Frequently Asked Questions

Q: How can I get visitor information?

Our helpful staff at the Ventura Visitors & Convention Bureau can answer all your questions — and if we can’t, we’ll find out how! Please contact us …

  • 101 South California Street, Ventura, CA 93001
  • 805-648-2075 (You can reach us directly (Pacific Time) Monday-Friday 8:30am-5pm, Saturday 9am-5pm, and Sunday 10am-4pm. After these hours you can leave a voicemail message.)
  • web site: visitventuraca.com

Q: When is the Visitors Center open & how do I get there?

A: Monday-Saturday 9am-5pm and Sunday 10am-4pm. Winter Hours: Monday-Saturday 9am-4pm and Sunday 10am-4pm. We are located at 101 South California Street (at the corner of Santa Clara Street and California Street). From the 101 Freeway Northbound, exit California Street, turn right, stay in the middle lane, and drive straight on to California Street to the second traffic light. The Visitors Center is on the left side of the street. From the 101 Freeway Southbound, exit Seaward Avenue and turn right on to Harbor Boulevard. Follow Harbor Boulevard to California Street and turn right. Stay in the middle lane, and drive to the second traffic light. The Visitors Center is on the left side of the street.

Q: How far is Los Angeles from Ventura?

A: Los Angeles is located one hour south of Ventura – about 60 miles (and a few worlds) away.

Q: How do I take a trip out to the Channel Islands National Park?

A: Located off the coast of Ventura, the five islands that comprise Channel Islands National Park can be accessed via Island Packers Cruises. The Park’s sole concessionaire, Island Packers runs trips to the islands daily. www.islandpackers.com; 805-642-1393.

Q: When Do Whale Watching trips take place in Ventura?

A: Whale sightings are an inexact science — which is part of their beauty. But, in general, from the end of December through the end of March, Pacific Gray Whales pass through the channel off the coast of Ventura. From late June to late August, Blue and Humpback Whales feed in the channel and off the Channel Islands. Island Packers Cruises (listed above) has more information and a host of whale watching trips.

Q: Does Ventura have lots of family activities?

A: To borrow a line, we are family. Ventura has plenty of fun family offerings (take a deep breath), from safe and uncrowded beaches, to biking, kayaking, miniature golf, harbor cruises, museums, a carousel (at Ventura Harbor), surfing, skate parks, tide pools, pedal boats, Channel Islands cruises, hiking, Ventura Harbor Village family weekend events, and special events throughout the year. Whew.

Q: How can I get lodging information for Ventura?

A: We have a list of hotels, motels, and bed & breakfast inns here on our website; visitventuraca.com  Also, we have a detailed listing in our Ventura Visitors Guide (available for free at our Visitor Center; 101 South California Street). And you can always call the Visitors Center (805-648-2075). We love to help!

Q: What is the total number of hotel rooms available in Ventura?

A: Roughly 2,150 rooms are available.

Q: What kinds of activities are at the Ventura Harbor?

A: The Ventura Harbor offers lots of fun activities including Harbor cruises, shopping, casual and fine dining, a weekly fishermen’s market, boat rentals, diving trips, walking paths, the Channel Islands National Park Visitors Center, weekend concerts, and dozens of special events throughout the year. www.venturaharbor.com

Q: From Ventura, how can I get to Highway 1 (Coastal Scenic Route to Malibu)?

A: It’s easy. You can probably look it up on your phone, but if you stop by the Visitors Center, we’ll give you inside tips for sights to see along the way!

Q: How can I get camping information on the Ventura area?

A: Our website has campsite listings, and the annual Visitors Guide (which you can pick up at the Visitor Center) has a campground listing as well. If you need more help, you can call the Visitors Center with specific questions. We can also fax you a detailed list of local campground offerings.

Q: When does the Monarch Butterfly season begin in Ventura?

A: The Monarch butterflies usually begin to arrive in October — and they can stay through February. A popular site to see them is Camino Real Park, located on Dean Drive off of Mills Road (near the Pacific View Mall.) The yearly migration can differ greatly in numbers depending on the weather and climate. The best time to see the lovely throngs of butterflies clustered in the eucalyptus trees is in the morning before it gets too warm.

Q: Where can I get weather / climate information on Ventura?

A: Please refer to our website weather section when planning your visit! Though we should mention that we have close to 300 sunny days a year.

