Ventura, California is a coastal city whose official name is The City of San Buenaventura which means ‘good luck’ or ‘good event.’ Appropriately named, it is sometimes referred to as one of America’s most livable communities. Located northwest of Los Angeles, between Malibu and Santa Barbara, Ventura is known for its beaches, proximity to two of the eight Channel Islands: Anacapa and Santa Cruz, and Surfer’s Point which is a haven for both surfers and windsurfers. The 13 mile coastal hiking and bike path, vast sandy beaches and hillside trails encourage locals and visitors alike to enjoy an outdoor lifestyle in keeping with the quaint seaside community. The Ventura Pier, originally named the Ventura Wharf, was built in 1872 and by 1938 was one of the longest piers in California. Having survived many storms, it is now the 6th longest primary wooden pier in the state. Rich in both Native American and Spanish history and culture, Ventura is home to the Mission San Buenaventura founded and built by the Franciscans in 1872. It is the 9th of the 21 Spanish missions established in California and the last of those established by Father Junipero Serra. Open 361 days a year, it is a popular destination for elementary school field trips and regular churchgoers.
Ventura Harbor, one of the most active commercial fishing ports between San Pedro and Morro Bay is a vital player in the economy of the city of Ventura. The harbor also offers a vast selection of festive shops, restaurants and family entertainment. Historic downtown Ventura is an eclectic mix of boutiques, inns, antique shops, and restaurants housed in a variety spaces with distinct and unique architectural styles.