The Santa Barbara South Coast is ripe with activity during June, whether your goal is to catch a lively polo match, revel in on-the-water tours and entertainment, colorfully celebrate the year-round sunshine in our beachy paradise—or all of the above. Discover what makes Santa Barbara an exciting summer destination and soak up the energy of Santa Barbara’s many festivals and summer happenings this June.

If you’re itching for a family getaway once school lets out or are just in need of a solo retreat, we’ve compiled a list of quintessential Santa Barbara activities that are sure to make for a memorable visit to our seaside city.

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Festivals & events

Santa Barbara Zoo‘s annual fundraiser Zoo Brew delights all who arrive at the grassy, hillside overlooking the Pacific Ocean, dotted with shaded tents offering unlimited beer tastings from over 30 local breweries and live entertainment. Taste craft brews from local purveyors and explore the zoo after hours during this iconic summer event.

The Santa Barbara Surf Film Festival, which is held over two days at Lobero Theatre, celebrates this rich surf history and the diverse storytelling styles of filmmakers, artists, board shapers and surfers who spearheaded it all. A highlight to look forward to is the outdoor Surf Film Festival Block Party, where you’ll find a variety of surf exhibitors, local artisans, live music, delicious food and craft drinks.

Celebrate Juneteenth at Santa Barbara’s annual Juneteenth Santa Barbara Block Party (June 15) in the Funk Zone. The annual event welcomes everyone to commemorate the freedom of enslaved African Americans in the United States. The theme of this year’s Juneteenth celebration is “nourishing the people,” and will honor local Black artists, business owners, performers and organizations and will feature free food, dancing and singing.

The annual Summer Solstice Celebration (June 21-23) is back with flying colors—literally—for its 50th year. Gather in downtown Santa Barbara to usher in the summer season, and revel in the bold costumes, colorful displays, dazzling entertainment and local culture. This year’s festival theme is “roots,” and the Summer Solstice parade on June 22 will light up Santa Barbara Street with dancers, music, floats and more. The parade will end at Alameda Park, where there will be boutique shopping, live music, a beer and wine garden and sweet treats galore all weekend long.  

On June 22, the second annual Classics with the Cardinals car show returns to Bishop Diego High School for a day of admiring classic cars, shopping at local vendors and eating barbecue.

Explore the Santa Barbara Lavender Festival—brand-new to Santa Barbara this year—on June 24 at Old Mission Santa Barbara. This unique arts and crafts festival will celebrate creativity through the artistic expression of lavender and lavender themes, featuring works from over 75 local artisans, lavender farms and small business owners. 

And back for its 51st year is the Santa Barbara Greek Festival, slated for June 28 and 29. At the all-new location at Chase Palm Park, visitors are in for a treat. The lively musical stylings of The 4 Greeks fill the air, creating a festive atmosphere. With a cold Greek beer in one hand and a hot gyro in the other, attendees can enjoy a delightful blend of music, food and fun.

This June, walk through a beautiful garden inside the Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History while nearly 1,000 live butterflies flutter freely around you. Butterflies Alive! features a dazzling variety of butterflies including local favorites and exotic tropical species. Learn about the life cycle and behavior of these spectacular invertebrates while observing them up close. The exhibit is included in museum admission and will be open through September.

music & Entertainment

Looking for a memorable outdoor concert experience? Catch one of the following shows during the Santa Barbara Bowl’s jam-packed summer season. You’ll quickly see why the ocean views seem even more spectacular when accompanied by a cold beer and a glittering light show under the stars. Right out of the gate is blues and rock band Tedeschi Trucks (June 5), vocal group Pentatonix (June 6); then Daryl Hall, Elvis Costello & the Imposters with Charlie Sexton (June 14); Whiskey Myers (June 18) and Totally Tubular Festival (June 28).

Grab your tickets for Flying High: Big Band Canaries Who Soared on June 29, celebrating the iconic female vocalists from big bands like Glenn Miller and Benny Goodman who soared into remarkable solo careers. Join Champian Fulton, Carmen Bradford, Charles Ruggiero, Mike Gurrola and special guest Jane Monheit as they pay tribute to jazz legends like Billie Holiday, Lena Horne, and Ella Fitzgerald on stage at Lobero Theatre.

Aquatic Adventures

Speaking of unbeatable views, Santa Barbara Sailing Center’s yearly Music on the Water series combines live music, refreshing libations, on-the-water panoramas and the fresh ocean breeze aboard Double Dolphin. Catch Gavin Roy (June 7), David Segall (June 14), Justin Claveria (June 21) and Vienna (June 28). Piazza Family Wines and Luna Hart Wines will be featured aboard Double Dolphin, Sipping on the Sea (June 20), where guests will enjoy hand-picked wine for the occasion as they take in the stunning mountain and beach vistas from the water.

Looking for more on-the-water fun? Santa Barbara has a number of outfitters that provide a wide variety of tours and water-based activities for all ages. Santa Barbara Adventure Company and Paddle Sports Center offer a multitude of guided kayaking tours, stand-up paddleboarding, rentals and more for the active-minded. 

If you want to get out on the water in a more relaxed setting, The Landshark provides land and sea tours of downtown and the harbor, and the amphibious boat is something you’ll need to “sea” to believe! Celebration Cruises provide boats for all occasions. For a short-and-sweet voyage, Lil’ Toot, Santa Barbara’s legendary water taxi, shuttles riders from Stearns Wharf to the harbor and back. Or, if you’re looking for an exhilarating adventure, head out to sea with Santa Barbara Parasail, where you’ll glide over 1,000 feet over the ocean and take in once-in-a-lifetime views of The American Riviera®. Needless to say, in Santa Barbara, you’re guaranteed to find an aquatic activity that suits your needs.


The grassy fields at Santa Barbara Polo & Racquet Club boast an iconic ocean view and the cool sea breeze is a welcomed addition to the exhilarating atmosphere. Sip on a chilled glass of Champagne and nibble on charcuterie under the shaded grandstand awning, and cheer for your favorite jockey to score. Keep an eye out for the royals also attending the matches, as Prince Harry joined team Los Padres. At halftime, take part in a fun polo tradition and help stomp the divots, where you’ll get a spectacular view from the fields!

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