For some people, taking their dog for a walk is the highlight of their day. For others, it’s a chore. But for those who love to go on adventures, there’s no better way to spend a day than a walk on the beach. Santa Barbara dog beaches are well-known for their beautiful white sand and clear blue water.
These beaches are the perfect place to spend a day with your dog. Whether you are bringing your dog for a walk, a swim, or some training trips, there is no better place to bring your pup than on the south coast of California.
However, it’s important to note that not all beaches are created equal. While some will provide all pet-friendly amenities and activities, others will not or only have a few.
Here are the best Santa Barbara dog beaches to help you choose the perfect beach for your pup.
Before you read this guide, “Best Santa Barbara Dog Beaches,” check out: Pensacola Dog Beach – The Perfect Beach For Your Companion! (2023) and Belmont Harbor Dog Beach – Everything You Need To Know! (2023).
1. Butterfly Beach
If you are looking for a pristine white sand beach with tall palm trees and clear blue water, look no further than Butterfly Beach. A Santa Barbara dog beach favorite, this beach is next to Montecito Village, south of East Beach. The beach offers beautiful views of the Channel Islands and its coastline, where you can spot dolphins and other marine life swimming in the ocean.
Some major activities you can enjoy with your pup while on this beach include:
- Watching the beautiful sunset
In addition to the above activities, if you want to enjoy good food, you can visit Coast Village Road, five minutes from the beach, and find various food options and drinks.
While on this beach, always ensure your dog is leashed. Only the Shoreline Park located on this beach allows dogs to run freely. This beach also doesn’t have lifeguards, so you must ensure your dog’s safety. The other thing to note is that this beach often gets crowded, so find parking as early as possible.
2. Summerland Beach
If you are looking for another dog-friendly beach to relax with your pup, you must visit the gorgeous Summerland Beach. Unlike the previous beach filled with crowds of people, this one is in a quiet area, making it perfect for those who want to relax with their dogs.
Some activities you can enjoy with your pup on this beach include:
- Enjoying the stunning views of sea life and nature
- Enjoying the best walks with your dogs off-leash
- Dip your feet in the clear and cool water
Besides these incredible activities, Summerland Beach also incorporates an adjoining green park, perfect for a stroll after your beach visit.
While on Summerland Beach, ensure that you carry your umbrella. This beach is one of the best Santa Barbara dog beaches but is also known to get very sunny.
3. Santa Claus Beach
This beach is also one of the most enjoyable Santa Barbara dog beaches, with its location in Santa Claus, a well-liked town known for Christmas celebrations. Located on Highway 101, the beach offers some of the best views of the clearest water, making it the perfect beach for water activities with your dogs.
Some activities you can enjoy on this beach include:
- Boogie boarding
Besides that, you’ll enjoy the stunning views of the clear blue skies meeting the deep blue ocean, making it a fantastic place for taking pictures. You will also experience rocky borders, which adds a rustic charm to this beautiful place, making it among the best Santa Barbara dog beaches.
While on Santa Claus Beach, ensure that your dog is well-leashed. Parking is also limited, so be prepared.
4. Arroyo Burro Beach Park
This 14-acre dog-friendly Santa Barbara beach is next to Hope Ranch, west of Cliff Drive’s city center. The locals here refer to this beach park as Hendry’s Beach. This beach is an amazing place where your dog can splash water and enjoy strolls on the popular Douglas Family Preserve.
Other activities you can enjoy here include:
- Watching the whales swimming
- Enjoying the beautiful sunset with your dog
Another unique thing about this beach is that it is in a secluded place, surrounded by tall bluffs and a curving coastline. These features make it an incredible place to relax and unwind. After enjoying the beach, you can visit the Boathouse Restaurant and experience the delicious meals available.
Always ensure your dog gets leashed on this beach except at Douglas Family Preserve and the east of the creek, where dogs can run freely. The other thing is to be aware of the tides and currents, so before you swim, inform the lifeguards.
Additionally, the beach offers a warm bath dog wash station on a self-serve system, which will come in handy in case your pet gets dirty.
5. 1000 Steps Beach
Santa Barbara undoubtedly has some of the best dog beaches in California, and one of them is 1000 Steps Beach. This beach sits west of Shoreline Park Beach, a popular beach in the area that needs you to hike the 200 steps stairs concrete to experience the gorgeous views.
Most people know this beach for its laid-back vibes and calm waters. Other activities you can enjoy here include:
- Enjoying the gorgeous views of the coast
- Experiencing tide pool exploration
- Enjoy a sunset walk with your dog
The 1000 Steps Beach also offers a peaceful environment, perfect if you want to enjoy your dog’s company away from the city’s chaos. Dogs here are also permitted to stroll without a leash on specific points from the beach staircase, Mesa Lane Beach, 1000 Steps Beach, all the way to Hendry’s Beach.