Q: Where can I take surfing lessons in Ventura?

A: We are surfing. There are plenty of great surf schools, including these…  Surfclass.com ; 805-200-8674. seawardsurf.com: 805-648-4742. https://www.venturasurfschool.com ; 805-218-1484. https://maryosbornesurf.com/ ; 805-973-7263. https://venturamakossurfcamp.com/ ; 805-426-0765.

Q: Where can I find electric charging stations in Ventura?

A: Ventura currently has electric charging stations at the following locations.

  • The beachfront parking structure at 550 Harbor Boulevard (next to the Crowne Plaza hotel).
  • The downtown parking structure at 555 Santa Clara Street. City Hall at 501 Poli Street.
  • City Maintenance Yard at 336 San Jon Road.
  • East Ventura Metrolink Station at 6298 Inez Street.
  • And the Ventura Community Park at 901 South Kimball Road.

Q: Does Ventura offer any local historical tours?

A: The Visitors Center produces a self-guided historical walking map of Downtown Ventura. Stop by the Visitors Center to pick up your free copy (101 S. California Street and the corner of Santa Clara and California streets). Additionally, the City of Ventura offers a variety of tours throughout the year, usually on Saturdays and weekends. Please refer to our website calendar of events or call the Visitors Center to receive the current listing.

Q: How can I find out about any Special Events happening during my visit?

A: Please refer to our website’s year-long Calendar of Events. https://visitventuraca.com/events/ Also, you can call the Visitors Center the week you are coming for a current update. (805-648-2075)

Q: I have seen Ventura referred to as San Buenaventura. Which is correct?

A: San Buenaventura means “city of good fortune” in Spanish. The name is taken from the Spanish mission that was built here in 1782 by Father Junipero Serra. Now generally referred to as Ventura, the city is indeed rich in natural, cultural, architectural and historical treasures. From rugged, transverse range mountains and fertile valleys to a magnificent coastline with offshore islands, Ventura is the backyard paradise to more than 100,000 residents.

Q: What is Ventura’s history?

A: Many cultures have inhabited the land where Ventura is now located. The earliest were the Chumash Indians. Archaeologists have discovered that even earlier cultures date back as far as 10,000 years. In 1782, Father Junipero Serra founded the San Buenaventura Mission where the Chumash established a regimented life, learning new skills and developing agriculture. Due to diseases and a lack of funds, mission life declined. In 1866, the City of San Buenaventura officially became part of Santa Barbara County. The majority of residents were of Spanish, Mexican and Indian origin. In 1873, Ventura County was formed and San Buenaventura became a city within the new county. Ventura thrives today as a classic California beach town filled with interesting restaurants and an eclectic mix of stores, boutiques and open-air coffeehouses. Its beachfront hotels, offshore islands, and cool climate make Ventura an ideal vacation getaway.

Q: What is the population of Ventura?

A: Roughly 111,000 happy souls.

Q: What is Ventura’s climate like?

A: Ventura has a Mediterranean climate with ideal weather in the fall and winter months, and equally cool and dry temperatures during the summer season, making it a popular cooling-off spot for folks from hotter climes. The average temperature is 70.9 degrees Fahrenheit. And, yes, close to 300 sunny days a year.

Q: What major industries are supported in Ventura?

A: Tourism, agriculture, and oil. Also home to home-grown companies like Patagonia and The Trade Desk.

Q: Where is Ventura?

A: Ventura is 62 miles north of Los Angeles, 27 miles south of Santa Barbara and 364 miles south of San Francisco. And world’s away from crowds. Water defines Ventura geographically, with the Ventura River forming the town’s northern boundary, the Santa Clara River at its southern edge and the Pacific Ocean to the west.

Q: How can I get to Ventura?

  • Air: Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) and Burbank Airport are both approximately a 90-minute drive from Ventura. Santa Barbara Airport is about 45 minutes north from Ventura.
  • Ground: Greyhound buses stop in Ventura. Airport shuttles like Ventura County Airporter and Roadrunner Shuttle take visitors to and from airports like LAX, Burbank and Santa Barbara.
  • Rail: Amtrak runs passenger trains daily. The train station is located at the Ventura County Fairgrounds by the beach.

For more information, please see the Transportation page on our website; https://visitventuraca.com/visit/maps-transportation/ 

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