Outdoor Recreation

Santa Barbara Outdoor Activities

Getting outside is essential in Santa Barbara. The Santa Ynez Mountains offer endless opportunities to hike and bike your way to amazing scenic vistas. The golden ridgelines cascade into the Pacific where you’ll find a plethora of activities on the water, including kayaking, surfing, SUP and more, as well as incredible views of the 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.

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. You’ll find a wide variety of options for outdoor fun here, including guided outdoor tours and lessons that give you a chance to learn a new skill.

Santa Barbara Outdoor Activities include:

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. Here you can hike, sea kayak, snorkel, or scuba dive to get one-of-a-kind encounters with local marine life. Keep an eye out for migrating whales and playful dolphins on the short ferry ride out to the islands.

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

Outdoor Recreation in Santa Barbara


Recommended

Wheel Fun Rentals

Best way to see Santa Barbara like a true native! Explore along our beautiful coast or head downtown for some shopping and dining without the worry of parking! Get the family together for a group Surrey ride (which is able to accommodate up…


Recommended

Condor Express Whale Watching

The Condor Express offers daily whale watching trips year round from the Sea Landing dock in the Santa Barbara Harbor. The Condor Express is a 75' state-of-the-art, ecofriendly, high-speed catamaran. Our cruising ground includes the…


Backroads

Let's see. How a spa treatment feels after a glorious ride past idyllic beaches and citrus groves. How exquisite our evening meal tastes after a brisk climb up the California coast. Let's enjoy the best of biking with the best of everything. The…


Santa Barbara Adventure Company

See a part of Santa Barbara few visitors ever get to experience with the best outfitter in town. Our guides create thousands of unforgettable travel adventures each year – come join us! Channel Islands National Park - Sea Cave…


Santa Barbara Beach Horseback Rides

Enjoy this iconic – one-of-a-kind – Santa Barbara adventure that CNN Travel rates in Top Three Things To Do in SoCal. Rides offered three times daily all Summer. Perfect for families, couples and groups. Check our website for…


Santa Barbara Botanic Garden

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


Truth Aquatics, Inc.

SCUBA DIVING: From single day dives to multi-day expeditions, Truth Aquatics is the #1 provider of Channel Islands diving. The best liveaboard dive fleet on the west coast, Truth Aquatics leads dive excursions to the giant kelp forests and rocky…


Additional Experiences


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