By Jordan Wehlage
It is no secret that college is often difficult and time-consuming. From late night studying to long afternoons doing research for that pesky 10-page paper, students have a lot going on that is both stressful and monotonous at times.
However, students at CI are fortunate; our campus is surrounded by spots to take study breaks and enjoy ourselves. What are some of these places?
One of the most obvious answers is the beach! From CI, the beach is just 10 to 15 minutes away by car where students can enjoy the relaxing effects of the sun, surf and sand. Caleb Klotzle, a third-year environmental science and resource management major, is a member of the Surf Club here at CI. Klotzle explained, “Surfing here is one of my favorite activities and really grounds you in the culture around campus. Everyone in the water or on the sand is there to enjoy the same beach and ocean. It really creates a community of friends that you can just chill with and not have to worry about classes.”
Travel a few minutes in the opposite direction of the beach and you will run into the famed Camarillo Premium Outlets. The Outlets, as most people call them, host a massive variety of retailers. This is a popular spot to pick up a new pair of shoes, find the perfect outfit or grab a delicious meal.
Speaking of meals, Camarillo offers many dining options for those who want to branch out from campus eateries. Students can enjoy a classic Californian staple at In-N-Out Burger, or head to Ventura Boulevard for a wide range of local restaurants. Within a short drive of campus, there is an option for everyone, from Thai to barbecue to pizza and much more. The restaurant options nearby also vary greatly in price, so you always have choices, whether you are grabbing a reasonably-priced snack or taking a special someone out for a fancy dinner.
Emily Schumacher, a sophomore health science major, shared her favorite spot for a snack in Camarillo: “Blenders in the Grass is the best place to go after a long class to grab a smoothie. It’s a refreshing treat that will taste good no matter what time of day…It never disappoints.”
Many of the local businesses in Camarillo offer discounts to CI students through the Dolphin Discount Program. Bring a CI student ID and you can nab discounts such as 10% off at eateries like Bandit’s Bar and Grill and Ottavio’s Italian Restaurant, 10% off clothing at Revolution Surf Co. and many more. Find the full list of participating vendors here: https://asi.csuci.edu/student-union/dolphindiscounts.htm
The Camarillo area is also home to some fascinating historical sight-seeing. Students can visit sites like the Reyes Adobe, the old Camarillo Ranch and the Pleasant Valley Historical Society’s Museum and botanical gardens. Links to the websites for these attractions can be found below:
There is even more to see in Ventura for those willing to make a quick trip about 25 minutes north of campus. This town is a favorite among surfers for its beachy look and laid-back energy. There is also a cozy downtown area centered around Mission San Buenaventura. The downtown area offers many local shops, antique stores, thrift stores, bars, restaurants and coffee shops. In fact, some of Ventura’s most popular coffee shops are on Main Street: Palermo, Palm and Boy and Café de Suro, to name a few.
Just a short walk from the downtown area is the beach, which features the boardwalk and pier. You can walk along the boardwalk and watch the surfers, and then head down to the pier and grab some tacos from Beach House Tacos.
Ventura boasts a variety of new beaches to explore such as Ventura Harbor, which is home to a collection of restaurants, shops and even The Ultimate Escape Rooms. The city of Ventura also features Golf N Stuff, an entertainment park with miniature golf, bumper cars, go-karts and a sizeable arcade.
Our corner of Southern California is filled with many things to do and see. Who knows what hidden gems you will discover? Your next study break might just lead you to your new favorite place. Use #CIStudyBreaks on Instagram and Twitter to share your best local finds with us!