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Town and Nature Walks

Best Town and Nature Walks in or Close to Town

The Best Town Walks in Santa Barbara & Fun Things to do in Santa Barbara
Region
Show All (25)
Santa Barbara (8)
Carpinteria (2)
Summerland (4)
Montecito (5)
Goleta (6)
Gaviota Coast (42)

Distance
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0-1 Miles
1-2 Miles
2-3 Miles
3-5 Miles
5 Plus Miles

Features
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Waterfall
Viewpoints
Sunset
Historical
Dining

User Types
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Bicycling
Bird Watching
Dog Walking
Equestrian
Great Photography
Hiking
History Buffs
Kid Friendly
Trail Running


Getting Around Town

Out and About Close to Town
For those of you who'd like to explore areas closer to town, including our many open space areas like Ellwood Mesa, More Mesa, Elings Park or Parma Park — and even the sidewalk routes that will take you through town and our local neighborhoods — town walks provide information about places to go that are practically at your doorstep.

Our area has a rich tradition of Chumash, Spanish, Mexican and American history that can often be found by exploring the streets in the downtown area and in the surrounding hills. Whether exploring Santa Barbara's unique archtecture, as typified by the Courthouse, an extended neighborhood walk to explore areas like the Riviera, or one of our open spaces you don't need to go far to have a great walk.

Plus, many of them are great for family outings!

Open Spaces
Viewed from above, the open spaces along the ocean bluffs and along the foothills are easy to spot: in the springtime they are like emeralds, the rich green colors sparkling in the afternoon lighting. There are many of them: Ellwood Bluffs, Santa Barbara Shores, More Mesa, Lake Los Carneros, the Douglas Family Preserve, and the Carpinteria Bluffs — most of them saved by the active participation of the community, some of them like More Mesa still in danger of being developed.

These are the places where you can go to spend a few minutes or an hour or two depending on the time available to you. More important than what these areas provide for us is the wilderness corridor they offer for the animals, birds, and especially the migratory species with which we share the land. We have changed much and it is important we preserve as much as what we have left.

Urban Walks
An interesting irony about living in Santa Barbara is that we have such a rich architectural and historical past and yet few of us know much about it. Events like the Old Spanish Days Fiesta hint at a past history and a walk through most any part of downtown Santa Barbara offers glimpses of our past — the Courthouse, Arlington Theatre, the Lobero, the Old Mission, or the Presidio — and many other buildings, historical landmarks and interesting places to visit, offer an opportunity to learn about who and what we are. Look for a selection of walks that will take you through our urban areas and neighborhoods and in the porcess provide an up close look at Santa Barbara past and present.

Walker Tompkins
Perhaps Santa Barbara's most prolific writer, through his many books, Walker Tompkins provided a fascinating look at our past that is must reading for history buffs. Most his sixty-year writing career was focused on Santa Barbara, during which time he penned eighteen local history books including: Santa Barbara’s Royal Rancho, California’s Wonderful Corner, Goleta: The Good Land, Santa Barbara Past and Present, It Happened in Old Santa Barbara, Stagecoach Days in Santa Barbara County, and Santa Barbara History Makers

Tompkins also provided an in depth look at each of Santa Barbara's local neighborhoods through a series of small booklets called "The Neighborhood" series. If you'd like to read them we've provided the text from the series here.

Names and Places
Santa Barbara street and place names reflect the diversity of our historical past, ranging from the Chumash through the Spanish and Mexican periods and post Civil War when Santa Barbara became more an more Americanized. Check out the link to our Street Names for a peek at how many of them came to be named.

