Hipmunk Hotels: Foodie Stops in Ventura, Torrance, Santa Ana, San Mateo, and Oakland

Every time I book a trip, I create three “to-dos” at the place I plan to visit: best beach/mountain/lake, best hotel, and best restaurant. If I succeed at visiting two of the three on each list, I’m a happy traveler. To continue my exploration of California, I found some really great restaurants and local foods to get the most of my California vacation.

Ventura, California

Ventura Harbor Village is known as the seaside playground. Located in Ventura, California, the village houses hotels, bars, and amazing local spots for tourists and locals to enjoy. Most of the eateries have an ocean or harbour view, so this location is seaside dining at its finest. You can find casual as well as elegant dining. The restaurants are as diverse as the people. There is Italian, Mexican, Asian, Greek, and American food, all utilizing the local seafood and produce. Brophy Bros Restaurant and Clam Bar is first on my list.

Image provided by Ruth Rieckehoff via Trover.com

Torrance, California

Torrance, California is an oceanside township south of Los Angeles with great ocean view hotel rooms. It houses a famous restaurant with an unlikely speciality on the menu, the Hawaiian Sweet Roll. Opened in 1977, King’s Hawaiian Bakery & Restaurant & Factory is the continental U.S. home to these tasty Polynesian treats.  If you’ve never had one, head out to your local grocery store and pick some up, but make sure you head over to the deli section. This bread is too good to hangout with the other breads. The restaurant features Hawaiian inspired dishes using the famous sweet bread rolls and you can learn about the history of the bread and the family who created it back in 1950 in Hawaii.

Image provided by Rich Barton via Trover.com

Santa Ana, California

Santa Ana is another suburb of Los Angeles that has its own personality and cultural influences. The city’s downtown historic district is the new hot spot for tourists to stay and locals to live. Santa Ana has Spanish influences and several local restaurants use the local seafood in the Spanish cuisine. I look forward to trying the fish taco or shrimp enchiladas that are popular at some of the local spots.

San Mateo, California

San Mateo, California is located in Silicon Valley near San Francisco. It’s no surprise that the food in this region of California is heavily influenced by the large Asian population in the area. Downtown is the best place to stay to sample the many Japanese inspired restaurants and check out the Asian themed Central Park.

Oakland, California

Across the Bay and north of San Mateo is Oakland, California.While Oakland may not get the respect it deserves, the city grew when people from San Francisco relocated during the 1906 earth quake. The San Francisco Bay offers beautiful views from the Oakland side. There are many great southern food restaurants; one of my favorite dishes is chicken and waffles. The House of Chicken and Waffles is my first stop. It’s in the name, I have to try it.

Image provided by Nica F! via Trover.com

Do you have any hidden food gems in California to share? 

2 thoughts on “Hipmunk Hotels: Foodie Stops in Ventura, Torrance, Santa Ana, San Mateo, and Oakland

  1. Great list! I was born in Ventura and still live only about 30 minutes away; I definitely ought to get out and try Brophy’s and Clam Bar!

  2. My wife works in Santa Ana so she eats there more than I do, but I have tried a few decent Mexican places in town though not the “historic district”.

    Arlee Bird
    A to Z Challenge Co-host
    Tossing It Out

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