Santa Barbara, also known as the American Riviera, is a coastal paradise that offers something for everyone. Whether you’re looking for surfing, fishing, sunbathing, or dog-friendly spots, you’ll find a beach that suits your needs in this beautiful city. Here are six of the best beaches in Santa Barbara that you should visit on your next trip.

West Beach

West Beach is one of the most central and convenient beaches in Santa Barbara, located between Stearns Wharf and the harbor. It’s a great place to enjoy kayaking, windsurfing, or sailing, as it’s part of the Small Craft Quiet Water Area. You can also rent boats and equipment from nearby vendors, or take a tour of the harbor or the Channel Islands. West Beach has plenty of facilities and amenities, such as bathrooms, parking lots, picnic tables, playgrounds, and even restaurants and cafes right across the street. It’s also where the annual Fourth of July celebration takes place! 

East Beach

East Beach is another popular and accessible beach in Santa Barbara, located on the other side of Stearns Wharf from West Beach. It’s a favorite spot for volleyball players, as it has more than a dozen courts along the sand. You can also enjoy swimming, biking, or walking along the Cabrillo Bike Path that connects to other beaches. East Beach has all the facilities and amenities you need, such as bathrooms, parking lots, showers, trash cans, and audio tour stops. You can also grab a bite at Reunion Kitchen or visit the nearby Santa Barbara Zoo.  Remember, no dogs on the sand though!

Leadbetter Beach

Leadbetter Beach is a scenic and family-friendly beach in Santa Barbara, located between the harbor and Shoreline Park. It’s a popular spot for surfing, windsurfing, kite surfing, and stand-up paddle boarding, as it has consistent waves and wind conditions. You can also relax on the grassy areas or have a picnic at the tables and barbecues. Leadbetter Beach has facilities such as bathrooms, parking lots, showers, and a restaurant. You can also enjoy the views of the harbor and the mountains from this beach. Dogs are allowed on-leash here.

Arroyo Burro Beach County Park

Arroyo Burro Beach County Park, also known as Hendry’s Beach by locals, is a dog lover’s paradise. Located five miles west of downtown Santa Barbara, this beach allows dogs to run free on the Douglas Family Preserve, just adjacent to the park. You can also wash your furry friends at the self-serve dog washing stations in the parking lot. Arroyo Burro Beach is also a great place for swimming, surfing, fishing, or hiking along the trails. It has facilities such as bathrooms, showers, trash cans, and a seafood restaurant called The Boathouse at Hendry’s Beach.

Butterfly Beach

Butterfly Beach is a secluded and elegant beach in Santa Barbara, located in the upscale neighborhood of Montecito. It’s a perfect spot for sunbathing, swimming, or watching the sunset over the ocean. Butterfly Beach has no facilities or amenities, so you’ll need to bring your own supplies and park on the street. You can also bike to this beach from Stearns Wharf along the coastal trail. Many locals bring their dogs to Butterfly Beach and walk along the water (dogs are permitted on-leash).  You’ll enjoy some great views here, and the opportunity to spot whales and dolphins often, as well as the Channel Islands.

Goleta Beach County Park

Goleta Beach County Park is a fun and lively beach in Santa Barbara County, located near UC Santa Barbara and Santa Barbara Airport. It’s a great place for fishing, as it has a 1,450-foot pier that doesn’t require a license. You can also enjoy kayaking, swimming, biking, or playing at the volleyball courts or horseshoe pits. Goleta Beach has facilities such as bathrooms, parking lots, showers, picnic tables, barbecues, and food nearby. You can also explore the nearby Goleta Butterfly Grove or Goleta Slough Ecological Reserve.

Santa Barbara is home to some of the most stunning beaches in California, each with its own charm and character. Whether you want to relax, play, or explore, you’ll find a beach that matches your mood in this coastal city. And Haller Coastal Homes offers a great roster of vacation rentals that are perfectly located to satisfy the beach lovers in your group.  From cozy cottages to luxurious villas, you’ll enjoy all the amenities and comforts of home, as well as stunning views and convenient locations. Haller Coastal Homes offers more than just a place to stay.  It’s a place to create exceptional vacations…..and lifelong memories.