Vandenberg space force base

Lompoc is where the rockets launch!

Vandenberg Space Force Base is the West Coast Headquarters for launching satellites into space. Be sure to check the schedule of upcoming launches!

Next Rocket Launch

Vandenberg space force base

Where to watch rockets launch in lompoc!

Lompoc is just minutes from some of the most spectacular rocket launches on California’s Central Coast! As the primary spaceport on the West Coast, Vandenberg Space Force Base is just minutes from Lompoc, making our valley and the surrounding area the best place to view rocket launches. The launches take place from several Space Launch Complex launch sites (SLC’s).

As Vandenberg is an active space force base, only members of the military can view the launch on the base. However, we have put together a list of several great sites where you’ll be able to view the launch action.

Lompoc Rocket Launch Observation Locations:

  • #1 – Surf Beach
    If skies are clear and the beach isn’t closed due to security issues, Surf Beach can be another great place to view the launch. Pack snacks, a beach blanket and a camera for some Insta-worthy launch views and a relaxing afternoon at the beach.
  • #2 – West Ocean Avenue
    Minutes from downtown, West Ocean Avenue provides a good viewing location (again depending on weather). Parking is along an active roadway, so make sure you park safely, far enough off the roadway to avoid traffic. Several intersections provide a good location for viewing, 13th street/Arguello Blvd., Renwich Avenue, and Floradale Avenue/Ocean Ave.

Other good viewing locations include:

  • Santa Lucia Canyon Road & Victory Road, which offers views of SLC-4 and SLC-3
  • Top of Harris Grade Road – this is the farthest location from the launchpads but is a good elevation and distance if the fog rolls in.
  • Marshallia Ranch Road – when launches happen from SLC-2, this location right outside Vandenberg is your best bet.


Lompoc has over 40 murals across our little city, so you are going to want to dedicate a whole day to view all of our beautiful murals. Mural art includes historic scenes, space themes with rocket launches and satellites, as well as our beautiful flower fields and fanciful creatures. Be sure to check out our map of murals in Lompoc to help you plan accordingly.

Make Lompoc Part of Your Next Road Trip!