Beaches & Parks

While Santa Barbara is well known for its expansive, pristine beaches, it has just as much space to offer inland as well. Santa Barbara’s beaches and parks are a testament to the city’s affinity for fresh air and outdoor fun.

Starting at the Pacific, Santa Barbara is home to miles of public beaches, many of which serve as a launchpad for making a splash. Surf some of the most renowned breaks in the world, or stand-up paddleboard in the protected waters of Butterfly Beach in Montecito. Cabrillo Boulevard connects East and West Beach, which are hot spots for pick-up volleyball games, picnics, and an afternoon date with a good book. Every Sunday, make sure to catch the Santa Barbara Arts & Crafts Show that spans the popular coastline.

A few steps inland, Santa Barbara becomes a treasure trove of green parks, gardens, and hidden sanctuaries — the city is home to over 50 of them. Chase Palm Park makes the sand-to-grass transition easy with its location across from East Beach. It also offers free family-friendly concerts throughout the summer. Stow Grove Park in Goleta features redwoods and eucalyptus trees, volleyball courts, a baseball diamond and horseshoe pits, making it the perfect stop for the entire family. Other favorites include Alameda Park, which is home to an elaborate 8,000-square foot playground, and Alice Keck Park Memorial Garden, where you’ll see turtles cruising through the pond, and beautifully manicured gardens — a wedding favorite.

One look and it’s easy to see why Santa Barbara makes being outside a priority and staying out a must.

Beaches & Parks in Santa Barbara


Hilda Ray Park

A small, out of the way, neighborhood park with spectacular views of the city and Santa Ynez mountains that can be enjoyed from the picnic tables or the children's playground area. Reservable sites.


El Capitan State Beach

El Capitán’s peaceful setting, sandy shoreline and close proximity to Santa Barbara make it a popular spot for camping, picnicking, wildlife viewing and other outdoor activities. Stands of sycamore, oak and eucalyptus trees create lots of shady…


City of Santa Barbara Parks and Recreation~Chase Palm Park

Flanked by towering palms on one side and the blue Pacific on the other, the Chase Palm Park Center is a “hidden jewel” located on the ocean side of Cabrillo Boulevard opposite the carousel in Chase Palm Park. A Spanish-style entryway…


Butterfly Beach

Located in the chic and laid-back village of Montecito, Butterfly Beach is a favorite among Santa Barbara locals. The beach’s pristine shoreline is ideal for swimming, surfing and sunbathing, and its unique east-west orientation makes for…


Santa Barbara Botanic Garden

Explore California’s unique natural landscape at the Santa Barbara Botanic Garden, a 78-acre living museum designed entirely with California-native plants. Five miles of easy walking trails crisscross the wild-crafted gardens, so you can…


Arroyo Burro Beach

Located just ten minutes from downtown Santa Barbara, Arroyo Burro Beach is often referred to by locals as Hendry’s Beach. This beach is known for its winding coastline and light surf. Arroyo Burro Beach is also surrounded by tall bluffs that…


Leadbetter Beach

Located along Shoreline Drive and directly adjacent to the Santa Barbara Harbor, sits Leadbetter Beach, one of the most popular beaches in Santa Barbara. The beach is flanked by green grass and showcases an expansive strip of sand lining the…


Additional Experiences


The Channel Islands

Learn More