WHERE TO STAY
If you’re looking for a stay that combines Ojai’s mountainside vibe with modern design try the Ojai Rancho Inn, a roadside motel turned aesthetic paradise with wooden walls, eclectic decor and hammocks in its outdoor garden. The Capri, the Inn’s mid-century modern cousin, is another stunning oasis filled with Instagram-famous furniture and clean, contemporary design. Or, for something equally as hip but a little more unexpected, Caravan Outpost offers Airstream lodging, a stylish and quintessentially Ojai experience.
Situated around a garden, each trailer is surrounded by cleverly positioned foliage to provide a sense of privacy, and features all the offerings of a standard hotel room. While you’re there, explore the town on a bike loaned out by the Caravan Outpost owners, meet your fellow neighbors at night around the campfire, and shop the well-curated general store filled with vintage and local finds.
For the more luxury-inclined, the Ojai Valley Inn boasts all the amenities of a traditional resort, from an indulgent spa and pristine golf course to amazing eateries and event-ready facilities. You can even rent out your very own estate on the property for the utmost privacy and relaxation.
Another option for a discreet, high-end experience in Ojai is the Thatcher House, an exclusive compound comprised of five private cottages traditionally decorated with antique silverware, oil portraits, plush bedding and vintage furniture. On-site activities include goat and sheep milking, cheese and yogurt making and gardening on the farm — there’s no shortage of things to do at the Thatcher House.
WHAT TO DO
When you aren’t enjoying the variety of accommodations at your hotel, resort or alternative housing, Ojai will surely keep you busy. For the devoted yogi (or inspired city-dweller), awaken your soul at Light and Space, a gas-station-turned-yoga-studio with mountain views, a 1500-square foot garden, and a shop filled with locally-sourced, earth-conscious goods and vintage treasures. Another source for spiritual, mental and physical connection is Sacred Space, a yoga studio run by Ingrid Boulting, a celebrated healer of Ojai who has taught yoga since 1988.
Beyond yoga, Ojai’s stunning landscape provides a variety of ways to connect with nature (and perhaps your inner self along the way.) Carolyn Murphy recommends relaxing and meditating at Meher Mount (a spiritual and historical gathering place at the summit of Sulphur Mountain), walking through the Taft Gardens and Nature Preserve, or exploring Ojai by horse with Ojai Valley Trail Riding.
Operated by Susan Gruber (“a former champion and badass,” as Carolyn describes), Ojai Valley Trail Riding is located adjacent to the Ojai Land Conservancy and offers day rides and sunset rides through California’s beautiful horse country.
Once you’ve had your fill of nature, Downtown Ojai is filled with a handful of shops and restaurants to round out the rest of your day, and one of the best ways to explore the town is by bike. Many hotels in the area offer bikes with your stay, but you can also rent them through The Mob Shop, a full-service bike shop. While you’re cruising around, be sure to check out some of our favorite stores and restaurants.