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California Surf Museum

312 Pier View Way, Oceanside, CA 92054-2525
+1 760-721-6876
Review Highlights
Our visit was made special by Cramer Jackson!

We were already enjoying this little surfing museum as it's well laid out and well labeled, but it... read more

Reviewed 12 August 2017
Greater Sydney, Australia
Surf history -- a great stroll down CA history

CA culture has been shaped by the surf culture and this is THE only surf museum where you can go to... read more

Reviewed 7 August 2017
Oceanside, CA
Read all 157 reviews
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Founded in 1986, the California Surf Museum mission is to preserve surfing heritage. The museum hosts a variety of cultural events from book signings to lectures, to movie nights to concerts. But the museum is most known for the wonderful rotating exhibits about surf and skateboard culture, art, and history. The whole family is welcome and you don't have to surf or skateboard to enjoy the museum.The California Surf Museum has been featured in Smithsonian Magazine, National Geographic, the BBC, the American Pickers "California Dreamin'", Hawaiian Airlines commercial, PBS "Getting Away Together" and many more. Don't miss the outdoor Secret Spot and Bethany Hamilton's surfboard while you are here. Also, shop the Museum Store for unique gifts and souvenirs. Joining as a member is a great way to get involved in volunteer opportunities and to support the museum on an annual basis. Hope to see you soon!
  • Excellent62%
  • Very good27%
  • Average10%
  • Poor1%
  • Terrible0%
Travellers talk about
“on display” (13 reviews)
“china beach” (3 reviews)
“gift shop” (12 reviews)
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Hours Today: 10:00 - 16:00
312 Pier View Way, Oceanside, CA 92054-2525
+1 760-721-6876
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Reviews (157)
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1 - 10 of 152 reviews

Reviewed 12 August 2017

We were already enjoying this little surfing museum as it's well laid out and well labeled, but it went from good to a highlight of our trip in just a few minutes! We were only about a third of the way through when we were...More

Thank Dromomaniac
Reviewed 7 August 2017

CA culture has been shaped by the surf culture and this is THE only surf museum where you can go to go see it. It is not a large place but full of history and explanations for those not deeply embedded in surf culture.

Thank JamesJOceanside_CA
Reviewed 17 July 2017

We wandered into the California Surf Museum today and were pleasantly surprised to find such a well done exhibit on China Beach and the healing power of wave riding. The staff was so kind and knowledgable and the entire experience was very enjoyable. If you...More

Thank chrisanne2812
Reviewed 11 July 2017

Turned out to be a very interesting museum with a special exhibit on China Beach and surfing in the Vietnam War; also long boards, surfing culture and nice gifts to purchase. Very inexpensive and well worth stopping in!

Thank nmdb22
Reviewed 25 June 2017

I was really intrigued by the map of Vietnam that highlighted the different surf spots soldiers and marines experienced during the war in Vietnam. I had thought that China Beach may have been a fantasy place, along the lines of the 4077th MASH, but the...More

Thank RangerBobN
Reviewed 30 May 2017 via mobile

Stopped in here on a misty, cool, dreary day. Interesting little stop. Inexpensive at $5 for adults and $3 for students over 12. We are not surfers but was fun for kids to see Bethany Hamilton's board. Interesting to read about surfing during the Vietnam...More

Thank ep1979
Reviewed 26 April 2017

Everytime we come to Oceanside, this museum is on our list of "musts". If you surf (like we do) or are just interested in the true culture of California surfing, you've got to visit!

Thank Maradog
Reviewed 19 April 2017

It's not large, but it's interesting, reasonably priced and well-designed. Great photo ops and a cool little gift shop. A great part of the character of Oceanside.

Thank MJWalsh
Reviewed 30 March 2017

Although it's not large, it's crammed with an interesting variety of surf exhibits that are well designed and very informative. Definitely worth a stop when you're downtown.

Thank CH200
Reviewed 28 March 2017 via mobile

This is a great place to spend an hour or so walking through surfing history. A nice little gift shop too. The staff was was so welcoming and knowledgeable.

Thank Barbara S
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