Santa Barbara > Activity Guide > Beaches > West Beach
Pros:  If you're looking for the best place to watch fireworks on the Fourth of July or New Years, or you want to watch boats coming and going from the harbor, or you want to play volleyball or rollarblade, then come to West Beach.  This is also where the Ka Nai'a Outrigger Club holds their Sunday lessons and where many kayaks, windsurfers, and sailboats set out. 

There aren't a lot of facilities, but you are close to the Chase Palm Park and Wharf so it's not really needed.   There are a number of excellent restaurants across the street.  Leadbetter is about four blocks down and the breakwater is about three blocks away.

Cons:  Okay - so it's not the prettiest beach in the world unless you like industrial.  Call me a snob, but I don't think I'd swim here - I don't know if I've ever seen anybody swim.  Come to think of it - I don't think you can swim.  I'd be afraid of getting hit by a boat.

Directions:  Take the Garden Street exit and turn towards the ocean.  At the end of the road turn right.  There is on-street parking and if you're willing to walk a bit there's parking on the wharf and parking for East Beach.