    All I need now is for the husband to retire so we can start our bucket list.
    Although, If we get the chance before then, I would definitely love to go Oxnard for the festivals and the strawberries.
    Thank you for giving me places to look forward to seeing.

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      You are very welcome Lee Ann! Thanks for visiting my Oxnard Travel Guide, and I am glad you have enjoyed reading!

      Reply
  10. ShanLo

    Great article, I’ve been looking for good holiday destinations to go to and this gives me some idea’s, Thanks!

    Reply
    1. admin

      Great! Thanks for visiting!

      Reply
  11. Eric

    This sounds like a fun place to go, maybe in may but I really think Oxnard has a much bigger reason to go there. Perhaps I need to have to plan on going there when the whales are active. Can you tell me more about when during the winter you have the best chance to see the whales? Also, it says tourism is slowest during the colder months, are there still quite of few things to enjoy when not taking a tour to look for ocean life?

    Reply
    1. admin

      The peak of whale watching season is during the Grey Whale Migration (December through mid-April), expect to see grey whales with their new born calves, humpback whales, seals, sea lions, dolphins and orca whales. You can also see whales during the summer months (mid-June through mid-September), where you can get a glimpse of blue whales, finback whales, humpback whales and orca whales, along with other marine mammals. The colder months means colder water, less beachgoers. For everything else, this is the best time to go. If you are not solely going for the beach, then this is a great time to save money. Thanks for visiting BeachTravelDestinations.com.

      Reply
  12. Howard

    This is a very informative article about the about what ahead of your journey NW of LA. I have only been to California a couple of times and when I think of the CA beaches, I think of the ones south of LA all the way to San Diego.

    Excellent post. Very informative and detailed, especially for someone like myself who hasn’t visited this part of California before.

    The restaurant suggestions were spot on and you even included the star rating – a nice extra bonus! I would imagine that you could see much of there areas by automobile, which I have to admit is my favorite mode of trave.

    I have said for years that what’s the point flying overseas when there’s so many beautiful places I haven’t seen IN MY OWN COUNTRY.

    I am also bookmarking this post for future reference.

    Reply
    1. admin

      Thank you Howard, and I am glad you enjoyed reading 🙂 I will have lots more to come on California for sure as that is the area I am focusing on right now 🙂 Thank you so much for taking the time to leave me comments and for reading my Oxnard Travel Guide.

      Reply
  13. Don

    This is a very informative article about the about what ahead of your journey NW of LA. I have only been to California a couple of times and when I think of the CA beaches, I think of the ones south of LA all the way to San Diego.

    I guess I didn’t realize that you could go NW for beach fun too. Thanks for the restaurant suggestions and where to stay. My wife and I will put this destination on our RV travel plans in the future. One of our plans is to explore the east and the west coast areas of the US.

    This article does a great job ranking the restaurants and describing the venues for all taste.

    I am bookmarking your website for future reference.

    Reply
    1. admin

      Great Don! You will have a blast traveling up and down both coasts! So many beautiful places, and so many beautiful beaches 🙂 Thanks for visiting my Oxnard Travel Guide.

      Reply
  14. Michael

    I’m planning on visiting California next year as my son really wants to go and keeps on at me to book it.
    Oxnard looks and sounds like a lovely place to visit and stay for a few days.
    The hotels and restaurants look amazing so now it’s definitely somewhere I will look into staying.
    I would prefer to go around winter time so I have the best chance of seeing the Gray whales. I will have to see about that though as I have a feeling my son will want to go long before then.
    Thanks for this great information on a lovely looking place.
    Best wishes,
    Michael.

    Reply
    1. admin

      Thanks for visiting Michael. Luckily it is still nice in October. The water might be a little chilly though. Not so bad you can’t get in it though 🙂 Please let me know if you have any questions.

      Reply

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