Outdoor Recreation

Getting outside is essential in Santa Barbara. The Santa Ynez Mountains offer endless opportunities to hike and bike to the next vista. The golden ridgelines cascade into the Pacific, where outdoor recreation defines this iconic California coastline. On any given day, you’ll find pick-up beach volleyball games, people sea kayaking from Stearns Wharf to the Harbor, boats setting sail to go whale watching, and stand-up paddleboarders sliding across the water.

And it doesn’t stop there. Just across the Santa Barbara Channel is the Channel Islands Marine Preserve, home to one of the most unique national parks in the world where you can hike, sea kayak, snorkel, or scuba dive. Keep an eye out for migrating whales and playful dolphins on the short ferry ride there.

Santa Barbara’s climate, which boasts over 300 days of sunshine every year, is a huge draw for those looking for some outdoor adventure year-round. Start the day with a hike. Go rock climbing, or take a surf lesson. Sail away, or hop in an ATV and take an open-air tour.

It’s easy to start your outdoor adventure in Santa Barbara.

Featured Outdoor Recreation in Santa Barbara

Santa Barbara Botanic Garden

Take a nature break! Explore 5 miles of easy trails in this 78 acre wild crafted garden designed completely with California native plants. In one fun hike cover the coastal redwood forests to the inland cacti filled deserts that define California's…

Rancho San Marcos Golf Course

From the moment we opened in January of 1998, Rancho San Marcos Golf Course has been a classic. Designed by legendary golf architect Robert Trent Jones Jr., this course became the talk of the community by offering a world class golf course on 300…


The Ultimate Golf Destination

Learn More


Activities Along the Waterfront

Learn More

sb. Snapshots: A Visual Exploration of Santa Barbara

Driving to santa barbara
hiking in santa barbara lizards mouth
outdoor itineraries santa barbara
sea cave kayaking the channel islands
sailing in santa barbara
Ellwood Bluffs Goleta