Santa Barbara > Activity Guide > Beaches > Goleta Beach
Pros: This beach has a little bit of everything for just about anybody.  A long sandy beach is flanked by a grass.  There are plenty of grills and picnic tables and a brisk wind keeps bathers from getting over heated. There is a busy walking trail nearby.

The parking is free.  A fishing pier, restaurant and snack bar, volleyball nets, restrooms, and large areas for group picnics provide plenty of amenities.  Although it is close to the University and the airport, ground and air traffic seem very far away. 

Cons:  The area is rich in oil deposits, which occasionally give it a tar smell.  It is a very busy beach and parking can be difficult to find.  Since it is right off the highway, it isn't possible to park on the road.

Directions:  From the 101 take the 217 until you come almost the end.  Take the airport exit and at the bottom of the ramp turn left.  Go under the bridge and turn right into the parking lot.