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

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…


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SunSwept Sailing

SunSwept Sailing is Santa Barbara's most exclusive private charter, aboard the classic sailing yacht, Kelpie. Sailing in Santa Barbara has never looked so good. Private Charters Aboard Sailing Yacht Kelpie Your party of up to six passengers…


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Channel Islands Expeditions

Day Trips to the Channel Islands National Park from Santa Barbara Harbor Santa Barbara is the entrance to the Channel Islands National Park across one of the most biologically diverse bodies of water on earth, the Santa Barbara…


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Santa Barbara Adventure Company

Experience an unforgettable adventure in Santa Barbara with the city's premier outfitter, providing exciting experiences to thousands of visitors yearly. CHANNEL ISLANDS TOURS Sea Cave Kayaking Tour at Channel Islands National ParkExplore Channel…


Santa Barbara Parasail

Soar to new heights and embrace the breathtaking beauty of the Santa Barbara coastline with our exclusive Public Parasail Flight. Elevate your experience as you ascend up to 1,000 feet above the azure waters, offering a panoramic vista that is…


Lil’ Toot Santa Barbara

Since 2003, Lil Toot has been providing narrated public boat rides between the Santa Barbara Harbor and Stearns Wharf. What started as an alternative transportation option has grown to become a local legend. Join us onboard "the happiest boat in…


Circle Bar B Guest Ranch & Stables

Luxurious accommodations, fine cuisine & horseback riding. Amazing horseback riding, tranquil surroundings, excellent food and warm hospitality await you at the Circle Bar B Guest Ranch. Whether you’re escaping for a few days or planning…


Additional Experiences


The Ultimate Golf Destination
Lush fairways and smooth, fast greens. Discover three courses, just a short drive from one another, in one of the best vacation spots around.
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Activities Along the Waterfront
Take it from a local, waterfront activities in Santa Barbara are endless and offer visitors much more than lounging along the coast.
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