It’s also crucial to note that the beach lacks a designated parking lot, so drivers use street space.
6. Goleta Beach Park
This beach located north of Santa Barbara and near Goleta’s Municipal Airport is approximately 1.2 miles long. Goleta Beach Park is popular for its 1,500-foot fishing pier where you can enjoy the gorgeous mountain views.
The park also incorporates a designated playground where kids can play and rest. You will also find volleyball courts with sandy paths and grassy ballgames areas.
The water activities you can enjoy here include:
After enjoying strolls with your dog, you can head to Beachside Bar Café & Restaurant, which has some mouthwatering meals and drinks.
Besides the special features, this beach park only allows dogs on a leash. Goleta Beach is also one of the most crowded beaches in Santa Barbara, so make sure you secure your parking before you arrive. You also need to note that this area is a famous oil deposit area, so don’t worry when you encounter a tar smell.
7. Miramar Beach
Miramar Beach is another beautiful beach in Santa Barbara, which is the location of the famous Rosewood Hotel. Some popular activities you can explore while on this beach include:
- Beach walking with your dog
- Stand-up paddleboarding
You can also enjoy the Rosewood Miramar Beach hotel, which offers incredible meals and drinks. The hotel also has fantastic accommodations for all the guests, with different types of rooms to choose from.
This beach has dog restrictions, so before heading to the beach, ensure that your pets are on a leash.
8. West Ellwood Beach
This Santa Barbara dog beach, located at 7686 Hollister Ave, is open from 4:00 am to 10:00 pm. The beach is generally uncrowded, allowing you to experience your time with your dogs in an exclusive environment.
Some activities you can enjoy here include:
- Quality time with your dog
While on this beach, it’s important to note that your dog should be leashed. There is parking, although it’s quite a long walk to the beach. Additionally, this beach often receives stains from natural oil seepage.
Frequently Asked Questions
Here are answers to a few of the most frequently asked questions that will help you gain more insights into the dog-friendly beach scene in Santa Barbara.
Yes, most Santa Barbara beaches allow dogs as long as they are on a leash, with just a few exceptions, like Arroyo Burro Beach, which permits unleashed dogs. It’s also important to note that cities like Carpinteria prohibit dogs on some beaches.
There are several different places you can take your dog in Santa Barbara. For instance, Santa Claus Beach and Summerland Beach provide ample space for dogs to run and play, while Arroyo Burro is the perfect place to let your dog off the leash.
Yes, dogs are permitted on Butterfly Beach in Santa Barbara, where you can walk with your dog on a leash while enjoying the ocean views. However, you won’t find any public facilities at this beach in Santa Barbara.
Yes, Miramar Beach is dog friendly in Santa Barbara. However, as mentioned before, it’s crucial to note that this beach only allows dogs on leashes at all times.
Yes, dog-friendly beaches in Santa Barbara include Santa Barbara Beach, Arroyo Burro Beach, and Miramar Beach. However, it’s vital to note that most beaches only allow dogs on a leash if you want to enjoy the beach with your dog.
Conclusion for “Best Santa Barbara Dog Beaches”
Santa Barbara dog beaches are a must-go for dog owners. These beaches provide dogs with a place to run, swim, and play in the sand. However, it’s important to note that some dog-friendly beaches allow dogs off-leash while others do not.
Additionally, if you are planning to bring your dog to a beach in Santa Barbara, it’s vital to check the rules and regulations so you don’t get in trouble with the authorities.
To sum it all up, the best Santa Barbara dog beaches, such as Arroyo Burro and Miramar Beach, are great places to take your dog for a walk and enjoy the refreshing water.
If you find this guide, “Best Santa Barbara Dog Beaches,” helpful, check out:
- Asbury Park Dog Beach – The Perfect Beach for Your Companion! (2023)
- Montrose Dog Beach – The Perfect Dog Beach! (2023)
- Is Daytona Beach Dog Friendly? (2023)
Learn more by watching “Dog Friendly Santa Barbara – Things To Do” down below:
Garrett loves animals and is a huge advocate for all Doodle dog breeds. He owns his own Goldendoodle named Kona. In addition, he volunteers at the Humane Society of Silicon Valley, where he fosters dogs and helps animals. Garrett enjoys writing about Doodles and believes that dogs can teach humans more about how to live than humans can teach a dog.
Why Trust We Love Doodles?
At We Love Doodles, we’re a team of writers, veterinarians, and puppy trainers that love dogs. Our team of qualified experts researches and provides reliable information on a wide range of dog topics. Our reviews are based on customer feedback, hands-on testing, and in-depth analysis. We are fully transparent and honest to our community of dog owners and future owners.