What Are the Best Beaches in Santa Barbara?

If you’re planning a summer vacation, consider visiting Santa Barbara, California. This tranquil seaside city is perfect for a romantic getaway or a fun family adventure! There are miles of pristine shoreline to explore, and whether you want to surf, swim, or simply enjoy the sun, you’re sure to find the perfect spot. Here are some of the best beaches in Santa Barbara.

Learn more about the best beaches in Santa Barbara when you download our free vacation guide! It’s full of information on great places to visit during your stay at the Cheshire Cat Inn.

4 of the Best Beaches in Santa Barbara

1. Leadbetter Beach

Situated below Leadbetter Hill, Leadbetter Beach is one of the most popular beaches in Santa Barbara. It’s easily accessible from Santa Barbara City College and attracts students looking to socialize, swim, and tan. Leadbetter is also a favorite of kitesurfers and windsurfers. Grills, picnic tables, showers, and restrooms make this beach ideal for celebrations with friends and family.

2. East Beach

East Beach is another busy stretch of sand that offers a wide range of recreational activities. Amenities include a playground, rollerblading trails, food vendors, picnic facilities, showers, and more. East Beach even hosts various volleyball tournaments throughout the year. Swimming and sunbathing are popular here as well.

3. Arroyo Burro Beach

Even if you’ve been to Santa Barbara, you’ve probably never heard of this beach. That’s because it’s referred to as “Hendry’s” by the locals. Hendry’s is usually filled with scampering dogs as it welcomes four-legged friends off-leash. There’s even a coin-operated pet wash! A picnic area, restrooms, and a great seafood restaurant are all available onsite.

4. Shoreline Park

Shoreline Park is a long, narrow strip of land that faces the Pacific Ocean. It’s one of the area’s most popular parks and includes a playground, picnic area, Japanese garden, and a whale watching telescope. Gray Whales may be observed here during their migration months, along with a variety of marine mammals like dolphins and seals.

Local Tip: Atop the park’s bluff is a wooden staircase that descends to the tidal beach below. It’s completely submerged during high tide, but in low tide periods, Leadbetter Beach and Arroyo Burro Beach (Hendry’s Beach) are accessible to the east and west.

Book Your Stay at the Cheshire Cat Inn

After you visit the best beaches in Santa Barbara, come home to our bed and breakfast and unwind! You can reserve a guest room or suite in the Main House, Eberle House, or Coach House, or choose from one of our spacious cottages. All of our accommodations are comfortable and luxurious. We even offer a delicious homemade breakfast and wine hour each day! Check our availability online or call us at (805) 569-1610 to book your stay. We look forward to having you!

For more fun things to do in Santa Barbara, check out our activities page.