Sunset Over the Waterfront at Channel Islands Harbor in Oxnard, California
Sunset Over the Waterfront at Channel Islands Harbor in Oxnard, California

Oxnard, California isn’t well known as a tourist destination — but it should be. Oxnard offers business travelers and vacationers both an abundance of outstanding reasons to visit. Oxnard’s comfortable weather, scenic beaches, fertile soil and interesting port work together to make the city one of the most magical places on earth.

Of all the cities in Ventura County, Oxnard is the one with the highest population.

Traveling to and From Oxnard, California

Oxnard has its own local Airport (OXR) that isn’t in widespread use by the traveling public. Oxnard is within easy traveling distance of Burbank Airport (BUR), Santa Barbara Airport (SBA) and Los Angeles International Airport (LAX).

The 101 and the Pacific Coast Highway (PCH) are two of the major freeways offering access to and from Oxnard, California.

If you’re a civilian traveling to Oxnard via the sea, Channel Islands Harbor will be your likeliest point of entry.

Things to Do in Oxnard, California

If you’re looking for a relaxing vacation getaway, Oxnard is an outstanding destination to put on your travel itinerary. You’re likely to have a quieter, more laid-back vacation experience in Oxnard than you would in neighboring coastal areas like Santa Barbara, Marina Del Rey or Los Angeles.

On the one hand, there isn’t as much to do in Oxnard as there is in Santa Barbara or Los Angeles. On the other hand, that’s actually a fantastic reason to consider visiting Oxnard instead of one of those other destinations.

Oxnard Nightlife

There are many restaurants, bars and nightclubs in Oxnard, California. You’ll enjoy abundant opportunities to eat out, try some new dance moves, check out a live band or listen to a DJ spin some tunes.

Oxnard, California Attractions

Beaches — Sunbathe, paddleboard, surf or swim at Oxnard’s many beaches. A few of your options include Hollywood Beach, Silver Strand Beach, Hollywood Beach, McGrath State Beach, Ormond Beach and Mandalay Beach.

Boating Adventures at Channel Islands Harbor and Beyond — Do you enjoy sportfishing? The Channel Islands Harbor in Oxnard is one of the best places on earth to hop aboard a fishing boat and head out to see what’s biting. Want to check out some marine life? Explore the Pacific on a local whale watching tour. You’re sure to enjoy the local marine environment, whether you want to paddle a kayak around Channel Islands Harbor, set sail for nearby Santa Barbara Harbor, visit the Channel Islands or head out on an ocean cruise bound for a port in some exotic distant land. Your options also include boarding a historic steamboat for a cruise, taking a beginner’s sailing lesson or grabbing your binoculars for a morning of waterfront bird watching.

Even if you aren’t a boater, the Channel Islands Harbor is an appealing destination. It’s a fantastic stop on your travel itinerary if you want to grab a bite of seafood, watch interesting marine animals or sightsee along the waterfront. On weekend mornings, it’s entertaining to watch the boat traffic into and out of the harbor.

Every Sunday morning, local vendors flock to the public marina to offer fresh produce and fish for sale at the farmer’s and fisherman’s market. If your accommodations offer kitchen privileges, you’ll definitely want to take advantage of the opportunity to sample, and cook with, local fare.

Oxnard Museums — The Channel Islands Maritime Museum is an educational and intellectually stimulating day trip for visitors of all ages. Fine art enthusiasts are likely to enjoy the Carnegie Art Museum.

Local Parks in Oxnard, California — Oxnard’s many parks offer you and your family space to play outside, enjoy a picnic lunch or go for a leisurely stroll. Plaza Park, Oxnard Beach Park, College Park, Cabrillo Park, Southbank Park and Channel Islands Harbor Park are a few of your options. If your dog is along for the trip, you’ll be happy to know there are many pet-friendly destinations. Several of Oxnard’s beaches welcome dogs, and your beloved pet might also enjoy playing at the College Park Dog Park.

Annual Events, Happenings and Festivals in Oxnard, California

The Channel Islands Tall Ships Festival is a fantastic reason to travel to Oxnard.

The California Strawberry Festival is a popular annual event in Oxnard. This is an event we can’t in good conscience recommend, thanks to all the horrifying chemicals farmers are using to grow strawberries. If you decide to attend the event, or even if you don’t attend, we recommend being careful to avoid consuming conventionally grown strawberries. When it comes to strawberries, eating organic is definitely preferable.

Oxnard Climate and Weather

Weather conditions in Oxnard, California are usually sunny, comfortable and pleasant, with temperatures ranging from 40 – 81 degrees Fahrenheit. Oxnard does occasionally experience rain, drizzle and fog. There are many windy days, particularly in springtime. In the harbor, be sure to check at the coast guard station before heading out on a boat; windy conditions are commonplace along the coastal area right around the harbor.