Ventura County Scenic Drive

Posted by R.S. Rodriguez

As a former resident of San Francisco, I’ve fond memories of that wonderful city. When guests would come to visit, I often found myself taking them on a vehicular journey of The City, often following the well-known signs which guide drivers along San Francisco’s “49 Mile Scenic Drive.” It behooves western Ventura County (Camarillo, Ventura, Oxnard etc…) to implement a similar route to entice drivers to get off the 101 freeway and enjoy the many visual splendors of this area.
The route in San Francisco is designated by signs recognized throughout the world (an image of a seagull, and the words “49 Miles Scenic Drive) with arrows instructing drivers where and when to turn to follow the path. Perhaps western Ventura County can implement a similar sign system with a our own different logo.

With thousands and thousands of travelers passing daily along the 101, maybe a few dozen would be enticed to follow a route, which hypothetically, pulls drivers heading south off the freeway before Main Street in Ventura, allowing them to enjoy the architectural beauty of Downtown Ventura. The route could wind its way westward to the ocean at the intersection of Main and California. There, they could appreciate a view of the Ventura Pier before heading south along Harbor Blvd toward Oxnard, allowing them to enjoy sights of the Channel Islands Harbor and Oxnard beaches. A well-thought out route could potentially incorporate vistas of Ventura, the beauty of Channel Islands Harbor and could meander through Oxnard’s Historic District and eastward through the agricultural fields. The drive could then be planned to enjoy the charm of Camarillo, somehow winding its via Camarillo and to Santa Paula and Fillmore, with the route meandering through Foothill Blvd between Ventura and Santa Paula, for example.

It seems to me that so many drivers passing along the 101 corridors have no idea as to the richness and beauty of western Ventura County. A well-defined route could benefit local business, restaurants and shops and would give drivers unfamiliar with this area a viable reason to pull off the freeway. Yet, in order to do so, local cities must work in conjunction with Cal Trans to properly place a few signs along the freeway with a well-thought-out logo and wording that perhaps says, “39 Mile Scenic Drive” (49 Mile Scenic Drive might be trademarked).

If there are any of your favorite Ventura County historical landmarks, cafes or restaurants which you feel should be included, please feel free to share them in the comments.