Explore the most popular beach trails near Goleta with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

I hiked this back in 2013 in a large group. Short but steep, so it’ll get your heart rate up. Beautiful views of the ocean and surrounding mountains. There is camping on the state beach below. Not sure if dogs are allowed on this trail but they are not allowed on the beach. Very windy, obviously, so dress in layers. The caves are really cool, but unfortunately there is a lot of graffiti.

Pretty quick hike up to the caves with lovely views. Not super strenuous but a decent work out.

I didn’t think I could make it all the way, but I did and the view was amazing!

One of my favorite areas in Santa Barbara / Goleta. Gorgeous bluffs and then an easy descent down to the beach.

The monarch trails in the forest are currently closed because the trees are dying. Check the butterfly grove website.

El Capitan is a large campground but the most of the camp sites are well spaced a part. This is more of a walk along a paved bike path rathern than a hike. Great ocean views along the ocean bluff. Part of the paved path is closed but you can bypass by going down to the beach. Best if you go during low tide as there isn't a lot of beach to walk on at high tide.

Beautiful hike! Quite steep in some parts but relaxing in the caves with a view of the ocean was the best part.

Cool hike! Caves are neat. I would say kid friendly if 6 or older. 4 year old had trouble with the steep parts. My two year old got a shoulder ride once we were off the paved path. Short hike but definitely moderate due to steep trail.

hiking
3 months ago

I am in no shape of form a hiker. This trail was supper fun and I brought my 4yr old with me and she handled it like a champ. I definitely felt the burn during the hike but it was doable and I had a blast

hiking
3 months ago

Beautiful hike especially when done in April. The mustard flowers coat the small valley and hills and it becomes very scenic with the ocean as the backdrop. The caves themselves are interesting but not mind-blowing. The hike itself is pretty enough to do it though. Unfortunately some of the rocks are tagged with graffiti.

Family friendly hike. Sad we can't take our dogs anymore. Beautiful caves and views.

Awesome hike! Nice wind caves. Wish there was more to hike.

Beautiful hike , steep , short, worth the time.

Loved the vistas and rock formations.

If you go to UCSB or work there, this is a great trail. If you love bird watching, you'll dig the lagoon. This mixed use trail is pieced together with sections of single track, bike path, hardpack, and maintained crushed granite walkways. There are interpretive signs around the lagoon educating about birds, plant life, restoration, whale migration, and more. If you are from out of town looking for a place to explore, I wouldn't recommend this hike over some others, with one exception: the Lagoon Island Labyrinth. This labyrinth is the largest I've personally seen (out of several), and overlooks the Pacific Ocean. Overall, a nice morning walk, with plenty of parking at Goleta State Beach.

hiking
7 months ago

Beautiful views. Challenging part of the way but in a fun. The caves are unique. The turkey vultures gliding around made it more fun. Definitely worth the trip.

Good quick hike! Fun! Had to rock scramble a bit at the very top! Went on a nice windy day!

Beautiful and unique. Very, very steep.

Love this place. Last time we hiked this, we finally ventured past the caves. Technically you're on the Beach to Back Country trail.. we took a right once that meets up with the Overlook Fire Rd & went to the tower. The views there are AMAZING...frightening & stunning as you overlook 101 Gaviota Pass & tunnel. Lots of magical hawks that like to show off. We headed back & had enough juice left in us to venture towards the other way & got a lil ways down Hollyridge (or someth like that, don't remember) before we headed back the way we came in.. looked like we weren't getting closer to ocean & was much hotter than forecasted.. so did total of 8+ miles. Worth it, but bring plenty of water, esp on warmer day. Can be trafficked on weekends & evenings, but only up to caves. Past that, you see very little of other humans.

This trail has a closed portion, but the entire trail isn't closed. If you start at El Capitan, you can avoid the closed portion by heading down to the beach for a bit, then back up. If you start at Refugio you have much more trail. This trail is easy, and paved. Some areas you can't see the ocean due to plant growth, but there are some lovely quiet beaches along the way. A really nice way to walk a section of the Gaviota Coast.
Pro Tip: Use the bathroom before heading in either direction. Pro pro tip: A lot of the bathrooms are locked. Keep trying. It's like an Easter egg hunt!

great place

hiking
8 months ago

I've been meaning to do this short hike for quite some time. Finally got around to it today. I am not very athletic and found this trail to be a little challenging. It throws everything at you: easy, moderate, hard. Cool temps. Hot temps. Sand. Rocks. Ocean view. Mountain view. Scrambling. Sliding. Add in the "easy" paved trail to the trailhead and back and you've got a nice 4 mile workout. Not sure I'll hike this trail again, unless I was sharing it with someone. The caves are neat for what they are; nice views. Free.

gets very steep and dangerous towards the top .almost 90 degrees incline . with narrow path.

I didn’t see a single piece of trash on my way to the wind caves but then I saw someone leave bags of dog poo in the parking lot. If you’re going to bag dog poo only to leave it on the ground, don’t bag it to begin with. You can also hear the nearby highway from the smaller peak. If you have 90 minutes to burn I suggest this hike. Otherwise I think there may be better options nearby

Great hike. Not too long or hard. Great views from the top!

Great quick local escape

Nice views. Good family time

trail not clearly marked in some places

camping
Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Don't know how long the trail has been closed, but I used the bypass and felt very unsafe. There are a couple of paths down to the beach, that was nice. You can see the ocean almost the entire time which us beautiful, but the trail itself is just an asphalt path.

Saturday, August 19, 2017

Fun hike! Great views

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