Currently there are 25 total results available.
Use the filters to select the type of adventure you want to go on today. ×
Carp Bluff Walk - Carpinteria
1-2 Miles • Dirt Path • Sunset, Viewpoints
Walks, Dog Walks, Family Friendly, Biking, Running, Photography, Kid Safe
1
Carp Salt Marsh - Carpinteria
1 Miles • Dirt & Paved • Sunset, Historical, Viewpoints
Walkss, Dog Walks, Family Friendly, Running, Photography, Birding, Historical, Kid Safe
2
Douglas Preserve - Santa Barbara
1-3 Miles • Dirt Path • Viewpoints, Sunset
Walks, Dog Walks, Family Friendly, Biking, Running, Kid Safe, Photography
3
Elings Park - Santa Barbara
1-3 Miles • Dirt Path • Viewpoints, Sunset
Walks, Dog Walks, Family Friendly, Biking, Running, Kid Safe
4
Ellwood Mesa - Goleta
1-3 miles or more Miles • Dirt Path
Walks, Dog Walks, Biking, Running, Photography, Birding, Kid Safe, Family Friendly, Equestrian
5
Ennisbrook - Montecito
1-3 Miles • Dirt Path • Not too far from Oprah's estate.
Walks, Dog Walks, Family Friendly, Biking, Running, Kid Safe
6
Hale Park - Santa Barbara
1-3 Miles • Dirt Path
Walks, Dog Walks, Family Friendly, Kid Safe
7
Honda Valley Park - Santa Barbara
1-3 Miles • Dirt Path • Viewpoints, Sunset
Walks, Dog Walks, Family Friendly, Running, Kid Safe, Equestrian
8
Lake Los Carneros - Goleta
2 Miles • Dirt Path • Historical
Walks, Dog Walks, Family Friendly, Biking, Running, Photography, Birding, Historical, Kid Safe
9
Modoc Preserve - Santa Barbara
1-3 Miles • Dirt Path • Viewpoints, Sunset
Walks, Dog Walks, Family Friendly, Running, Kid Safe, Equestrian
10
Monarch Groves - Goleta
1 - 2 miles Miles • Dirt Path • Monarchs, Ellwood Bluffs
Walks, Dog Walks, Biking, Running, Photography, Birding, Kid Safe, Family Friendly
11
More Mesa Bluffs - Goleta
2 Miles • Dirt Path • Historical
Walks, Dog Walks, Family Friendly, Biking, Running, Photography, Birding, Historical, Kid Safe
12
Ortega Hill - Montecito
1-3 Miles • Dirt Path • Not too far from Oprah's estate.
Walks, Dog Walks, Family Friendly, Biking, Running, Kid Safe
13
Parma Park - Santa Barbara
1-3 Miles • Dirt Path • Viewpoints, Sunset
Walks, Dog Walks, Family Friendly, Running, Kid Safe, Equestrian
14
Polo Club - Summerland
1-3 Miles • Dirt Path • Viewpoints
Walks, Dog Walks, Biking, Running, Equestrian
15
Reservoir Trail - Montecito
1-3 Miles • Dirt Path • Viewpoints
Walks, Dog Walks, Family Friendly, Biking, Running, Kid Safe, Equestrian
16
San Antonio Creek - Goleta
1.5 Miles • Dirt Path
, Walks, Dog Walks, Family Friendly, Biking, Equestrian, Running, Kid Safe
17
San Marcos Preserve - Santa Barbara
1-3 Miles • Dirt Path • Viewpoints, Sunset
Walks, Dog Walks, Family Friendly, Running, Kid Safe
18
Sheffield Reservoir - Santa Barbara
1-3 Miles • Dirt Path • Viewpoints, Sunset
Walks, Dog Walks, Family Friendly, Running, Kid Safe, Equestrian
19
Summerland Overlook - Summerland
1-3 Miles • Dirt Path • Viewpoints
Walks, Dog Walks, Family Friendly, Biking, Running, Kid Safe, Equestrian
20
Summerland Trails - Summerland
1-3 Miles • Dirt Path • Viewpoints
Walks, Dog Walks, Biking, Running, Equestrian
21
Toro Canyon - Summerland
1-2 Miles • Dirt Path • Viewpoints
Walks, Dog Walks, Family Friendly, Kid Safe
22
Toro Ridge - Summerland
1-2 Miles • Dirt Path • Viewpoints
Walks, Dog Walks, Family Friendly, Kid Safe
23
Valley Club - Montecito
1-3 Miles • Dirt Path
Walks, Dog Walks, Biking, Running, Equestrian
24
West Campus Loop - Goleta
1-3 Miles • Dirt Path • Devereux Sough, dunes and beaches.
