Lake Casitas

Lake Casitas is the name of a large reservoir that can be found near the coast in Ventura County. More specifically, this artificial lake has a maximum length of 3.3 miles and a maximum width of 1.9 miles. Lake Casitas was created by the construction of Casitas Dam, and among the reservoir’s roles are providing drinking water for area residents and helping to control regional flooding. It also serves as a popular recreational destination, due in part to its scenic appeal. Numerous hills and mountains rise up around Lake Casitas, and there is plenty of visual depth for visitors to relish in.

Los Padres National Forest

Los Padres National Forest
Los Padres National Forest

Surrounding Lake Casitas is a portion of the vast Los Padres National Forest. This forest extends along the California coast from Ventura to Monterey and is a wonderful place to explore. As you might suspect, trees abound in the Los Padres National Forest, and there are plenty of mountain vistas to enjoy. Hiking is among the most popular activities in the Los Padres National Forest, and should visitors wish to spend the night, the park has its fair share of campgrounds. Some of the camping sites in the Los Padres National Forest are extremely rugged, while others are more established and can accommodate recreational vehicles. Lake Casitas visitors should know that the Lake Casitas Recreation Area has 400 campsites of its own, and some of these sites are right on the water.

Outdoor Recreation

Hiking and camping are just two options when it comes to the recreational activities that can be enjoyed in and around Lake Casitas. Since the lake supplies drinking water, no swimming is allowed. The lake can be used for boating and fishing, however, and during the hotter season, visitors who have their minds set on swimming can visit Casitas Water Adventure. This water park has two different water playgrounds and caters to kids and adults alike. Lake Casitas visitors who are interested in enjoying some outdoor recreation can also look to play some disc golf or go biking. The Coyote Point Disc Golf Course was professionally-designed and delightfully overlooks the lake. For cyclists, there is a walking and biking path that winds its way along the lake’s east side. Picnicking and bird watching are just two more ideas for things to do at the Lake Casitas Recreation Area, and when a break from recreational pursuits is in order, the park has a café and a store that can be taken advantage of.


Many travelers who have their sights set on Lake Casitas choose to base themselves in Ojai. This small city sits to the near northeast of the lake and is known for its tourist-friendly attributes. Hotels, spas, and spiritual retreats are examples of the various Ojai offerings, and the town has an artistic edge that is quite appealing. Golfing enthusiasts can take an interest in the two major courses that call Ojai home, and Sundays are great days to visit for fans of farmers’ markets. This might be the smallest city in Ventura County, but what it lacks in size, it more than makes up for in overall quality.

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