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Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area

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Santa Monica Mountains rise above Los Angeles, widen to meet the curve of Santa Monica Bay and reach their highest peaks facing the ocean, forming a beautiful and multi-faceted landscape. Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area is a cooperative effort that joins federal, state and local park agencies with private preserves and landowners to protect the natural and cultural resources of this transverse mountain range and seashore. Located in a Mediterranean ecosystem, the Santa Monica Mountains contain a wide variety of plants and wildlife. The mountains also have an interesting and diverse cultural history which begins with the Chumash and Gabrielino/Tongva peoples and continues today in 'L.A.'s backyard.'

   

CONTACTS

Email - SAMO_interpretation@nps.gov

Fax- (805)370-1850

Write to
Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area
401 West Hillcrest Drive
Thousand Oaks, CA 91360

- or -
California State Parks
1925 Las Virgenes Road
Calabasas, CA 91302

Phone
Headquarters Recorded Message - (805) 370-2300
Visitor Information - (805) 370-2301
Education OfficesRecorded Message - (805) 370-2348

TRAVEL BASICS

Operating Hours, Seasons
The National Park Service Visitor Center is open daily from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. It is closed on Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year's Day. The Visitor Center contains a bookstore which is open during the same hours.

VISITATION: Mountains: Highest in spring; Lowest in summer

Beaches: Highest in summer; Lowest in winter

Getting There
PLANE - Nearby Airports include the Los Angeles International Airport and the Hollywood/Burbank Airport.

CAR - The Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area is located west of Griffith Park in Los Angeles County and to the east of the Oxnard Plain in Ventura County. U.S. Highway 101 (Ventura Freeway) borders the mountains on the north, and State Highway 1 (Pacific Coast Highway) and the Pacific Ocean form the southern boundary. Access to most park areas is available via many roads that cross the mountains between these two major highways. A portion of the park also stretches into the Simi Hills, north of U.S. Highway 101.

The National Park Service Visitor Center is located at 401 West Hillcrest Drive in Thousand Oaks, California.

From Ventura Freeway (U. S. Highway 101) to Lynn Rd turn north on Lynn road turn east (right) on Hillcrest Drive left onto McCloud Ave. First driveway on the right.

If you are going South on the 23 Freeway, exit at the Thousand Oaks Blvd/ Hillcrest Drive exit go west or right onto Hillcrest and turn right onto McCloud.

PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION - Public Transportation is available through: Thousand Oaks Transit (800) 438-1112 in Thousand Oaks and Vista in Ventura County.

Weather & Climate
The Santa Monica Mountains have a true Mediterranean climate with hot, dry summers (80 to 100 degrees Fahrenheit) and relatively cool, wet winters (40 to 70 degrees Fahrenheit). Nights can be cool any time of the year. In the summer, the coastal side of the mountains is generally 10 to 15 degrees cooler than the inland side. In the winter this pattern is reversed with warmer temperatures along the coast.

Layer your clothing to be comfortable anywhere in the mountains. For safety and comfort, use a hat, sunscreen and appropriate shoes or boots.

Accessibility
Various tours, programs, and trails are accessible or partially accessible to persons with disabilities. Contact our Visitor Center for a list of Accessible sites in Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area.

Sometimes changes in weather will make a trail less accessible. Use your best judgement before embarking on a trail that looks potentially inaccessible.

Please contact the park visitor center to find out more details on accessiblity of our trails and programs.

The National Park Visitor Center in Thousand Oaks and the Satwiwa Culture Center are fully accessible. Both of these centers have accessible exhibits.

Getting Around
Traveling by car is the most convenient way to get around the Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area. Maps are available for planning your visit.

FEES/PERMITS

Special Use Permits


CAMPING

California State Parks Campgrounds
Open All Year
There are 4 California State Parks in the Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area. Their facilities vary. Most require reservations.
For More Information on this campground please call 818-880-0350

Circle X Group Campground (10-75 people)
Open All Year
Reservation Required. Located on Yerba Buena Road in Malibu. Has trails leading to the highest points in the Santa Monica Mountain Range. Drinking water, pit toilets, tent spaces are available. Pets are permitted
For More Information on this campground please call 805-370-2300, Ext. 1702

LODGING

There are no lodging facilities in the Santa Monica Mountains NRA
Please explore local chambers of commerce or use a search engine to find lodging. Cities with lodging convenient to the Santa Monica Mountains include: Los Angeles, Thousand Oaks, Agoura Hills, Malibu, Santa Monica, Woodland Hills, Westlake Village, Calabasas, Encino, Newbury Park, Camarillo, Beverly Hills, Hollywood, Sherman Oaks, Bel Air, Brentwood, Simi Valley.

