12 Outdoors- Other to explore in Santa Barbara County
Santa Barbara County, California, officially the County of Santa Barbara. Whether you enjoy hiking, fine-dining, water sports, lazing on the beach, culture, or a great night-life, Santa Barbara has something for you. Its beautiful beaches, majestic mountains, and colorful culture make Santa Barbara a premier resort destination.
This is a 42-acre saltwater marsh, is one of the largest wildlife refuges in Santa Barbara County and is managed by the City of Santa Barbara Parks Division. The refuge has a 29-acre freshwater/brackish lake, an artificially modified estuary that is usually about four feet deep, which drains through East Beach into the Pacific Ocean. Three islands are located in the lake. A great overlook of the Bird Refuge is available at the neighboring Santa Barbara Zoo, below the Condor Exhibit.
Chase Palm Park along the Pacific Coast, in the heart of Santa Barbara, with its palm trees, is a very pleasent park for walking, running, and biking. This is an extensive park that encompasses much of both sides of East Cabrillo Boulevard and includes a palm tree-lined park adjacent to East Beach. An oceanfront bike path and walkway runs the length of Chase Palm Park from Stearns Wharf along East Beach.
Coal Oil Point, located just west of the UCSB campus, is an ecologically important area that is home to a number of endangered and threatened species.Largely undisturbed coastal dunes support a rich assemblage of dune vegetation and has become a nesting site for the endangered Snowy Plover.
The 70-acre Douglas Family Preserve is located near the intersection of Cliff Drive and Las Positas Road in the Mesa neighborhood. The property spans 70 acres of undeveloped ocean-front land, and represents the largest area of coastal open space within the city limits of Santa Barbara. A walking trail loops the park perimeter, with many smaller trails across and along the interior. There are several bluffs overlooking the beach, popular for watching whales, dolphins, and birds.
The Goleta Monarch Butterfly Grove goes by several names including Ellwood Main Monarch Butterfly Grove as it is signed when you get there. It is located next to Ellwood Beach just west of Santa Barbara. This is one of several monarch butterfly groves in California that are home to tens of thousands of butterflies during the winter months. In November to February you can find these eucalyptus trees covered in bright orange butterflies. It is quite spectacular to see in person.
Goleta Point is a cape in Santa Barbara County. It is characterized by a beach cliff, crashing waves, and a view of the Channel Islands. The rock formation is frequented by shorebirds. It is one of the iconic attractions in this area and also there are so many things to see and do.
Lotusland is a globally renowned 37-acre estate and botanic garden situated in the foothills of Montecito, California.Theme gardens include the blue garden, theatre garden, and a Japanese garden. Other classic features are a topiary garden, horticultural clock, Neptune fountain, parterre and hedged allées.
Ficus macrophylla, commonly known as the Moreton Bay fig or Australian banyan, is a large evergreen banyan tree of the family Moraceae native to eastern Australia, from the Wide Bay–Burnett region in the north to the Illawarra in New South Wales, as well as Lord Howe Island. Its common name is derived from Moreton Bay in Queensland, Australia. It is best known for its imposing buttress roots.
Romero Canyon is a popular destination for hikers and mountain bikers. The trail is shady and along a creek bed for the first half. The features of this hike most people will appreciate are that the trail and creek environment are very wooded and pretty, and also the fact that most of the trail is shaded.
The San Marcos Foothills is a County of Santa Barbara open space located in the foothills between Santa Barbara and Goleta. Encompassing 200 acres the San Marcos Foothills offers extraordinary views of the Santa Ynez Mountains, Pacific Ocean, and the Channel Islands. The Foothills is the feeding ground for hawks, kestrels, kites, roadrunners, coyotes, bobcats, and hundreds of other animal species. It offers nesting locations for dozens of native bird species.
This is a wiode sandy beach located in the west of and adjacent to Stearns Wharf Pier at State Street. This is also where the outriggers hold lessons and where many kayaks, windsurfers, and sailboats set out. Thousands of tourists on Stearns Wharf look out at West beach every day because the wharf is actually built on top of it.