Santa Barbara > Activity Guide > Beaches > Carpinteria
Pros: Although legally two beaches, this is one long stretch of gorgeous sand, surf and dunes.  Without a doubt, this is one of the nicest beaches anywhere. 

Surfers, campers, kids and "non-gull" bird activity make this beach a little slice of heaven.  Amenities include showers and restrooms, and volleyball.  On the State Beach side you can rent skates and bikes.  The heart of Carpinteria is just three blocks up Linden, so if you weary of sand you can easily pick up a burger or even a nifty little antique.

At low tide the tidal pools are filled with sea life.  Part of the beach is closed during seal birthing time because there's a nearby rookery, but most of the year there's clear and open access.

Cons:   Bring your own refreshments.  Carpinteria has some great places to eat but they're away from the waterfront.  Also, near the State side there is tar seepage, so bring along a pair of beach sandals and some baby oil, which will take the tar off your feet.

Directions: From the 101 take the Linden exit away from the mountains. Go to the end of the road and you will find the beach.  There is plenty of free and paid parking.