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California Surf Museum

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Address: 312 Pier View Way, Oceanside, CA
Phone Number: 7607216876
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10:00 am - 4:00 pm
Closed now
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Thu 10:00 am - 8:00 pm
Fri - Wed 10:00 am - 4:00 pm

Founded in 1986, the California Surf Museum mission is to preserve...

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!

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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 99 reviews
Visitor rating
  • 62
  • 23
    Very good
  • 13
  • 1
  • 0
Enjoyable even if you know nothing about surfing!

A visit to the California Surf Museum is great way to spend $5 while in Oceanside. I know nothing about surfing, but nevertheless found the exhibits very interesting. Of... read more

5 of 5 starsReviewed 1 week ago
Jennifer C
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99 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Polish first
  • Portuguese first
  • Any
English first
Level Contributor
65 reviews
22 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 1 week ago

A visit to the California Surf Museum is great way to spend $5 while in Oceanside. I know nothing about surfing, but nevertheless found the exhibits very interesting. Of particular interest was the section on Bethany Hamilton--including her surf board and the swimsuit she was using at the time of her shark attack. The host who was present was most... More 

Thank Jennifer C
Oceanside, California
Level Contributor
7 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 1 week ago

Few museums can educate and intrigue as much as this little wonder. Love the old and new shown side by side to put this lifestyle in context. This is The Surf Museum toi see if your in California. Go check out the surf steps away and really make your day...

Thank 101BikeGuy
Long Beach, California
Level Contributor
51 reviews
26 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed 1 week ago

California Surf Museum provides good information on surfing history. It displays various surfboards from one used during late 70s till date and info on some renowned surfers and surfing organizations. Museum is of small size and I personally felt the entrance fee is little higher for the size of the museum. We were able to view the museum in half... More 

Thank Travelcrazyperson_12
Concord, New Hampshire
Level Contributor
34 reviews
12 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 20, 2015

I liked the museum and mostly enjoyed reading about Swami's, the history of wax, and my 8 year old girl was very into the Bethany Hamilton exhibit. I am super into the history of the small iconic stuff...and would have loved to see an exhibit on the history of neoprene...I have to remember it is California history..but I do this... More 

Thank teamfunannie
Level Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 6, 2015

The whole history is here; complete with awesome displays, and even Bethany's shark-bit surfboard. This museum should be on everyone's list who visits Oceanside. Definitely a hidden jewel of this beach town.

Thank Deirdre C
Euless TX.
Level Contributor
28 reviews
10 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed September 20, 2015

This is a small out of the way shop / museum. We wandered the place and I bought a surf shirt. It is small and not exactly what I expected. Although it was fun to see the old pictures and stuff.

Thank Gtnolen
Oceanside, California
Level Contributor
8 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 5, 2015

We visit the surf museum every year when we vacation in Oceanside. We go back each year because they change the displays frequently. We have yet to go to one that disappointed us. We have learned a lot about the history of surfing and different surfers by coming here. We have also bought great souvenirs here, tshirts, earrings,etc.since they have... More 

Thank SfromPhx
Solana Beach, California
Level Contributor
16 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 27, 2015

Finally made it to Surf Museum and it was well worth the wait! I imagine there are MANY locals that have never visited museum and I suggest you place it on your bucket list. You get a realistic view of surfing history and it is so much a part of Southern California. The memorabilia is well thought out and the... More 

Thank Princessa57
Cardiff, United Kingdom
2 reviews
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 17, 2015

This is a must see when visiting Oceanside!!! There is a wide range of surf boards from your mums ironing board to Bethany Hamilton's, shark bitten board.

Thank Sian J
Level Contributor
27 reviews
15 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 6, 2015

If you are a surfer or love surfing, this is definitely the place for you. Seeing all of the memorabilia and the boards of surfing legends was enough for me to be excited. This a great stop to cool off as well even if you aren't a huge surfing fan. You can see how the sport has evolved over the... More 

Thank Robert A

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