For those who are hawkish for nature and outdoor activity, Thousand Oaks is a birdwatchers’ paradise, offering several hiking trails that wind through picturesque landscapes with opportunities to observe a diverse range of bird species. Whether you’re a seasoned birder or just starting, these trails offer a vivid glimpse into avian diversity. So grab your binoculars – birdwatching is looking up in Thousand Oaks!


Here are our Top 5 birdwatching and hiking trails for seniors in and around Thousand Oaks


Los Robles Trail: Located in the Los Padres National Forest, the Los Robles Trail is a favorite among birdwatchers. This scenic track meanders through oak woodlands, chaparral and riparian habitats, providing a great opportunity to spot species such as the California quail, western bluebird and acorn woodpecker. The hiking trail is relatively easy, making it suitable for older adults and birdwatchers of all skill levels.


Conejo Valley Botanic Garden: While not a traditional hiking trail, the 33-acre Conejo Valley Botanic Garden is a hidden gem for birdwatchers. The garden features a variety of habitats to explore, including a butterfly garden, a desert garden and a bird habitat. Visitors are likely to spot a range of bird species here, including hummingbirds, finches and sparrows. Admission is free.


Santa Rosa Trail: For those up for a more challenging hike, the Santa Rosa Trail offers stunning views of the Santa Monica Mountains and passes through diverse habitats, including oak woodlands and coastal sage scrub. Birdwatchers may spot hawks, falcons and owls. The route is moderately difficult, so be sure to wear sturdy hiking boots, consider a walking stick or a pair of hiking sticks, and bring plenty of water.


Bird Museum & Research Center at Western Foundation of Vertebrate Zoology: While not a hiking trail, the Western Foundation of Vertebrate Zoology offers a unique experience for birders. This research facility houses one of the largest collections of avian eggs and nests in the world. Tours of the scientific collections are available by reservation only; however, visitors are welcome to explore the surrounding gardens, which are home to several bird species. The facility also offers guided bird walks, providing visitors with the opportunity to learn more about the birds of Thousand Oaks from local ornithologists.


Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area: Of course, no birdwatching excursion would be complete without a visit to the Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area. This vast park offers habitats that cover grasslands, oak woodlands and coastal sage scrub. Birds abound, including the endangered California condor. The park’s hiking trails range from easy strolls to challenging hikes, making it suitable for birdwatchers of all ability levels.


Nestled in Thousand Oaks, University Village is an expansive retirement living community offering residential living and a plan for future care. The 65-acre community includes beautiful residences, an amenity-rich lifestyle and natural green space. It’s a vibrant haven for older adults in search of feathered fauna. One resident, Dee Lion, was delighted recently to see a horned owl while walking the community’s paths. Grab your binoculars and contact us today.