FACILITIES

Visitor Centers
HEADQUARTERS VISITOR CENTER
Open All Year 9 AM- 5 PM
Phone - 805-370-2301
Location - 401 West Hillcrest Drive Thousand Oaks, CA 91360
Closures - Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Day and New Years Day
Exhibits - Mountains to Ocean is an exhibit that will guide you through the Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area. It features interactive displays and historical art work.
Available Facilities - Audio/Visual Room, Restrooms

  Map
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Detailed Map


Contact Info
contact info
Phone, Email, Address, GPS coordinates


Campgrounds Nearby
campgrounds
List of Nearby Campgrounds


Weather
weather
Local weather forecast


OUTDOORS
These outdoors activities are available near Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area.
 Campgrounds Near Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area:
Camp Westoaks, Thousand Oaks, 1 miles away
Oak Park, Simi Valley, 6 miles away
Camp Jca Sholom, Malibu, 7 miles away
Camp Keystone, Agoura Hills, 7 miles away
Santa Monica Mts National Recreation Area - Circle X Ranch Group, Newbury Park, 7 miles away
Decker Canyon Group Camp, Westlake Village, 9 miles away
Point Mugu State Park - Danielson Group, Newbury Park, 10 miles away
 Marinas Near Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area:
Acebo Marina, Winnetka , 20 miles away
 Hotels Near Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area:
Quality Inn & Suites Thousand Oaks, Thousand Oaks , 2 miles away
Best Western Plus Thousand Oaks Inn, Thousand Oaks , 2 miles away
Hampton Inn - Suites Thousand Oaks CA, Thousand Oaks , 3 miles away
La Quinta Inn & Suites Thousand Oaks Newbury Park, Thousand Oaks , 3 miles away
Palm Garden Hotel, Thousand Oaks , 3 miles away
Courtyard Thousand Oaks Ventura County, Thousand Oaks , 4 miles away
TownePlace Suites Thousand Oaks Ventura County, Thousand Oaks , 4 miles away
 Trails Near Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area:
Whiteacre Peak Trail, Ventura County , 18 miles away, 4.5 hiking miles, 1954 feet elevation difference
Pothole Trail, Ventura County , 19 miles away,  10.6 hiking miles, 2168 feet elevation difference
Last Chance Trail, Ventura County , 20 miles away,  11.8 hiking miles, 4251 feet elevation difference
 Beaches Near Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area:
Encinal Beach, Los Angeles County , 10 miles away
Trancas Beach, Los Angeles County , 10 miles away
South Beach, Los Angeles County , 10 miles away
North Beach, Ventura County , 11 miles away
Yerba Buena Beach, Ventura County , 11 miles away
 Ski Areas Near Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area:
Mt Waterman, California , 77 miles away, 1300 foot drop, 3 lifts, 10 runs
Mountain High, California , 82 miles away, 1600 foot drop, 16 lifts, 62 runs
Ski Sunrise, California , 82 miles away, 816 foot drop, 4 lifts, 24 runs
Mt. Baldy, California , 86 miles away, 2100 foot drop, 4 lifts, 28 runs
Shirley Meadow, California , 88 miles away, 600 foot drop, 3 lifts, 7 runs
 Whitewater Near Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area:
Piru Creek, Ventura County , 16 miles away, Class II - 4 miles long (Lake Piru to Santa Clara River)
Piru Creek, Los Angeles Ventura County , 26 miles away, Class IV - 15 miles long (Pyramid Lake to Lake Piru)
Sespe Creek, Ventura County , 28 miles away, Class IV-V - 31.5 miles long (Lion Campground to Highway 126 bridge)
 Public Lands Near Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area:
Channel Islands National Park, Ventura - CA , 29 miles away
Robert H. Meyer Memorial State Beach, California , 10 miles away
Leo Carrillo State Park, California , 10 miles away
Point Mugu State Park, California , 11 miles away
Malibu Creek State Park, California , 11 miles away
 Golf Courses Near Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area:
Los Robles Greens Golf Course, Thousand Oaks , 2 miles away
Sunset Hills Country Club, Thousand Oaks , 2 miles away
Tierra Rejada Golf Course, Moorpark , 4 miles away
Max Out Golf, Westlake Village , 5 miles away
Westlake Golf Course, Westlake Village , 5 miles away
 Lakes Near Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area
Lake Eleanor, Ventura County , 4 miles away
Lake Piru, Ventura County , 17 miles away

Copyright © Stratus-Pikpuk, Inc. - Pictures of park and text about park by the US National Park Service. Operating hours and fees are valid at the date of publishing and are subject to change, please contact park directly for current information.