I have to admit, I never thought twice about Oxnard. I’ve always thought of Oxnard as just an agricultural town. I normally would drive through Oxnard, just to get to Santa Barbara. We would sometimes stop to check out the strawberry fields and the nearby Camarillo Outlet stores in the area, but that’s about it.
It wasn’t until some years ago, we started noticing Oxnard, this hidden California Gem. My daughter started having soccer games in Oxnard. So, we started driving north, on Highway US-101 to Oxnard, quite often.
We noticed immediately, that Oxnard was pretty close to Los Angeles. If you leave early enough in the day, you can get to Oxnard, in less than an hour. We also noticed, that the soccer fields in Oxnard were pretty immaculate! Lots of land to make great recreational parks.
Right around the same time, our friends bought a beach house in Oxnard. That’s when we really saw this gem of a town! Who knew Oxnard had nice beaches? Our friends bought a house, just a few blocks away from the most beautiful beach, known as Mandalay beach.
Mandalay beach is part of Oxnard State Beach. The location of this beach is pretty spectacular. Long white sand beach, with manageable waves and beautiful views of the Channel Islands.
This beach is so pretty and so quiet, compared to all of the other Southern California beaches.There’s a great walkway along this beach. There’s a really nice, big park in the area and an impressive Embassy suites, that’s right by the beach. Mandalay Beach is also dog friendly. Embassy Suites is located at 2102 Mandalay Beach Road, Oxnard 93035
Close to Mandalay Beach is the Channel Islands Marina, where you can catch a boat and cruise the area. You’ll find great restaurants, shops and a wonderful Sunday Farmer’s Market. Local, organic fruits, vegetables, nuts, flowers, plants and cheese are sold at this quaint Farmer’s Market. Great art, soaps and clothing are sold by local vendors, as well.
You can get fresh seafood, literally, fresh off the boat, from a nearby dock! We always score great salmon and ahi! While it’s not that cheap, you get a big portion and the fish is fresh, fresh, fresh! Located at 3600 Harbor Blvd. Oxnard, 93035
One of my favorites eateries at the Channel Island Marina is Sea Fresh. The food is affordable and delicious. Bloody Marys and Mimosa’s are always $3, yum! Great sashimi and sushi at reasonable prices, makes this restaurant very popular.
A big outdoor dining area makes this a great spot for marina viewing and perfect for your pets, as well! Located 3550 S. Harbor Blvd. 93035
For nightlife, we always head to Ventura. Ventura is right next to Oxnard, just north. It’s more of a well known beach town. You’ll find nice beaches, hotels and a lovely downtown. We love to shop and brunch during the day and love to go dancing in the evenings! Yes, Ventura offers a pretty good nightlife!
One of our favorite spots for dining and dancing is Watermark in downtown Ventura. Located in a restored 1920’s bank. Downstairs there’s a big dining room and bar. Upstairs, where you’ll find us, is a lounge, a big bar, a dance floor, and usually, a really good live band. There’s an outdoor lounge, as well. Wonderful food, drinks and music, always makes for a great night out! Located at 598 E. Main St. Ventura 93001.
There you have it! Oxnard, my favorite Hidden Gem in California. It’s a wonderful change from other California beach communities. If you’re looking for a quiet spot and if you’re looking to just take in the beauty of the California coast, then this beach is for you. If you’re looking for a scene, then keep moving on. Oxnard is all about relaxation. So, come and chill out, if you’re Going California! Oxnard State Beach located at 1601 S. Harbor Blvd, Oxnard 93035