Walks, Dog Walks, Biking, Running, Photography, Birding
25
Carp Bluff Walk - Carpinteria
1-2 Miles • Dirt Path • Sunset, Viewpoints
Walks, Dog Walks, Family Friendly, Biking, Running, Photography, Kid Safe
1
Carp Salt Marsh - Carpinteria
1 Miles • Dirt & Paved • Sunset, Historical, Viewpoints
Walkss, Dog Walks, Family Friendly, Running, Photography, Birding, Historical, Kid Safe
2
Douglas Preserve - Santa Barbara
1-3 Miles • Dirt Path • Viewpoints, Sunset
Walks, Dog Walks, Family Friendly, Biking, Running, Kid Safe, Photography
3
Elings Park - Santa Barbara
1-3 Miles • Dirt Path • Viewpoints, Sunset
Walks, Dog Walks, Family Friendly, Biking, Running, Kid Safe
4
Ellwood Mesa - Goleta
1-3 miles or more Miles • Dirt Path
Walks, Dog Walks, Biking, Running, Photography, Birding, Kid Safe, Family Friendly, Equestrian
5
Ennisbrook - Montecito
1-3 Miles • Dirt Path • Not too far from Oprah's estate.
Walks, Dog Walks, Family Friendly, Biking, Running, Kid Safe
6
Hale Park - Santa Barbara
1-3 Miles • Dirt Path
Walks, Dog Walks, Family Friendly, Kid Safe
7
Honda Valley Park - Santa Barbara
1-3 Miles • Dirt Path • Viewpoints, Sunset
Walks, Dog Walks, Family Friendly, Running, Kid Safe, Equestrian
8
Lake Los Carneros - Goleta
2 Miles • Dirt Path • Historical
Walks, Dog Walks, Family Friendly, Biking, Running, Photography, Birding, Historical, Kid Safe
9
Modoc Preserve - Santa Barbara
1-3 Miles • Dirt Path • Viewpoints, Sunset
Walks, Dog Walks, Family Friendly, Running, Kid Safe, Equestrian
10
Monarch Groves - Goleta
1 - 2 miles Miles • Dirt Path • Monarchs, Ellwood Bluffs
Walks, Dog Walks, Biking, Running, Photography, Birding, Kid Safe, Family Friendly
11
More Mesa Bluffs - Goleta
2 Miles • Dirt Path • Historical
Walks, Dog Walks, Family Friendly, Biking, Running, Photography, Birding, Historical, Kid Safe
12
Ortega Hill - Montecito
1-3 Miles • Dirt Path • Not too far from Oprah's estate.
Walks, Dog Walks, Family Friendly, Biking, Running, Kid Safe
13
Parma Park - Santa Barbara
1-3 Miles • Dirt Path • Viewpoints, Sunset
Walks, Dog Walks, Family Friendly, Running, Kid Safe, Equestrian
14
Polo Club - Summerland
1-3 Miles • Dirt Path • Viewpoints
Walks, Dog Walks, Biking, Running, Equestrian
15
Reservoir Trail - Montecito
1-3 Miles • Dirt Path • Viewpoints
Walks, Dog Walks, Family Friendly, Biking, Running, Kid Safe, Equestrian
16
San Antonio Creek - Goleta
1.5 Miles • Dirt Path
, Walks, Dog Walks, Family Friendly, Biking, Equestrian, Running, Kid Safe
17
San Marcos Preserve - Santa Barbara
1-3 Miles • Dirt Path • Viewpoints, Sunset
Walks, Dog Walks, Family Friendly, Running, Kid Safe
18
Sheffield Reservoir - Santa Barbara
1-3 Miles • Dirt Path • Viewpoints, Sunset
Walks, Dog Walks, Family Friendly, Running, Kid Safe, Equestrian
19
Summerland Overlook - Summerland
1-3 Miles • Dirt Path • Viewpoints
Walks, Dog Walks, Family Friendly, Biking, Running, Kid Safe, Equestrian
20
Summerland Trails - Summerland
1-3 Miles • Dirt Path • Viewpoints
Walks, Dog Walks, Biking, Running, Equestrian
21
Toro Canyon - Summerland
1-2 Miles • Dirt Path • Viewpoints
Walks, Dog Walks, Family Friendly, Kid Safe
22
Toro Ridge - Summerland
1-2 Miles • Dirt Path • Viewpoints
Walks, Dog Walks, Family Friendly, Kid Safe
23
Valley Club - Montecito
1-3 Miles • Dirt Path
Walks, Dog Walks, Biking, Running, Equestrian
24
West Campus Loop - Goleta
1-3 Miles • Dirt Path • Devereux Sough, dunes and beaches.
Walks, Dog Walks, Biking, Running, Photography, Birding
25
Last Updated: Saturday, July 25, 2015